The Youth Studies minor is an interdisciplinary exploration of young peoples’ lived realities in today’s shifting cultures. The minor is designed to supplement a student’s current course of study particularly if that student is considering youth work in the future. Youth Studies students develop constructive and critical lenses for understanding society’s perceptions and treatment of young people. These lenses also shed light on young peoples’ processes of constructing meaning and culture. Students in this minor gain practical skills through hands-on experience with children and youth in various settings. The underlying philosophy of the Youth Studies minor is one of youth empowerment. Young people are often targeted as a menace to society, but we see young people as gifted and empowered agents of positive change. Students in this minor will learn to take this approach to youth work into their chosen professions.

For more information about this program, contact one of these faculty members:

Jeremy Myers | 612-330-1202 |
Adriane Brown | 612-330-1528 |

What Can I Do With This Minor?

This minor prepares you to work with and advocate for youth more effectively. You will be equipped to be successful in any youth serving agency such as the YMCA, the YWCA, the Boys and Girls Club, religious organizations, parks and recreation, and schools.


20 credits including:

  • YST 210 – Rethinking Children and Youth
  • YST 320 – Working with Children and Youth
  • One human development course from:
    • PSY 203 – Lifespan Development
    • PSY 250 – Child Development
    • PSY 252 – Adolescent and Young Adult Development
    • SWK 303 – Human Development and the Social Environment
  • EDC 330, 331, 332, and 333 – Public Achievement sequence – no longer taught; see program director for alternatives
  • Complete 4 credits in a YST elective from the courses listed below
    • HPE 115 – Chemical Dependency Education (2 cr.)
    • HPE 335 – Outdoor Education (2 cr.)
    • POL 122 – Social Justice in Urban America
    • POL 325 – Politics and Public Policy
    • PSY 262 – Psychopathology
    • PSY 291 – Addiction and Recovery
    • SOC 231 – Family Systems: Cross Cultural Perspectives
    • SOC 265 – Race, Class, and Gender
    • SOC 387 – Juvenile Delinquency
    • SOC 395 – Mental Illness and Society 
    • WST 281/481 – Topics: Girls, Culture, and Identity (this topic only)

For a complete list of courses and descriptions, see the Course Description Search.