More than 1,000 students and hundreds of conservatives in Southern California heard from leaders of the Conservative Movement in the last six days through Young America’s Foundation programs.

YAF’s campus lecture program brought conservative firebrand Ben Shapiro to University of Redlands in California last Wednesday, and sent cultural commentator and advocate for conservative action Rachel Campos-Duffy to California State University-Los Angeles on Thursday.

At University of Redlands, leftists staged a weak attempt at a protest of YAF and Ben Shapiro’s presence on the campus in the form of a “Dance Party of Resistance” that drew less than 60 people. Meanwhile, more than 900 students crammed into a lecture hall to hear a conservative message from Shapiro.

During her camps lecture at California State University, Los Angeles, Rachel Campos-Duffy eviscerated leftist leaders, ideas, and policies for the harm they’ve caused Americans, especially within the hispanic community. Bold activism was again proven to be the best method for advancing freedom’s principles on the notoriously leftist campus.

Young America’s Foundation set a new record for attendees at our Wendy P. McCaw Roundtable at the Reagan Ranch Center on Friday, when Jesse Watters addressed more than 400 students and members of the community.

Over the weekend, hundreds of young conservatives gathered at Young America’s Foundation’s Reagan Ranch Center in Santa Barbara, California, for our first high school conference of 2017. There, students heard from prominent conservatives, including President Reagan’s son, Michael Reagan; Fox News’s Jesse Watters; Rachel Campos Duffy; Breitbart’s Joel Pollak; Jihad Watch’s Robert Spencer; legendary history professor Burt Folsom; Project 21’s Derryck Green; and our own Patrick X. Coyle.

These students—future leaders of the Conservative Movement—walked in President Reagan’s footsteps at his beloved Rancho del Cielo and heard stories from John Barletta, President Reagan’s riding partner and longest serving Secret Service agent. After touring the mountaintop property preserved as a rite of passage for young conservatives by Young America’s Foundation, conference participants left with a better understanding of who President Reagan was, and why he believed so strongly that young Americans are needed to protect, preserve, and defend freedom.

“It became apparent during the visit to the Ranch that President Reagan was not only a great leader but also a great man,” said Daniella Spading of Plumas Lake, California

“This is such an amazing and eye-opening event for young conservatives to see what the Movement is about,” remarked Finley Means, a student from Shelby, Ohio.

“I feel like I now know what ‘conservative’ really means,” added Nathaniel Olson from Valparaiso, Indiana.

Students returned to their classrooms this week and brought with them a new appreciation and understanding for our conservative values and the best tools in the Movement to help them stand boldly as they carry the torch of freedom to their peers.

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