There are seven different general roles that students can fill in the Youth & Government program (not including elected or appointed offices). Each role has its own duties, qualifications and challenges. The seven roles are outlined below:

325Attorneys perform a number of tasks and jobs over the course of the program year. Each attorney team is required to write a detailed brief based on the Appellate Facts. Attorneys must familiarize themselves with the facts of the case as well as the precedent setting cases that are noted in the facts packet. Based on the written brief, each attorney team will prepare an oral argument to be presented to other attorneys that are empaneled as the Illinois Youth Supreme Court. Additionally, attorneys participate in the Judicial Review process in which a passed bill from the Youth Legislature is debated as to its Constitutionality.

Eligibility: Must be a Junior or Senior. Sophomores may be an attorney only if paired with a Junior or Senior partner.

So that new students can gain an understanding of the Youth & Government judicial process, sophomores are assigned to be clerk-bailiffs. In this role, students serve as a general assistant to the Assistant Chief Justice in the court to which they are assigned by assisting with research, delivering messages as needed and taking attendance. Clerks are also teamed with an attorney team at the Springfield Assembly and may participate in oral arguments and brief writing. They do not serve as judges.

Eligibility: Freshman, Sophomore or Junior.

Legislative Assistants (LA) is considered an introductory role in the program, and delegates serving as LAs have the opportunity to see how the entire program works, by listening to debate in Chambers or in committees, and observing the other roles such as Lobbyists, Press Corp, and the Judicial Program.  Each LA is assigned to legislator in their delegation and assists in the writing and research prior to Springfield.  Additionally, all LAs (including Sargeants at Arms, Clerks, Secretaries, and Bill Flow Clerks) will participate in a State Issues Forum to bring their own ideas before the Springfield Assembly.  The duties of a Legislative Assistant vary from the Pre-Legs to the Assembly.

Eligibility: Legislative Assistants can be freshmen, sophomores, juniors or seniors.

366Legislators spend most of the school year developing an idea into a bill to present in the Youth Legislature in March at the Springfield Assembly. Generally, four legislators form a bill group and spend the early part of the school year coming up with an idea for legislation, doing research, and writing their bill. At the Springfield Assembly, legislators present their bill to other legislators in an assigned committee. If the bill is voted to pass out of committee, it then must have passing votes in both the House and Senate in order to be sent to the Governor for consideration.

Eligibility: Must be a Junior or Senior.

13232123494_a1a838a61f_oAs Lobbyists in the Youth and Government Program, students will have an opportunity to simulate the nearly 3,000 persons who are currently registered as Lobbyists with the Illinois Secretary of State in this extraordinarily influential “third house” of government. During the program year, each Lobbyist will be aligned with an organization, draft a legislative agenda advocating his position, present the paper at Pre-Leg 2, track his/her bills they are supporting or not supporting throughout the Legislative Process in Springfield, present written or oral testimony, and lobby and influence legislators throughout the weekend.  Certain activities will earn lobbyists points which will be tallied to determine Most Effective Lobbyists.

Eligibility: Sophomores, Juniors or Seniors are eligible.

14360252400_edecebd93a_hThe ins and outs of the Youth and Government program are covered daily by the members of the Newspaper Press. Reporters write stories on legislation, candidates, trials, and special interests before, during and after the Springfield Assembly. These stories are published each of the three days of the Assembly in The Observer which is followed by a wrap-up issue after the end of the weekend.

Eligibility: Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors or Seniors are eligible. A limited number of newspaper press positions are available.

477Each year at the Springfield Assembly, a small fleet of students spend the weekend shooting video, conducting interviews, writing stories, and producing segments for the nightly video press newscast, Capitol Report. Weary students stay awake on Friday and Saturday night to watch the 20-25 minute news report that is completely put together by the students in the video press.

Eligibility: Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors or Seniors are eligible. A limited number of video press positions are available.