Cluster: Adolescent and Youth Development
Karl G. Hill, PhD, University of Washington
James Herbert Williams, PhD, University of Denver
Thursday, January 14, 2010: 1:30 PM-3:15 PM
Seacliff D (Hyatt Regency)
The transition to adulthood is an important link between development in childhood and adolescence and later adulthood. Most often, transition times encourage continuity, reinforcing developmental patterns already established, but transition periods also can function as turning points, providing opportunities for change from negative to more positive developmental pathways and the reverse. Most studies on the transition to adulthood have not examined vulnerable populations, which is the goal of the three papers comprising the present symposium. The first paper examines the impact of early child maltreatment on mental health, substance use and crime at age 30, and whether these effects differ by race/ethnicity and gender. The second examines the continuity and discontinuity in poverty in adulthood for children raised in poverty, and the extent to which educational aspirations and expectations may help break intergenerational cycles of poverty. The third study employs a qualitative methodology to determine how youths involved with delinquency and/or drugs characterize themselves throughout young adulthood (ages 21 to 30), and, further, if different themes emerge between groups of young adults that persist in or desist from their drug and crime involvement by age thirty. All three studies draw on data from the Seattle Social Development Project, at twenty five year longitudinal study of youth and young adult development. The panel is joined by a discussant, who will consider the contributions of the papers' findings to the knowledge base in social work, and discuss implications of the findings for social work practice, policy and research.
* noted as presenting author
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