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The Young Ambassadors Program (YAP) is a nationally recognized program for graduating high school seniors that fosters the next generation of community-conscious Latino leaders in the arts, sciences, and humanities via the Smithsonian Institution and its resources.


The Young Ambassadors Program (YAP) is equally open to students of all races and ethnicities, without preference or restriction based on race or ethnicity. The Museum does not use racial or ethnic classifications or preferences in selecting awardees for YAP.

Before applying, please read the YAP program materials below, including the applicant guide, which includes a step-by-step process of how to fill out the application.

Click here to apply through the Smithsonian’s Online Academic Appointment System (SOLAA).

This program will be offered in English. Applicants are not required to speak Spanish to apply.

Community-Conscious Leaders

YAP is a life-long opportunity for enrichment, development, and resource access via the Smithsonian and its valuable partners, thereby creating a community of community-conscious Latino leaders.

Watch the video below to learn more about the Young Ambassadors Program.

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Washington Week

YAP students experience a once-in-a-lifetime learning opportunity at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., and participate in workshops with preeminent Latino scholars and leaders. After a week in Washington, the fellows conduct internships at one of 17 partner cultural or science museums across the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Students also participate in community outreach events with local libraries to promote early childhood literacy.
Watch these videos to learn more about Washington Week:

Community Impact

As a Young Ambassador, you will get to impact your community through your Internship experience.

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Nuestra Familia

The YAP Alumni Network keeps students engaged beyond the internship and provides them with continuing professional and leadership development opportunities. The YAP network has a 97% graduation rate and is known for transforming high school graduates into college-educated, early-career professionals poised for success. Many alumni embark on successful careers in the arts, business, education, and technology sectors, among others.

Check out YAP in Action, visit our FLICKR page.

Click here for the Young Ambassador Program Alumni Long Term 2017 Evaluation.

Young Ambassadors in Your Community

The Young Ambassadors Program and its Alumni Network implement the Alcancemos community outreach events that include mentor days at local high schools and summer library reading days, which aim to foster Latino success in K-12 and higher education by establishing community near-peer mentors and role models discussing educational opportunities.