Youth Voices is a Youth Participatory-Based Research (YPAR) program hosted at the UNP Hartland Partnership Center. Since 2016, Youth Voices was developed to increase educational opportunities for young people on the Southwest side of Salt Lake county. In order to fulfill this goal, Youth Voices engages youth through art, research, and prosocial activities. Youth Voices places young people’s expertise at the center of knowledge production in a space (the University) often perceived as unwelcoming to minoritized populations. In partnership with faculty and staff from multiple departments, in the pursuit of this work has also emerged what we’re calling Hartland Scholars. Hartland Scholars is an early-college credit program, centering the youth, values, and experiences of the community we work with, while challenging the expectations and barriers that exist in other early admissions programs.

What Students Say About Youth Voices

Here at Youth Voices, we create a safe space to focus on transitioning diverse students from high school to college.

Students at Youth Voices are given resources to be creative in combining original research with artistic projects. We get to work with amazing mentors from different backgrounds who help us succeed.

Picture taken by student on portrait day

“I joined Youth Voices as a student first to get college credits, but then I came back as a mentor because I like talking about the things we talk about”

Tima, 22 years old

“Youth Voices made me more comfortable and have the confidence to speak out loud, knowing my voice is heard, and my opinion matters. I made a lot of friends who I know consider family”

Fatima, 17 years old

Picture taken on a field trip to the Peace Gardens

“Youth Voices is not only going to be your biggest resource when it comes to college, it’s a family”

Sarah, 18 years old

2019-2020 Cohort on a hike to Ensign Peak

“Youth Voices is a very safe space where I can learn. The students and teachers have helped explore more about my education”

Marjella, 18 years old