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United States Senate Youth Program

Annual scholarship competition administered by the California Department of Education.

NOTE: Due to COVID-19 and the safety and health of our students, government officials, military officers and all program participants, the 2020 USSYP Washington Week program was canceled.

Due to the many uncertainties posed by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, The Hearst Foundations’ planning for Washington Week 2021 is currently on hold and applications nationwide are NOT being accepted at this time. Please check for updates here that we will post as soon as we have heard from the USSYP with additional information.


In 1962, the United States Senate unanimously passed a resolution creating the United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP), a national nonpartisan initiative to provide an annual opportunity for talented high school students with demonstrated leadership abilities to deepen their understanding of America's political processes and strengthen their resolve to pursue careers in public service. Each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia, and the Department of Defense Education Activity select two student delegates to participate in the USSYP.

Typically, the delegates receive a $10,000 college scholarship and attend a one-week, all-expense paid trip to Washington, D.C. during the spring to deepen their understanding of America's political processes and strengthen their interest and desire for a career in public service.

Students must be nominated by their high school principal to be considered for the USSYP and cannot apply to the USSYP directly.

IMPORTANT! Nominated students must be high school juniors or seniors currently serving in an elected or appointed leadership capacity in a student government, civic, or educational organization for the entire school year for which they are applying.

Students must be actively serving in qualified leadership positions, and actively representing a constituency in organizations that relate to government, education, public affairs, and/or community service.

Students must be a permanent resident of the United States, currently enrolled in a California public or private secondary school, and living in the state they will represent for the entire academic year for which they are applying.

Frequently Asked Questions


  • William Randolph Hearst Foundation External link opens in new window or tab. — Information from the William Randolph Hearst Foundation's website regarding the United States Senate Youth Program as well as a copy of their USSYP brochure.

Contact Information

For further information, please send an email to

Dina Fong, U.S. Senate Youth Program Coordinator

David Carriker, U.S. Senate Youth Program Assistant

News Releases for California USSYP Delegates and Alternates

Questions:   USSYP |
Last Reviewed: Friday, July 10, 2020