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CYCCB Office
1212 Orr Street
College Station, Texas 77840
Voice: (979) 764-7306 | Fax:  (979)764-7307


Merging of
certification programs


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CYCCB completed the process of electing new board members in June.  Five positions were up for election. Four of them were members who were re-elected.  This included Debbie Zwicky, Jean Carpenter-Williams, Frank Eckles, and Cindy Carraway-Wilson.   Debbie served as treasurer 2008 – 2012 and has been a strong contributor to the board since its inception.  Cindy has been on the board since 2008, served as vice president, treasurer 2009 – 2018 and is our current president.  Jean joined the board in 2008 when she was president of ACYCP. She has continued on the board since that time and is currently Chair of the Marketing Committee.  Frank Eckles joined the board in 2008 as president and has served on the board since CYCCB was formed. He is currently the CYCCB office administrator.  

MarkLittlefield 216

We welcome Mark Littlefield to the board in his first term.  Mark is a permanent faculty member with the University of the Fraser Valley in British Columbia, Canada. He is the chair of the education day committee for the CYC Educational Accreditation Board (CYCEAB) in Canada and a site surveyor.  He brings strong collegial relationships with many colleagues in other post‐secondary institutions across Canada and offers help to institutions across Canada to follow Frazier Valley by having a process to ready all CYC graduates in Canada for certification.  He has a passion to grow certification and professional regulation in British Columbia and across Canada.  We are very pleased to have him join the work of CYCCB.  Mark is also an Association for Child and Youth Care Practice board member.


CYCCB, working with Jeananne Reich, CYC Certification Director in Indiana, has implemented FILLABLE PDF FORMS.  Jeananne converted the forms so they have fillable fields where information can be directly entered using a keyboard.  fillable

Beginning in July, these forms are available for all certification levels on our website.  Visit the CERTIFICATION PROCESS page to access the forms.  They allow users to download the forms into their device, complete them, and send them to CYCCB electronically (or by printing and mailing or scanning).  

If you send the files electronically, remember to relabel the files so they include your name.


State-wide Certification for Hoosier Youth Workers

Youth workers across Indiana are leading the nation in obtaining their Child and Youth Care (CYC) Certifications. There are currently over 250 certified youth work practitioners in the state. Heather Richards, who serves as Program Manager for Blue River Services, believes that earning her CYC Certification reinforced her desire to work with children. Blue River Services is proudly working toward 100% of its staff members becoming CYC Certified.  As Heather explains, “We can offer a lot if we can show as a state that we are certified, and we are trying to do the best youth work we can!”

Administered by the Child & Youth Care Certification Board, CYC Certification is recognized across the United States and Canada and provides a framework for ongoing professional development, with multiple levels and renewal of certification. CYC practitioners demonstrate their knowledge and skills for certification through a process that includes an application, references, portfolio, and exam. Certification shows that youth workers have the skills to provide high-quality programs and are committed to developing happy, healthy kids. In Indiana, CYC Certification has replaced the former Indiana Youth Development (IYD) Credential to align with the national efforts of The Association for Child and Youth Care Practice, Inc.

Heather first heard about CYC Certification through The Journey, a fellowship program designed to support youth workers through professional development and renewal. The program is supported by Lilly Endowment Inc. and helped spark the growth of certification in the state. As a result of her experience with The Journey, Heather felt that earning her CYC Certification would set a great example for her staff. She further explains, as a supervisor “I believe that investing in your staff is the number one thing you can do, the thing you get the most return on.”


Other youth workers recognize the value of certification. Ashleigh Coster, Program Director at Intercollegiate YMCA says, “This process also does an amazing job to unite all of us into one interconnected network.” Cassie Wade, Family and Youth Services Director at Bauer Family Resources, shares that since obtaining her certification “promoting and professionalizing the field of youth work is now a passion of mine. This includes providing staff professional development opportunities, providing high-quality services, [and] incentivizing staff receiving their Child & Youth Care certification.”

