Jaycee members develop critical skills through learning by doing. The St. Louis Jaycees offer opportunities to develop leadership, project management, and communication skills to name a few. We empower our members with skills, knowledge and understanding to make informed decisions and take action to create positive change across St. Louis.
Develop valuable skills and experience that are fully transferable to their careers.
Develop professional and personal relationships with a diverse group of committed and active persons in the community providing a network that spans the professions across the metropolitan area.
Learn how to balance their lives and use their time productively away from work.
Creating Positive Change
Our members take action about the causes and issues that they are passionate about, committed to and invested in. These include the following to name a few:
The St. Louis Jaycees began with the idea that youth should not be a barrier to personal development or participation in your communities development and decision making. From its humble beginnings as a dance club in St. Louis, Missouri, the organization has grown from one young man's vision to an international movement offering young people the opportunity for hands-on leadership training and experience in local, state, national and global development.
A young man called Henry Giessenbier founded JCI in St. Louis as far back as 1915. Henry had a dream that through civic action young people could become active citizens; “great purpose of fellowship, advancement and everything which would make a good boy a better boy, a good student a more proficient scholar and a good citizen a better citizen”.
That vision became a reality when on October 13, 1915 at the Mission Inn in St. Louis, 32 young men formed the Young Men's Progressive Civic Association (YMPCA). Giessenbier was elected the first president. The group quickly became involved in St. Louis civic affairs and won respect from authorities for efficiently handling tasks assigned them. In under six months the membership grew from 32 to 750.
After many name changes YMPCA became known as the St. Louis Junior Chamber of Commerce or St. Louis Jaycees. By this time the local St. Louis organization had sparked a movement that first expanded across the nation and then the globe.
Over its 100 year history the St. Louis Jaycees and its counterparts around the world have been responsible for such achievements as:
Instituting safe driving practices including signage, road safety laws, driving schools and advocated seat belts.
Fighting for the rights of all marginalized citizens including children, the disabled, women and impoverished through advocacy, local programs and projects for senior centers, handicapped friendly camps and more.
Influenced the urban development of the St. Louis community to ensure sustainable infrastructure and a welcoming community environment,
Developed such leaders as Bill Clinton, George Bush, the founder or Papa Johns and former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan.