Program Areas | Youth Development

Girl Scout Council of Greater New York: Evaluation of the Career Exploration Program

In recent years, the Girl Scout Council of Greater New York, which serves more than 21,000 girls each year, has explored how to broaden the career horizons of disadvantaged girls in New York City who may not be attracted to the traditional after-school experience. To reach girls in areas facing high poverty levels and significant language barriers, the council has begun offering the Career Exploration Program (CEP) in five Bronx middle schools. CEP is designed to better prepare the girls in these schools for high school, college, and future careers, and improve their personal competencies, including self-confidence and interpersonal and leadership skills. The program curriculum combines leadership development with an introduction to a wide variety of career options in the sciences, media and arts, and business. Successful women make guest appearances in the classroom and invite participants to visit and observe their workplaces.

Through a competitive process, Metis was awarded the contract to evaluate this program. Beginning in October 2008 with the first cohort of sixth graders, Metis has looked not only at participants' career knowledge but at their confidence levels and general academic achievement, seen through factors such as test scores and attendance. Metis has created and is administering surveys that assess the girls' attitudes and knowledge about careers, as well as their personal and social skills, both prior to and after the program. Metis is also surveying teachers and principals to understand their relationships with the Girl Scouts and whether or how the program is impacting the school community as a whole.