High school students attend Global Young Leaders Conference (GYLC)
Leadership Development

Global Young Leaders Conference (GYLC)

Now Enrolling for 2016!



About the Global Young Leaders Conference

Global Young Leaders Conference (GYLC) videoThe Global Young Leaders Conference (GYLC) program is the premier leadership development program for motivated and accomplished students from across the United States and more than 145 countries around the world.

This 10-day leadership journey provides an out-of-classroom learning experience and rigorous curriculum that equips students with the confidence, independence, skills and global competiveness required of the next generation of future leaders. Become a part of GYLC’s rich history when you come together with students from around the world to represent your country and community! Distinguish yourself as a future leader of the 21st century!

Founded in 1985, the Global Young Leaders Conference invites you to fully explore cultural differences, gain firsthand exposure to the challenges of international diplomacy, build confidence and enhance decision-making skills in an atmosphere of mutual respect and that will challenge you to broaden your world view. Choose from one of three exciting conference sites: the United States, China or Europe. You will return home with valuable perspective on your role as a leader in the international community.

By completing this program, you are eligible to receive college credit from George Mason University.

Activities & Benefits

Set yourself apart in today’s globally competitive world.  At GYLC, you will be inspired to expand your horizons and explore your future on a whole new level as you work among your peers, interact with leaders in your host country and gain a fresh, new global perspective.






    Extend your time and learn about university admissions. Learn more about cultural extensions.


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Find out why college credit is important for you. Learn More


    Alumni of the Global Young Leaders Conference (GYLC) go on to be leaders for change in the world, no matter what they do. Meet our Alumni


Rigourous Curriculum
Rigorous Curriculum
  • Stand out from your peers with the experience and knowledge you will gain from taking part in GYLC’s site visits, which include special presentations from motivating speakers, small group working sessions and real world simulations.  Students attending the U.S. Program visit the United Nations and U.S. Department of State.  In Europe, participants visit the Austrian Parliament and international organizations. Students in the China Program visit the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Nest, a social innovation and community development project.
  • Gain critical leadership skills and build self-confidence and independence through public speaking and group presentations.
  • Enhance your leadership ability, cross cultural communication, goal setting, decision making, and conflict resolution skills.
University Preperation
University Preparation
  • Explore and experience some of the world’s most interesting and iconic locations, including university and college campuses in your host country.
  • Strengthen your scholastic credentials with international skills and gain a better understanding of the larger world picture.  GYLC gives you the edge you need to meet you future academic and career advancement goals.
  • Reference your GYLC experience in your college or university applications.
  • Receive college credit through George Mason University.
Cross-Cultural Immersion
Cross-Cultural Immersion
  • Make new self-discoveries and international friends as you work side-by-side with peers and experts from diverse cultures and backgrounds.
  • Learn from and exchange ideas with some of the world's top business leaders, policy officials, lobbyists, journalists, diplomats and academics.
  • Immerse yourself in the culture, history and world views of diverse people in whichever destination cities you choose:  either New York City & Washington, DC in the U.S., BeijingHangzhou & Shanghai in China or ViennaPrague & Berlin, in Europe.

2016 Dates & Locations

Summer Leadership Programs for High School Students - China
Beijing, Hangzhou, Shanghai

July 12 - July 21

Summer Leadership Programs for High School Students - Europe
Vienna, Prague, Berlin

June 26 - July 5

Summer Leadership Programs for High School Students - Washington, D.C.
United States
Washington, DC and New York, NY
  • Jun 13 - Jun 22
  • Jun 20 - Jun 29
  • Jun 27 - Jul 6
  • Jul 4 - Jul 13
  • Jul 11 - Jul 20
  • Jul 18 - Jul 27

Tuition & Financial Assistance


Tuition for the Global Young Leaders Conference program includes housing, conference materials, two meals per day and transportation during the program. For students attending the program in China or Europe, tuition also includes English-speaking guide service and entrance fees.

Learn More


Envision offers a limited number of scholarships to qualified students each year based upon financial need, scholastic merit, leadership achievements and other factors.

Apply Now


Many students use fundraising and sponsorships to cover some or all of their tuition costs. Envision has prepared a fundraising guide featuring suggestions and activities to help you raise funds.

Get Started

Frequently Asked Questions

Program Eligibility & Nomination

Is the Global Young Leaders Conference program for me?

This summer program is for you if you are a high-achieving student between the ages of 15-19 who has demonstrated academic achievement and leadership potential. GYLC is your springboard to investigating exciting career possibilities and leadership roles on a global scale. To attend GYLC, you must be between the ages of 15 - 19. Many of our students are nominated by educators, leaders from youth organizations and participating institutions, but open enrollments are welcome from qualified students who want to make the most of this opportunity.

What happens after I enroll?

After you enroll, you will receive an enrollment confirmation email. A personalized URL will be created for you – your MyEnvisionExperience.com page – where you can find important program updates, the Mandatory Travel Form, the Student Information Form, a travel checklist, pre-conference assignments and a press release you can use to notify local media about your participation in this prestigious program. You will receive notification in the mail and via email with details about how to access your MyEnvisionExperience.com page.

