269545 Impact and Outcomes Associated with an Innovative Fellowship for Youth Linked Professionals: A Mixed Methods Evaluation

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Laura E. Santurri, PhD, MPH, CPH , Master of Public Health Program, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
Kristina Knight, MPH , Master of Public Health Program, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
Patricia Heilbron, MEd , Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH
Background: A resiliency based fellowship for youth linked professionals (YLP) designed to provide support and professional development for those who work with urban and suburban youth, ages 13-18 years, during non-school hours has been implemented since 2005. The fellowship consists of a two-phase process of individual education followed by structured peer mentoring and networking. Purpose: The purpose of this mixed methods evaluation was to assess program outcomes related to the overall impact on participants' knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors about personal and youth resiliency and youth development programming. Methods: Each cohort of fellows completed a baseline survey prior to the beginning of phase one, at the conclusion of phase one, and at the conclusion of phase two, which is approximately 9-12 months after initiation of the fellowship. Surveys consisted of quantitative measures of perceptions of professional support, ability to engage in effective youth development programming, and personal resiliency. Open-ended questions were designed to elicit perceptions of resiliency in youth. Results: Over the course of ten years, there have been a total of eleven cohorts of fellows with no more than sixteen individuals per cohort. The majority of fellows were women, African-American, and younger than 35 years of age. Significant increases in knowledge relating to the resiliency framework, as well as increased perceived ability to implement youth development programming were found. Conclusion: The implementation of a community-based youth development fellowship has built a community of youth linked professionals with increased individual and organizational capacity to promote resiliency and positive youth development.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice

Learning Objectives:
To describe both the impact and outcome measures associated with a professional development initiative for community youth workers. To describe the process associated with a mixed methods approach to evaluation in a diverse community.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am currently part of the administrative team and an adjunct faculty member for the Case Western Reserve University Master of Public Health Program. I am also a doctoral candidate in Health Education and Promotion at Kent State University.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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