Since 1946 the Model Assembly Session has grown from a simple program featuring only a Model Legislature and a Youth Governor, to an incredibly realistic and complex simulation of Minnesota state government. Approximately 1,600 students in grades 8-12 take part in the Model Assembly Session every January.


Participants have opportunities to serve in a number of different program areas. Participants can serve as leadership corps members, legislators, judges, attorneys, lobbyists, and cabinet members. They may also work in the offices of the Youth Attorney General, Youth Secretary of State, Youth Lieutenant Governor and Youth Governor.

Others may choose to spend their time exploring the role that media plays in government by taking part in the production of their own daily newspapers, nightly television news broadcasts, or daily radio station programming. The Model Assembly program itself is conducted almost entirely by students, so many leadership opportunities exist for interested delegates. The possibilities for discovery are virtually limitless.

The Model Assembly Session provides unique, hands-on, opportunities for the young people of Minnesota to learn about their government. Minnesota YMCA Model Assembly has the honor to use the facilities of the Minnesota State Capitol Complex and the Minneapolis Hilton Hotel. Very few people have experienced the thrill of making a speech in the Senate or the exhilaration of presenting a case before the Supreme Court. The Model Assembly Session offers students these and many more wonderful opportunities.

While the primary goal of this program is the promotion of responsible citizenship, students come away from Model Assembly with much more than a greater knowledge of the inner-workings of government. Participants sharpen their leadership skills and improve their critical thinking while they become more skillful at debate and public speaking. Students' self-esteem is improved as they learn that their ideas do matter and that they can make a difference in their world. As Model Assembly participants experience what it is like to run the State of Minnesota for a few days, they also learn a great deal about themselves - their abilities, their interests, and their responsibilities as citizens of a participatory democracy.

2014 MAS Joint Convention and State of the State

Video courtesy MN House of Representatives