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Student Board of Directors

2019 Student Board of Directors | St. Louis Fed

2019 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.


The application period is now open. The deadline to submit your application is Feb. 21, 2020.

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. 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.

Please note that each school may provide letters of recommendation for no more than two students, and that recommendations from community members 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

Applicants must be high school seniors during the 2020-2021 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. The applicant must fill out an application online (view the application form). The entire form must be completed before “Submit” is clicked.

Students also must supply an essay, a signed letter of recommendation from an official at the student’s school (e.g., teacher, counselor, administrator), and a second letter from a community member. The letters and essay must be submitted via email to by 5 p.m. on Feb. 21, 2020.


For the essay:

  • 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. You must write a personal narrative—not a research paper—and 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.

For recommendation letters:

  • The recommendation letter from a teacher, counselor or principal also must have specific examples of that particular student’s leadership and scholarship. Each school 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.

St. Louis Fed 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 title of each document the applicant’s name, the type of document, and, for the essay, the date. The applicant also should include her or his name on the essay.

For example:

  • Teacher Recommendation for John Smith
  • Community Member Recommendation for John Smith
  • John Smith Essay 2.20.2020

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.

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


We have a limited number of seats on the board. Only one student per school will be accepted. Students who are selected will be notified via a personal phone call in early May.

Members must:

  • Serve from late July/early August 2020 through May 2021.
  • 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/or guardians, will be invited to the dinner.

For more information contact:
Alan Ernst,