The Ohio Youth Capital Challenge began in the mid-2000s as a partnership between Ohio 4-H, Ohio FFA and Ohio Farm Bureau with the goal of introducing youth to advocacy, citizenship and public policy.
Over the past 10 years, more than 400 high school students have participated in the program, working in teams to research a local community issue, work with mentors and share their solutions in a public format.
This annual event will be offered again in 2022, as a hybrid program, with portions being virtual and portions being in person. Forty student delegates 14 to 18 years old and in grades nine through 12 will have the opportunity to travel to the Ohio Statehouse to meet with legislators and aides to better understand the conception, development and implementation of public policies.
2022 program details
The program will be held virtually with a new curriculum releasing bi-weekly through the Ohio Youth Capital Challenge Google Classroom. Delegates will be assigned a team where they will be tasked with developing public policy proposals and presentations for public hearing. Independent work over the four-month period is expected as teams work with mentors to prepare their policies and presentations. The presentations also will likely have both virtual and in-person options.
Apply by Dec. 17, 2021.
To nominate participants
Teachers, OSU Extension agents and Farm Bureau members are invited to complete nominee information for a youth member who meets these minimum criteria:
- Nominee is enrolled during the 2021-2022 school year and is in at least the ninth grade.
- Nominee is between the ages of 14 and 18.
- Nominee has shown a interest in local community issues and has a desire to be more involved; and
- Nominee has access to a reliable computer or tablet to complete online school work.
Nominees will be notified via email by Friday, Dec. 3, 2021.
Nominating teachers, Extension agents and Farm Bureau members are not obligated to attend or participate in this program beyond submitting the nominee contact information.
OYCC is seeking dynamic, motivated college students with an interest in public policy to serve as mentors to youth delegates.
Ohio Youth Capital Challenge Mentor Internship
The responsibility of the mentors is to encourage and support the research process for youth delegates. Mentors are assigned to a team of two to four youth and are expected to meet regularly with teams and ensure they stay on schedule. Mentors will assist delegates in understanding the curriculum covering civil discourse, policy creation, etiquette, public speaking, creation of bills, and research. The 2022 OYCC will be planned as a hybrid experience, with the ability to transition to in-person activities as allowed by partners and local regulations. Mentors may be expected to work up to 10 hours per month.
Currently enrolled college students in their second year or beyond are encouraged to apply. Ideal candidates possess:
- Strong communication skills.
- Experience working with youth.
- Major/Minor in agriculture communication, public policy, agribusiness, public service, community leadership, or related area.
- Youth Capital Challenge, 4-H and/or FFA alumni are encouraged to apply.
Mentors are eligible to receive up to a $500 stipend at the conclusion of the program, pending their active engagement with their team, all program obligations have been met, satisfactory performance of their mentoring/coaching duties, and following a short evaluation and review with staff.
Ohio State College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences provides research and related educational programs to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis.
Apply by Nov. 8 at 5 p.m.