Office of Ethics and Compliance celebrates youth protection

Penn State facilities, including Shaver's Creek Environmental Center, host youth year round for educational programs. Programs such as this are overseen by the Youth Compliance Unit in the Office of Ethics and Compliance. Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

While most college students head home to enjoy some rest and relaxation during the summer months, activity on the University Park and Commonwealth Campuses remains vibrant with a wide range of youth programming.

The University’s youth programing includes hundreds of programs throughout the University. The range of programs may include summer sports camps, academic camps, 4-H camps and events, children’s day camps and outdoor exploration camps.

Youth-focused camps are held across all of University Park and at an overwhelming majority of Commonwealth Campuses, as well as the Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center located just outside of State College. These camps range from one day camps to week-long residential programs, attracting youth from across the country.

Even after the return of students for the fall and spring semesters, youth programs are taking place throughout the university for the entirety of the calendar year, ranging from youth events held during sporting events to overnight educational outdoor camps for local school districts.

Penn State is committed to promoting a safe environment for all youth participating in activities offered through the University. The Youth Programs Compliance Unit, in coordination with the University’s Youth Program Advisory Council, embraces a culture of service that values teamwork and focuses on the needs of all youth programs including: 

  • Continual review and update of University policy and procedures based on current law and national best practices
  • Dissemination of updated policy and procedure information to all youth programs staff as well as to the University at large
  • Sharing effective training options to individual programs for the purpose of continually enhancing the quality of youth programming
  • Participating in the review of monitoring activities designed to evaluate effectiveness of all policies and youth programs and ensuring that results are incorporated into a continuous quality improvement  

Additional responsibilities of the Youth Program Compliance staff include the oversight of reporting suspected child abuse under University Policy AD72, as well as the creation and updating of the Building a Safe Penn State: Reporting Child Abuse training. 

Penn State is a national leader in higher education youth protection and works in conjunction with Universities nationwide to help create policies and standards that promotes a culture of safety for interacting with youth when they visit our campuses. If you have any questions about youth programming or youth compliance, please feel free to visit us at, where we have a host of information and resources  regarding youth program policies, good practices to implement when managing youth programs, background check information, and reporting child abuse procedures. 

To learn more about the Office of Ethics and Compliance, please visit

Corporate Compliance and Ethics Week began in May 2005 as a way to help members of SCCE & HCCA to increase awareness of compliance and ethics issues at their organizations. It has since grown to an annual event that is celebrated around the world. Find out more at

Submit your answer to the question at All correct responses received by 8 am on Nov. 7 will be entered into our daily prize drawing!

Approximately how many children does Penn State serve on an annual basis in youth programs, activities and services?





Last Updated November 05, 2019