Youth Development Through Service: A Quality Assessment of the YouthBuild AmeriCorps Program

by Kathleen A. Tomberg

Feb 1, 2013

The objective of the assessment was to "measure the program's model of student service engagement as a means for skill building, educational attainment, personal development, and student experience of service." The assessment was conducted on the 2011-2012 cohort of students using a pre-test/post-test survey designed to measure changes in the students' perceptions of service, their commitment to service, and their connection with the community. Highlights of the survey's findings include the following: for many students, participation in the program was the first time they perceived themselves as service providers rather than service recipients; the students perceived a positive shift in personal responsibility and the way they were perceived by family and community members; and following participation in the program, the students reported an increase both in the trust they had in members of their community and in the perceived trust members of their community had in them. These findings suggest that the YouthBuild Americorps program is a successful and effective model that can be used to support student participants with occupational and educational services, and that participation in the program facilitates positive changes in students' attitudes towards community service and civic engagement.

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