2020 Youth Capital Challenge

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.

Mentor opportunities

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.

Desired Experience

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.

Diversity Statement

Ohio State College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences provides research and related educational programs to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis.

Mentor application

Apply by Nov. 8 at 5 p.m.

For all questions related to the application, nomination or mentorship internship, contact Kelsey Turner at [email protected] or Sally McClaskey at [email protected]

I'm eternally grateful for the support Ohio Farm Bureau scholarships provided in helping me turn my dreams into reality.
Bethany Starlin's avatar
Bethany Starlin

Hocking County Farm Bureau

Available scholarships
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Business Solutions
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

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