Youth on A Mission

Youth on a Mission logo

What is Youth on A Mission?

Youth on A Mission (YAM) is a Youth Advisory Council comprised of high school youth from Unit 5 school district. The expectation of the council is to provide an avenue to engage youth, provide leadership growth and an opportunity to learn about municipal government. Youth on A Mission will engage in activities like community service, advocacy and strategic planning. The program year is 12 sessions, running from September to April/May. Students may also participate in Illinois Municipal League activities during the course of the program, as well as have the opportunity to travel to various National League of Cities events. The program year closes with an award ceremony and celebration.

 Click here to complete the application! 


Students from Normal Community High School, Normal Community West High School and University High School are eligible to apply. Students must have at least 2.25 GPA or higher to participate. 

There is no cost for a student to participate. In lieu of paying for the program, we ask each student to:  

  1. Attend every session and be actively engaged. Participants cannot miss more than two sessions. 
  2. Agree to participate in the YAM fundraiser. 

How do I apply?

The application period for 2022-2023 closes Sept. 2. Students should hear back by Sept. 9. Click here to complete the application!

Youth On a Mission Curriculum

  • Retreat Weekend (October) (Team Building, Leadership Development, Civic Engagement, Prioritizing Projects and Selecting Project for the year)
  • Session 2 (November) - The Council & Mayor: Forms of Municipal Government (Council-Manager/Strong Mayor-Council/Commission)
  • Session 3 (December) - The Departments: How Does it Work. 
  • Session 4 (January) - Andrew Huhn: The Budget
  • Session 5 (February) - Advocacy Training (Local, State, & Federal)
  • Session 6 (March) - Boards & Commissions: Making Your Case
  • Session 7 (April) - Prepare for Council Presentation
  • Session 8 - Final (April & May) -  Make Presentation to City Council 

Mentors & Advisors

Youth On a Mission, presented by the Town of Normal and in accordance with the National League of Cities, was created in 2021 to heighten youth engagement/involvement within the community. This council aims to engage and educate the youth of Normal about community decision making, sparking future initiatives that incorporate the structure of all levels of government. The council will directly involve the students in policymaking, as well as special projects, all of which are in partnership with adult community leaders. Youth On a Mission will also present a community plan to the Normal City Council for each fiscal year they are in session.
If you are interested in becoming a mentor or volunteer, please contact the Town of Normal or 
complete this application.


  1. How should I compile my essay questions?
    1. Complete all essay questions on a separate document.
  2. When are student applications due for the 2022 – 2023 program year?
    1. Student applications are due on Sept. 2, 2022.
  3. When will I hear back that I have been accepted into the program?
    1. Students should hear back by Sept. 9, 2022.
  4. When are mentor and volunteer applications due?
    1. Both applications are due Sept. 2.
  5. What is the age range for Youth On A Mission?
    1. The program prioritizes high school sophomores and juniors, however, will consider freshmen and seniors.
  6. What is the time commitment for the Program?
    1. Students should prepare to attend a two-day weekend retreat in October and one session a month on Saturdays. In addition, students create and present a presentation to the Town Council at the end of the program in late April/early May.