- A bachelor’s degree in youth development or a related field.
- A minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 (on a 4-point scale) in the last two years of undergraduate studies. Conditional admission may be granted if a GPA in the last two years of undergraduate studies is under 3.0. Conditional admission will be converted to a regular admission if a B or better is earned in the first graduate course taken.
- Submit a resume that includes work, volunteer, practicum and internship experience.
- A statement that describes how experience(s) have influenced career goals and a desire to pursue a certificate degree, and how earning a graduate certificate in Youth and Community Development will advance these career goals.
- Recommendations from three persons able to comment on the applicant’s potential to success in the graduate certificate program.
This graduate certificate in Youth and Community Development prepares those engaged in youth work and related fields to assume greater program and leadership responsibilities in youth-serving settings.
Why youth and community development at Western Michigan University
The graduate certificate in Youth and Community Development is a 9 credit hour program that offers a foundation in theory and practice.
Who should apply
Professionals working in social services, education or youth-serving settings who are seeking to advance their careers by obtaining a graduate certificate; other professionals who wish to transition to working with youth; and professionals who are considering pursuing a master’s degree in youth and community development.
Graduates may pursue greater leadership responsibilities in
- public and private human services organizations and agencies
- informal learning environments
Employer tuition reimbursement
If your employer has a tuition reimbursement program, find out about WMU’s deferment program for employer paid tuition.
All courses are 3 credit hours unless otherwise specified.
1. Youth development: Theory and foundations (6 credit hours)
FCS 6410: Advances in Youth and Community Development
ED 6040: Childhood Learning and Development: Theory to Practice
ED 6035: Risk and Resilience in Adolescent Development
FCS 6510: Child Development: Theories and Practice [0-18]
FCS 5250: Adolescents in Development
2. Youth development: Practice (3 credit hours)
FCS 6420: Building Capacity and Quality in Youth and Community Development
ED 5950: Experiential Education and Place-Based Learning
FCS 6550: Adult-Child Relationships
ED 6700: Authority and Autonomy in Schooling
FCS 5350: Communication Skills