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Student Board of Directors Application,
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Our student board of directors program offers high school seniors a dynamic way to learn about the nation’s central bank! Students will gain a thorough understanding of the Federal Reserve’s role in the U.S. economy and engage with various employees.

The application period for the 2021-22 student board is now open. The deadline to complete your online application and submit materials is 5 p.m. Friday, March 5, 2021. Please review these instructions carefully.

Who Is Eligible?

Members of the St. Louis Fed’s student board of directors program come from diverse backgrounds and serve as ambassadors between St. Louis-area high schools and the Federal Reserve. Applicants:

  • Should be St. Louis area high school seniors during the next (2021-22) academic year.
  • Have at least a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale.

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

How Do Students Apply?

There are four steps to the application process.

  1. Fill out the application of interest form.
  2. Prepare a personal essay.
  3. Get two letters of recommendation.
  4. Email us your essay and recommendation letters.

Download a printable checklist (pdf) of all items required for the application process.

Step 1: Fill out the Application of Interest

First, interested students must fill out this online application. Be sure to finish the whole form.

Step 2: Prepare a Personal Essay

Next, write a narrative essay on “why I 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.

  • 500 to 600 words, double-spaced, 12-point font.
  • Save your essay as a Word document or PDF. (Google docs and other formats are not supported at this time.)

Step 3: Get Two Letters of Recommendation

In addition to the essay, applicants will need two signed recommendation letters:

  1. One letter should be from an official at your school (e.g., nominating teacher, counselor or administrator). It should give specific examples of your leadership and scholarship.
  2. One letter should be from another adult in your community (e.g., an employer, coach, religious leader, fine arts director, leader of a nonprofit where you volunteer, or a former teacher, etc.) It should contain specific examples of your leadership.

Note to schools: A single high school may recommend no more than two students in an academic year.

Step 4: Email Us Your Essay and Recommendation Letters

If you’ve completed the online application and your materials are ready, attach the essays and two letters of recommendation to an email and send to by 5 p.m. Friday, March 5, 2021.


  • Send all three documents in the same email, with the student’s name and “application package” in the subject line.
  • Submit these as Word documents or PDFs. For security reasons, other formats are not accepted.
  • Label and date documents clearly to ensure they stay together for review. Examples:

-Jasmine Smith Essay 2.1.21.doc
-Teacher Recommendation for Jasmine Smith 2.1.21.pdf
-Community Member Recommendation_Jasmine Smith 2.1.21.doc

More Information

2020 Student Board of Directors | St. Louis Fed

How Are Students Selected?

The St. Louis Fed uses a scoring rubric and reviews student nominations and applications. Students are selected based on the quality of their essays and letters of recommendation. Due to the limited number of seats on the board, only one student per school will be accepted.

Students who are selected will be notified via phone in early May 2021.

How Often Do Students Meet?

During their year on the board, members meet every month from late July/early August through May at the St. Louis Fed, Broadway and Locust Street.

Virtual instead of in-person meetings will be conducted if warranted out of an abundance of caution for health.

Students will 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.

Meetings are from 7:30 to 9 a.m., with two exceptions. In July/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/or guardians, will be invited to the dinner.

Participation Requirements

If selected for the board, members must:

  • Attend all meetings and prepare for and participate fully in all discussions and projects.
  • Complete online learning modules from our Econ Lowdown Online Learning series to prepare for discussions and interactive activities.
  • Collaborate with other Student Board members to create a presentation about the Fed and share it with a class at their school.
  • Maintain a standard of behavior befitting a representative of the nation’s central bank.

After successful completion of the yearlong program, students may apply for summer internships at the St. Louis Fed.

For more information, contact: