Youth Action Council

The Youth Action Council is a leadership program for ambitious high school students who wish to share their passion for marine science while also making a positive impact in their community on behalf of the ocean. The program brings groups of teens together from San Diego, Orange, and Los Angeles county to discuss a variety of ocean conservation issues. Youth learn to transform their passion into action to create meaningful and effective change for a healthier planet.

During the 2023 session, students, in grades 9-12, will be given the opportunity to learn about cutting edge science being used to assist in the recovery of the critically endangered Southern Resident killer whales. A series of hands-on workshops, demonstrating different field techniques, precedes a variety of youth driven initiatives to raise awareness of the cascade of human impacts affecting these whales and how people in Southern California can help.

Next session: January – May, 2023 (3rd Tuesday of each month meetings, 4-6pm)
Location: Meetings will be held virtually and regionally. Applicants should sign up through the facility in their region.

  • San Diego County: National Marine Mammal Foundation (
  • Orange County: Pacific Marine Mammal Center (
  • Los Angeles County: Marine Mammal Care Center (

Time Commitment: The council meets once a month for two hours. Additional hours outside of meetings are required to fulfill the community project. Contact your regional site for a monthly schedule.

Qualifications: All levels of experience are welcome. Applicants need only have a passion for marine science and ocean conservation to participate. Applications will be weighed based on essay responses to questions included.

Acceptance is predicated on the applicant’s ability to commit to all sessions of the program and willingness to participate in and fulfill the conservation awareness initiative. Students must have access to a reliable internet connection for online meetings as well as transportation to meetings held at their regional sight.

Cost: This program is grant funded and at no cost to participants, but participants must be able to provide their own transportation for in-person meetings.

2023 Youth Action Council Application