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Organize, Lead, Mentor, Inspire Action!

As a host city coordinator, you will have the opportunity to design and run a community-oriented week-long summer program for high school students in your community or city. Working with a team of 3-5 of your peers as grassroots organizers from training and planning in the winter, recruiting high school students from your community to participate in the spring to running the program in the summer, you recruit participants, build relationships with community stakeholders, craft your own curriculum, mentor young people, and more.

Hosts receive the opportunity for a paid Everytown Support Fund summer program internship (upon completion of Thriving in the Field, our leadership and field organizing training course), full access to to Students Demand Action/Everytown for Gun Safety resources (including mentorship from your Regional Organizer, Everytown staff and a program budget). Each coordinator will get the chance to attend our in-person Thriving in the Field training program in February.

While no prior experience in gun violence prevention or leadership is required to host or be a program team member, the strongest candidates demonstrate a passion and commitment for gun violence prevention.

Become a Host

Our application process is simple and designed to showcase your leadership skills. We are committed to respecting your time and providing ongoing support throughout the application process.

To start the host city application process, all you need to do is submit a short 1-3 minute interest form.

After you fill out the interest form, a member of our team will reach out to you to schedule some time to talk with you about why you are interested in hosting a Summer Leadership Academy, why you think young people in your community could benefit from a Summer Leadership Academy and to discuss the opportunities and commitment associated with leading a Summer Leadership Academy in your community.

The Application Process

  • Application opens on December 1, 2022.
  • Application closes on January 6, 2023.
  • Our team will be in touch with all applicants on a rolling basis to schedule an interview.

Host city applicants will be notified on January 13, 2023.

Thriving in the Field

We’re committed to equipping you with everything that you need to be a successful leader and grassroots gun sense organizer. Thriving in the Field is a weekend-long crash-course February 13-16, 2002 facilitated by Students Demand Action team members covering everything from recruiting tactics to budgets and everything else that you need to know to recruit, plan, and run a Summer Leadership Academy. You’ll also spend time one-on-one with your Regional Organizer fine-tuning and creating plans for your program, as well as getting to meet and collaborate with other host city coordinators.

Thriving in the Field is a prerequisite course for a paid Everytown Summer Leadership Academy internship. It is available for host city applicants only.

What Course Participants Are Saying:

“I am more open to sharing my ideas to others without the fear of being judged. I am most proud of how far we have all come in our summer leadership academy programs. This year was tough and I feel we all handled it exceptionally well.”

“I have grown more confident in my organizing and improved my critical skills, such as time management, both in the personal and activism level.”

“I feel like I have gained some confidence. Talking is not really my strong point. Activities like making an elevator pitch as well as the discussion questions at the beginning of meetings really helped me. I am proud of how we collaborated together.”

Meet Our Alumni

“It was rocky at first because we didn’t know each other, but as time went by we got closer and closer…eventually we became a family.”

Angel Barrales, 14 (He/Him/His)

“I truly enjoyed my role as Program Manager for the South-Central Summer Leadership Academy. At first, I was very nervous because I knew it would take a lot of effort but being organized and staying ahead really helped our team become better and transition throughout the events with ease. Thinking back about everything we did this summer; I am proud of the amazing students I was able to mentor and lead.”

Justin Funez, 18 (He/Him/His)

“I encourage anyone who wants to give back to their community to host a summer program. For me, the academy was very educational. I went from knowing little about the gun violence prevention movement to understanding how my friends and I can make a social impact. As a core team leader you will also learn skills that will help you in life.”

Aaronica Domonique, 21 (She/Her/Hers)

“…this is exactly what I was hoping for and more. Being able to present my proposal to judges, and gaining experience was such a powerful and impactful part of this program.”

Alessandra Zepeda Ortiz, 15 (They/Them/Theirs)

“I wanted to learn how to create my own service projects and effectively solve the issues I cared about most. I learned that, and more. Not only did I learn what problems run deep in our society and what to do about them, but this experience made me feel more comfortable with talking about the prejudice I see and have experienced. With this knowledge, I now feel more empowered to facilitate change and more passionate about gun sense.”

Iman Omer, 17 (She/Her/Hers)

“As we got deeper into the program those friendships turned into family and through my personal experiences, I could tell the people that I surrounded myself for those few months really cared for me as I did for them.”

Jonathan Gonzalez, 16 (He/Him/His)

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How old do I need to be to host the 2023 Summer Leadership Academy?

    Student leaders to be 18 years of age by January 1, 2023.

  • What’s the time commitment to host a summer program?

    If you accept to host the Summer Leadership Academy, then you would serve an 8 month leadership role between Friday, January 13, 2023 and Thursday, August 31, 2023.

  • How much organizing or advocacy experience do I need to qualify for the application?

    No organizing or advocacy experience is required to host a summer program. We will happily provide you with mentoring, training, and resources at no cost so that you can run a successful summer program.

  • What resources are available to host city leaders?

    Access to meals and mentoring at no cost and leaders during the program and, in some cases, internship opportunities for student program managers.