Graduate students have opportunities to participate in practicum experiences and research activities in infancy, childhood, and youth prevention through Centers in the Department and with individual faculty. Departmental faculty are actively engaged in evaluating prevention programs for infants and young children, and promote and mentor students in prevention programs directed toward children and youth in the care of non-family members, in school and community settings outside the home. A key value of these prevention activities is that children benefit through the training of individuals who care for them outside the home. Our faculty are involved in studying implementation and outcomes of programs that provide:
- Paraprofessional and professional infant mental health services through Early Head Start.
- Supportive housing programs for at risk families with young children through the Connections Program
- Teacher training in early care and education settings through the Child Labs and the Jumpstart Program
- Case worker training targeted for youth transitioning from foster care to adulthood through the CT Dept for Children and Families
- Paraprofessional and professional educator training in after school programming through the CT Dept of Education
- Youth mentoring, in a variety of settings including Gear Up
- Family-focused diversion models for youth at risk
In addition, our faculty are also involved in a number of research areas relevant to healthy infant, child, and youth development. Among the areas of faculty research and expertise are:
- Infant mental health
- Developmental disabilities
- Social-emotional development in ethnic/racial minority and immigrant children
- Latino/a sexuality development
- Foster care policy and practices
Students with a program of study in the area of infancy, childhood, and youth prevention might become parent educators or early childhood teacher trainers. They might work as managers, trainers, evaluators, or program specialists within agencies that seek to prevent child abuse, promote quality foster care or adoption practices, promote social emotional learning in early childhood, primary, and secondary classrooms, after school programs, or youth mentor programs.
Additional information about Prevention and Early Intervention training in the Department is located on the following pages –