In partnership with Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG), PRO Youth & Families has launched the Youth Leadership Academy for high school juniors and seniors. The Youth Leadership Academy (YLA) is an opportunity for students from across SACOG’s six counties (Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo, Yuba, Placer, and El Dorado) to weigh in on policies surrounding transportation, land use, affordable housing, and environmental impacts of development.
Students in the program will participate in monthly trainings including civic engagement and professional development activities, as well as interact with SACOG’s board members who hold elected offices across the region.
The kick off for SACOG’s Youth Leadership Academy was held on January 26 with 29 high-school students from across the six-county region. This first training introduced the program to students, discussed civic engagement and SACOG’s core functions, included presentations and activities, and ended with a tour of the California State Capitol Museum.
The training led to great discussions among the students throughout the day and was a snapshot of what’s to come in the next five months. The students showed their interest in gaining skills to create change in their communities and the desire to be part of complex discussions and decisions that affect their communities.
The YLA is a pilot project that encourages a two-way learning path for youth of the region and SACOG. Through the program, we hope participating youth will gain more in-depth knowledge about local government, planning, and an overall interest in the public sector as a possible career option. The YLA will also be an opportunity for SACOG to hear from youth on regional needs and be an avenue for more inclusive dialogues.