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Youth Leadership Institute

mobile graphic with QR code, scan to access 2023 application for YLI
2023 Youth Leadership Institute
Sessions: April 16, 23, 30, and May 7
Graduation: May 7

Applications now being accepted.
Deadline March 24, 2023

APIDC’s Youth Leadership Institute trains young adults to become advocates for APIs with disabilities. We seek college students from all backgrounds and ethnicities who have a passion for empowering APIs with disabilities.

How to Apply

1. Submit a completed application through online form.
2. Email two recommendation letters to

Qualities of an Institute Participant

  • Have a strong desire to learn from others

  • Demonstrate an ability and willingness to share best practices and lessons learned

  • Be open minded to different ways of thinking

  • Have a desire to share their own story about their experience with disabilities

  • Be committed to implementing a community initiative 1 year within training completion

  • Be committed in staying in touch with APIDC

What to Expect as a Participant

APIDC’s Youth Leadership Institute is aimed at training people to become advocates for APIs with disabilities. We seek college students from all walks of life and ethnicities who have a passion for empowering APIs with disabilities. The Youth Leadership Institute focuses on a combination of developing grassroots leadership skills and providing a safe space for mutual sharing and learning. Participants are selected from a broad variety of backgrounds who show a strong potential to become future leaders.


We plan for the sessions to be held virtually via Zoom (but if conditions change in Los Angeles County, we may have local students attend in person.


Applicants from throughout the country are welcome to apply!

What to Expect During the Program

  1. Interactive discussions on grassroots leadership, topics including:

    • API/Disability Rights History

    • Advocacy

    • Coalition Building

    • Communication/Networking Skills

    • Public Speaking Skills

    • Basic Employability Skills

  2. Opportunities to discuss how your involvement in the community and the issues that you wish to address or learn more about

  3. Free time to interact with other participants

Are You Eligible to Apply

  • Be at least 18 years of age

  • Show a track record of involvement in the disability community

  • Show an interest in advocating for APIs with disabilities

  • Attend college and have a high school diploma, GED or equivalent

Selection Criteria

  • Proven track record of participating in community activities

  • Demonstrated leadership skills and an interest in community service

  • Demonstrated ability to relate to people of other cultures and backgrounds

  • Expressed interest in developing and sustaining a community initiative

  • Leadership potential

  • Willingness to do public speaking

  • An energetic, positive attitude

  • Finalists will be invited to an interview with the selection committee

When is the Youth Leadership Institute?

  • There are two main components to the Youth Leadership Institute:

  • The training workshops will take place on Sundays, April 16, 23, 30 and May 7 & 14 with a full day of training each day. A graduation ceremony will be announced at a later date. 

  • Full attendance of all 4 workshops is required. (9 AM to 3 PM)

  • After the training series, participants will have 1 year to utilize their learned skills to implement a disabilities initiative in their campus or community.

What is the Cost?

  • There is no application fee for applicants. Stipend provided upon completion of full program.

  • Participants may apply for assistance to cover program-related expenses such as transportation.

Application Materials

To complete your application please submit the following information:

  1. A completed online application

  2. Two letters of recommendation from adults not related to you and know you well enough to talk about your leadership abilities, character, and ability to handle situations under pressure. Email letters of recommendation to

We thank our generous sponsor
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