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Extension > Center for Youth Development Update

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Youth work self studies are now available for free!

The following training opportunities include 3-6 hours of individual online learning.

Dilemmas in Youth Work Online: A self-study
Explores research on the dilemmas of youth work. Participants examine, discuss, and respond to these situations, and develop youth-centered strategies for addressing dilemmas in their own work that better meet the developmental needs of youth.

Youth Engagement Matters Online: A self-study
Explores a research framework, Rings of Engagement, which outlines four types of youth engagement and youth-adult partnerships.

Youth Work Matters Online: A self-study
Explores the foundational research and theories of positive youth development and applies course content to participants’ work with youth.

Listen to our latest podcasts!

Getting Intentional About SEL

Kate Walker, associate Extension professor

Social and emotional learning (SEL) includes learning to be aware of and manage emotions, work well with others, and work hard when faced with challenges. Youth programs develop SEL skills by creating opportunities for young people to engage in real-world projects, work in teams, take on meaningful roles, face challenges and experience the emotional ups and downs that come along the way. Kate Walker discusses a free online SEL toolkit that includes activities, templates and tools organized around four ways to help support staff and youth in SEL.

Listen to the podcast.
Read the blog post.

We can prepare youth for college, but not in the way you think!

Joanna Tzenis, Extension educator

"College prep" programs make an effort to instill in youth the desire to go to college and the hard skills to qualify, but it's not enough. They leave out something important - the young person, so many marginalized young people are still not ending up with degrees. Joanna discusses ways they include research around aspirations, future orientation, and social inequalities into the 4-H campus immersion program design.

Listen to the podcast.
Read the blog post.

Top 10 things you need to know about the Journal of Youth Development

In this week's Youth Development Insight blog post, Kate Walker talks about being the new editor of the Journal of Youth Development (JYD), which is dedicated to advancing youth development practice and research. JYD fills a critical niche as a place for relevant and useful studies about and for those working with and on behalf of young people. She is seeking articles that feature applied research that can inform practice, useful evaluation strategies to improve programs for youth, and promising programs that have insights for others. Learn about the top 10 things you need to know!

Online videography adventure for middle schoolers

Learn how to make movies like a pro

This is an online learning opportunity for Minnesota youth in grade 5-8 / age 10-14. It is created by the University of Minnesota and open to any youth who like making videos. Participants can win prizes for completing each of the three levels of learning and scholarships are available. 

A limited number of spots are open in the session that starts this Friday, April 7. Please pass this along via your networks to any youth who might be interested.

For more information:

Register for our upcoming training opportunities!

Responsive Practices to Support Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) - Pilot!

April 13, 9 a.m. - noon in St. Paul

This new workshop is about responding to unplanned opportunities, integrating cultural responsiveness, and supporting SEL when working with youth. Participants will talk about cultural values and preferences, role-play different scenarios, explore SEL related dilemmas and reflect on their programs. Email Kate Walker to sign up and learn more.

Culturally Responsive Youth Work Matters

April 25, 9 a.m. - noon in Faribault
April 26, 9 a.m. - noon in Minneapolis (This class is full. Contact Colleen Byrne to be placed on the waiting list.)

This class examines the creation of inclusive youth programs. Participants will explore cultural identities and examine how they affect interactions with youth.

Youth in a Global Community

April 26, 9 a.m. - noon in Moorhead

This forum includes opportunities for networking, keynote speaker Jennifer Skuza, two workshop sessions and an optional IGNITE Afterschool workshop & SEL luncheon.

Creating Partnerships with Tribal Nations

May 10, 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Are you interested in collaborating with reservations or American Indian programs and organizations? This webinar will focus on the barriers and strategies for creating partnerships with tribal nations.

Save the date for the Northeast regional forum!
Oct. 5, 9 a.m. - noon, Grand Rapids

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Professional development opportunities

Youth Development Conference: Exploring the impact of physical fitness and sports in Healthy Out-of-School-Time programs

April 21, 20178:30 am - 3:30 pm
University of Minnesota Recreation and Wellness Center123 SE Harvard St., Minneapolis MN 55455

$65 Admission / $20 StudentIncludes a Box Lunch from French Meadows • Student Discount Code: Student (ID required at check-in)
Extension Center for Youth Development's Kate Walker and Margo Herman will be presenting on staff SEL skills.
Sign up

Educational Equity in Action: A statewide convening at the University of Minnesota

June 20-21, Minneapolis

This year's theme is Working Across Schools and Communities to Enhance Social Emotional Learning. University of Minnesota faculty, school, community, and youth leaders will present the latest research and programs that are making a difference in the lives of children and youth across the state.
Explore the impact of chronic trauma on youth with a special focus on American Indian students.

Learn more and register

Announcing A New Foundational Series For Youth Workers From The University Of Minnesota!

The Youth Work Learning Lab is launching a new core training series called Youth Work in Community.  The series was designed for youth workers and other related practitioners who want to explore the foundational knowledge, theory and practices that set youth work in community apart from other disciplines.  It was created for newer staff who are serious about making youth work their vocational choice.  It was also created for those who have been practicing youth work for a while and are ready to dive into a more formal and reflective space with other youth workers. There are eight classes on different topics, each running for two 3-hour sessions.  

The coursework is designed for maximum flexibility.

  • The Youth Work Learning Lab will offer the eight core classes 1-2 times per year.   
  • You can enroll in one, two or up to all eight of the classes - your choice.
  • When you complete all eight classes, you receive a certificate of completion signifying you have successfully completed 48 hours of University of Minnesota coursework.
  • For those interested, you can pay an additional fee and the coursework can be transferred into college credit within the Youth Studies Department at the U of MN.  It can add to your credit load or start you on a pathway to a new degree.
  • The fee for each 6 -hour course is $100. All classes are on the St. Paul campus.


