Youth Climate Institute

Educating and certifying the next generation of leaders on
climate science, environmental justice and real world solutions.

What is the Youth Climate Institute?

Youth Climate Institute student voices are amplified for civic action and positive change in their communities leading to aware, engaged, and responsible stewards of our shared planet.

In this three year program, students will enter as Scholars and graduate as Certified Ambassadors with Honors©. The goal of this program is to educate and empower student Climate Ambassadors to create awareness and understanding of global climate change. They will identify and initiate action in their communities that lessen the adverse effects of climate change on human health, biodiversity, and the economy.

We are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion for participants.  While the application will include a short essay and teacher recommendation, the Youth Climate Institute (YCI) will not require students to take advanced placement or honors classes to participate.  Registration fees will also be waived for students with financial need.

If you are interested in learning more about how you can begin your own chapter of the Climate Change Institute or have any questions, please contact

Youth Climate Institute –
Howard County Chapter

Howard County has piloted the Youth Climate Institute for the last two years.

Ambassadors have participated in webinars related to climate change science, impacts, solutions, Green Infrastructure Network, legislation and policy, Howard County Initiatives, Environmental justice, and food waste.

Students have chosen action teams such as Energy, Tree Planting, Education & Messaging, Food & Agriculture, and Legislation to implement advocacy projects. Each team is mentored by a professional volunteer.

Program Honors & Recognition:

Students will not only develop leadership skills in climate action but earn the following upon completion of the program:

  • Graduation cords and pins
  • A YCI “digital badge” that students can utilize on online profiles
  • Eligibility for college scholarships

See our ambassadors in action on social media!

If you are a Howard County student that will be entering the 10th grade during the 2022-2023 school year and want to know more about becoming a Youth Climate Institute Ambassador, please fill out the interest form below

If you are a professional working the the climate change field and you are interested in being a mentor for this program, please fill out the interest form below

If you are interested in starting a new chapter of the Youth Climate Institute in your area,
please fill out the interest form below

The Youth Climate Institute is a program of the Howard County Conservancy