United States Senate Youth Program

 
senateyouth
The United States Senate Youth Program, established in 1962 by U.S. Senate Resolution, is a unique educational experience for outstanding high school students interested in pursuing careers in public service. The 55th annual program will be held in Washington, D.C., from March 4 – 11, 2017. Two student leaders from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity will spend a week in Washington experiencing their national government in action. 
 
Student delegates will hear major policy addresses by senators, cabinet members, officials from the Departments of State and Defense and directors of other federal agencies, as well as participate in a meeting with a justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. All transportation, hotel and meal expenses will be provided by The Hearst Foundations. In addition, each delegate will also be awarded a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate studies, with encouragement to pursue coursework in history and political science. 
 
Selection Process in Delaware
 

Each Delaware high school may nominate one student to apply for the USSYP. The nominations from each high school are due by Friday, October 14, 2016. The nomination must come from a school administrator or counselor.

 

Delaware administers a comprehensive public affairs, government, and history test prepared annually for the program by the Hearst Foundation. Based on the results of the test, the state selection committee invites 6-10 students for a personal interview in Dover on Friday, November 18, 2016. The Secretary of Education makes the final selection of two delegates and two alternates by December 1, 2017. The program is merit-based and highly competitive and the chosen delegates are consistently of the highest caliber in the nation.

Click here for Delaware’s USSYP application form. Each high school – public or private – may nominate one student.

  
How to Qualify
 
Qualified junior or senior high school students must show demonstrated leadership through public service in elected or appointed positions in organizations that relate to government, public affairs, history, and/or community service.
 

Qualified junior or senior high school students must show demonstrated leadership through public service in elected or appointed positions in organizations that relate to government, public affairs, history, and/or community service.


The student is required to be actively serving in an elected or appointed capacity in any one of the following student government, civic or educational organizations during the entire 2016-2017 school year:

  • Student Body president, vice president, secretary or treasurer
  • Class president, vice president, secretary 
or treasurer
  • Student Council representative
  • Student representative elected or appointed (appointed by a panel, commission or board) to a local, district, regional or state-level civic, service and/or educational organization

 

Participation in academic clubs and or educational competition programs or conferences do not qualify a student for the USSYP, although many students who qualify participate in such.

The positions listed below do NOT alone qualify the student for the program:

  • Attendance or officer position at Boys/Girls Nation/State summer conference
  • Member of the National Honor Society (serving as an elected officer for the organization for the entire school year is acceptable)
  • A founder or chairman of a self-created group
  • A participant or officer in Mock Trial, Model U.N. or other academic club, conference or competition

 

RESIDENCY – Each student must be a permanent resident of the United States and currently enrolled in a public or private secondary school located in the state in which at least one of their parents or guardians currently resides.


Exceptions to the residency requirement will only be made in the following cases (in Delaware, this only applies to the Delmar School District):

Students may reside in a state other than the state in which they attend school if they are enrolled in the only designated public high school available to them in a school district that legally crosses contiguous state borders through legal interstate agreement. Students in these schools shall make application to the program through the state where the high school is located and shall represent that state if selected.

 

For more information on USSYP in Delaware, contact Preston Shockley at preston.shockley@doe.k12.de.us.