» OVERVIEW THE
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What happens at age 15 has a lot to say about teens’ success in school
and beyond. Teen Voice 2009, a new report by the Search Institute, and
sponsored by Best Buy Children’s Foundation, introduces three concepts
that have potential to set or keep 15-year-olds on a positive course at this
critical time in their life.
This report, which is based on a national study of 1,817 fifteen-year-olds, is part of Best
Buy @15, a platform to connect with teens, listen to what they have to say about the world,
give voice to their perspectives, and invest Best Buy’s resources to support teen efforts to
lead social change.
• Sparks, which are individual talents, passions or gifts that give teens energy,
motivation, focus and joy, are critical to teen’s well being. Yet, while 66% of teens
surveyed can identify at least one spark for themselves, fewer than half who know their
spark have much spark support beyond their family.
• Teen Voice Index (TVI), a new measure of teen engagement in social issues, found
18% of youth scored high, indicating significant opportunities to help young people
find their voice and contribute to their communities. Teens with high TVI scores are at
least three times as likely as those with low scores to see civic engagement as
important, hold prosocial values and have a sense of hopeful purpose for the future.
DISPLAY A Teens Who Score High on 3 Key Strengths
Know They Score High Score High
Have a Spark on the TVI on the ROI
• Relationships and Opportunities Index (ROI) is a new measure to track three
elements that significantly help teens: being valued and treated fairly; having access
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to high-quality opportunities, such as after-school programs; and having people who
nurture their sparks. Only about one in eight (12%) of teens score high on this index.
Youth with high ROI scores are much more likely to report positive outcomes and are
three times as likely as those with low scores to have a sense of hopeful purpose,
express caring values, be actively engaged in school and take on leadership roles.
• Teen strengths, are most effectively supported when teens know their sparks and
score high on the Teen Voice Index and Relationships and Opportunities Index. Only
7% of U.S. teens experience high levels of all three of these critical strengths.
DISPLAY B Teens Who Experience Multiple Strengths
None of the Three
3% Only Sparks
Only TVI or ROI
Sparks + TVI or ROI
Sparks + TVI + ROI
What are the Implications?
Teen Voice 2009 captures what the nation’s 15-year-olds need in order to thrive. They are a
rich resource, ready to be tapped. It’s up to adults to work alongside young people to see
that they find and follow their passions—enriching themselves, their families and their
communities as a result—by doing the following:
• Connecting teens much more with adults who are working in their areas of interest;
• Mentoring teens about how to study and how to practice their passionate
• Giving teens opportunities to get more experience doing what they love to do.
For More Information and to view the report please visit http://www.at15.com