Jay HoranTwenty-two new professionals from youth serving organizations from across Indiana have been selected for the 2014 Journey Fellowship for New Professionals.  In response to a growing need to grow the pool of talented new professionals in the field of youth work, this Journey Fellowship was created in 2010 and funded by the Lilly Endowment Inc.

The Journey Fellows for New Professionals will embark on an expedition to develop themselves and their careers in youth development.  This unique opportunity is meant to support emerging leaders in their quest to get grounded, get connected and get going; making their mark in the field and making a difference in young people’s lives throughout Indiana.

“This Fellowship is about keeping these young youth workers in the field of youth development and helping them become the new leaders in the field to improve services and programs for young people.”  says Tom Plake, Journey Leader.

Each of the twenty-two participants in the Journey Fellowship for New Professionals will attend a series of residential retreats designed to create new ways of thinking about and practicing youth work within existing systems and youth programs. Fellowship participants will be awarded career advancement scholarships, and be supported to make a difference within their local organizations or communities.

“We know that youth workers play a vital role in the lives of young people.  It has been documented in dozens of ways that youth who enjoy positive relationship with adults over time do better in life,” explains Janet Wakefield, Journey Leader. “We also know that many people enter the profession because they ‘want to make a difference’ and they enjoy building positive relationships with young people.  The Journey Fellowship for New Professionals provides Indiana’s youth workers greater opportunities to strengthen themselves as leaders and invest in their careers serving the young people of Indiana.”