The benefits of certification also bring challenges of how to recognize and reward employees who achieve and maintain their CYC. Some organizations propose giving bonuses or stipends, some are evaluating pay or classification incentives, and others are considering a combination of ideas. These organizations are looking to each other for suggestions and possibly a uniform approach. Even though the method is not consistent, the conversation shows the level of interest and commitment to certification, which will have positive outcomes for the field. No matter what recognition is implemented, employers and practitioners can include the statement “We employ CYC Certified Youth Workers” prominently on their websites, windows, and brochures.

CYC Certification is more than a stamp of approval; the process is personal. Ashleigh shares that the hardest parts were also the most rewarding. “The most challenging part was organizing all of the professional development I have taken part in over the years, but that was also one of the best things that came out of this process…The portfolio also challenged me to reflect over my career in order to answer the questions, and I found that process to be really incredible.”   

In partnership with the CYC Certification Board, Indiana Youth Services Association has implemented a revised process for certification with coaching from the Indiana CYC Director. The main goal of the project is to increase the number of candidates who go through to completion, and thus the number of Indiana certified practitioners, increasing the quality of youth programs overall across the state. During the first six months of this project, the completion rate increased by about 23%. The youth work practitioners certified in Indiana currently represent programs in mental health, juvenile justice, consulting/training, scouting, resource/referral, crisis centers, community/multi-service centers, state/children’s services, higher education, and schools/out-of-school-time.

Much of the continued success in Indiana is due to the Indiana Department of Education’s (IDOE) 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) program. Erin Busk and Christen Peterson, 21st CCLC Grant Specialists at the IDOE, have both earned their CYC Certifications.  They are passionate about creating high-quality out-of-school-time programming for Hoosier youth. As a result, they have collaborated with the Indiana Youth Services Association to provide support to all 21st CCLC program administrators, coordinators, and direct service staff to obtain their CYC Certification free of charge.  The candidates are very appreciative of the commitment from IDOE. As Cassie states, “Their support is a sign of their commitment to the field, youth workers, and Indiana youth.” With the support of Indiana Youth Services Association, The Journey, and the Indiana Department of Education, Indiana has the potential to double or triple its number of certified youth workers and create a stronger network of practitioners who positively impact youth.

At the end of 2018, Indiana officially doubled its number of certified youth workers since 2017.   More info on certification in Indiana is available on the CYC page of the IYSA website:

Become a Test Site

Do you need people certified but the closest site is not close enough?

Consider becoming a test site.  Many of our partnering organizations set up their own internal proctors to make it easier for their staff to become CYC certified.  CYCCB will work with you on training and approving someone to proctor exams and help with local promotion. Reach out to our office with your questions or needs.


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Connect the Dots

CYC Competencies Connected to Search Institute
40 Developmental Assets

Connecting the Dots is a significant effort to bring research informed understanding of assets into more general use across the field of child and youth work practice by creating a cross-walk to the CYC Certification Competencies.  As such, it will benefit practitioners in early childhood, juvenile justice, after school, disabilities, congregate and foster care, child welfare, education, and many other settings. This work was undertaken by the Bartholomew County Council for Youth Development in collaboration with CYCCB.  This is an effort to invest in a future where children, youth, and families are served by CYC professionals who benefit from the sharing of our best ideas across all settings.

Connecting the Dots is intended to serve as a reference document for practitioners and program managers in the child and youth care field. You will find each of the CYCCB Competencies listed in a table. Then, to the right, notation of which Developmental Assets can be associated with that Competency, including the asset type (External or Internal), the asset category, and finally the specific Developmental Asset(s) name.

The document can inform individual practice by affirming that efforts to use the Competencies also build child and youth assets. It can also recognize organizations seeking support for their program efforts by showing funders and supporters how use of professional child and youth care workers, grounded in the CYC Competencies, increases the likelihood for program success in enhancing the fundamental building blocks of positive youth development.

The complete document is available for download and can be reprinted and used without further permission if citation of source and copyright is included.

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