Shawn Ginwright Ph.D.

I often say that today we sit directly between trauma and transformation. When I say “transformation”, I’m referring to the term in a holistic sense. This is not where we put our superhero capes on as youth development professionals and expect to help others when we haven’t dealt with our personal issues. You can not profoundly have an impact on young people if you’re still dealing with your stuff. Being an adult or having a degree from a university does not mean that we automatically know how to mentor young people.

As I speak to youth development…


Shawn Ginwright Ph.D.

From time to time, researchers, policy makers, philanthropy and practitioners all join together in a coordinated response to address the most pressing issues facing America’s youth. I’ve been involved with this process for long enough to have participated in each of these roles. I recall during the early 1990s experts promoted the term “resiliency,” which is the capacity to adapt, navigate and bounce back from adverse and challenging life experiences. Researchers and practitioners alike clamored over strategies to build more resilient youth.

In the early 2000’s the term “youth development” gained currency and had a significant influence…


My 17 year old daughter attends high school in Oakland, California and is a new driver. I get a bit nervous every time she gets in the car to drive somewhere, like this morning when she drove to school and join millions of other students around the country to raise their voices and demand sensible gun control in our country. My daughter is incredibly bright, full of ideas, and ready to make her light shine in the world. Like millions of other students, she is fed up with how our politicians find every excuse to making our schools and neighborhoods…

Shawn Ginwright

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