YLI Application, Class of 2024

About the Program:

The Youth Leadership Initiative (YLI) releases untapped potential in the next generation of community leaders. This untapped potential is released as students learn skills that propel them into their next steps in life and as they embrace their roles as shapers of a community where their dreams can be realized.

High school students get out of the classroom and into real-life learning experiences throughout Greater Des Moines. Their teachers are local business and community experts. Their subjects are opportunities and challenges in our region. Their lessons teach self, group, professional, and community leadership skills to prepare for their futures. Their graduation showcases students who are ready to confidently lead in their personal lives, schools, workplaces, and community.

YLI experience days will take place during the school day one Friday each month. Please reserve the following Monday evening for a classroom session, important to the successful learning and linkage between the experience and the five exemplary leadership practices. Once selected, we will work with your school to ensure the absence is excused. The student will need to make up classroom assignments.

There is a $35 acceptance fee due at orientation if selected to the program, with no other costs or tuition for the year. You will have the option to request a scholarship when you accept your spot, no further questions asked. This fee should NOT prohibit any applicants from applying or accepting.

About the Application Process:

The application period is open February 27 through April 17, 2023. 

This application includes 4 steps:

1) Applicant Contact Information and Optional Personal Information

2) Written Application Essay Questions (300-600 words each)

- Think of someone you consider a great leader. Who is it? What qualities do you appreciate about that person? How has this person inspired you?

- Describe an issue you see in the community or at your school that you would like to see changed.

3) Verbal Application Question (Must be 3-5 minutes total)

- How do you envision yourself growing into leadership roles? What might help you overcome current barriers or challenges? What skills would you like to learn by participating in YLI?

4) Understanding the Commitment

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Lead DSM

1910 Ingersoll Ave., Des Moines, IA