Professional Development for youth workers from home


University of Minnesota Extension Center for Youth Development

Extension is offering a number of learning opportunities — free and online — for youth workers during the pandemic.

  • Learn about foundational research and theories of positive youth development in Youth Work Matters.
  • Gain practical resources for incorporating reflection and discussion of dilemmas in your work with Dilemmas in Youth Work.
  • Explore a research framework, Rings of Engagement, which outlines four types of youth engagement and youth-adult partnerships in Youth Engagement Matters.

Itasca Area Community Education

Community Ed has been working to put more classes online for you to enjoy.  Check out their YouTube channel for their offerings:

Ignite Afterschool

Ignite Afterschool offers weekly calls for providers across the state.  You can find information about each call on their Facebook Page.

Youth Voices of Experience 

A new online magazine and podcast created by youth to raise awareness about mental health.  Find it here:

Tools you can use.

For summer learning

From Minnesota Community Education Association:

As you plan for the possibility of offering in person programming, make use of the COVID-19 Programming Response & Preparedness Plan.–fTbsFX3wQiCxFLMfW1EKCSaTuuMBBoPss8/edit

From the University of Minnesota Youth Development:

For your work in youth development 

From University of Minnesota Youth Development — Tips for Working with youth from a distance:

From Search Institute — Now more than ever we need to build strong relationships with young people.  Follow this link to view a TED talk and download an interview tool to engage young people using the 4 s’.

  • Sparks: Talents, deep interests, and activities that bring enjoyment and meaning to life
  • Strengths: Skills, behaviors, attitudes, and values that promote success and development
  • Struggles: Problems that cause concern and potentially undermine success and development
  • Supports: People and programs that nurture sparks, build on strengths, and reduce struggles

Also from Search InstituteRelationship Check tool.

From the Harvard School of Graduate Education comes At Home with Project Zero.  This resource is filled with engaging activities for young people of all ages.  Check it out:

To better take care of yourself

This is a stressful time and you need to take care of yourself if you are going to be able to serve young people.

COVID-19 Resources from the Afterschool Field


Minnesota Resources

National Partners

Itasca County 


Public Health


Economic Development


Minnesota State Health Department and CDC