Join us for Lessons from the Field: Meeting the Needs of Our Transgender Youth, featuring CYFC's resident visiting scholar, Jenifer McGuire, Ph.D.

This year Children, Youth & Family Consortium is hosting regional events for parents, educators, and professionals who work with families and youth beginning in January 2017. Topics covered include:
  • Challenges that face rural and urban transgender youth and families.
  • Definitions and vocabulary about transgender youth, including how terms show up in everyday interactions.
  • Standards of practice for professionals who work with transgender youth.
  • The stages of development for transgender youth, as well as how the medical system and mental health community care for them.
  • How communities can support families and families can support their transgender youth.
  • Nutrition and body image for transitioning youth.
  • Mental health as a public health issue.

Registration is required but attendance is free and open to the public. Lunch will be provided for those attending the full day. Continuing Education Units are available for social workers.
  • Morris: April 25
  • St. Cloud: May 2
  • UROC: Feb. 28
  • Rochester: May 15

Learn more and register

National Youth Leadership Training

July 23 – 29
Audubon Center
54165 Audubon Rd
Sandstone, MN 55072

The National Youth Leadership Training, a seven-day immersive leadership camp, activates young people to address today’s most pressing challenges and create impactful change.

What You Do at NYLT:

  • Stay Engaged in meaningful activities.
  • Experience Discomfort by pushing your boundaries, from a ropes course to difficult conversations about power and privilege.
  • Speak Your Truth about your own story and recognize the knowledge and expertise you already have.
  • Listen Generously to different perspectives and personal experiences.

What You Get from NYLT:

  • The ability to work together with people of all backgrounds.
  • Allies to support your leadership development and service-learning action plan.
  • The tools and knowledge to create equitable change in your community.
  • Motivation to take action for the common good.
  • This leadership opportunity is open to both youth and adults. Adult partners are invited to join their team the final three days of the training.

For more information, go to
Application deadline: March 31, 2017

Community job openings

The University of Minnesota Extension Center for Youth Development is hiring!

There are currently nine (9) County 4-H Program Coordinator positions available; they are accepting applications for multiple 4-H Program Coordinator positions to be filled by June 2017.

  • Most positions are full-time.
  • Current county openings include: Crow Wing, Grant, Hennepin, Le Sueur, Mower, Pine, Renville, Washington and Wright.
  • Bachelor's degree and four years of related experience required.
  • Must have direct experience in a youth development organization (as a member, volunteer, leader, paid staff member, or some combination).
  • Access to reliable transportation for job-related travel.  Ability to work evenings and weekends. 
  • Job ID 316039 - County 4-H Program Coordinator, multiple locations.
  • Applications submitted by 4/2/2017 will be considered first.
  • Positions will remain open until filled.

Boys and Girls Club of the Twin Cities is hiring!

Wilderness Inquiry is hiring!

Love spending time outside? Love working with people? Love to teach? Looking for summer work with a flexible schedule? Programming centers around youth engagement. Wilderness Inquiry is hiring for the summer season! Outdoor Leaders (seasonal, PT), Internships (options available year-round).

Search Institute is hiring a Research Assistant!

We’re looking for someone passionate about youth research to support our Research and Development team as a full-time Research Assistant. For more details.
POSTING DATES:  March 20 – April 21, 2017
HOW TO APPLY:  If you meet the qualifications of this position and would like to apply, please email the following items to by April 21, 2017:
  • Cover letter
  • Resume or CV
  • Your academic transcript, highlighting coursework in social science research methods

College Health Corps VISTA Positions 

Are you graduating or recently graduated, and are interested in supporting public health, low-income college students, food and nutrition, and/or campus-community partnerships? Apply by May 1st for 2017-18 VISTA positions with MNCC’s College Health Corps sites by creating a profile at and submitting it to one or more of the positions below.

Learn more here, or click links for position descriptions:

Teach a Class this Summer!
courageous heARTS is now accepting youth and adult class proposals for our summer session running. Classes can range across the spectrum of expressive arts and are chosen by our Youth Advisory Board based on availability and alignment with our mission and focus on process over product.

The deadline to apply is Monday, April 10!
Get more info and apply!

Other Volunteers Needed

Not ready to teach a class? We are always in need of volunteers to help facilitate and maintain a safe space during our drop-in Open Studio hours. If you are interested in helping out over the summer (M-Th, 12-4pm), shifts are 2 hours in length from 12-2 or 2-4pm. Here's the volunteer description to see if you are a good fit!

Volunteer at Camp Odayin

Camp Odayin is the premier camp in the Midwest specifically for children with heart disease. Our mission is based on a holistic approach to healing hearts, a desire to nurture and develop independence, confidence, and acceptance throughout our camper’s lives, the importance of a sense of community among our heart family, and an emphasis on having fun and celebrating life! 

Our medically-supervised camp experiences in Minnesota and Wisconsin only cost $25 for campers, thanks in part to the generous counselors, nurses and physicians who volunteer their time. We would not exist without the huge hearts of people like you!

Will you join us this summer? The staff application for our 2017 Residential Camp and Day Camp programs is now available - apply by May 15th.

2017 Sessions
Residential Camp:
July 10-14 (grades 1-6) Crosslake, MN
July 17-21 (grades 6-8) Crosslake, MN
July 24-28 (grades 9-11) Crosslake, MN
July 31-August 4 (grades 1-11) Elkhorn, WI 
Day Camp (9:00am-3:00pm):
August 7-11 (K-3) West St. Paul, MN

Apply online and access the complete job description. 
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