Community, Youth, and Education Studies Overview
Community, Youth, and Education Studies (CYES) is an interdisciplinary major that bridges Community Development, Critical Youth Studies, and Education Studies. In addition to the power of interdisciplinarity, CYES majors and minors engage in social justice oriented “praxis.” Toward that end, student in the major take a sequence of 11 courses that guides and supports them to critically interrogate their social world, reflexively examine their social location within that world, engage in social change, and reflect critically on their work for a broader audience. The aim of CYES is to prepare students for engaged scholarship and leadership in the 21st century, working for social justice across a wide-range of educational, cultural, institutional, and linguistic boundaries and borders.
The CYES major is designed with high standards and high levels of support. A signature element of the CYES major is the 3-course Capstone Sequence: Praxis Design Seminar (CYES 290), Praxis Project Seminar (CYES 292), and the Praxis Thesis Capstone (CYES 294), beginning in the spring semester of the junior year. The Praxis Design Seminar (CYES 290) supports students in the development of their praxis project proposal and IRB approval. The Praxis Project Seminar (CYES 292) supports students as they carry out their praxis project, including data collection, data analysis, and theory development. The Praxis Thesis Capstone (CYES 294) course supports CYES majors as they complete their final thesis, digital portfolio, and thesis defense. The capstone thesis and digital portfolio demonstrates a CYES student’s capacity for integrating theory and practice; showing creativity, discipline, resilience, and intellectual excellence - needed to engage in original, self-directed work of consequence for a particular site or program, the neighborhood, or community at large.
Students are admitted into this major or minor on the basis of their commitment to working alongside community and/or youth, enacting change in community contexts and exploring the relationship between theory and praxis.
The first step in the process is to make an appointment with a program advisor to learn about the CYES major/minor. Then students must prepare 2 papers. The first paper is a critical reflection of one’s learning and experiences to date. It should include A) a description of work (projects, internships, etc.-both in and outside of the Clark classroom-that has been most interesting, challenging and/or transformative, and why; B) a reflection of one’s strengths and assets as a learner; and C) any information that one wishes to share with program faculty. The second paper is a declaration of one’s commitment to Community, Youth, and Education Studies. As such, it should include a description of the student’s objectives and goals in pursuing the concentration; and an indication of subjects, topics and questions that one might pursue with the support of program faculty, peers, and mentors. An advisor will read both papers.
The next part of the process involves a roundtable discussion made up of at least one CYES advisor and group of new students. In this discussion, students will share their papers and learn about their peers’ questions and ideas.
Theoretical Strands Courses (3 courses - 1 from each category)
Critical Social Theory Related to Inequity (1)
Positionality and Identity in Social Context (1)
Theorizing Social Change (1)
Socially Just Participatory Research Practices (1)
Electives: (3) - chosen from the list below (or via a course petition, approved by the Program Director)
All CYES majors produce a digital portfolio that provides a record of work accomplished throughout the program, a space for reflection, and a mechanism for demonstrating to others original work and accomplishments. As part of the portfolio development, students are expected to develop three core portfolio pieces: 1) A theoretical framework for understanding the social world, 2) A piece on social identity that examines students’ understandings of their social identity in relation to their social world, and 3) A theory of change rooted in the social context. Each of these theoretical pieces is interconnected and developmental. Students will be asked to write papers and develop presentations throughout their coursework. They will be asked to reflect on and re-work their ideas in a finalized portfolio.
Capstone/Praxis Sequence (3)
The CYES major is designed with high standards and high levels of support. All CYES majors are required to complete a capstone sequence that involves the completion of a praxis project, thesis, and digital portfolio. The capstone thesis and portfolio demonstrate a CYES student’s capacity for integrating theory and practice; showing creativity, discipline, resilience, and intellectual excellence - needed to engage in original, self-directed work of consequence for the neighborhood or community at large.
Students are guided and supported in this process by a three-course, three-semester “praxis sequence” that begins during the spring of their junior year. Students complete an individual final thesis based on the research conducted in their praxis project site. The Praxis Design course (CYES 290) supports students in the development of their praxis project proposal and IRB submission and approval. The Praxis Project Seminar (CYES 292) and Praxis Thesis Capstone (CYES 294) courses support CYES majors as they complete their praxis project and final thesis. The final thesis will be one of several portfolio pieces including the three theories of understanding pieces that will compose the final portfolio. The Praxis Thesis Capstone (CYES 294) supports students in the completion of the thesis, final portfolio, and thesis defense.
Upon satisfactory completion of CYES 294 and the program, the CYES Program Praxis Committee may recommend graduation with departmental honors. For an Honors designation, the praxis project thesis should be of publishable quality, generate new knowledge or tools, and leave a legacy for the community, program, or institution that demonstrates the role of engaged activist scholarship.
Community, Youth, and Education Studies Faculty
Eric DeMeulenaere, Ph.D.
Sarah Michaels, Ph.D.
Jie Park, Ph.D.
John Ameer, Ed.D.
David Bell, Ed.D.
Parminder Bhachu, Ph.D.
Kate Bielaczyc, Ph.D.
Nigel Brissett, Ph.D.
Nancy Budwig, Ph.D.
Edward Carr, Ph.D.
Thomas Del Prete, Ed.D.
Holly Dolan, Ed.D.
Alena Esposito, Ph.D.
Jude Fernando, Ph.D.
Letina Jeranyama, Ph.D.
Nastasia Lawton-Sticklor, Ph.D.
Carmen Ocón, Ph.D.
Heather Roberts, Ph.D.
Raphael Rogers, Ed.D.
Laurie Ross, Ph.D.
Andrea Allen, Program Adminstrator
Cindy Gabriel, Office Assistant
Community, Youth, and Education Studies Courses
Courses offered within the last 2 Academic Years