Youth Leadership in China 2024

One World, Our Future

Organized by China Institute in America
In Partnership with the China Education Association for International Exchange (CEAIE)

By forging a meaningful people-to-people exchange, the annual Youth Leadership in China (YLC) program envisions bringing young people together to build a mutual understanding of the two most important countries, U.S. and China, for a better future.

YLC 2024 is poised to deliver a transformative experience for American high school students, equipping them with global competence and leadership skills through engaging people-to-people exchanges.

Spearheaded by China Institute in America in collaboration with the China Education Association for International Exchange (CEAIE), YLC 2024 endeavors to enable American high school students to connect with exceptional peers from China and facilitate meaningful dialogues, while nurturing cross-cultural understanding, promoting interpersonal relationships with Chinese students and families.

In the span of this two-week study tour across the culturally rich cities of Beijing, Chengdu, and Shanghai, YLC 2024 participants will also have the opportunity to immerse themselves in China’s vibrant present while delving into its storied past.


Youth Forum: One World, Our Future
Throughout the program, participants will actively cultivate global competence and leadership skills through their participation in this Youth Forum organized by China Institute in America, CEAIE, and local schools. This forum, a cornerstone of the experience, facilitates dynamic dialogues and presentations, allowing participants to connect with their Chinese counterparts and provides the young generation of the U.S. and China a platform to share thoughts, voices, and ideas about their future.

Life in a Chinese school and home
During their visits to schools, students will have the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the educational environment, fostering meaningful connections with their Chinese counterparts. Additionally, students can engage in substantive interactions with Chinese families during daytime homestay. This immersive experience not only enables students to gain a deep understanding of Chinese culture and life, but also promotes the development of invaluable intercultural experiences that enhance communication skills.

Immersion in China’s past and present
Embarking on a journey through the vibrant cities across China, students will explore the historical wonders of the Forbidden City and the Great Wall in Beijing, delve into the realm of wildlife preservation at the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, and meander through the captivating streets of Shanghai — a cultural crossroads where East meets West. This immersive itinerary presents a blend of historical, environmental, and contemporary insights, creating lasting memories for the participants.



July 15 – 27, 2024 (in-country dates; group departures on July 14 from New York)

Program fee*: USD $1,000

  • Includes all in-country activities, meals, materials, transportation that are arranged by the program
  • Covers international travel insurance and visa application
  • Does NOT include international airfare

*part to full-tuition may be available to families based on need and China Institute’s fundraising effort.


  • Participants must be currently enrolled in an accredited high school at the time of application
  • Have a proven academic track record equivalent with a GPA of 3.5 or above
  • Have demonstrated ability to interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds, and strong leadership capability; Experiences in a senior leadership position of a student-led organization is a plus
  • Committed to prepare a project of interest for presentations, discussions and dialogues with Chinese student counterparts as designated by the program
  • Have the willingness to advance a deeper understanding of China and its culture while build mutual understanding and friendship between U.S. and China for the future.
  • Applicants must hold American citizenship

Recognition and Awards:

Upon successful completion of YLC 2024, students will receive 8 service-learning hours and will be granted a specialized Young Envoys Scholarship (YES) certificate and pin.


The following documents are required to be considered as a completed application:

Seating is limited, and all final decisions are subject to the discretion of the China Institute.

All applications are carefully reviewed by our admissions committee. Eligible students who have demonstrated a genuine interest in YLC 2024, possess a strong academic background and are willing to contribute to this cross-cultural exchange program, will be considered for admission. Our goal is to accept as many qualified students as possible until all available seats are filled.

We encourage students to submit their applications as soon as possible. Please be aware that all documents must be submitted for your application to be considered.

China Institute reserves the right to make the final decision on admissions.


Sign up a virtual info session to learn more about the program:

Click to register for the Info-session:
8:00 pm, Tuesday, March 5
8:00 pm, Tuesday, March 19
8:00 pm, Thursday, March 28

Welcome to schedule a dedicated session for your school!

Have a question? Please contact Dianjun Jia, at or call (212) 744-8181, ext. 136

This program is made possible through the support of the China Education Association for International Education (CEAIE), East China Normal University, and generous supporters of China Institute in America.

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