Service Year NC and Movement of Youth partnered to sponsor a conversation on March 13, 2019 in Raleigh, North Carolina, USA. In order to facilitate nonprofits, policy makers, private companies, and concerned residents to learn more about the two organizations and service years.
Problems and Purpose
In the United States of America, there are five million people aged 16-24 who are neither in school nor employed. In 2018, 11.7% of North Carolinians aged 16-24 were neither working nor in school . This conversation focused on spreading information about service year programs and opportunities with the purpose of helping opportunity youth find future pathways to help fill gaps in the country’s workforce .
Background History and Context
Opportunity youth are youth aged 16-24 who are neither in school nor in the job market . Opportunity youth account for as much as 17% of the total youth population in the United States . Youths’ completing service years can have two profound effects. First, it can transform the life of the youth completing the service year . Second, service years have the potential to revitalize communities . Opportunity youth completing a service year can be a win-win situation. Service Year NC and Movement of Youth partnered to sponsor a reception and conversation to encourage young people to take advantage of service years and learn more about the two organizations .
Organizing, Supporting, and Funding Entities
The partners for this event were Service Year NC and Movement of Youth . Service Year NC is a North Carolina State University initiative to increase the number of young North Carolinians who participate in service years . Movement of Youth is a nonprofit that focuses on middle-range students, those with GPAs of 2.0-2.9 , and strives to be the nation’s leading movement for young people to disrupt the status quo and build a better world . The NC Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service and the Raleigh office of the Corporation for National and Community Service both played a role in the event’s success .
Participant Recruitment and Selection
This event was open to the public and advertised on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram . The selection was by voluntary self-selection . It appears from photos from the event that about 40 people participated . It was a diverse group and both males and females were well represented .
Methods and Tools Used
The method and tools used were storytelling and conversation in an in-person group setting . The entire group participated in the conversation and the meeting was face-to-face .
What Went On: Process, Interaction, and Participation
The reception and conversation were held in The Frontier – Building 800, an office rental space in Durham, North Carolina . Organizations that host service years and young people that had completed a year of service presented their stories to the entire group . Then, open conversation among the whole group was used to allow participants to share their perspectives and exchange ideas . During the event a Tweet was sent out by the Institute for Emerging Issues as a real time update and sparked the interest of additional participants . The Institute for Emerging Issues shared a Facebook post after the event and included photos of the day .
Influence, Outcomes, and Effects
There is not much data on the outcome of this reception and conversation. However, participation for the event was good and it is likely this event has led to future events and partnerships . This event occurred this year (2019) and data is not yet available to measure its impact. The reception and conversation was successful in spreading information about service-year programs and opportunities as evident in the attendance to the event and social media present . As a new program, data on the effectiveness of the reception and conversation in increasing social capital is not available. However, one stated goal of service year organizations is to increase the social capital of their participants .
Analysis and Lessons Learned
According to one Greg Hedgepeth the event was a “huge success.”  Although there is not much data on the outcome of this event, having a conversation and bringing stakeholders to the table is a productive start of creating a relationship between youth and service year organizations because, as Nabatchi and Leighninger explain, face-to-face conversation has positive effect on brain chemistry.
 Hedgepeth, G. (2019, March 29). Service years and opportunity youth conversation. Retrieved from https://iei.ncsu.edu/2019/service-years-and-opportunity-youth-conversation/
 Institute for Emerging Issues [@emergingissues]. (2019, March 13). Our Service Year and Opportunity Youth Reception and Conversation is well underway. Learn how you can take advantage of a paid opportunity to develop real world skills through hands on service. @ServiceYear @serviceyr @PublicAllies_NC @movementofyouth @NC_CNCS @AmeriCorps [Tweet]. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/emergingissues/status/1105969476963573761
 Institute for Emerging Issues [@emergingissues]. (2019, March 13). come learn more about Service Year NC and how you can take advantage of a paid opportunity to develop real world skills through hands on service. Also learn how Opportunity Youth and more young people of color can connect [Instagram Photo]. Retrieved from https://www.instagram.com/p/BurJdkinJqE/
 Institute for Emerging Issues. (2019, March 13). A few moments from the IEI Service Year NC, Service Year Alliance, Public Allies NC, Movement of Youth and the NC Commission on Volunteerism & Community Service Conversation about service. [Facebook Post]. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/emergingissues/posts/10156603990880129
 Institute for Emerging Issues. (2019). Come learn more about Service Year NC and how you can take advantage of a paid opportunity to develop real-world skills through hands-on service. Also learn how Service Year NC is connecting Opportunity Youth and more young people of color [Facebook Event]. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/events/571476760036506/
 Belfield, C.R., Levin H. M., Rosen R. (2012). The economic value of opportunity youth [PDF]. Retrieved from https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED528650.pdf
 America’s Health Rankings (2018). Disconnected Youth, North Carolina, United States. Retrieved from https://www.americashealthrankings.org/explore/annual/measure/disconnected_youth/state/NC
 NC State University. Institute for Immerging Issues. Service Year NC. Retrieved on October 23, 2019. Retrieved from https://iei.ncsu.edu/serviceyearnc/
 Movement of Youth. Our History. Retrieved on October 23, 2019. Retrieved from http://movementofyouth.org/about-us/our-history/
 Movement of Youth. Who We Serve. Retrieved on October 23, 2019. Retrieved from http://movementofyouth.org/about-us/who-we-serve/
 Nabatchi, T. and Leighninger, M. (2015). Public participation for 21st century democracy.
 SCI Social Capitol Inc. Become a Host Site Partner! Retrieved October 23, 2019. Retrieved from http://www.socialcapitalinc.org/AmeriCorps/host-site
The first version of this case entry was written by Cody McKinney, a Master of Public Service candidate at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service, and then edited. The views expressed in the entry are those of the authors, editors, or cited sources, and are not necessarily those of the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service.