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The company that organized the conference, a direct-mail powerhouse called the Congressional Youth Leadership Council, runs an alphabet soup of such conferences that it says are attended by 50,000 students a year. It solicits recommendations from teachers and alumni of previous conferences, and it culls names from mailing lists, for which the council paid $263,000 in 2006 alone, according to its last filing with the Internal Revenue Service, before it gave up its nonprofit status.
The Academy is proud to provide thousands of full academic scholarships to students who are selected by their teacher or guidance counselor for leadership ability, academic achievement, and dedication to science and technology to attend the Academy's Congress of Future Science and Technology Leaders. In addition, the Academy offers nearly half-off, partial scholarships for students to attend the Congress, based on financial need.