Middle School Conferences
The State YMCA Youth In Government program provides middle school students with an amazing opportunity to become acting state legislators. Students will arrive for a three day and two night conference. Upon arrival they will immediately begin working alongside other groups to develop their bills, share ideas, and grow as leaders. These students are are also given the use of the actual Michigan House and Senate Chambers along with the committee rooms to debate the bills they have written.
However, not all students become part of the legislature. MYIG offers two additional programs in which students can explore their passions. The Contemporary Issues Forum, a debate program, puts students in the thrall of some of the most heated national debates of the time. This unique program teaches students how to think critically and debate their opinions in a respectful and thoughtful way.
The third choice for our middle school participants is the Political Compromise Program. This is the newest of the middle school programs and is a truly inspirational process to observe. Students are given a single issue that faces the state. Be it vaccines, water rights, or stem cell research, the Political Compromise participants must represent one of three groups that have an interest in the topic, and together, reach a compromise in which no single group feels unhappy with the results. They also must do this in the time span of two days.