Virginia21 empowers college students and young Virginians to be engaged citizens and advocates for issues important to them and Virginia’s future.
VA21 envisions a well-educated, prosperous, and civically engaged Virginia.
Virginia21 is a statewide, non-partisan organization that brings young Virginians together to tackle the challenges of today and tomorrow. In every corner of the Commonwealth there are young people who are looking for the right resources to enact change and lead within in their communities. We find these leaders and work alongside them to empower their advocacy by building relationships and honing leadership skills that bridge regional and political differences.
It started 21 years ago in a campus coffee shop with a small group of William & Mary students. Policy decisions were being made every day in Richmond that directly impacted the lives of young Virginians. However, no coalition existed to ensure that their ideas and needs were heard or that their votes were earned by those who represented them. Those students founded a coalition of passionate young Virginians from the Commonwealth with one common goal: build a better Virginia in the 21st century. Thus the first ever student-run political action committee was born. Eventually, that organization would evolve into Virginia21, the 501(c)3 nonprofit we are today.
Virginia21 continues to amplify the voices of young Virginians. Our work targets many challenges that young people face: college affordability, campus safety, civic engagement, and leadership development. Our success relies on collaboration between our Student Leaders, Virginia higher education institutions, policy experts, government officials, and community advocates who represent all sides of the political spectrum.
We remain committed to advocating for policies that will make Virginia the best place to live, work, and pursue an education. Together, we will ensure that we are heard in our local communities, campuses, the state Capitol, and beyond.
Fun Fact! "Virginia21" is a nod to those we serve: Young Virginians of the 21st Century!