Child and Youth Studies (B.S.)

Program Overview

A degree in Child and Youth Studies (CYS) prepares tomorrow's leaders through community-based teaching and learning. Authentic learning takes place with our extensive range of partners who facilitate students to be agents of change in our community and beyond. With over 400 hours of field experience upon graduation, students receive firsthand preparation in a variety of settings from non-profit organizations to child development centers. This program prepares human services, community development, and other Child and Youth professionals for employment in public, private, nonprofit, and for-profit organizations. 


Concentrations Overview

Community Engagement Concentration

  • Prepares graduates for leadership roles in informal learning environments such as youth organizations, clinical work with children with disabilities, museums, non-profit organizations, parks and recreation, and other community agencies.

Education Studies Concentration

  • Prepares graduates for teaching in childcare or other educational settings by providing them with the fundamentals of teaching, classroom management, and learning. 


Career Paths

Community Engagement Concentration

  • Child Advocate 
  • Outdoor and recreational education providers (counselors, coaches) 
  • Youth Program Coordinator 
  • Human services professionals, case managers, and counselors 
  • Outreach workers 
  • Residential care treatment providers 
  • Child welfare workers 
  • Disability advocates 
  • Juvenile corrections staff 
  • Non-Profit Organizations 

Education Studies Concentration

  • Child Life Specialist  
  • Applied Behavior Analysis (RBT) 
  • Paraprofessional 
  • Family Life Educator 
  • After School Programs 
  • Children’s Museums   
  • Preschool Teacher


Information for Current Students

CYS Internships

In CYS, an internship is a two-semester long mutually beneficial relationship between a student and a selected agency. In both semesters, students gain valuable hands-on experience in their CYS fields of study while earning academic credits. 

The Field Experiences and Practicum in the CYS Program at Florida Gulf Coast University are two separate one-semester internship experiences that occur during two periods in the student’s program, one prior to their final semester, the “Field Experience” and one during the end of a student’s senior year, which is the “Practicum”. These two experiences are often referred to as “Internships”. 

During the semester long “Field Experience” program (Block 4 internship), each candidate will be placed at a site, where they log 160 hours of work. During the semester long student “Practicum” (Block 5 internship) each candidate will be placed at a site, where they log 320 hours of work. In both cases, the student is expected to report regularly to an assigned site. The dates and times of the internship are mutually agreed by the student, site supervisor and university supervisor. In order to ease their load in the second part of the internship, students may roll-over a maximum of 100 hours from Field Experience to Practicum.  

If you have any questions, contact CYS Block 4 and Block 5 Experiences at 239-745-4336 or

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  • Education Studies Concentration
  • Community Engagement Concentration
  • Accreditation

  • Admissions Information

  • Program Requirements

  • Degree Map

  • Course Description

  • Course Schedule

  • Learning Outcomes

  • Tuition, Fees, and Financial Assistance

  • Destination FGCU Transfer Program

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