JSA’s unique, time-tested method puts students in charge of their own experiences, allowing them to explore how to make their voices and actions matter. Through this approach, JSA has prepared more than 500,000 young people for thoughtful leadership in every sector of society.
Alumni and current students agree: this community of leaders has a lasting impact on their ability to address complex issues and have vital but difficult conversations across diverse viewpoints. These skills benefit not only individual students and alumni, but also the organizations they lead, the communities they inhabit and society overall.
Hear from current students about how JSA has impacted them.
In the wake of this election, I return to what drives me most days, and that is: How can I change things for the better, right here, right now? Whose life can I improve today? How can I make the city I live in safer today? What can I do to improve the education system and education outcomes for the people in my city today?
It is the TODAY part that motivates me, because I know that each of us can in fact make a difference every day. We don’t need to wait for an election. We shouldn’t wait until we retire or have more time, or finish X or Y. We should do what we can now, today.
There are many organizations that deserve our attention, our energy and our financial support. First among them for me is the Junior State of America (JSA). I am convinced that a student-run organization focused on civil discourse and civic engagement is exactly what our nation needs…today and for years to come.
I watch our incredible JSA students, more than 10,000 of them across the country, grapple with challenging political questions with a grace and dignity few grown ups managed to muster during this political campaign. I find myself in awe of the sophistication of JSA student discourse, and the near boundless empathy they show for their fellow students, regardless of political, religious or ethnic background.
Please help us reach more young leaders with JSA’s unique student-led, student-run programs. I am focused on what I can do to support civic education and the rising generation of leaders TODAY. I hope you’ll join me.
Rachel Kaganoff Stern President, The Junior Statesmen Foundation
As people across the country headed to the polls on November 8, 2016, JSAers made their voices heard by voting in a virtual election conducted on our app. Check out what tomorrow’s leaders had to say – not only on the candidates for president but on congressional races and ballot measures as well!
These results offer a glimpse at the priorities of the next generation and the representatives that speak to them and therefore offers telling perspective on the political future of America. The students learned the difficulty of making decisions that could change the course of a nation while also developing an understanding of the importance of voting to our American Democracy. They were also given the opportunity to share their opinion and learn from others by posting on an activity feed that included candidate endorsements, pictures of mock elections at schools, and real-time election updates.
Mauricio Macias, a Senior at Cibola High School in Yuma, Arizona explained the feeling of empowerment he experienced through the online election.“Many high school students don’t have the ability to vote because of age restriction but JSA again gives them an opportunity to express the voice. Being able to vote; even though it wasn’t an official ballot, gave me the opportunity to express my voice and participate in a democratic process that wouldn’t of bee provided otherwise. JSA does this everyday for thousands of high school students and i’m privileged to be be given this opportunity.”
Participating in JSA is truly a life-changing experience. Beyond the fun experienced at conventions and chapter activities, students gain skills that are necessary for success in higher education and the work place. Young people are also given a taste of university life, introducing them to the rigors of college-level classes, through JSA summer programs held at Georgetown, Princeton and Stanford.
Your Gift Will Be Doubled! Our volunteer Trustees believe passionately in JSA’s mission and have personally put up a $55,000 matching fund. It will double any amount you give by September 30th!
Looking across the messages scrawled across the Fight Apathy posters in their hands it was easy to see how the members of the DC JSA staff came to find themselves dedicated to the cause of getting students involved in public life; each started from deeply felt commitment to the causes they held in their hands and to the idea that it was important for our public discourse to start conversations about those commitments.
Beliefs spanned the political spectrum and ranged from perpetually unachieved goals such as “Equal Pay For Equal Work” and “DC Statehood” to those with momentum such as “Marriage Equality” and to the politically unlikely such as “Flat Taxation”, “Comprehensive Immigration Reform”, and “Gun Control.”
Andy Clark, the Program Director for the Ohio River Valley and Midwest States and a recent candidate for his Advisory Neighborhood Commission this last November said he supported DC Statehood because “More people live here than in two other states. When our nation goes to war young people from DC who might be in harms way have no voice in our government.”
Even after the Lilly Ledbetter Equal Pay Act and a half-century after the start of the modern Women’s Movement women still earn less than men do for the same work. Elizabeth Ventura, the Mid-Atlantic State Program Director, said that she “Believes in Equal Pay for Equal Work” because it’s basic fairness and something unfinished in our society.
Larry Guillemette advocated for a Flat Tax as a matter of fairness. He discussed the way in which people pay income taxes on their earnings, then sales taxes when they spend those earnings, and in many states, estate taxes on the previously taxed money after a lifetime of saving. A flat tax and scrapping multiple levels of taxation would lower the burden on working people and be a fairer way to pay taxes he said.
An immigrant from Sierra Leone herself, Winstina Hughes explained how difficult the immigration system could be, especially for students, who might not be able to stay in the country after completing their studies, or who might be barred from gaining permanent residency or returning if they over-stayed student visas even briefly. If our nation adopts comprehensive immigration reform then at the very least, our society might better hold on to immigrant students whose drive and education contribute so much to our society.
Fight Apathy is about starting conversations about what we believe in so that we can engage in conversations, share ideas, and realize that each and every one of us cares deeply about something, and that something is worth advocating and voting for.
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The mission of the Junior State of America and the Junior Statesmen Foundation is to strengthen American democracy by educating and preparing high school students for life-long involvement and responsible leadership in a democratic society.
Pricing package details for all Fall State conventions are listed below. Note that these prices apply only to chapters that register online using MyJSA. The paper registration fee is an additional $10 per student. There is also a late fee of $15 per person for chapters that do not complete their registration by the registration deadline.
Fall State Pricing Package Details 2016
EARLY REGISTRATION PRICES
REGULAR REGISTRATION PRICES
Oct. 29 - 30, 2016
Early Bird Registration Period: Sept. 12 – Sept. 25