Youth Leadership Summit (YLS)


This program was the first program that Rippleffect offered in 2001, and it continues to offer students the unusual opportunity to learn life leadership skills, recognize individual potential and have a great adventure in an experiential setting. This program is open to current sophomores and juniors from Maine.

Students must apply to attend. Please submit your application no later than June 1st, 2019. Applicants are accepted throughout the spring, so make sure to get your application in as soon as possible. Applicants are accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Thank you to L.L. Bean for serving as our long time sponsor for this program! It is through their support that this program has thrived.


Dates: June 24-28

What is the Youth Leadership Summit?

On this five day overnight program, students from all over Maine live, play and learn outside on Cow Island.  The YLS teaches students life leadership skills through sea kayaking adventures, guest speakers, team challenges, and outdoor living.  After the week-long program is over, students come back to Cow Island later in the summer to “give back” two days of community service and practice their new leadership skills. Students have the opportunity to earn up to 16 hours of community service. The 2019 YLS is from June 24th-28th..

What will I be doing on the YLS?

On any given day, your group may be going on a sea kayaking journey, riding our 400’ zip line, competing in an intensive raft building leadership activity, climbing on our climbing wall, experimenting with environmental art creations, or enjoying solo time on our beautiful island. Most mornings begin with a relaxing yoga class and each day ends with a guest speaker or a reflective and fun campfire. The food on Cow Island is fantastic and is enjoyed in a community setting. Students stay in our rustic yurts, except for one night that will be spent on a neighboring island in a backcountry setting. Toilet facilities on Cow Island consist of solar-powered toilets.  There are no showers on Cow, although evening swims and paddling sessions provide a fun alternative!

 Who is eligible to apply?

The YLS is open to participants who will be in high school as of Fall 2019 who would like to learn more about themselves as leaders, are interested in living and learning in the outdoors, and are excited to meet new people and try new things.

How do I get in?

Students are accepted by application only. All applications are due by June 1st, 2019 but this is a first come, first served application process, so early applicants have the advantage!

 How much does it cost?

This program is made possible through funding from L.L. Bean, which allows Rippleffect to offer this program on a sliding scale between $200-$655.  The full cost for each student is $655.00 and families pledge to pay an amount on this scale that works for them.  Full scholarships are available upon request.


Financial Assistance for our Youth Summer Programs is available!

Rippleffect is committed to providing affordable, accessible programs for youth. We believe that participating in an adventure should not be deterred by financial limitations. For more information on scholarship options please click below.


The full cost of YLS is $655

Families pledge to pay an amount that works for them on a sliding scale between $200-$655.

An $100 deposit is required to reserve your child's place. Register online or by phone (207) 791-7870.