Course accreditation will open up ‘dynamic qualification’

Course accreditation will open up ‘dynamic qualification’

Dr Kaz Stuart associate professor in child, adolescent and family studies at the University of Cumbria

A new course at the University of Cumbria to train the inspiring youth and community workers of the future has received accreditation by the National Youth Agency (NYA) and endorsement from the Endorsement Standards Board (ESB) for Community Development.

The university’s new BA and MA in Youth Work and Community Development which will launch in September is aimed at students hoping to work in a wide range of local authority, private and charitable organisations.

“This dynamic qualification is the ideal springboard to get alongside and support the empowerment of young people and communities within diverse settings,” Dr Kaz Stuart, associate professor in child, adolescent and family studies at the University of Cumbria, said. “This work is imperative at the moment to support the many issues that young people are experiencing for example exclusion from school, homelessness, living in poverty, sexual exploitation and trafficking and so on.”

Accreditation by the NYA and endorsement by the ESB means the three-year undergraduate course and one year post graduate programmes at Lancaster will be looking to recruit students who aim to become youth workers, community workers, sport development workers, support workers and other social and care careers.

Practical assessments or problem based learning together with extensive professional fieldwork practice will, course leaders say, offer a mix of hands-on experience and professional practice. The university’s recent partnerships with organisations overseas means students can choose to study or have a practice placement overseas for a semester.

“Students will be given a broad overview of the field of contemporary youth and community work together with all the knowledge and skills required for a career in this profession,” Dr Stuart added. “As well as leading to JNC qualification and ESB endorsement, our programme offers a safeguarding certificate, a leadership certificate (ILM) and a health and safety certificate (IOSH) so you’ll know how to give people the positive help they need. Above all, these programmes are aimed at ensuring the workforce can support young people to thrive despite the challenges of this day and age and in order to support social justice across our region, nation and beyond.”