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Often, society hears negative reports related to teens — for example, 51 percent cheated on a test in the last year (Josephson Institute of Ethics 2012) — and the lack of positive opportunities provided for teens contributes to these statistics. Research shows that when teens are engaged in long-term, positive opportunities with caring adults, they are more likely to be academically productive in high school and to graduate (Lerner et al. 2011). 4-H Youth Development provides the longitudinal opportunities and caring adults who promote positive outcomes for teens. However, the recruitment and retention of teen 4-H members is often difficult because of family and community factors. While these factors may inhibit positive teen opportunities, there are other factors that can help overcome the barriers.
Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.
Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.
June 18, 2014