What happens if the program is full? Is there a wait list?

GYLC is a very popular international summer program and the allotted spaces for each session fill quickly. If your preferred session is full, we encourage you to choose another session. You may also request to be put on a wait list for a full session. However, due to the popularity of the program, there is no guarantee that space will become available if you choose the wait list option. It is best to enroll in an available session to guarantee your spot for this exciting experience.

What is the Cultural Extension?

As part of the Global Young Leaders Conference experience, you have the option of extending your time and further immersing yourself in the culture of the host country you choose: 

  • China Global Experience: To extend your 10-day China Global Experience by an additional four days, you may choose a Cultural Extension to further explore either Hong Kong or Xi’an.
  • Europe Global Experience: To extend your 10-day Europe Global Experience, you may choose a Cultural Extension to spend four extra days visiting Munich, Salzburg and Bavaria.
  • United States Global Experience: There are multiple options to extend your 10-day United States Global Experience. You can customize your experience by choosing one of the following options OR choose both to create a 16-day program:
    • Pre-Program Orientation Option: Spend two extra days in Washington, DC, prior to the start of regular conference activities.
    • Cultural Extension Option: Spend four extra days in New York City at the end of regular conference activities.

What is the dress code for this program?

You should expect to wear professional/smart attire most days at the Global Young Leaders Conference. Professional/smart attire for women requires blouses and skirts (no denim), pantsuits or dresses. Shoulders must be covered at all times. Professional/smart attire for men requires jackets, slacks or suits with ties (no denim). You will have the opportunity to dress casually most evenings, which includes jeans and appropriate-length shorts. Comfortable dress and casual shoes are essential. You will be walking a great deal throughout the program.

For more detailed information about the dress code for this program, visit your MyEnvisionExperience.com personal Web page, which will be available to you after you enroll.

What is the code of conduct for this program?

Attending GYLC is fun, but it is also an honor. Like all meaningful experiences, you will get out of it what you put in to your time spent at this exciting summer conference. You are expected to conduct yourself as a responsible leader as you represent your school and community. You must abide by the Student Code of Conduct. You must also abide by and uphold all program rules.

What is the enrollment deadline date?

The deadline date is the date that enrollment closes for GYLC. It is important to note, however, that you enroll on a first-come, first-served basis. Since program space is limited, it is wise to enroll early for this popular summer program.

Organization & Affiliations

Who is Envision?

Envision Experience Envision is a leading experiential education organization dedicated to enabling students of all ages explore their interests and gain critical learning experiences beyond the classroom. Envision merged with LeadAmerica in 2012 to provide a comprehensive offering of programs to help students develop the leadership, scholarship and career skills needed to succeed in the competitive 21st century. See About Envision for more detailed information about Envision, its history of successful educational programs, its leadership and its partners.

All Envision programs are designed to align with Common Core State Standards and other national standards for education. See what others are saying about their Envision program experiences.

How is Envision funded?

Envision is a tuition-based, self-supporting organization, with many students securing financial support from local business, civic, community and leadership organizations. Scholarship funds are also available for qualified nominees. Learn more about scholarships and fundraising opportunities.

Is Envision affiliated with a political party or the U.S. government?

No. Envision is a nonpartisan educational organization.

Tuition & Financial Assistance

What is included in tuition?

Tuition for the GYLC U.S. program includes housing, conference materials, two meals per day and private motor coach transportation during the program.

Tuition for the China and Europe programs includes housing, conference materials, two meals per day, English-speaking guide service, entrance fees and transportation during the program.

Transportation to and from home and the program location is NOT included in tuition. While attending the program, you will only need money for one meal per day, souvenirs and other incidentals.

How do I apply for a scholarship or financial assistance?

You can visit the Envision scholarships page for more information. We are proud to offer a limited number of scholarships to eligible students, opening the door to young leaders from a variety of backgrounds. You should also know that many students fundraise to pay for most or all of their tuition costs. See the fundraising page for more information.

What happens if there are no spaces available by the time I am able to accrue the full tuition amount by fundraising?

If you intend to fundraise to raise program tuition, we encourage you to enroll using our convenient payment plan. That way you will make sure you have safely secured your space in the program. It is always a good idea to contact our Office of Admissions once you begin your fundraising campaign

How will I be notified about my scholarship application?

You can expect to be notified by email. This usually happens about two weeks after the scholarship deadline date has passed. If you do not provide an operable email address, you will receive notification by mail approximately three weeks after the scholarship deadline date has passed. The scholarship deadline date can be found on the scholarships page.

Safety & Supervision

Who will meet me at the airport?

Envision staff will be at the designated airports to assist you with your arrival and departure. We will also ensure there is shuttle service for you to get you from designated airports to program sites one the first and last days of your program. The shuttle service fee is $35 each way or $70 round-trip. 

