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Girl#039;s State ends with Montgomery visit

After a week of campaigns and legislative sessions, Girls State ended with commencement exercises Friday afternoon.

Families and friends packed into Crosby Theater on the Troy State University campus to watch as 328 girls received diplomas and certificates for completing Girls State.

Before that, however, the week's activities culminated with a trip to Montgomery for a closer look at how it all comes together.

Girls Staters held their fourth and final legislative session Friday morning in Alabama's House and Senate chambers before each constitutional officer visited her counterpart.

Before eating lunch on capitol grounds, Gov. Bob Riley spoke to the girls on the north lawn.

"It was really great to hear Gov. Riley speak," said Brittany Campbell from Opelika.

Campbell said the entire week was a fun learning experience for her.

"It was really interesting to learn how the government system works," she said.

"And meeting all the girls was so great.

I've made a lot of friends."

Caitlin Burns from Muscle Shoals agreed with her friend.

"I really feel like I can take a lot home with me and take it to school," Burns said.

"Maybe I can talk to other girls and get them interested in coming."

TSU Chancellor Jack Hawkins Jr. spoke briefly at Girls State commencement exercises told the girls how much the TSU staff enjoyed having them on campus.

"I am delighted to have you on campus," he said.

"And I'm proud that you've been here."

He encouraged the girls to take what they learned during the week to become leaders in their own communities.

Girls State Governor Chasi Fowler also addressed the group one last time.

"Remember me, remember your friends and remember what you have learned her," she told them.

"Use it in the future to make Alabama the best that it can be."