Risk and Protective Factors Associated With Opportunity Youth

Renee Ryberg , Child Trends

During the transition to adulthood, youth finish education and begin work trajectories that affect them for their rest of their lives. A large subset of youth, however, stall out during this transition. More than one in ten youth ages 16-24 are not actively engaged in society as either students or workers (Belfield, Levin, & Rosen, 2012; Burd-Sharps & Lewis, 2018). Previous research has identified some of the risk and protective factors associated with youth disconnection, but analyses at the national level have been quite limited. This study examines the risk and protective factors associated with youth disconnection using NLSY97 and examines how these factors vary by severity of disconnection (chronic vs. temporary) and demographic groups known to experience disconnection differently. Preliminary analyses indicate that cognitive ability acts as a protective factor against disconnection and teen parenthood is the largest risk factor across types of disconnection.

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 Presented in Session 49. Work and Education Outcomes in the Transition to Adulthood