Note: More details about the designated airport, arrival windows and the airport shuttle service will be provided to you on your personal MyEnvisionExperience.com Web page after you enroll in the program.

How will I be supervised?

Your safety and well-being during the program is our highest priority. The program is structured so that you will reside in a safe, controlled environment. You will be closely supervised by professionally trained staff, including faculty advisors who serve as educational facilitators and chaperones, security personnel, operations personnel and a program coordinator.

For nearly 30 years, Envision has achieved a stellar record of safely and successfully enriching the lives of students, providing them with superb educational experiences and professional supervision. Other Envision safety measures include:

  • Greeting students at the designated airport upon their arrival and providing shuttle service directly to the program site, as well as providing shuttle service back to the airport on departure day.
  • Maintaining a student-to-staff ratio of 17-to-1.
  • Providing single-sex rooms and single-sex floors.
  • Requiring all students to attend all activities.
  • Checking rooms nightly and ensuring that students remain in their rooms.
  • Having night monitors in place to support students who may become ill or who have an emergency during the night.
  • Equipping all staff members with two-way communication devices.

Travel & Accommodations

Where will I stay?

For the 2016 Global Young Leaders Conference programs, you will reside at hotels and universities in the United States and in hotels in China and Europe. Please confirm that you are enrolled in the desired location before making travel arrangements.

How many students share a room?

Each room will house two students (China and Europe) or three students (United States). You will have your own bed. In the United States program, each room is complete with two single or two double beds, and a roll-away bed, dressers and closet space. Linens, blankets, pillows and towels will be provided.

Can I request a roommate?

Roommate requests are not accepted. You will be randomly assigned a room prior to your arrival day. We believe that one of the important benefits of this program is the opportunity for you to network with others and get to know peers from different parts of the country.

Why do you ask for my passport information or U.S. social security information after I enroll?

  • If you are enrolling in the Global Young Leaders Conference program that takes place in Washington, DC and New York City, this information is required for special conference activities such as visits to government buildings and international embassies.
  • If you are a U.S. citizen attending the program in the United States, only your U.S. Social Security number and state of residence are required. Your passport information is not needed.
  • If you are not a U.S. citizen and you are attending the program in the United States, your passport details are required.
  • If you are applying to enroll in a Global Young Leaders Conference program that takes place in China or Europe, your passport details are required to secure your housing accommodations.

Can I attend if I am a student with special needs?

Yes. If you are a student with special needs or with disabilities, we encourage you to enroll. We may be able to provide you with auxiliary aids and services to assist you. Please call our Office of Admissions for more information or to discuss your particular needs prior to enrolling in the program.

Can a U.S. student attend the conference in Washington, DC and New York City?

Yes! Even if you do not travel abroad, you will greatly strengthen your cross-cultural communication skills and learn more about your world as you join peers from around the globe.

What is the Tuition and Travel Protection Plan?

To protect and safeguard the investment that you and your parents make in travel and tuition costs, we strongly recommend that your parents take advantage of our Tuition and Travel Protection Plan. This plan is offered through Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. You may purchase this cancellation insurance when you enroll. You may also select this option when you complete the Mandatory Travel Form on your personalized MyEnvisionExperience.com page after enrollment. If your parents would like more specifics about the Tuition and Travel Protection Plan, please have them call the plan administrator, Nationwide, at (866) 282-3987.

Academic Preparation

What is the pre-conference assignment, FUEL?

The first step of your leadership journey includes assessing your strengths and opportunities for growth. To aid in this assessment, you must complete a brief pre-program assignment entitled Feedback for Understanding Emerging Leaders (FUEL).

The FUEL assignment will be available on your personal MyEnvisionExperience.com web page after you enroll. It simply requires that you choose five mentors – teachers, coaches, youth group leaders or other trusted adults – to complete a short survey about your leadership strengths. You also will complete a short self-assessment as part of the FUEL assignment.

When is the deadline to submit my FUEL form? Is the assignment mandatory?

Please make sure you complete the assignment no later than one week prior to arrival. You will be able to see the results on the first day of the program. 
The FUEL assignment will be available on your child’s MyEnvisionExperience.com personal Web page after you enroll.

Other Questions

Can special dietary needs be met?

Vegetarian options are always available. Kosher and Halal meals can be made available to you, provided the request is submitted prior to the start of the conference. When you complete the Student Information Form, you will have the opportunity to make special dietary requests.

Can the Global Young Leaders Conference Accommodate Special Religious Needs?

Yes. The Global Young Leaders Conference welcomes students of all religious and cultural backgrounds. We are happy to work with you. Please notify our Office of Admissions prior to the start of the conference so that we can prepare for your experience.

What if I lose something or forget to bring a personal item home after the program?

All lost and found items are retained by the program staff for two weeks following the conference. Items of higher monetary value are retained for 30 days. After 30 days, all items remaining are discarded or donated. Contact the Office of Admissions for assistance.

My question is not listed.

If you have additional questions, please contact the Office of Admissions.