West Bountiful Youth City Council is in the room where it happensMay 06, 2022 02:26PM ● By Peri Kinder
For teens who love to provide service, enjoy connecting with local organizations and have leadership potential, West Bountiful City Councilmember James Ahlstrom encourages them to apply to serve on the West Bountiful Youth City Council.
“It’s a great opportunity for youth in our city to understand the city’s principles they’ll be dealing with all of their lives,” said Ahlstrom, city council liaison to the YCC. “It develops leadership skills and it’s just plain fun. There’s fun social interaction and it’s a good resume item on a college application.”
Viewmont High School senior Nicole Wood, 17, has served on the youth council since her freshman year. In ninth grade, she worked as the group’s historian, as a sophomore she was mayor pro-tem, and this year she’s been the YCC mayor.
“I loved the idea of getting involved,” Nicole said. “I’ve always loved leadership and being involved in service projects. Service has been a big part of my family’s life. I try to do it as much as I can.”
The YCC works closely with the city council to promote pride and strength in the community. Organizing several service projects during the year is one of the group’s duties. In 2021, the YCC worked with the Bountiful Rotary Club to put on the Coats for Kids car show and fundraiser. Youth members also organize the city’s Christmas event with Santa, and the “legendary” Easter egg hunt.
“It’s going to be a lot of work and there will be times it won’t be as fun as you’d like it to be,” Nicole said. “ But you get to know the city council and police officers, and get to make friends with other members of the council. It’s 100% worth it.”
Applications to serve on the West Bountiful Youth City Council are available at WBCity.org and will be accepted until June 22. All applicants must live in West Bountiful, be in 7th through 12th grade and have a GPA of 3.0.
Jen Jacobsen and her husband, Chris, work as advisors to the YCC. She said the youth mayor and youth council make decisions that directly impact the community. By working with the city council, members of the YCC learn to listen to different points of view and promote West Bountiful's values of strength, unity, and family.
“Local government is where magic happens. This is where the vast majority of things that affect daily life happen,” Jacobsen said. “In a small community like West Bountiful, the opportunity to be involved in local government is the opportunity to see that magic happen close up, and to be part of creating that magic for others .
The truth is that [serving on the YCC] is an experience that can be life-changing for them, and the community they serve.” λ