The Youth Sustainability Leadership Program

The Youth Sustainability Leadership Program (YSLP) is a collaborative effort to engage Cleveland high school students in sustainability and community engagement. YSLP introduces Cleveland youth to the concept of sustainability, and helps identify ways for them to get involved with sustainability at home, at school, and in their community.




As part of the YSLP program, youth will be invited to attend the 10th Annual Sustainable Cleveland Summit on Thursday, September 20th and Friday, September 21st, 2018. Thanks to generous support from our sponsors, selected youth leaders will experience the impact of the 10-year initiative and have the opportunity to interact with leaders in the Sustainable Cleveland community. During this process, students will be guided by members of the City of Cleveland Mayor’s Office of Sustainability and a team of community stakeholders to design sustainability projects that will have a positive impact on their school, peers or community.



By participating in the Youth Sustainability Leadership Program, students will:

  1. Gain exposure to the concept of sustainability, including higher education and career opportunities;
  2. Become leaders on sustainability at home, at school, and in the community;
  3. Receive mentoring from community stakeholders devoted to sustainability to advance work on environmental issues in Greater Cleveland;
  4. Have the opportunity to share the knowledge and skills gained from the YSLP with peers through positive action and encouragement;
  5. Attain volunteer credit hours and earn Mayoral recognition;
  6. Strengthen college admission applications and resumes by gaining valuable organization and leadership skills; and
  7. Earn a digital badge for leadership in sustainability.



  • Have an interest in sustainability and developing leadership skills, and be self-motivated, open-minded, and eager to learn;
  • Attend the 10th Annual Sustainable Cleveland Summit (Sept. 20th & 21st, 2018) and actively participate in all activities;
  • Use the skills and experience gained at the Sustainable Cleveland Summit to develop and implement sustainability projects at home, at school, or in the community; 
  • Attend between 6-8 meetings throughout the school year;
  • Hold leadership roles at student conferences and/or public outreach events, helping to engage peers and community members in sustainability and climate action; and 
  • Provide feedback on how YSLP can be improved for future generations.  



The YSLP is open to all Cleveland public high school students in grades 9 to 12. High school students from private schools and schools outside of Cleveland are also welcome to apply. YSLP participants must meet all requirements for the duration of the program: September 2018 through April 2019.


A maximum of 50 students will be chosen to participate in the 2018-2019 YSLP and attend the 10th annual Sustainable Cleveland Summit.



Contact Philena Seldon at if you have any questions on the program. 


For a YSLP program overview and application, click here. Deadline to apply is September 14, 2018.


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  • Matthew Gray