Young Elected Legislative Leaders (YELL)

April 6-7th, 2018 at the South Dakota State Capitol

YELL brings high school students together from across South Dakota at the state capitol for a mock legislative session with Democratic leaders and political insiders. Draft bills to chart South Dakota’s future. Debate with real South Dakota legislators. Develop leadership skills for college. It’s free – transportation, housing, meals and all!

To apply online, click here!

To print and mail a physical application, click here!

To view our informational flyer, click here!

Application Deadline:  March 24th, 2018


Prior to the event, students will receive reading material on SD budget, legislative process, current state issues.

5:00PM – 6:00PM:Registration & Ice Breakers @ Capitol Building
6:00PM – 6:45PM: Dinner and Speaker
6:45PM – 7:15PM: Tour of the Capitol
7:15PM-8:00PM: Legislative procedure & students receive caucus assignments
8:00pm-10:30PM Caucus Meetings
10:30PM Capitol Hill Wrap Up; Return to Ft. Pierre Gym
10:30PM-12:00AM Closing Activities (games, etc.)
12:00AM Lights Out

8:00AM – 9:00AM: Breakfast, Quiz bowl: “How much do you know about SD?”
9:15AM – 10:30AM: Mock Committee Meetings: Discussion with SD Legislators
10:30AM – 11:00AM:Re-caucus to present Committee Reports
11:00AM-12:00PM: Legislative Session
12:00PM – 12:45PM: Lunch & Speaker TBA
1PM – 3:15PM:Legislative Session

YELL Reception
View 34
4251 S Dakota 34
Pierre, SD 57501
Free will donation, suggested contribution of $25
RSVP at 605-271-5405 or

  • hope you can get this to Chamberlain, because my young granddaughter has gone 2 x’s to the Republican one … are you sure they have all those requirements??   Are you making their application similar to the ones put out by the other party …. sounds like a lot of work to me ….

    • zachcrago

      Please send this link to your granddaughter! We’d love for her to come. The requirements are really easy: fill out the application information, write a short essay, and get ten people – whether friends, family, teachers, or random strangers – to sign the nominating petition, just like a real candidate for office does. Anything we can do to help your grand daughter get an application?

  • Hi! I’m an eighth grader, can I attend?

    • zachcrago

      Hi Jacksyn, please do apply. It’s going to be a lot of fun but also very challenging with older high school students. Hope you’re up for it!

  • pamelamerchant

    We are very excited about this opportunity in Brookings! We’re hoping that at least 3 young men will send in nomination forms and applications. Thanks so much for doing this, SD Dem Party! Please let me know if you need any help. Yours, Pam Merchant