Youth Leadership Initiative

The Youth Leadership Initiative at the University of Virginia Center for Politics is dedicated to increasing civic engagement by providing teachers with the best civics education materials and programs. Research shows that quality civics education programs are essential to creating lifelong citizenship and YLI programs empower students to take responsibility for our democracy.

In 1998 UVA professor and Center for Politics Director Larry J. Sabato founded the Youth Leadership Initiative to combat the apathy and cynicism that he saw in his politics students. Professor Sabato believed that by creating quality civics education programs students would be energized to accept the responsibilities of citizenship and become lifelong participants in American democracy.

Activities such as the yearly Mock Election, E-Congress, Democracy Corps, and YLI lesson plans do more than just teach about civics and government. Each program is infused with simulations and hands-on projects that connect students with the political process.

The Youth Leadership Initiative (YLI) provides everything educators need to get their students in the game absolutely FREE of charge. There is no catch.

For more information on Youth Leadership Initiative, visit our website here.

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  • Social Studies
  • High School
The state of the economy during the presidential election season has a significant impact on not just the approval rating of the incumbent president...
  • Social Studies
  • High School
This twenty-six minute film features seven high school and middle school aged students sharing lunch and discussing the Constitution with President...
  • Social Studies
  • High School
The Constitution was created through discourse, debate and most importantly- compromise. This interactive board game assists students in learning key...
  • Social Studies
  • High School
The Founding Fathers believed that the Constitution would need to be revised and reworked to meet the changing needs of the country. They would be...