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Student Board of Directors

2018 Student Board of Directors

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis’ student board of directors program offers high school seniors a dynamic way to learn about our nation’s central bank. Participants gain a thorough understanding of the Federal Reserve’s role in the U.S. economy, participate in online and in-person learning experiences, and engage with employees from various areas of the Bank. St. Louis area students are selected based on the quality of their essays and letters of recommendation. After successful completion of the year-long program, students may apply for summer internships at the St. Louis Fed.


Members of the St. Louis Fed’s student board of directors program come from diverse backgrounds and serve as liaisons between St. Louis area high schools and the Federal Reserve. During their year on the board, members meet every month from August through May at the St. Louis Fed, Broadway and Locust Street.

At these meetings, students discuss issues related to economics and personal finance; participate in discussions with St. Louis Fed leaders on topics ranging from professional development to career planning and progression; and prepare a presentation about the Federal Reserve to be delivered to peers at their respective high schools.

Some details on applying for student board membership have changed, so please review the requirements carefully.

In particular, please note that a school official may provide letters of recommendation for no more than two students, and that recommendations from a community member must be supplied by someone not affiliated with the applicant’s school.

Children of Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis employees are not eligible for the program.

Application Process

The deadline has been extended to April 1, 2019.

Applicants must be high school seniors during the 2019-2020 academic year with a GPA of at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. They are responsible for gathering and submitting all application materials by April 1, 2019.

The applicant must fill out an application online. (Click here to review the application form.) The entire form must be completed before “Submit” is clicked.

Students also must supply an essay, a letter of recommendation from an official at the student’s school, and a second letter from a community member. The letters and essay must be submitted via email to


  • The essay must be 500 to 600 words, double-spaced and in 12-point font, submitted as a Word document or PDF attachment. Google Docs submissions will not be accepted. The essay topic is leadership.
  • For the essay:
    • Describe why you think leadership is important. Explain how leadership can help others resolve disputes, contribute to group efforts, or make your community or school a better place. Give at least one specific example of how you have demonstrated leadership.
  • The recommendation letter from a teacher, counselor or principal must have specific examples of that particular student’s leadership and scholarship. A school official may recommend no more than two students.
  • The recommendation letter from a community member should be written by someone the applicant knows from work, hobbies or volunteering who is not affiliated with the student’s school.

Bank employees use a scoring rubric and review the student nominations and applications.

To make sure each applicant’s documents stay together as a package for the review, include in the name of each document the applicant’s name, the type of document, and, for the essay, the date.

For example:

  • Teacher Recommendation for John Smith;
  • Community Member Recommendation for John Smith;
  • John Smith Essay 2.20.2019.

Follow the same formats for the email subject lines. If the documents are sent in the same email, include the applicant’s name and “application package” in the subject line.


We select a maximum of 18 students per year for the board. Students who are selected will be notified in May.

Members must:

  • Serve from late July/early August 2019 through May 2020.
  • Attend all meetings and prepare for and participate fully in all discussions and projects.
  • Complete online learning modules from the St. Louis Fed’s Econ Lowdown Online Learning series to prepare for discussions and interactive activities.
  • Maintain a standard of behavior befitting a representative of the nation’s central bank.

Meetings are from 7:30 to 9 a.m., with two exceptions. In August, a luncheon meeting will be scheduled. A parent/guardian or family member is required to attend. In May, the meeting will be a recognition dinner for board members’ work. Teachers who recommended the students, and students’ parents and guardians, will be invited to the dinner.

For more information contact:
Alan Ernst,