JSA is the largest student-run organization in the nation aimed at building a generation of leaders who value diversity, inclusion, and empowerment. On high school campuses across the country, students gain valuable public speaking, critical thinking and leadership skills as members of JSA Chapters.
Through chapter debates, thought talks and other activities, students develop their public speaking skills in a non-competitive environment. The emphasis for the students is on communicating their own opinions, persuading their peers and learning by listening to the opinions and thoughts of others. These valuable skills are necessary to help today’s students become leaders for tomorrow who will raise the level of political discourse.
JSA Chapters are located in 35 states and engage more than 11,000 students.
Making a Difference
JSA allows students to have political efficacy, even if they are unable to vote. At JSA conventions and summer programs, students hear from current political leaders and debate issues that are top of mind for the country. Combining real-life experiences and mock forums to debate, legislate and advocate, JSA encourages students to understand and respect diametric viewpoints and aids students as they develop leadership skills.
Over the years, students have heard from a number of high profile speakers including Sen. John McCain just six months after his failed bid for the presidency. JSA members are often complimented for being the smartest group of students in the country. During Winter Congress in Washington, DC, students visit Capitol Hill and many meet with their state senators and representatives. Students met with Rep. Henry Waxman to advocate a platform for better education policies that they devised and rallied for in Washington State.
Through their involvement in JSA, students are able to effect change in government by encouraging politicians to support youth-backed issues.In perfecting their communication skills, students become better leaders. Any student can learn to be a great leader through JSA. The student-run nature of JSA programs allows students to lead different departments in each state. Students learn how to work well with others, how to manage large groups, and how to help run low-cost conventions.
JSA students make an impact in their communities. Whether JSA students choose to advocate a particular position in an election, run for a political office, or to help those less fortunate than themselves, they are given the tools to effect change and be model citizens.