Nomination and Selection Process

When is the deadline to nominate a youth?

We accept nominations year round, but if you’d like a youth to be considered for next year’s awards, please submit a nomination by December 31.

Who can be nominated for Spirit of Youth recognition?

We recognize Alaska youth age 12-19, statewide. Nominations can be submitted for an individual or a group.

Who can make a nomination?

Nominations can come from anyone who wishes to recognize a hard-working Alaska teen. Recommendations often come from school staff and board members, youth clubs and organizations, the business community or other teens. Any community member inspired by a teen’s efforts can submit a nomination.

What if the youth I nominate has already graduated high school – can they still receive an award?

As long as the individual (or members of a group) is not over the age of 19, they are still be eligible for a Spirit of Youth Award.

What if the youth I nominate wasn’t in the age range at the time of their service project – can they still be considered for an award?

As long as the youth is between the ages of 12 and 19 at the time of the nomination then they can be considered for an award.

I am having difficulty submitting a nomination online. How else can I make a nomination?

You can download and print a hard copy nomination form and either email it to or mail it to P.O. Box 243721, Anchorage, AK 99524.

Can I nominate my own child?

Although all nominations are accepted for Alaska youth age 12-19, a non-parental nomination may carry more merit during the award selection process.

Do multiple nominations for one individual increase the likelihood of being selected for a Spirit of Youth Award?

The number of nominations for one individual does not affect an individual’s chances of receiving an award, but the more information provided may carry more merit during the award selection process.

Who selects the award recipients?

The Spirit of Youth Teen Advisory Council meets to review all the nominations for the year. They ultimately select the eight award recipients and eight runners-up.

Scholarships and Awards

Is there a Spirit of Youth scholarship?

Each year Spirit of Youth gives out one award and one runner-up in each of their eight categories. Each individual award recipient receives a scholarship from Alaska 529.

Who should I contact with inquiries about my scholarship funds?

If you were awarded a Spirit of Youth scholarship and have questions, please contact Alaska 529 at 1-888-4-ALASKA, or

Where can I use my scholarship? 

Spirit of Youth scholarships can be used for education-related expenses like college or university fees, books, housing, vocational training, K-12 tuition, student loans, and more. See the Alaska529 Plan website for specific details.

When does my scholarship expire? 

Your scholarship will expire when you turn 25.

How is the scholarship distributed to a group of students?

If a group of students receives a Spirit of Youth Award, instead of an individual scholarship, a grant will be given to the group to support its efforts.

I was nominated for Spirit of Youth recognition and received a certificate. Does this mean I was selected for a Spirit of Youth award?

All nominees receive a certificate from Spirit of Youth, but this does not mean you’ve been selected for a Spirit of Youth Award. All nominations are reviewed by our teen advisory council in January, when eight award recipients and eight runners-up are selected. Those award recipients will be notified in February.

Radio Series

I was featured in a Spirit of Youth radio story. How can I listen to it?

Most public radio stations in Alaska broadcast Spirit of Youth stories, but if you’re unable to hear them in your town, you can view the archives on our website.

Organization and Mission

Is Spirit of Youth a non-profit 501(c)(3)?

Yes, and the organization’s Tax ID # is 92-0168893.

How are Spirit of Youth and ATMI related?

Alaska Teen Media Institute is a program of Spirit of Youth that provides journalism training for youth and creates a distribution point for teen-related news in Alaska. ATMI functions as a teen newsroom where youth work as reporters, editors and producers under the guidance of experienced journalists.

What is Spirit of Youth’s mission?

Spirit of Youth is dedicated to creating, promoting and recognizing youth involvement in communities across Alaska.