Nicolas Sanchez, our 2020 Youth of the Year, poses in Joe's Garage Teen Center at the Santa Ana Club

For nearly 70 years, the Boys & Girls Club Youth of the Year program has honored and celebrated the nation’s most inspiring teens and their incredible journeys. Stories of outstanding leadership, service, academic excellence, and dedication to living a healthy lifestyle have made Youth of the Year America’s premier leadership and recognition program for teens. The amazing young people selected represent the voice and spirit of hope for America. Inspiring all kids to lead. To succeed. To inspire.

Each year, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Orange Coast has the distinct honor of selecting and recognizing a Youth of the Year from our family of Clubs. Picking one outstanding member is always a very difficult decision, but it’s also really rewarding to see all that our teens have accomplished thus far in their young lives and to hear about their goals for the future.

Please join us in congratulating our 2020 Youth of the Year, Nicolas Sanchez.

A senior at Samueli Academy, Nicolas is a 4.0+ student who consistently excels in honors and advanced placement (AP) courses while being an active member of the school’s Art Club and Samueli Choir Program. Additionally, Nicolas has been involved with his school’s Associated Student Body (ASB) all four years of high school, serving as ASB Vice President his sophomore year, President his junior year, and Communications Director this year.

He has been described by his academic advisors as compassionate, driven, and a natural born leader who is committed to making a difference in the community and with everyone he meets. His goal is simple: to spread hope and empower others. As such, Nicolas established the Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) to promote unity, tolerance, and acceptance at Samueli Academy and to encourage students to reach out for support, as well as the school’s Pre-Medicine Society to expose students to the field of medicine by offering healthcare presentations and medical skills workshops.

A fourth year member of our College Bound program, Nicolas makes himself available to younger College Bound members by acting as a resource for information on the internship application process and providing guidance on resumes and mock interviews. Additionally, he has encouraged his younger sister and many of his peers to join College Bound.

With his interest in medicine and compassion for others, he earned a highly desirable and competitive internship position as a child life volunteer at CHOC Children’s. Hoping to pursue a career as a physician, Nicolas recently committed to the University of California, Riverside, majoring in Cell, Molecular, and Developmental Biology and minoring in Business. He said, “I am so excited to dorm and meet new people. I also have a connection to the school of medicine, so hopefully I’ll be interning there after I get comfortable at school.”

As Youth of the Year, Nicolas received a $2,500 scholarship from our Club to use toward his education. We are excited to see what the future holds for him as he continues to pursue greatness.

Our College Bound program provides additional scholarships to help deserving kids pay for college. Want to be a part of it? Please consider making a gift. Thank you for helping us fulfill our mission to ensure every child has mentors and champions in life and for giving high school students a better opportunity to reach their GREATEST POTENTIAL!