Georgia Impact

Nominations open for new youth leadership program

Students participate in previous Fanning-led youth leadership program. (Photo by Charlie Bauder)

Fanning Institute will implement statewide Youth LEAD Georgia 

Nominations for a new University of Georgia-run statewide youth leadership program are now open.

In January, UGA received a $1.5 million pledge from Chick-fil-A Inc. to support the development of Youth LEAD Georgia, a new UGA-led statewide youth leadership program, as well as an annual youth leadership summit at UGA.

Rising 10th and 11th grade students will be eligible to participate in the inaugural Youth LEAD Georgia program, which will run from January to November 2024.

Fanning faculty lead a youth leadership program. (Photo by Shannah Montgomery)

The UGA J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development, a unit of Public Service and Outreach, will create and implement both Youth LEAD Georgia and the annual summit at UGA. In addition, the Fanning Institute will partner with youth leadership development organizations from around Georgia for student recruitment and program delivery.

“Youth LEAD Georgia participants should demonstrate a commitment to academic success with a desire to engage with and lead in their schools and communities,” said Matt Bishop, Fanning Institute director. “The program provides an opportunity for future leaders to develop their personal skills and network with peers and potential mentors to build a foundation for success.”

Students must be nominated by an adult. After being nominated, the student and their parent or guardian will receive an email with a link to the application form. To be considered, students must complete the entire application form.

There is no cost for student participants. Meals, transportation for tours and program activities, and program materials are available through the pledge from Chick-fil-A.

Youth participant in a leadership program led by Fanning. (Photo by Shannah Montgomery)

Those selected for the inaugural Youth LEAD Georgia class will be expected to attend all the sessions, which are scheduled for the following dates and locations:

  • Jan. 20 – 22, 2024; Athens
  • Mar. 10 – 11, 2024; Cartersville
  • June 4 – 7, 2024; Bus Tour of south Georgia
  • Sept. 15 – 16, 2024; Columbus
  • Nov. 3 – 4, 2024; Atlanta

In addition, Youth LEAD Georgia participants will be invited to participate in the youth leadership summit at UGA in July 2024.

During Youth LEAD Georgia, participants will learn leadership skills from the Fanning Institute, develop awareness of issues facing Georgia and explore ways to apply their knowledge to issues within their communities. Youth will also have an opportunity to gain exposure to postsecondary opportunities, businesses and industries.

Nominations for Youth LEAD Georgia will remain open through Sept. 1 and nominated youths will have until Sept. 30 to complete their application. A volunteer committee comprised of individuals from different regions throughout Georgia will select participants.

The Fanning Institute will announce the inaugural Youth LEAD Georgia class this fall.

Those wishing to nominate a youth for Youth LEAD Georgia may do so here.

More information on Youth LEAD Georgia.