In collaboration with colleagues from North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service and the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, Dr. Koralalage Jayaratne recently co-authored an article on the challenges faced by early-career youth development extension educators. The article appears in the journal MDPI.
Early-Career Challenges of Youth Development Extension Educators and Effective Strategies
The purpose of this research study was to determine the challenges faced by early-career youth development extension educators and strategies helpful in managing those challenges. This study used the modified Delphi method of three rounds with a specifically selected expert panel of 24 members to build consensus on the challenges that early-career youth development extension educators faced and managing strategies of those challenges. The expert panel of this Delphi study was selected from two south-eastern states in the U.S. based on their proven success and effectiveness in youth development extension programming in their respective counties. The three-round Delphi study led to building the consensus on 16 challenges faced by early-career youth development extension educators and 14 strategies helpful in managing those challenges. The findings of this study have implications for planning onboarding training programs for early-career youth development extension educators. Future research is needed to understand how identified strategies contribute to managing early-career challenges faced by youth development extension educators.