Youth Studies is an emerging multidisciplinary field that integrates theory, research, public policy, and practice. It spans academic disciplines like psychology, sociology, social work, education, human services and media, just to name a few. Youth workers with the background and skills needed to foster a positive youth development approach will be best equipped to meet emerging workforce demands. Millions of young people, especially disconnected youth, participate each year in out-of-school time programs through public and private agencies. The Youth Studies Consortium serves as a clearinghouse to increase capacity for Youth Studies at CUNY through the development of new courses, certificate and degree programs; web resources; counseling services for students; and faculty research opportunities in this emerging multidisciplinary field.

DYCD Scholars Program

Since 2006 the NYC Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) has partnered with CUNY through a variety of initiatives to build the capacity of youth-serving agencies by investing in the higher education of their staff. The DYCD Scholars program fosters a community of practice by bringing together and supporting a cohort of CUNY students who are also leaders in the youth field. Since spring 2013, 54 scholars have been supported through the program.

Congratulations to the newest cohort of DYCD Scholars.

Scholars and eligible youth workers may wish to take advantage of training offered by DYCD Capacity Building.

Youth Studies Coursework at CUNY

Prospective students who are interested in entering a program in Youth Studies at CUNY can explore coursework at various levels across the University. Examples include:

Field Building

The Youth Studies Consortium recognizes the importance of bringing together regional partners engaged with youth development. Through opportunities for CUNY students, NYC youth, practitioners, and funders the Youth Studies Consortium organizing field building events that allow for these partners to connect and discuss the current and future state of youth development. Activities organized at the campus level include lectures, book talks, and an annual convening held in the spring semester.


Research on CUNY’s Youth Studies Certificate, an undergraduate program offered from 1999-2011, illustrates the efficacy and replicability of the model, as well as its impact on professional retention in the youth field.

For more information about Youth Studies, please contact Carrie Shockley.