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Young Leaders Initiative

YouTube Playlist Icon for Demonstration Purpose MORE VIDEOS: See all the videos on this playlist. Click the YouTube Playlist Icon for Demonstration Purpose icon in the upper-left corner of the player to view the playlist.

The Young Leaders Initiative (YLI) planning team thanks the following institutions for their participation in YLI at the Catholic Social Ministry Gathering:

Australian Catholic University
Cabrini College (PA)
The Catholic University of America (DC)
Chaminade University (HI)
Clark University (MA)
College of the Holy Cross (MA)
College of St. Benedict/St. John's (MN)
College of St. Scholastica (MN)
Creighton University (NE)
Dominican University (IL)
Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University (LA)
George Washington U. (DC)
Georgetown University (DC)
John Carroll University (OH)
Kent State University (OH)
LeMoyne College (NY)
Lewis University (IL)
Louisiana State University (LA)
Loyola University New Orleans (LA)
Lyke House – Clark Atlanta U.
Manhattan College (NY)
Morehouse College and Spelman College (GA)
Marquette University (WI)
Maryland Institute College of Art
Modesto Junior College (CA)
Mount St. Mary (MD)
The Ohio State University
Our Lady of the Lake College (LA)
Purdue University (IN)
Seton Hall University (NJ)
Southeastern Louisiana University (LA)
St. John's University (NY)
St. Mary's University (TX)
Trinity Washington University (DC)
University of California-Merced
University of Dayton (OH)
University of Georgia
University of the Incarnate Word (TX)
University of Maryland-College Park
University of Missouri-Columbia
University of Notre Dame (IN)
The University of St. Thomas (MN)
Xavier University (LA) 

Universities and colleges play a vital role in the formation and education of young and emerging leaders. We invite universities and colleges to participate in this unique and valuable opportunity for students to:

  • Meet national Catholic social ministry and advocacy leaders.
  • Build knowledge of current Catholic social ministry priorities and initiatives.
  • Develop advocacy skills to empower students to call for positive change.
  • Voice concerns with legislators on issues of human life and dignity in the U.S. and internationally.
  • Discover new ways of growth in faith, studies, and future work through Catholic social ministry and advocacy.

See important dates below.  |  Download an interest form now!

Students grow as leaders at CSMG -- in society and the Church.

  • Our advocacy on Capitol Hill…was a tremendous experience where I really felt my faith put into action. By raising a voice for the poor, I felt that I was not speaking on my own but with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I really felt empowered by the Gospel message to spread the good news of Christ to others, and I will forever cherish this opportunity to advocate for the poor on Capitol Hill.
    - Trevor Bonventre, University of Notre Dame

  • The CSMG conference was an amazing experience. Coming from Hawaii, I never would have thought that I would get the opportunity to make a difference by visiting with our representatives in Washington, D.C. [It] allowed me to network and meet students from across the country who have the same passion for social justice that I do.
    - Amber Alvarez, Chaminade University of Honolulu

  • …It was inspiring to me to see so many people, from all over the country, speaking out for the poor and vulnerable—“being a voice for the voiceless.” I had the opportunity to hear numerous people speaking with the CST lexicon that I learned in my core course last semester, people who were also living out the documents through their careers and vocations. I think this conference helped me to become a better-informed citizen and to see how my faith and politics do not have to be mutually exclusive.
    - Clara Hageman, University of Notre Dame

  • Hear what participants had to say about their experience at CSMG!
    - Four Reasons You Should Participate in YLI
    Notre Dame students on Prayer and Liturgy
    - St. Mary's University participants on visiting Capitol Hill: video 1 | video 2 | video 3

Who organizes participation in CSMG-YLI?

Universities and colleges designate a campus coordinator who arranges registration, travel, accommodation and all related funding for their group.  Campus coordinators invite participation from a select group of student leaders who have demonstrated interest in Catholic social teaching and ministry (usually 2 to 6 student leaders).    Since our Church is strengthened and enriched by great diversity, the student selection process is an important opportunity for campus coordinators to identify and foster leaders of diverse cultures and abilities.  While CSMG does not require the coordinator to attend, we strongly encourage a member of staff (or graduate assistant) with pertinent experience to accompany undergraduate students.

How will students benefit from CSMG-YLI?

CSMG provides students an opportunity to integrate faith, education, and action in pursuit of a better world.  During the three-day gathering, students join a community of professional, dedicated Catholic social ministry and advocacy leaders in their annual gathering to  pray, learn, network and advocate for change.  The experience has proven transformative for students who have attended in the past, influencing their continuing education and even career choices. Meeting leaders in the field opens doors for future contacts, internships and possible employment. Opportunities for follow-up, reflection and action back on campus will include national legislative advocacy in students' home districts, and participating in local programs of Catholic Relief Services and the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.

How are CSMG-YLI participants funded?

Coordinators are asked to seek resources on campus allowing students to participate in this unique formative, educational, and professional experience.  Possible sources of funding include student affairs, student government, campus ministry or Newman centers, academic departments, experiential or service learning programs, faith and justice centers, and sponsoring religious communities.  Campus coordinators need to secure funding from their institution by the time interest forms are submitted (EXTENDED: December 12, 2018 deadline) to ensure that registration can be completed by December 31, 2018 and accommodation and travel can be arranged at the most affordable rates.  See the top 10 fundraising ideas from past YLI participants.

Next Steps: participating in the CSMG Young Leaders Initiative.

Now – October 2018

  • Consider how CSMG can form students on campus for leadership. View student and campus staff flyers.
  • Investigate funding options.  Identify others who might want to help.

November 2018

November 2018 – February 2019

  • Look for a Fall 2018 e-mail from CSMG staff confirming participation in YLI and inviting your group to register.  Complete online registration for CSMG by December 31, 2018.*
  • Complete hotel accommodation and travel arrangements before the close of the Gathering’s discounted hotel room rate in January (watch for announcement of date on the CSMG web page).
  • Take advantage of informative resources and opportunities to prepare those attending the Gathering.
  • Prepare to participate using these materials.

February 2019

  • Attend CSMG (Feb. 2-5) in Washington, D.C.

March – May 2019

  • Bring the experience back to campus.

* It is important that participants in the Young Leaders Initiative not register until they have received confirmation of participation and instructions from CSMG staff.  CSMG cannot provide a refund to any campus groups, staff, or students who incur additional expenses by registering outside the process designated for the Young Leaders Initiative.

CSMG Young Leaders Committee

Emily Schumacher-Novak  (Co-Chair)
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Department of Justice, Peace and Human Development

Samantha Kennedy (Co-Chair)
University of Dayton, Campus Ministry

Thelma Ekeocha
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Secretariat of Catholic Education

Fr. Etido Jerome
Xavier University of Louisiana, Campus Ministry

Anne Riley
Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities

Lindsay McDermott
Fellowship of Catholic University Students

Alyssa Beasley
Creighton University, Center for Social Justice

Patrick Baikauskas, OP
Purdue University, Campus Ministry

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