Our Mission

Empowerment Through Education

Got Skills? 4-H Camp Counselors Do!

CampWORKS Camp Counselor Work-Based Learning Project Pilot Completed

A multi-year applied research pilot program to improve the intentionality of connecting the 4-H camp counselor experience with the world of work has recently concluded.  The attached report summarizes the results of the CampWORKS Camp Counselor Work-Based Learning Project conducting during 2009-2011. We demonstrated that 4-H camp counselors consistently excel in many workforce skills valued by employers. To read more, click the link below. More information on the CampWORKS program can be found on the Program Profiles page.

Read more about camp counselors and the skills they learn by reading this summary report from 2010.

Self-Determined Project Guidelines

Guidelines for a self-determined starter project are now available by clicking on the link below!

Workforce Prep Self Determined Information

Skills for Success in the

21st Century

Ever wonder what skills can help you get an edge in the workforce? Employers are placing a high priority on employees who have the skills listed below. Read on!

With today’s economy and the current job market, those looking to hire are seeing larger applicant pools, over experienced candidates, and high competition. Over 50% of employers say that most employees lack basic skills to be employes and advance in a job. Ever wonder what skills you need to have an edge in today’s job market? Employers are saying that the skills you need to succeed in the 21st century workforce include:

Thinking Skills


Technology Adoption & Application

Lifelong Learning and Self-direction

Professionalism & Ethics

Teamwork & Leadership



To learn more about these skills,

visit the Skills for Success page.

You can also download Skills for Success (pdf).

Afterschool and Workforce Development

The After School Alliance, in partnership with the MetLife Foundation, has released a series of action briefs examining critial issues facing youth and the role afterschool programs play in addressing those issues. One of those critical issues addressed is youth workforce and career development. These action briefs examine some of the ways afterschool programming can support middle and high school youth in preparing them for success in tomorrow’s workforce. Below are two of the action briefs focusing on workforce and career development.

Afterschool and Workforce Development:

Helping Kids Compete

Preparing youth for success in tomorrow’s workforce is of increasing concern to our nation’s schools, communities, policy makers and businesses. Afterschool programs, which have proven to keep kids safe, help working families and inspire learning, are also a powerful tool that helps young people develop the skills needed for the 21st Century workplace. Through partnerships with community-based organizations, schools, institutions of higher education and the business community, afterschool programs are playing a key role in preparing youth for work and careers. To read the full article click here.

Afterschool: A Natural Platform for Career Development

As technology evolves and the economy changes, greater demands will be placed on the workforce of the future. Myriad opportunities are and will be available to those who have the knowledge and the skills to meet those challenges. Afterschool programs offer a key opportunity to expose students to ideas and teach them skills that can unlock doors to future career prospects. During the afterschool hours, there is time for field trips, guest lecturers and new activities that are not always available during a school day filled with the basic three Rs. Going beyond the usual image of high school students working a part time job, afterschool programs create a learning environment where students from first-graders to seniors learn about and even get a taste of the career choices available to them in a variety of fields. At the same time, students learn life skills that will serve them well as adults, regardless of what career they choose. To read the full article click here.

In the Spotlight-JET

The Job Experience Training (JET) program is a work-based learning program that is part of a comprehensive 4-H youth development program at Adventure Central, and urban education center, in Dayton, Ohio. JET is conducted over a six-month period, culminating in an eight-week summer work experience in collaboration with a local park district.

"The most important things I learned were getting an opportunity to have a real job, fill out an application, and take an interview."

Recently, the JET program was designated as a National 4-H Program of Distinction!

To learn more about this program and many others, check out the Program Profiles page!

Welcome to Youth Success!

Welcome to the Youth Success website! Youth Success is your resource for Workforce Preparation information to help youth succeed in the workforce. The Workforce Preparation component of Ohio State University Extension is part of a larger foundation of positive youth development. The Workforce Preparation Initiative began in 2006 with a goal of helping Ohio youth develop awareness and skills for career success through intentional workforce preparation experiences that include education, experience, and reflection. The initiative works to strengthen and expand 4-H programs that are developing job skills in youth.

Hands-on exploration and learning by doing can help youth become interested in different careers and learn what the future world in work can hold for them.