IMPACT for High School students

Join us for Impact – a unique and engaging virtual program designed to help middle school and high school students develop the skills necessary to pursue a passion, tackle a community need, and form a network with other young leaders from across the country. The National Network of Schools in Partnership and Close Up Foundation have partnered to offer Impact, a program designed to help young people connect to the world around them, develop their sense of purpose, and empower them to make a local impact on global issues. Led by Close Up Instructors, Impact has two program options:


A major focus of education is preparing young people for their roles as citizens in a democracy. Now more than ever, young people want to play a pivotal role in developing solutions and addressing inequities in the United States. During the 2021-22 school year, Close Up & NNSP will bring together students from across the country to build the tools and knowledge to meaningfully engage with systemic issues and become catalysts for effective change in their communities.
Over the course of the program, students will deliberate about pressing national issues; explore the political and structural barriers to equity in our country; deepen understanding of existing campaigns for change; and work together to create meaningful solutions. By engaging young people from communities nationwide in meaningful dialogue, we aim to help students develop empathy for the perspectives of others and build the skills and confidence needed to empower a generation of change-makers.
Series 1 – Deliberating about Systemic Issues: How can you engage on controversial issues that matter to you and
build empathy for diverse ideas and perspectives?
Proposed Timeline: 6 online synchronous 75-minute sessions (October 2021)
Students will develop a deeper understanding of complex policy challenges facing the nation, connect those issues to
long-standing values and tensions, and gain a rich understanding of the value of deliberation in a democracy. Students
will examine three major policy issues, evaluate proposals that represent a range of viewpoints, and consider, as a
group, how to best address these issues. After developing a better understanding of their own values and priorities,
students will participate in a training to develop the facilitation skills to lead controversial issue discussions in their own
school communities.
Series 2 – Race, Justice, and Equity: How can you create positive, systemic change in your school or local community?
Proposed Timeline: 6 online synchronous 75-minute sessions (February 2022)
Students will engage in inquiry and deliberation on an issue of their choice in order to understand the political and
structural barriers to equity in our systems of education, health, and justice. Students will investigate root causes;
identify various approaches taken at the local, state, and national levels; engage with a policy advocate; and create a
vision statement that incorporates their personal experiences and tangible action steps they can take within their
school or local community.
Youth Policy Summit (D.C.):
What if instead of looking to others for leadership, young people stepped up to
communicate and compromise across differences in an effort to improve society and address societal challenges?
This 5-day Youth Policy Summit equips students with the tools and knowledge to become catalysts for change in their
communities. Students will network with diverse peers nationwide; hear inspiring stories from young activists on
strategies and models of advocacy and activism; deepen their understanding of issues and root causes in their
communities; work in national teams to create meaningful solutions and craft policy proposals; and have a chance to
present their proposals to decisionmakers on Capitol Hill.

Program Structure
Program Eligibility:
The programming is open to students in grades 9-12. Each school will have an opportunity to
nominate a cohort of 6 students to represent their school in an examination of today’s most pressing issues with
students from across the country.

Online Sessions: We recommend that students participate in both online programs, however, we know students have
many commitments so it is possible to only participate in one session. Generally, our online sessions take place in the
evening, however, if there is a time during the school day that works for multiple schools, we may be able to schedule
sessions during the school day.

Youth Policy Summit: In order to be eligible for the Youth Policy Summit, students must attend at least one of the
online sessions.

Program Cost

NNSP Member price

  • Series 1 - Cohort of 6 students: $1200
  • Series 2 - Cohort of 6 students: $1200

Individual student Price (per series): $250
5-Day Youth Policy Summit Approximately $1800 + Airfare

Financial Aid
Close Up and NNSP are deeply committed to ensuring that their programs are available to students of all backgrounds. For
Online Series #1 and Series #2, IMPACT will offer need-based financial aid for students that qualify. Close Up and NNSP are
committed to fundraising for the Youth Policy Summit and will provide a limited number of scholarships for students
that qualify.

Interest form>


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