National Young Leaders Conference (NYLC) High School Student
Leadership Development

National Young Leaders Conference (NYLC)

Enrollment for Summer 2015 is now closed.


What To Expect

The National Young Leaders Conference (NYLC) is a seven-day leadership program for outstanding high school students. At this summer program, Washington, DC will serve as your living classroom where you will join high-achieving peers from across the nation to gain real-world leadership experience and the essential leadership skills you need to succeed in college and in your future career.

Through hands-on workshops, exciting speaking events, and exclusive site visits you will be empowered to emerge as an influential voice in your community, state, and even at the national level. Discover the secrets of leaders as you explore your interests, enlarge your perspective and hone the skills you need to become an influential leader in the 21st century.

Benefits & Activities

Are you ready to step forward as a leader? At NYLC, you will:
  • Develop the essential leadership, communication, networking, decision making, conflict resolution and critical thinking skills you will need to be a leader in the 21st century.
  • Explore career opportunities available to you through a career fair, networking, social and interactive workshops led by local career experts.
  • Hear from and interact with members of Congress, right on Capitol Hill, and discover the career paths that brought them to Congress, the leadership skills that have made them successful, and how you can work on Capitol Hill through the Senate Page Program or serve as a Congressional intern.
  • Participate in an exclusive Press Panel with Washington, DC journalists, who cover critical topics such as the Pentagon, election campaigns, Capitol Hill and special undercover stories. Discover the skills needed to be a successful journalist.
  • Apply your critical leadership skills to service in The Envision Initiative: Igniting Community Change, a social advocacy project.

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



George Mason University logo

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


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


    As part of the National Young Leaders Conference experience, students meet with and learn from leaders who have shaped the future. Learn More


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


Explore Leadership and Careers
Discover the Leader Within
  • Learn to effectively resolve conflict, make decisions and set goals through workshops, role-playing exercises and constructive feedback sessions.
  • Design your Personal Leadership Plan that will help you achieve your goals and connect your passions to career pathways.
  • Gain knowledge and insight into domestic and international issues faced by 21st century leaders.
Learn Leadership Skills
Enhance Your Leadership Skills
  • Collaborate with your peers to identify community needs, explore real-world solutions, and design sustainable service plans when you participate in The Envision Initiative: Igniting Community Change.
  • Gain valuable leadership insights as you learn to embrace diversity and navigate group dynamics.
College Tour Extension
Explore Your Future
  • Gain insight into the various roles a leader can take within an organization through Leadership and Career Workshops led by Washington, DC professionals.
  • Imagine your future as an elected official as you step onto the Floor of the House of Representatives and hear from a member of Congress.
  • Find your voice in student-led town halls focused on today’s top issues concerning the environment, immigration, and technology.

2015 Dates & Locations

Leadership Conference for High School Students - Washington, DC
Washington, DC
Bethesda Marriott
Bethesda, MD
  • Jun 21 - Jun 27 *
  • Jul 5 - Jul 11 *
  • Jul 19 - Jul 25 *
University & Cultural Extension ENROLL NOW
*Optional University & Cultural Extension Available

Tuition & Financial Assistance


Tuition for the National Young Leaders Conference includes instruction and supervision, program activities and site explorations, two meals per day, program materials and transportation during the program.

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 National Young Leaders Conference for me?

This program is for you if you are a high-achieving high school student who has demonstrated leadership potential and academic achievement. Many of our students are nominated by educators, leaders from youth organizations and participating institutions, but open enrollments are welcomed from qualified students in grades 9-12 during the 2014-2015 school year.

What happens after I enroll?

After you enroll, you will receive an enrollment confirmation email. A personalized URL will be created for you – your 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 page.

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

Should the program be full, we will let you know. You will be placed on a wait list and your payment will not be processed. If space becomes available, we will contact you and confirm your interest to attend before proceeding with enrollment.

What is the dress code for this program?

You should plan to pack both relaxed business attire and professional attire for the program. When relaxed business attire is called for, ladies must wear dresses, skirts (no mini-skirts, short shorts or leggings) or slacks (no denim or capris) with blouses or polo shirts; gentlemen must wear button-down, polo or collared shirts and slacks (no denim or cargo pants).

When professional attire is required, ladies must wear dresses, suits or skirts/slacks with a jacket and blouse; gentlemen must wear a suit or sport jacket with dress pants, dress shirt and tie.

There will be opportunities during the conference for you to wear casual attire, including jeans. Comfortable dress shoes are essential. You will be walking a great deal throughout the conference.

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

What is the code of conduct for this program?

You are expected to abide by the Student Code of Conduct. You also must abide by and uphold all conference rules. We expect you to conduct yourself as a mature and responsible leader who represents your school and community.

What is the University & Cultural Extension?

As part of the National Young Leaders Conference experience, you have the option of extending your time at the program with the four-day University & Cultural Extension. During this interesting and fun exploration of Washington, DC, you will:

  • Visit the top of the Washington Monument for breathtaking views of the White House, the National Mall and our capital city.
  • Take a very special site visit to Arlington National Cemetery followed by lunch in Chinatown
  • Take part in several valuable workshops to guide you through the university experience
  • On a specially arranged campus tour, explore the impressive campus of Georgetown University.

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 National Young Leaders Conference (NYLC) includes instruction and supervision, program activities and site explorations, two meals per day, program materials and charter bus transportation during the program.

Transportation to and from Washington, DC is NOT included in tuition. While attending the program, you will only need money for 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

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 a 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?

Students reside throughout the program at the Bethesda Marriott in Bethesda, Maryland, just outside of Washington, DC.

How many students share a room?

You will share a room with one or two other students. You will each have your own bed.

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.

Can my parents attend the program?

No. Your parents or guardians are not allowed to accompany you during the program. Gaining independence, including experiencing new things on your own, is an essential part of your growth during the program. However, it is perfectly fine for your family to travel with you to the program location and stay in the area while you are attending the program.

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.

Do I need to make my own flight arrangements?

Yes. Your tuition does not include transportation to and from your home and Washington, DC. We recommend that you make necessary flight arrangements only AFTER you receive confirmation that the session dates you have selected are available and you are officially enrolled.

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 Web page after you enroll in the program.

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 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 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 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.

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.