Leadership Structure

Originally, the CYTI program’s administration included a single director who would take primary responsibility for the planning, promotion, implementation, and evaluation of the institute. The director was an employee of the University and received administrative support, office space, and supplies within the Office of Spiritual Life. In addition, the faculty of the Religion and Philosophy Department, the Campbell University Divinity School, and the Office of the Campus Minister served as important participants/advisors in the development of the program. Because CYTI focused on engaging youth participants in the community engagement work of the University, the institute also relied heavily on assistance from several other schools within the University community, including the College of Arts and Sciences, the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law, the Lundy-Fcttcrman School of Business, and the Campbell University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences. Faculty from these schools collaborated in the articulation of the framework for the two weeks, the development of the CYTI curriculum, and the facilitation of the experiences. Over time, more schools within the University became involved in CYTI and additional layers of administration were added. University students were also recruited (both undergraduate and graduate) to serve as mentors for the institute.

Institutional Goals

As might be expected, substantial assessment efforts have been used to monitor and evaluate the experiences of both the high school-aged participants and their student mentors from the University. While important, the student experience represents only a fraction of the impact that the CYTI project was designed to have on the University. Indeed, the project involves nearly as many faculty and staff as adolescent participants.

This chapter reports some of the early work in evaluating the institutional impact of the CYTI project. In the language of the original grant proposal, the youth theological institute initiative was expected to accomplish the following institutional goals:

By planning, promoting, and assisting in this summer institute, faculty and staff will of necessity think about issues of faith formation, vocation, and social action. As other programs, departments, and campus initiatives observe and make note of the potential connections between these three areas, we hope more ideas and larger initiatives will be spurred. [The youth theological institute initiative] aims to draw faculty and staff into the conversation to energize and challenge them to enrich their own programs in holistic, faithful, and integrated ways.

Although evaluation of these institutional goals was not included in the original parameters of program assessment, a multimethod case study evaluation—including surveys of faculty and staff involved in the CYTI program as well as an analysis of institutional indicators for community engagement—was performed to investigate the effectiveness of the program in meeting the institutional goals for faculty outcomes.

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