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Youth & Government

What is it?

Illinois Youth & Government is a YMCA program that teaches high school students about government and the process through which bills become laws.  Simply stated, Y&G is a mock legislature; we "play" Congress.


What are the different roles?

Legislative Assistant – Students will create a proposal for a selected topic that is chosen from a list of options.  They will then present their proposal in a tournament style forum throughout the Springfield Assembly.  A legislator will be assigned to mentor this position.  They do not vote for legislation.  There must be one LA for every 10 legislators.  This position is a great introductory position for those interested, but not quite sure what to expect. 

(Open to Freshman, Sophomores, Juniors, or Seniors in their first year in Y&G)


Lobbyists – Work to defeat or pass legislation.  Work with a bill group to support their bill but do not vote on legislation.  Must write a one-page lobbyist position paper. 

(Open to Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors)


Legislators – Form bill groups of 4 and write a bill.  Present the bill at Pre-Leg I, Pre-Leg II, and at the Springfield Assembly, both in committees and on the floors of the House & Senate.  Vote to pass or defeat legislation.  Will possibly be a mentor to a Legislative Assistant

(Open to Sophomores, Juniors, & Seniors)


Attorney – Students will work in attorney pairs to present an appellate case to a mock student youth court.  They will serve in the capacity of prosecution or defense, and will also serve as a youth justice.  Students will prepare a Bench Memo regarding their case and will work with the Attorney Advisor.

(Open to Sophomores (paired with a Junior/Senior), Juniors, and Seniors)


2021-2022 CALENDAR
First Meeting: Thursday August 26, 2021 at 7:40/3:20 in Room 212
Remind Code: @hlryg21

The program year is September through March, however students must be registered by the end of September. 

September 23 - First Registration Deadline

D-1 and A-1 registration forms and Bill Title Forms through the Y&G website.

Signed Form A-1 and D-2 (Codes of Conduct, Medical Forms and Photo Releases; First Payment of Fees; Financial Assistance Forms to Y&G Office.

October 26, 2021
Legislators must email bill briefs and final copies of bills to  

Links to:
Student Templates (bill title, brief, bill forms, lobbyist info, judicial)
    Illinois Compiled Statutes

November 6, 2021
LEG I -- Potentially held at HLR
***Bring snacks as we will NOT be stopping for lunch.

December 4, 2021

January 6, 2022 - Second Payment 
Lobbyist Position Papers and Legislative Assistant Final State Issues Forum

 January 20
, 2022
Judicial Bench Memos submitted to Y&G Office.

February 1, 2022
College Staff Applications to Y&G Office.

March 18-20, 2022
 Illinois YMCA Youth & Government Assembly in Springfield, IL.