Tyler Ruzich, who identities as a moderate Republican, said he was inspired by another teenager who has already filed to run as a Democrat.
Jack Bergeson, also 16, whose campaign launch last month received national attention, persuaded him to try.
If both teenagers win their party nominations they will face off in the 2018 general election.
But they join a crowded field of 16 candidates, including Lieutenant Governor Jeff Colyer and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.
Tyler says he will run as a “Republican for the next generation”, though he supported Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders in last year’s Democratic presidential primary.
When his history teacher heard about his campaign, he made him give a stump speech to the rest of the class, Tyler told the Kansas City Star on Tuesday.
“They know what [my] capabilities are, not just as a student but as a person,” he said.
He added that unlike one of his opponents he will be old enough – 18 – to cast a ballot next November.
“I think a lot of people would roll their eyes or raise their eyebrows at it. But I’m here to win,” Tyler said, before starting his shift as a grocery store cashier.
Tyler said he contacted Jack after hearing about his unlikely campaign, and the young Democrat urged him to join the race.
“It doesn’t really matter what your age is,” Jack, who will not be of legal voting age on election day, said this month.
“What matters is your ambition and your reason. If you’re getting into it for the right reasons.”
Kansas is one of a handful of states with no legal age requirement to run for governor.
Vermont, which also has no age requirement, has also had a teenager file campaign paperwork with election officials.
As carried in BBC