Teen Ambassadors Competition

This is a teen division of our California State Scholarship Competition. It is open to all youth ages 13-16 from across the state of California. Participants practice leadership and team-building skills, deepen their understanding of and commitment to community service, and make new friends along the way. Each participant comes into program with unique skills and abilities, and our goal is to encourage confidence and self-esteem. Activities include public speaking, interview and leadership training, as well as team-building and community service activities  culminating with the on-stage competition. Please read the Official Competition Handbook below for details about scholarships, sponsorship fee, areas of competition, schedule of activities and more.


group-wordpress-white About the Teen Ambassadors Competition
Sponsored by Youth Focus Inc., the California State Youth Accolades Teen Ambassador’s Competition is a prestigious and well-respected statewide youth program in search of outstanding youth to represent Youth Focus Inc.

California State’s Teen Ambassador and Ambassadress in their roles as Ambassadors for Youth Focus Inc. share an exciting and active year of appearances and engagements. They will have the opportunity to meet and interact with civic leaders and a myriad of volunteers who serve their communities with diligence and dedication.

The majority of their responsibilities will be representing Youth Focus Inc. as Teen Ambassadors at community functions to bring about a better understanding of the role of the Youth Focus Inc. in the community.

rohan-isabelle-white Basic Rules for Entry
The CSYA Teen Ambassador’s Competition for the position of California State’s Teen Ambassador and Ambassadress is open to young people of achievement who are interested in serving in a leadership position, which fosters community service and leadership development.

  1. Candidate must be a resident of California and presently attending a public, private, or home school within the State.
  2. Candidate must be between the ages of 13 to 16 as of the day of competition.
  3. Candidate must not have been involved in, ever convicted of, or pleaded guilty to any crimes including felonies and/or misdemeanors.
  4. Candidate holding a current or unexpired State or National title, which is in direct conflict with the competition program, is not eligible for participation without the express written consent of competition officials.
  5. Candidates who achieve the titles of California State’s Teen Ambassador and Ambassadress must be available to serve for a one-year term without exception.


2017 Jessie Brandenburg Memorial Scholarships

Every candidate receives a scholarship award.

California State Teen Accolades

$500……….California State Teen Ambassador and Ambassadress
$250……….Golden State Teen Ambassador and Ambassadress
$150……….Second Alternates
$100……….Third Alternates
$50…………State Teen Finalists


Teen and junior scholarships will be awarded as talent scholarships.


Special Awards

Trophy Award…..Most Inspirational Award – The Ralph W. Mayes Memorial Award
Trophy Award…..Talent Award Of Excellence – Bobbie Lynn Hosfeldt Talent Award


Scholarships are awarded in accordance with the rules and regulations of the scholarship awards program as administered by Youth Focus Inc., and the terms and conditions relating thereto.

Areas of Competition for Teen Candidates
  • 25%…..Personality Interview
  • 25%…..Personality Speech
  • 25%…..Extemporaneous Question
  • 25%…..Speech Presentation/Stage Arts

Judging of the foregoing categories is subject to and governed by the established policies and procedures of the California State Teen Accolades Ambassador’s Competition. Within these guidelines, judging is solely at the discretion of the judges selected by the California State Teen Accolades Ambassador’s Competition and Youth Focus Inc. The decision of the judges is final in all cases.

In this phase of competition, the judges meet with each of the Candidates in a seven-minute informal interview.  At this time, the judges evaluate the Candidate’s performance in response to a variety of questions.  The Candidate’s knowledge, perception, mental alertness and awareness of current events are evaluated. Articulation and self-expression are carefully reviewed.  This area of competition provides an opportunity for the judges to focus upon the Candidate’s sense of values, attitudes, future goals and aspirations, and personality.  Personal appearance and grooming habits provide the judges with additional insight relative to the Candidate’s ability to assume a position as a public relations specialist.

In the Personality Speech, the candidate is to provide an on-stage commentary up to 60 seconds including their name, age, school, grade, school activities, hobbies and/or interests, and why they would like to serve as Junior Ambassadress/Ambassador. Candidate’s personality and potential as a community ambassador and public relations specialist is evaluated. Time limit: 60 seconds. There is a 5-second grace period. A 50% penalty will be imposed upon exceeding the time limit.

In the Extemporaneous Question competition, the Candidate is provided with a question relating to an area of interest from the Candidate’s Official Application. This Competition provides the judges the opportunity to evaluate the Candidate’s ability to speak before a group and the effectiveness of his or her communication skills.  Consideration is given to the creativity and content of their response with regard to the pressures and demands of spontaneity in the public forum.  Overall appearance relative to their potential as a community Ambassador and public relations specialist is again evaluated. There is no time limit.

Candidates have the choice in this phase of competition of presenting either a speech presentation or a performing arts skill, which has been mastered through dedicated study. Both types of presentations will be judged equally. Time limit: 2 minutes. A 30-second grace period is allowed. A 50% penalty will be imposed upon exceeding the time limit.


The purpose of the speech competition is to evaluate each Candidate’s skills in developing qualities as a public relations specialist who will be addressing community groups in public speaking activities.  The Candidate is to prepare a speech on a topic the Candidate would advocate for as a community representative/Goodwill Ambassador. The Candidate will be judged on language and grammar, delivery, power of expression and general effectiveness. Candidates are allowed to use note cards for the delivery of the speech.

In the Stage Arts Competition, the Candidate displays a live talent or stage presentation. In this phase of competition degree of difficulty and technical ability are considered by the judges. Types presentation include, but are not limited to, monologue, dramatic reading, dancing, vocal performance (singing), instrumental performance (piano, guitar, flute, etc.), art demonstration/presentation, dramatic reading, cheer routine, etc.


Wardrobe Checklist
Wardrobe Checklist

Rehearsal Clothes Casual, lightweight clothing allowing free movement and comfortable shoes.
No jeans or flip-flops, please.
Rehearsal clothes will be worn in the theater during rehearsal and practice times.
Business Suit Business suit or dress appropriate for a business interview.
  • Personality Interview
Semi-formal Knee length party-dress or dress slacks and collared dress shirt.
  • Production Number
  • Personality Speech
  • Extemporaneous Question
Stage Arts Costume Appropriate costume for your stage arts or speech presentation.
  • Stage Arts

As noted above, please do not wear jeans or flip-flops. Cal State week is an opportunity for you to dress for success!

You are not expected to purchase expensive clothing to participate in the competition. We would be happy to help you find appropriate, affordable outfits. There are also opportunities to borrow items from the Youth Focus closet. Please feel free to give us a call or send an email if you have any questions about the wardrobe requirements, or finding/borrowing an outfit. We would be very happy to help you!


rohan-talent Sample Schedule of Activities

This schedule is subject to change. Official schedule will be sent to you prior to the competition.

Friday – Welcome and Tribute Day
5:00 p.m. Parent Orientation Three Flames Restaurant
1547 Meridian Ave
San Jose, CA 95125
6:30 p.m. Board of Directors Tribute Dinner
Honoring 2016 Junior and Teen All-Star Captains
Tickets are $20
(excluding candidates)
and will be sold at the door
Saturday – Competition Day
9:00 a.m. Personality Interviews / Speech Rehearsal Starbright Theater
1770 W Campbell Ave
San Jose, Ca 95008
2:00 p.m. Stage Arts Rehearsals Starbright Theater
7:00 p.m. Final Competition
 10:00 p.m.  Celebration Reception (complimentary) Starbright Theater