Title page for ETD etd-11132006-104057


Type of Document Dissertation
Author Carter, David Nathan
URN etd-11132006-104057
Title Factors Related to the Developmental Experiences of Youth Serving as Louisiana 4-H Camp Counselors
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
Department Human Resource Education Workforce Development
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Joe W. Kotrlik Committee Chair
Earl C. Johnson Committee Member
Krisanna L. Machtmes Committee Member
Michael F. Burnett Committee Member
Gary G. Gintner Dean's Representative
Keywords
  • positive youth development
  • 4-h
  • camp counselors
  • developmental experiences
  • youth development
Date of Defense 2006-10-25
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to investigate the developmental experiences of Louisiana high-school-aged 4-H youth who volunteer as counselors at Louisiana 4-H summer camps. A total of 288 counselors from 10 different camping sessions participated in the study from June through August of the summer of 2006.

The Youth Experiences Survey 2.0 and Developmental Experience Survey were utilized to measure the personal characteristics and developmental experiences of 4-H camp counselors. The Youth Experiences Survey 2.0 was developed by Hansen and Larson of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and the Developmental Experience Survey was developed by the researcher.

Results from the study showed that Louisiana 4-H summer camp counselors are active 4-H club participants, in 4-H leadership activities, at the club, parish, and state level. Counselors indicated that the highest-level of experiences occurred in the areas of Teamwork and Social Skills, Positive Relationships, Diverse Peer Relationships, Time Management, Leadership and Responsibility, Effort, Problem Solving, and Initiative Experiences.

Results from the study showed that black counselors had higher-level experiences in all positive and negative aspects of the camping experience. Results showed participation in perceived 4-H leadership and lifeskill activities had a positive association with Positive Relationships and Prosocial Norms. As counselors attended more hours of camp counselor training, they reported higher-level experiences in problem solving areas. In addition, multiple regression analysis showed that ethnicity explained a small amount of the variance in all constructs measured by the Youth Experience Survey 2.0: black counselors had higher-level experiences in all constructs measured. Gender also explained a small amount of the variance in three constructs revealing that females had higher-level experiences in the areas of Positive Relationship and Teamwork and Social Skills and males had higher-level experiences in the areas relating to Negative Experiences.

The findings from this study showed that serving as a 4-H camp counselor led to significant positive experiences in the areas of Teamwork and Social Skills, Positive Relationships, Diverse Peer Relationships, Leadership and Responsibility and Initiative Experiences. These finding may enhance counselors' ability to develop positive leadership and life skills that will be valuable tools in their futures.

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