Youth & Family Summit FAQs
Who can apply to the Youth & Family Summit?
Virginia youth with disabilities between the ages of 14-16 can apply to participate in the in-person Youth and Family Summit. The application is for the in-person event only. Youth who are 14-16 years old (during the summit dates) and want to attend in-person should apply. Youth who don’t fall within that age range OR would rather access the virtual component DO NOT need to fill out an application. Access to the virtual component will be added to the event page linked below closer to the date of the event.
What should I prepare before starting an application?
There are a few things that are helpful to have ready before you start the application process:
- Working email address – All communication, including acceptance letters, are sent through email. Please make sure that you use an email address that is working and that you can access easily. Also, make sure you enter the email address carefully when prompted so that our communication gets to you.
- Demographic information – Your address, phone number, email address, and school information (if still attending school) is all part of the application information. The same goes for your parent/guardian and emergency contact. Having this information ready will allow you to complete your application faster.
- Essay Response – See below for more information.
What happens once I submit my application?
Once you click submit, you will automatically receive a copy of your application emailed to the address that you gave on your application. Give the system 10 minutes or so to send the confirmation email. If you don’t receive this confirmation email, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
I didn’t receive a confirmation email. What should I do?
There are usually two reasons this might happen:
- Your email system is not allowing it to come through. Check your Spam or Junk folder to see if it is there.
- The email address that you provided was not entered correctly. If this is the case, we need to correct your email address. Contact email@example.com and let us know about your issue.
Can I receive assistance when filling out the application?
Yes, we encourage youth with all ability levels to apply and understand that some individuals will need assistance or accommodations when filling out the application. For the essay portion, we do want to see youth-generated work. This doesn’t mean that the youth performed each task necessary to complete the essay, but that the answers provided represent who they are.
Can you tell me more about the essay?
First off, don’t let the word essay fool you! Essays do not need to be written. All we ask is that the youth answers the questions provided in some way or another. We accept written essays, voice recordings, videos, and presentations. The only thing that is required is that you can send us a link that allows us to access it.
**Please note: The easiest way to send us a video or large file is to first house it somewhere online, such as DropBox, Google Drive, YouTube, or Vimeo. Once it is online, type the link to your video essay in the application fields and we should be able to access it. If we can’t access it, we will reach out to you about that.
How are applications processed? Is it first-come, first-served?
All applications that are received by the deadline are given to our review team after the application window has closed. Turning in your application early does not give any extra weight to your application. However, we do encourage you to apply as soon as you can. This will allow time to fix any issues, should they occur. All applications are processed equally by our team, who looks for authenticity, completeness of each component, and for the application to represent the youth who is applying. The application system will automatically turn off at the end of the application window. No late applications will be accepted.
Do parents need to apply?
Parents do NOT apply for the Youth and Family Summit. Only youth apply, and accepted youth under 18 must have a parent/guardian attend with them. Parents attend a separate Family Summit that happens at the same time as the Youth Summit.
FOR ALL OTHER QUESTIONS, FEEL FREE TO SEND A MESSAGE TO firstname.lastname@example.org