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What is the R2L® NextGen Program?

CHCI will bring high school students from across the nation to Washington, D.C. to spend five days learning about how the Federal Government works, meeting important leaders, visiting historic sites and developing a deeper understanding of how they can affect positive change in their communities and their nation.

Who is eligible?

Students who wish to apply must:

  • Be a current 10th or 11th grade student
  • Demonstrate interest in learning more about civic engagement
  • Reside in one of the following geographic regions identified for eligibility, including:
  • Atlanta • Central Florida • Chicago • Detroit • Las Vegas • North Jersey • New York City • Phoenix • Puerto Rico • South Florida • State of California • State of Massachusetts • State of New Mexico • State of Texas • Washington D.C. Metro Area

All individuals are welcome to apply. However, preference is given to individuals with financial need.

Family members of CHCI Board or Advisory Board Members are prohibited from participating in any of CHCI’s charitable programs (e.g., scholarships, internships, etc.). Applications by such family members will not be considered. Note: “Family members” include the following individuals regardless of whether the relationship is biological or adoptive:

  • Immediate family – includes spouse, domestic partner, ex-spouse, parents, siblings, half-siblings, children, stepchildren, grandparents, grandchildren, step-parents, step-siblings
  • Related by marriage – includes son-in-law, daughter-in-law, mother-in-law, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law
  • Extended family, either natural or by marriage – includes nieces, nephews, uncles, aunts, and first cousin

When is it?

Due to COVID-19, CHCI will be hosting programming virtually 100 R2L NextGen participants. The programs will take place July 6-31, 2020.

In a standard year, students are divided between the weeks as follows:

June 14-19, 2020

  • Atlanta
  • California*
  • Chicago*
  • Las Vegas
  • New Mexico
  • Phoenix
  • Puerto Rico*
  • San Jose*
  • Southern California*
  • South Florida*
  • Texas*

July 19-24, 2020

  • California*
  • Chicago*
  • Detroit
  • Massachusetts
  • New York City
  • North Jersey
  • Puerto Rico*
  • South Florida*
  • Texas*
  • Washington, D.C.

*There will be participants from California, Chicago, Puerto Rico, South Florida and Texas during both programs; applicants have the option of stating their preferred week in the application process.

Can I choose which week I attend?

Students from a city that is assigned to a specific week are ONLY eligible to attend that week. Those cities include: Atlanta, Detroit, Las Vegas, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York City, North Jersey, and Washington, D.C. If you are not able to attend on your region’s assigned week, we encourage you to apply next year.

Students from a city that will have participants in both weeks may note their preferred week in their application. However, please note that if you list in your application that you have no preference, you will be assigned to a week by CHCI and changes cannot be made.

What if I don't live or attend high school in one of the identified regions?

Unfortunately, students who do not reside or attend high school in a pre-identified region are not eligible to apply for the R2L® NextGen program. Since R2L® NextGen is made possible at no cost to our student participants, applicants are only sought from regions where CHCI has dedicated financial support. This is the sixth year CHCI is hosting the R2L® NextGen Program and new regions are added each year. We hope to be able to continue to grow this program in the future and open it up to more students.

Send us an email at with your name, high school, city and state. We’ll keep you posted about new opportunities as we grow!

If you are an adult, we’d love to bring high school students from your community to D.C., but we need your help to fund this important program. If you are interested in having individuals from your community participate in this program, please contact CHCI at We are willing to work collaboratively to identify partners, businesses, or foundations in your local community that may be interested in sponsoring future Latino leaders.

How much does it cost?

There is no cost to student participants. Travel, lodging, meals and activities will all be covered through the support of our generous sponsors and CHCI.

Will there be chaperones?

CHCI and Close Up staff will supervise students at all times upon their arrival in Washington, D.C. However, chaperones for travel are not provided. Students will not be supervised by any CHCI or Close Up Foundation staff beyond the airport security gate in Washington, D.C. or at any time in their home city.

Schools, districts, or programs are welcome to send a chaperone to participate in the program at their own expense. Contact CHCI for pricing information.

What will I need for my application?

The 2020 application will launch October 21, 2019. 

Applicants will be required to complete the following:

  • Your personal information (contact information, demographic information, educational information, emergency contact information)
  • Three short essays (see the tips page for details on the essay questions)
  • A copy of your transcript
  • Contact information for your recommender
  • Parent/Guardian Information and Permission Form (Available in English or Spanish)
  • A resume

Visit our Tips for Applying to the R2L NextGen Program for more helpful hints and to preview the essay questions!

When is the application deadline?

The application deadline is February 18, 2020 at 11:59 pm Eastern  Time. Please note this is much earlier than in previous years – make sure you don’t miss out!

If you don’t live in the Eastern Time Zone, be sure to determine what time that is for you locally! You must complete your application online at Access to the application will end at 11:59 pm, so be sure to get everything in!

What will students do in Washington, D.C.?

The program is packed with exciting opportunities for participants to engage with other student leaders, network with Latino professionals, visit historic sites, and learn more about their role as leaders in their communities and the nation. Please note that the entire program is presented in English.

Who should I contact if I have more questions?

We are happy to answer your questions. Please contact and we will get back to you soon.