Youth Leadership Academy

The goal of the Youth Leadership Academy (YLA) is to bridge the gap between youth and the leaders of today. The program also provides students from across the region the opportunity to learn about local and regional government, planning, civic engagement, promote careers in the public sector, and aid in their professional development. 

During the first year of the program, students had the opportunity to hear from local and state elected officials from across the region. They visited unique locations, such as the Sacramento International Airport and the Pacific Coast Producer’s tomato processing plant and participated in thorough discussions regarding autonomous vehicles, environmental concerns, transportation, and economic development. The second year is now underway, with the same goals, and 36 students from across the Sacramento region. 

The YLA launched in early 2018, under the leadership of then board chair Jay Schenirer, after the SACOG board of directors discussed the missing connection between current regional planning and the youth who will be impacted by today’s policy decisions. After securing private funding, the SACOG board unanimously approved staff to launch the SACOG Youth Leadership Academy. SACOG partnered with the non-profit PRO Youth & Families to create and execute the program.  


Youth Leadership Academy goes virtual
Adapting to a new format

April 23: Adaptability is the name of the game for the world right now, and the Youth Leadership Academy has had to do exactly that. Due to the impacts of Covid-19, SACOG and Pro Youth & Families have followed local and state orders and began working from home and cancelled all in-person sessions for the program. However, the YLA will continue virtually and will still be a place for students from across the region to connect with each other and learn about different regional and local topics that impact their communities.