Image Credits: YAF
Joining Young Americans for Freedom (YAF) was one of my better life decisions.
When I was a freshman, I remember entering my student organization fair looking for a conservative organization to join. I’d already stalked all the different organizations my school had to offer. In fact, I had composed a list of all the conservative and libertarian groups on my campus. After my first meeting with our YAF chapter, I was hooked.
In 1960, Young Americans for Freedom was started when a group of young adults met together in William F. Buckley Jr.’s house to create the Sharon Statement, our founding document that details all that we believe as conservatives. Fast forward to 2018, and YAF has been noted as one of the foremost activism groups on college campuses in the United States by media publications, such as the New York Times and popular figures, like Vice President Mike Pence.
Young Americans for Freedom chapters are the affiliated student groups for Young America’s Foundation, a national nonprofit that was started nine years after the creation of the first chapter groups. The Foundation was created by a chapter member, and current chairman, Ron Robinson. Today, chapter groups promote freedom at universities with the help of the Foundation.
Joining or starting a YAF chapter is one of the best ways for high school and college students to impact their fellow students and communities. It also provides life-changing experiences and unforgettable opportunities.
Conferences, activism and speakers
Sure, there are plenty of ways to find conservative speakers to bring to your school. YAF, however, has perfected the process or has gotten it as perfect as it can be. Bringing a conservative speaker to a liberal campus can be challenging regardless.
YAF has been the leader for campus lectures for years, helping popularize speakers like Ben Shapiro, Dennis Prager, Steven Crowder, and Christina Hoff Sommers. According to the New York Times, YAF has more than doubled its campus programs over the past two years alone. On any given week, there is at least one YAF campus lecture somewhere in the country.
YAF’s staff is with you from initial plans all the way through the end of the lecture. If you run into administrative trouble, such as ridiculous security fees or the disinviting of your speaker, YAF will do everything they can to make sure the event happens.
YAF’s speaking list is full of great people who speak on an expansive list of topics. With each speaker you bring, you are cultivating the conservative message on your campus and exposing other students to new ideas.
Unfortunately, it’s nearly impossible to bring dozens of center-right speakers to your campus at one time. The good news is that opportunity is available at YAF conferences. Attend one and you won’t be disappointed. While there are always tons of people to meet, they keep conferences at a reasonable size.
In addition to general conferences that take place in Washington D.C., Young America’s Foundation also preserved Rancho Del Cielo, President Ronald Reagan’s ranch in the mountains of Santa Barbara. Being able to walk through the home that he loved was the most humbling experience of my life. Trying to describe the experience wouldn’t do it the justice it deserves. I can only urge you to jump on any opportunity to go there.