Teen Leadership Institute

Three weeks of leadership development, service and wilderness experiences at Camp for rising 11th graders

Unfortunately, after careful consideration, we have determined that it is not yet safe to re-open our site for programs from July through October. The known and unknown risks of transmission conflict with Tawonga’s fundamental commitment to the health and safety of our families. We will reopen as soon as we are ready to do so.

To read more about our response to COVID-19, click here. You are also invited to join our virtual summer programming, “Tawonga at Home” for all ages!


During Session III: July 5 – 24, 2020


Rising 11th graders (current 10th graders)

Program Overview

This three-week program takes place at Camp Tawonga during Session III for rising 11th graders. Teens will go on a memorable four-day backpacking trip, participate in service projects both inside and outside of Camp, go rock climbing in Yosemite and more!

The Teen Leadership Institute is an opportunity for teens to experience Camp in a new way, emphasizing leadership as they transition into role models for the Camp community. Through thoughtful programs dealing with social justice and timely issues led by veteran staff, teens will walk away feeling confident that they can go out and make a difference in the world.

By giving back to Camp and the surrounding Stanislaus National Forest through service projects, teens will be able to see the positive impact of their labor and effort. And, through a variety of wilderness experiences including a four-day backpacking trip, rock climbing in Yosemite as well as classic Camp activities, teens will form bonds within their cohort that will last a lifetime.

Three teens smiling at Teen Leadership program
Teens posing for a group photo at Teen Leadership program

How to Apply

**The application process is now closed for 2020 Teen Leadership Institute program.**

The process includes four steps:

  1. Make sure your parent or guardian registers you through their Camp-In-Touch account, just like they would for any other Tawonga program. You will be automatically put on the waitlist.
  2. Complete the online Teen Program Application and indicate TLI as your program choice.
  3. Copy and paste this link and send it to your reference for them to submit electronically. Your reference can be a supervisor, coach, teacher, youth group advisor or anyone else who has seen you in a professional or leadership context. Please note that your reference must come from outside of the Camp Tawonga community i.e. NOT your most recent Tawonga counselor.
  4. Call our Director of Teen Programs, Sean at 415.543.2267 to schedule an interview. Interviews are conducted in person or over Google hangouts and generally last 45 minutes to an hour.


Teens posing for a group photo at Teen Leadership program

Teen Testimonials

TLI was an amazing, eye-opening experience that I’m so glad I applied for. It was so educational and super fun at the same time.Mariah Fisher

I loved being able to give back to the place I love so much.Puck Hartsough

I will recommend TLI to everyone who is a year younger than me. Literally everyone.Travis (Eli) Lane

This was a fantastic experience that made me realize how much I want to keep returning to Camp T.Jeremiah Haumeder

Check Out TLI 2019

Read this blog post all about last summer’s TLI teens and their amazing experience.


Please contact us if you have questions about the program or application process: 415.543.2267.

Stay in touch

Join Our Email List

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.