The YMCA Youth & Government program is a forum for debate and leadership among high school students throughout the state and nation. The mission of the program is to encourage and foster leadership through service, fellowship, responsibility, and respect for oneself and others among all participants and to educate and engage students in the process of government, from local to international, so that they become more active participants in their communities. Student participants in the Youth & Government program are of the highest caliber. These individuals excel academically and socially, while developing their skills as leaders and communicators through the avenue of this program. Louisiana Youth & Government is going on its 55th program year and supports more than 60 high school clubs and two conferences annually: Model United Nations (MUN) and Youth Legislature.
Model United Nations (MUN)
Model United Nations provides participants with an opportunity to gain insight into global relations through a challenging and constructive weekend program. The focus of this conference is to provide student participants with the experience of representing a country's viewpoint on global issues and engaging in the authoring of resolutions through compromise, cooperation, and exposure to parliamentary procedure.
Youth Legislature (LEG)
Youth Legislature provides participants with an opportunity to gain insight into local and state policy and politics. This conference is held at the Louisiana State Capitol building, and the focus is to provide student participants with the experience of being a part of a functioning state government, from bill passage to policy advising.
Conference on National Affairs (CONA)
The Louisiana Youth & Government program also participates in the annual YMCA Conference on National Affairs (CONA) held at the YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly in Black Mountain, North Carolina. The YMCA Youth Conference on National Affairs was started in 1968 as a follow-up to the large number of successful state programs conducted by the YMCA throughout the nation. This program offers unusual opportunities for a young person to do research in the area of National and International concern; to organize this information into a documented proposal; to engage in intensive discussion and to debate these proposals with understanding young people from other states. Young people who have participated in the YMCA Youth Conference on National Affairs are unanimous in their belief that this experience makes a vital contribution in helping young citizens to learn more about the democratic form of Government.
national JUdicial Competition (NJC)
This year we will additionally be selecting our inaugural Louisiana Delegation for the National Judicial Competition (NJC). NJC was started in 2012 as a follow-up to the large number of successful state programs and the Conference on National Affairs (CONA). This program offers unusual opportunities for a young person to do research in the area of judicial matters and engage with participants from around the country to face off in mock trial and appellate competitions in Chicago, August 2017.