Skip to main content

About Youth-Nex

Youth-Nex Brochure









YOUTH-NEX — The Center to Promote Effective Youth Development —is a trans-disciplinary center devoted to promoting healthy youth development through focused research, training and service. The cross-University center’s work encompasses a wide range of areas including health management, civic engagement, education, and social responsibility. Youth-Nex also aims to prevent youth problems such as violence; physical and mental health issues; substance abuse and school failure.

Youth-Nex promotes healthy youth development and reduce developmental risk through focused research, training and service. Youth-Nex works across diverse areas to bring a holistic understanding of youth development to enhance the individual’s potential to become healthy, productive citizens.

By recruiting faculty from across the University, Youth-Nex utilizes multi-disciplinary approaches, multiple methods and a coalescence of perspectives across diverse areas right at the “center of the center”—its research programs. This cross-pollination from one area of center study to another creates an intellectual nexus, providing a new understanding of youth development—allowing direct translation from research to practice; connection of training to research; and bridging the gaps between academia, practice and policy.

Youth-Nex is the only center in the country accommodating work on diverse aspects of youth development. Areas include mental health, educational functioning, citizenship, social functioning and physical health. The engagement of scholars with diverse skills and interests leads to fresh approaches and creates better alignment of research to “real world” needs. This structure also provides greater sophistication and depth of understanding on topics related to promoting more effective youth development.


• Applies a scientific and holistic approach to enhance development 
of healthy, productive citizens. 

• Works across the University to engage 
multi-disciplinary faculty with diverse 
expertise in youth development.

• Emphasizes promoting effective positive change including prevention of 
physical and mental illness, violence,
  substance abuse, and school failure.

Bridges gaps between practice and policy; disciplines; and service sectors.

Trains students and other professionals in the science and practice of effective youth development.

• Collaborates with local, state, and federal 
partners on action to 
promote youth development.

• Harnesses the opportunities in schools and communities to realize the potential of our nation's youth.


Youth-Nex programs of research focus on critical areas of youth development. These programs are multi-investigator, cross-disciplinary systematic research efforts. Each program is led by a U.Va. faculty member possessing substantial experience and expertise.  It is our goal to generate new understanding about the most useful practices and appropriate policies in youth development.

Supportive Relationships

Healthy Lifestyles

Avoiding Risk 

Engaged Citizenship

Program Evaluation and Community Consultation 






(If you'd like to see details of the image below, click here)

Youth-Nex Brochure - Page 2

Connect With Us On: