The panel of 4407 participants was established as part of a community-randomized trial of Communities That Care (CTC) in 24 small towns in 7 states. CTC is a science-based community prevention capacity building and planning system designed to prevent behavioral health problems among youth community-wide. CTC guides communities to install, implement, and monitor the results of tested and effective prevention programs and policies that address community-specific elevated risk factors and depressed protective factors and reduce problem behavior. The trial has shown that CTC can produce sustained reductions in youth delinquency, violence, and substance use through the end of high school, with sustained effects on delinquency and substance use in males through Age 19.
The first paper presents a latent class analysis of different role combinations (e.g., education, work, romantic relationships) in young adulthood and examines whether young adult stayers move more quickly into young adult roles than movers. The second paper evaluates whether CTC, which was designed to strengthen communities, was related to more favorable outcomes among stayers in CTC communities compared to stayers in control communities who were not exposed to CTC. It also compares Age 21 substance use and mental health outcomes among movers and stayers. The third paper presents a qualitative analysis of young adults’ own words and self-reflections about salient life events that may act as turning points in their lives. Implications for prevention and young adult development will be discussed.