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National Young Women of Distinction
Every year, ten exceptionally inspiring Girl Scout Gold Award recipients are chosen as National Young Women of Distinction (NYWOD).
This honor is given to Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors whose Gold Award projects demonstrated extraordinary leadership, had a measurable and sustainable impact, and addressed a local challenge related to a national and/or global issue. These young women are taking matters into their own hands, generating much-needed change!
The NYWOD program perfectly reflects our mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. The program provides these young stars with the opportunity to be an inspiration to girls around the world and throughout the Girl Scout Movement—and serve as incredible examples of what it means to be a G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™.
You can learn more about the 2016 awardees in our press release. Then, watch a live replay of these amazing young women as they present their inspirational Take Action projects to the world.
Did you know?
- National Young Women of Distinction represent GSUSA as speakers at a number of local and national events.
- All selected NYWOD receive professional public speaking training.
- NYWOD have the opportunity to reach a national audience while highlighting the importance and impact of their projects.
- NYWOD are awarded college scholarships and other opportunities to help sustain their Gold Award projects.
How are the National Young Women of Distinction chosen?
Councils are asked to select their top three Gold Award recipients using Go Gold Online. Girl Scouts who would like their councils to consider nominating them as a National Young Woman of Distinction are required to use Go Gold Online. GSUSA then ensures a rigorous review process, during which each application is reviewed at least three to five times: first by GSUSA staff, then by an external panel of trusted partners, and, finally, through an intense, in-house staff review of the top candidates. Once the list is narrowed through this review process, GSUSA's internal NYWOD team selects the top ten.
When are the National Young Women of Distinction selected?
Councils are asked to nominate candidates from April 1 through April 30 annually to be considered for this national distinction. Following a two-month review process, ten new National Young Women of Distinction are announced during the first week of July.
For more in-depth information on the nomination process, council staff can join GSUSA's National Young Women of Distinction Pearl community.
To find out more about the National Young Women of Distinction or to support the program, please contact us.
Watch videos featuring the 2016 Young Women of Distinction and hear their moving stories!