Youth work and community development

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Career outcomes

Our graduates have pursued careers as

  • community education workers
  • youth officers
  • school retention officers
  • participation officers 
  • youth activities officers
  • youth and community workers
  • youth and family mediations
  • youth development officers
  • youth engagement workers
  • youth health educators
  • youth liaison workers
  • youth officers
  • youth outreach workers
  • youth policy officers
  • youth advocacy workers
  • drug rehabilitation workers
  • homelessness agencies
Discover youth work and community development

About youth work and community development

Want to make a difference in the lives of young people? Youth workers improve young people’s social and personal development, helping them establish a voice and sense of place in their communities. Become a highly trained and skilled professional who helps people thrive, and make an impact on the lives of individuals, families and communities.

Make a difference

Engage with young people from all walks of life by building the knowledge required to respond to their needs. You will be equipped with the understanding and skills needed for competent, compassionate, ethical and professional engagement with communities in the developing world.

Learning with purpose

Make a commitment to young people’s health and wellbeing by preparing for a future career in a range of roles. Whether your aim is face-to-face liaison or policy development, you’ll be equipped for a variety of opportunities in community and government agencies.

Real-life experiences

Gain valuable experience working with young people from diverse backgrounds, in addition to the theoretical insights and practical skills required to deal with the needs, problems and aspirations of young people.

Hands-on and immersive

A specialisation in youth work does more than meet the growing need for youth workers in our communities. You’ll be given the experience you need to make a positive impact for people who need it most. As a youth work student at ACU, you’ll be immersed in a practical, hands-on degree with field placements and industry connections to local youth support services.

Meet our staff

Staff profile Paul Chalkley

Paul Chalkley

Lecturer

Based at our Melbourne campus, Mr Paul Chalkley is a lecturer in the National School of Arts. Since 2010, he has taught a variety of youth work and sociology subjects and coordinates all youth work field placement experiences. Mr Chalkley also teaches the ACU core curriculum and recently taught the unit at our Rome campus.

Mr Chalkley studies at ACU and graduated with a youth work degree in 2000. Since then, he has worked extensively in the youth sector and is passionate about working with disadvantaged young people. In addition to his work at ACU, Mr Chalkley works casually as a youth worker in the out-of-home care sector.

In 2018, Mr Chalkley completed his Master of Philosophy thesis, which examined the experiences of care for those young people living in the out-of-home care system, specifically those living in residential care in Victoria. He has also been the recipient of a Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award as well as an ACU Citation.

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Why study at ACU

At ACU, you’ll get more than an excellent education. You’ll get the opportunity to help others, inspire change, and make a real difference.

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