Youth Programs

Where are you going? 

The future of rural America depends on whether its young people want to stay—or come back—and help it grow. Engaging rural youth early is key to giving them this opportunity. The Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) provides scholarships, a Youth Tour, and a number of other programs to help invest in the next generation of rural leaders and citizens.


We have dozens of scholarships available for high-achieving, self-motivated rural students.

Youth Tour

We welcome over 100 rural students to D.C. to learn about policymaking & rural telecom.

Rural Youth Survey

Every other year, we survey hundreds of rural youth on their telecom usage.

Rural Youth App Challenge

Deadline for submissions: April 20, 2018

Challenge Overview

Students will develop a concept for a mobile app that will address a problem or improve a process in their rural community or in rural America at-large. The challenge will be concept-based only and the judgement will be based on how well-researched and well-presented the app is. The concept must be possible, well-researched and not already be an app in existence (but may be similar).

Who is eligible?

  • Students enrolled in grades 7 through 12
  • At least one student teammate must live in an area served by an NTCA­—The Rural Broadband Association (NTCA) member company*


Must be made up of 1 to 5 students, all within eligible grade range, and with at least one member served by an NTCA member company.


The winning team will receive $1,000 in gift cards and Codecademy Scholarships.


Will receive a year-long subscription to Codecademy-PRO (worth $84, approx.) and be eligible to win a $50 Amazon gift card.

Ownership: FRS has the nonexclusive right to publish photos and videos provided by students on their progress and use them for publicity.


For more information check out this flyer


View the application


Rural Youth App Challenge Winners


Speed Geeks


  1. Julie Helton (17)
  2. Davis Powell (17)
  3. Michaela Nees (15)
  4. Jaren Rossock (17)
  5. Harlee Pellum (16)

From: Cloverdale, Indiana

Sponsored by: Endeavor Communications

Goal: To support their community with tech support to help older generation learn new things that are available like iPads etc. They would also offer the customer to come once a month to a location to do hands-on support.




Water to Land


  1. Josh Klein (13)
  2. Elijah Anderson (13)

From: Barren County, SE KY

Sponsored by: South Central Rural Telecommunications Cooperative, Inc.

What: Allow tourists and the community to visit the state park and be aware of the activities surrounding it.




  1. Maggie White (18)
  2. Camden Williams (18)
  3. Eli Tipton (15)
  4. Zane Sizemore (15)

From: Green City, Missouri

Sponsoring Company: Northeast Missouri Rural Telephone Company

What: Make cattle farmers’ jobs easier and to eventually rid the cattle industry of all of the unwanted paperwork through the use of our app. The app will make cattle information available to anyone who scans the back of cattle tags. We will introduce the app to our rural cattle farmers and hope within time they will recommend it to others.




  1. Taylor Ladd (15)
  2. Zachary Harper (16)
  3. Dylan Bragg (17)
  4. Dakota Brown (17)

From: Barren County

Sponsored by: South Central Rural Telecommunications Cooperative, Inc.

What: Help farmers in community better manage crops and livestock by using app to keep track of the things they do. Also, consumer would be able to find local growers for fresh produce.


View Press Release

Watch an archived version of the webcast that provides additional insight into this new program!

Jessica Golden and Carissa Swenson launched the first-ever FRS Rural Youth App Challenge in this webcast. The webcast launched the challenge, walked viewers through the application process and answered questions.