Program Description

The California Youth Think Tank (CYTT) is an award-winning youth leadership training program that selects and brings together bright and motivated youth from diverse backgrounds and communities, trains and empowers them to become future leaders, and teaches them how to work together to create positive change in their community and our society.  Students from over 250 schools have participated in this enriching, life-changing educational experience.  Students are taught by a dedicated team of educators, counselors and college mentors who evaluate their progress and prepare them for success in college and beyond.


Summer Residence Program

Selected applicants will live in a college dorm on the beautiful USC campus in Los Angeles during their training.  Participants will attend daily workshops and participate in a variety of challenging activities and events, including public speaking, team debates, lively panel discussions, field trips, academic competition, Open Mic Talks, and collaborate with other dynamic youth leaders on special projects.  

What's included?

  • college dorm housing

  • bed linen, blanket & pillow

  • 3 daily buffet-style meals

  • comprehensive training program

  • educational materials & supplies

  • access to campus facilities

  • field trip transportation

  • trophies & awards

  • T-shirts & tote bags

  • College letters of recommendation

Knowledge & Skills Gained

Effective leadership, communication (oral & written), critical thinking, research, organization, public speaking, debate, collaboration & team building, human relations, self awareness, and self esteem


Selection Process

Applicants are selected based on: application material, academic merit, leadership potential, character, and program needs.​



Summer Programs: 

Our CYTT2020 Summer College Residence Program has been cancelled due to health and safety concerns regarding the coronavirus outbreak.  Applications for CYTT2021 summer residence program will be available at this site beginning in January 2021.


Fall & Spring Events:

Schedule of CYTT fall 2020 & spring 2021 activities & events for selected CYTT participants will soon be available at this site.  Please check back later for details.


Thank you.


Program Description

Our California Youth Think Tank (CYTT) Summer Day Camp is for middle schoolers in grades 7-8.  This program helps middle schoolers develop knowledge, skills, character, and self-confidence needed to succeed in high school, college and beyond.  Participants will attend daily classes on the University of Southern California campus in a positive and nurturing environment.  Day Campers are taught by a dedicated team of educators, counselors and college mentors who inspire them to achieve excellence and reach their highest potential in life.

What's included

  • Daily classroom instruction & training

  • Daily buffet-style lunch meals

  • Educational materials & supplies

  • Access to college campus facilities

  • Field trip transportation

  • Trophies & awards

  • T-shirts & tote bags

Selection Process

Applicants are selected based on their application material, academic performance, leadership potential, moral character, and the recommendation of teachers, counselors, coach, or other adult mentor.​


The next Young Center Middle School Day Camp will be held in June 2021.  Applications will be available online beginning in January 2021.

Thank you.



University of Southern California

Los Angeles

DATESTo be announced



Application for our 2021 Middle School Day Camp will be available in January 2021


Standard fee

Reduced Participation Fee

Note: Eligible for students who participate in Free & Reduced Lunch program or ’Need-based’ scholarship recipients.' Verification required,