Youth of the Year logoYouth of the Year

Since 1947, Youth of the Year has been Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s premier recognition program, celebrating the extraordinary achievements of Club members. Each year, one exceptional young person from a Boys & Girls Club is selected to be the National Youth of the Year. The National Youth of the Year serves as both an exemplary ambassador for Boys & Girls Club youth and as a strong voice for all of our nation’s young people.

Youth of the Year participants embody the values of leadership, service, academic excellence and healthy lifestyles. They exemplify the critical impact of Boys & Girls Clubs on the lives of young people. Through the Youth of the Year program, young people showcase their talents and achievements, share their hopes and dreams, and work toward a bright and positive future. Candidates emerge through year-round recognition programs in their local Clubs of BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations. They progress through state and regional events, culminating in a weeklong celebration in Washington, D.C., where one is named the National Youth of the Year — the highest honor bestowed upon a Club member. 

Boys & Girls Club members ages 14-18 compete on the state, regional and national levels for Youth of the Year titles.

Each state-level Youth of the Year, including military, earns a $2,500 college scholarship. Each regional Youth of the Year, including regional military finalists, receives a $20,000 college scholarship. The National Youth of the Year receives a $50,000 scholarship.