The World Food Prize Michigan Youth Institute is a one-day event that gives high school students the opportunity to present research and recommendations on how to solve key global challenges.

World Food Prize Michigan Youth Institute 4-H Youth Development Michigan State UniversityMay 9, 2019
At two locations:
East Lansing, MI @ Michigan State University
Marquette, MI @ Northern Michigan University (Marquette)

The World Food Prize Michigan Youth Institute (WFPMIYI) is a one day event coordinated by Michigan State University (MSU) where high school youth:

  • Present research and recommendations on how to solve key global challenges in a short speech and small group discussions with local experts.
  • Connect with other student leaders from across Michigan to share ideas, identify solutions to these problems and build lasting friendships.
  • Interact with global leaders in science, agriculture, industry and policy.
  • Take part in educational sessions to explore current research and issues in food, agriculture, natural resources, international development and life sciences.
  • Meet innovative professionals, researchers, professors and college students working to end hunger and poverty and improve food security in Michigan and around the world.

When and where: May 9, 2019, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Participants select from two choices of locations for the program: MSU‘s campus in East Lansing or Northern Michigan University (NMU) in Marquette, MI and the Upper Peninsula Research and Extension Center (UPREC)  in Chatham, MI.  Complimentary round-trip shuttle bus service will be provided for participants between NMU and UPREC for the afternoon portion of the program at our location in Marquette.

Who: Students who are in grades 8 through 12 during the 2018-2019 school year are eligible to register by submitting a two to five page paper (see link below).

Cost: There is no cost to participate in the Institute for registered Michigan 4-H and FFA members. Others must pay a $20.00 4-H Participation Fee in order to participate.  Scholarships are available.  Meals will be provided during the event. Student and teacher/mentor participants must organize their own transportation to and from the event.

Registration deadline: April 1, 2019

Online registation for youth participants and their adult teachers or mentors will begin on February 1, 2019 at

  • Youth Registration - Registration Open from February 1 to April 1, 2019
    (Please note that youth must submit their completed research paper as part of the registration process.)
  • Teacher and Adult Mentor Registration Deadline: April 1, 2019

Paper guidelines: Youth will select a developing country and research one of 20 key factors that affect food security (examples of key factors include plant science, water scarcity, dietary diseases, malnutrition or international trade). Under the supervision of a teacher or mentor, each participant will then write a two-page paper outlining their research findings, as well as an approach/recommendation they develop to overcome the issue. More topic, paper and mentor guidelines can be found through World Food Prize, along with examples of past papers.

At the event: Youth will give a short presentation on their research paper and recommendations. Presentations will be 2 to 3 minutes in length and presented in a round table format so youth can receive feedback on their research from their peers and experts that will be assigned to each group.

Papers will be evaluated by an external university party, prior to WFPMIYI on May 9, 2019. At the event, youth will be scored by the experts in their presentation groups based on their individual presentations.

The top performing youth will be considered as possible delegates to represent Michigan at the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute in Des Moines, Iowa, October 2019.  The quality of student research papers and presentations will be the primary measurements used to select potential World Food Prize Global Youth Institute delegates from Michigan.  Students selected as finalists to join Michigan's delegation to the World Food Prize Global Youth Institute will be invited to participate in an video conference interview with the WFPMIYI coordinators.

About the Global Youth Institute: Youth selected to be a Michigan delegate will join over 300 other outstanding high school students and mentors from across the United States and around the world for an exciting three day program to interact with Nobel and World Food Prize Laureates and the more than 1,000 global leaders from 75 countries attending the World Food Prize’s annual international symposium.

Accommodation, meal and program expenses at the three day Global Youth Institute event are provided by the World Food Prize Foundation for the selected Michigan youth delegates. Youth will be accompanied to Iowa for this prestigious leadership opportunity by WFPMIYI mentors. Both student and mentor participants must organize and fund their own transportation to and from the event in Iowa, as well as their lodging Wednesday evening prior to the start of the institute. Other than minor costs, this amazing follow-up opportunity to the WFPMYI is fully funded for the top scoring youth.


For more information on how to get involved with the 2019 Michigan Youth Institute, contact:

Brian Wibby, 4-H educator
Phone: (906) 315-2662


Betty Jo Krosnicki, 4-H educator
Phone: (810) 648-2515

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