Shreyas Amol Jethwani is enrolled in undergraduate political science courses at the University of Florida, but that hasn’t stopped him from taking a stab at a state House seat in the 2018 midterms.

The 21-year-old junior believes the climate is right for a paradigm shift in what defines a public servant, something he’s hoping to capture in his bid for Gainesville’s House District 21.

“Every 20 years or so in American politics there is a point at which we redefine what it means to be a public servant …  We’re at that point,” Jethwani said during an interview with Florida Politics.

A progressive Democrat, Jethwani believes it’s that tipping point, and a push from the rumored ‘blue wave,’ that will ultimately propel him to securing HD 21, which is currently occupied by Republican Chuck Clemons.

“We just have to reignite that spark and capitalize on it and build some strong momentum for the blue wave in 2018,” Jethwani said.

He said he’s always been interested in politics. His parents immigrated to the U.S. from India, where his father was a journalist. Jethwani, who was born in Ocala, said his father had impressed upon him the importance of being in tune to current events.

“I’ve always been raised to be conscious and aware of what’s going on in the world around me,” Jethwani said. He also said it was an interest in the environment — fueled by the wooded areas and springs that surround his hometown — that paved a way for his political involvement.

In the fifth grade, Jethwani began working at a tiger sanctuary in Citra, later becoming involved with an environmental group in middle school. By high school, he was conducting research for Silver Springs in coordination with the Howard

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