Clemson Graduate School

Clemson Graduate School

Youth Development Leadership

General Information

Degrees Offered


The online Youth Development Leadership Program in the College of Health, Education, and Human Development at Clemson University is moving forward to address the need for providing strong, effective leaders equipped to optimize the skills of youth and create a culture where youth thrive and are nurtured to become productive citizens of healthy communities in our society.

Our Youth Development Leadership program affords students the opportunity to receive a comprehensive discipline of study that (1) develops effective leaders to work with youth to foster healthy living and preparation for successful adulthood; and (2) expands the body of knowledge of best practices in serving youth.

The 2-year Master of Science degree program is designed to prepare leaders to build the capacity for youth to successfully act within their families and communities by equipping them with the knowledge and skills related to:

  • Theories of Youth Development
  • Best Practices
  • Child and Adolescent Development
  • Youth Program Services
  • Family Intervention
  • Research and Evaluation
  • Leadership Skills Development
  • Grantsmanship

Similarly, the online Certificate program can be completed within one year and is designed to equip professionals with competencies that augment their bachelor's degree in a related field.

Youth Development Leadership SACs accreditation information.

About the Program


The online certificate in youth development leadership is designed to equip professionals with competencies that augment their bachelor’s degree in a related field. This program requires a minimum of 15 graduate credit hours of course work while taking into consideration your academic background and preparation. It can be completed within one year.

If you are admitted into the certificate program as a non-degree student, you may decide to apply to the master’s degree program in youth development leadership. Only 12 credit hours can be transferred into a graduate degree program. If you intend to transfer into the degree program, you must do so before completing the certificate program.

Additional information can be obtained by visiting the youth development leadership website at

For additional information, please contact the program coordinator (William Quinn)

Application Requirements


Most successful candidates for admission to the program will have:

  • A bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • An acceptable score on the Graduate Record Exam
  • A letter of intent
  • Two letters of reference
  • Experience in the field of youth development leadership

You may apply on the web at Applications should be received by October 1 for January admission. Every required item in support of your application must be on file by that date.

Required Documents

For additional information, please contact the program coordinator (William Quinn)

Financial Aid

To see the proposed Graduate Tuition Rates for this academic year, click here.

Course of Study

Program of Study

This program meets the needs of students who are also working professionals. All courses are offered in an accelerated format and are delivered through the College of Health, Education and Human Development (CHEHD) Office of Distance Education. If you are accepted into the program, you will be required to visit the Clemson University campus for three days each year for group activities.

You will enroll in two courses (taken consecutively) each term and complete the program in two years.

This program is a 37-credit-hour interdisciplinary degree, primarily involving departments and units in the College of Health, Education and Human Development, but also including academic areas from other colleges and units at Clemson University.

Current Program


Students have access to the online library resources of the University. These resources are comparable to those provided to on-campus students as well as additional services such as book delivery and scanned journal articles.

Our Students

The Youth Development Leadership program admits a maximum of 25 students per year. The majority of students work in youth-related professions while enrolled in the program.

Students in the program are new professionals, career-changers and practicing professionals who want to expand their skills and create new professional opportunities.

Graduates of this program are prepared to work in youth-serving agencies and other family and community environments that promote youth well-being.

Other Information

Technology Requirements & Online Courses

You will connect and interact with your instructors and other students electronically, both asynchronously (at different times) or synchronously (at the same time). These courses involve approximately 80% asynchronous communications and 20% synchronous communications.

You will need a microphone, access to email and the Internet (via the latest versions of Internet Explorer, Netscape or an equivalent browser) and a computer with the ability to read a CD-ROM or DVD. You will also need current versions of your operating system and of word processing, spreadsheet and presentation software. Headsets are required and because the courses involve sending and receiving large files, a high-speed Internet connection is ideal.

You will be responsible for allocating sufficient time in your schedule to access the course materials, study the content and complete your assignments. This will require 12 to 15 hours per week, and two courses per semester are taken consecutively, each six weeks in duration.

Program Coordinator

Additional Contact

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