Youth Participation in State League Conventions
The Arizona League of Cities and Towns has invited youth delegates to a Youth Program at its annual conference since 2006. Youth participate in their own sessions and activities and also have the opportunity to interact with local elected officials. The one-day program includes presentations from youth commissions to showcase innovative programs in their cities and towns, interactive youth leadership development sessions, and networking opportunities for youth delegates and coordinators. Youth commissions and Youth Advisory Boards from across the state are invited to participate. There is a reduced registration fee for each student and chaperone attending the Youth Program.
The Florida League of Cities (FLC) organizes a robust youth council program at its annual convention. The League's goal in presenting this program is to provide attendees with additional insight into municipal governance, as well as to gain real-world experience about issues facing municipalities statewide and nationally, and to network with other Florida youth councils. Florida high school and college students who have attended the Youth Council Day that has taken place at FLC annual conferences have participated in networking lunches, session on common problems in Florida, and interactive sessions on the importance of government.
At its 2011 convention, FLC announced its inaugural municipal youth council video competition, in which Florida youth councils will showcase their work and commitment to their communities. Winners will be announced in February 2012 and at the league's next annual conference. Winning youth councils will receive five complimentary registrations to the FLC annual conference to present their winning entries, as well as recognition in Quality Cities magazines and the FLC website, and a cash prize of $750, $500, and $250 for first, second and third-place winners.
Since 2004, the Association of Idaho Cities has included a Youth Leadership Program with its Annual Conference. Workshops specific to youth engagement are part of the adult delegate agenda. The youth program empowers youth to become competent and confident leaders through team-building, leadership development and conflict resolution development skills.
MississippiThe Mississippi Municipal League (MML) has hosted a Youth Track at its annual summer conference since 2008. The youth track began as a half-day session and was expanded into a full-day session the following year. MML also hosts a separate statewide youth leadership summit in the spring. At the youth track, sessions have included presentations by local youth councils, a Youth Town Hall, and participation in the conference's opening general session, including giving the invocation, reciting the pledge of allegiance, and participating in the Parade of Flags ceremony.
Since 2005, the North Carolina League of Municipalities (NCLM) has organized a youth summit at its annual conference. The full-day event brings together several hundred youth leaders each year. Past sessions have included speakers from local universities, leadership programs, and discussion of issues such as "Privacy in the Age of MySpace, Facebook, Text Messaging and Video Messaging," building youth councils, and youth innovation in a troubled economy.
More than 400 youth join municipal officials in participating in the annual Local Officials' Day sponsored by the Utah League of Cities and Towns at the beginning of Utah's legislative session in January. These youth council representatives have the opportunity to meet with their state legislators, learn about state and local government, and discuss issues of importance to their communities. Youth gain an overview of Utah politics and the legislative issues facing the state, and participate in workshops on personal and public financial issues.Additional leagues that promote youth participation in their annual conferences include Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, and Wyoming.