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As the demand for careers with post-secondary credentials continues to increase, starting college and career interventions early in a child’s life is essential. IYI’s College & Career Readiness Initiatives support individuals and institutions in their work to ensure all Indiana young people are prepared and positioned for success in their post-secondary educational journey.

Indiana Youth Institute aggregates reliable, high-quality data and resources from state and national sources for youth workers and organizations working together to improve the lives of all Indiana children, especially those facing the greatest adversity.

Click on a topic below to explore.

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Weekly Update Newsletter

The latest updates on youth issues in Indiana, professional education trainings, and organizational capacity opportunities! Over 15,000 youth service professionals get youth development trends, IYI program news, and event updates delivered to the inbox every Friday morning. What are you waiting for? Sign up today.

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People

Data & Communications
Senior Communications Manager
(she/her/hers)
317-396-2733
Margaret Curtland
Senior Communications Manager
317-396-2733

Margaret is Indiana Youth Institute’s Senior Communications Manager, leading marketing, communications, and public relations for the organization.

Margaret has created, executed, and managed multichannel marketing campaigns and communications strategies at IYI for more than 5 years. She previously worked in PR agencies and graduated from Ball State University, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Strategic Communications: Public Relations.   
 
In her career, Margaret has had the opportunity to work on content strategy with National brands as well as targeted community outreach. Her favorite way to spend her time out of the office is going on walks and brunch with her husband and puppy around central Indiana. 
 

Creative Brand Manager
(they/them)
317-396-2738
Derek Dalton
Creative Brand Manager
317-396-2738

Derek is Indiana Youth Institute’s Creative Brand Manager, overseeing all branding and design projects. 

With a robust background in the nonprofit sector, they have dedicated more than five years to crafting compelling and impactful creative solutions. Derek’s expertise lies in translating complex ideas into visually stunning and meaningful representations, contributing significantly to the organization’s brand identity. 

A graduate of the Herron School of Art & Design, Derek brings a unique blend of artistic talent and strategic thinking to the IYI team.  

Derek is a proud Indianapolis resident, where they share a home with their husband, two dogs, and a lively bunch of chickens. 

Vice President of Data & Communications
(she/her/hers)
317-396-2737
Ashley Haynes
Vice President of Data & Communications
317-396-2737

Ashley is IYI’s Vice President of Data & Communications, responsible for leading initiatives that build and execute brand, strengthen marketing and communications, foster strategic partnerships, and expand relationships with other influencers and stakeholders. Additionally, Ashley leads IYI’s efforts to educate, equip, and empower the youth services field with actionable data that can drive solutions and positive impact for youth well-being. 

In addition to her background in advertising, community building, and nonprofit marketing, Ashley holds a master’s degree in elementary education. She taught second grade for three years in Washington Township and served as grade level professional learning committee lead. Ashley serves on the board of Beyond Monumental (the Monumental Marathon) as the Monumental Kids Movement program chair. 

Policy & Data Advocacy Manager
(he/him/his)
317-396-2719
Taylor Johnson
Policy & Data Advocacy Manager
317-396-2719

Taylor is Indiana Youth Institute’s Policy & Data Advocacy Manager. He develops, supports, and informs existing and new communication efforts related to data, issues, and policy initiatives impacting Indiana youth.  Taylor also provides expertise and insight into a wide range of issues impacting kids and youth workers, including monitoring the status of federal, state, and local policy.

Taylor graduated from Hanover College with a degree in political science and a minor in economics, spending time in Washington D.C. interpreting and analyzing policy. He lives in southern Indiana with his wife Colleen and enjoys staying physically active, playing piano, and exploring culinary arts. 

Data & Research Program Manager
(she/her/hers)
317-396-2754
Bri Youn
Data & Research Program Manager
317-396-2754

Bri serves as Indiana Youth Institute’s Data & Research Program Manager, dedicated to enhancing programs and policies for Hoosier youth and leading efforts in research, policy activities, and contributing to key publications like the KIDS COUNT Data Book.   

With bachelor’s and master’s degrees in public administration from Indiana University’s O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, Bri excels in communicating data-driven solutions and managing diverse projects. Her impactful academic journey includes leadership roles and honors during her studies, in addition to being awarded the William M. Plater Civic Engagement Medallion, emphasizing a commitment to community service and academic excellence. In her career, Bri has had the opportunity to guide both state and national-level organizations through her critical thinking and data analysis.  

Bri enjoys spending time with her family, reading a good book, and is also a green thumb.    

Finance
Senior Accountant
(she/her/hers)
317-396-2721 
Erricka Graham
Senior Accountant
317-396-2721 

Erricka is IYI’s Senior Accountant. She has more than 10 years of experience in financials and accounting, and more than six years specifically in nonprofit accounting. She holds a master’s in accountancy from Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis and a bachelor’s in chemistry from Indiana University, Bloomington. Prior to her work at IYI, she served as the finance manager at Joy’s House where she contributed to the audit process, annual budgets, and many other financial processes imperative for organizational success.

Erricka enjoys movie nights with her family, traveling with her husband, and exploring new foods. She loves to watch her three children in their extracurricular activities. Erricka also served in the Army for more than 12 years. 

Chief Financial Officer
(He/Him/His)
317-396-2724
Kevin Hampton
Chief Financial Officer
317-396-2724

Kevin’s thirty-plus-year career in the financial industry has involved the management of assets for individuals, companies, and non-profit organizations of varied size and complexity.

In the community, Kevin previously served as a Board Member & Treasurer on MCCOY’s Board of Directors and he currently serves as the Assistant Chair & Treasurer of Liberty Groves School.

Kevin received his education from Indiana University, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a Concentration in Finance & Accounting as well as graduating with his Master of Jurisprudence from Indiana University McKinney School of Law.

Payroll & Benefits Manager
(she/her/hers)
317-396-2722
Donielle Thomas
Payroll & Benefits Manager
317-396-2722

Donielle is the Payroll & Benefits Manager at Indiana Youth Institute. She plays a crucial role in managing payroll, overseeing new employee onboarding, and administering benefits for our team. 

Starting her journey at IYI as the Accounting Coordinator, Donielle has seamlessly transitioned into her current role, bringing a wealth of experience and dedication to the organization, ensuring the smooth functioning of payroll processes and supporting the well-being of our team through comprehensive benefits management. Donielle earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Indiana Wesleyan University. 

Beyond her professional prowess, Donielle brings a touch of joy to the workplace. When not immersed in payroll and benefits, she finds delight in hosting random game nights with her husband and kids at home. Additionally, Donielle and her family open their doors to friends for couples game nights, creating a welcoming and engaging atmosphere. 

Accounting Coordinator
(she/her/hers)
317-396-2727
Melanie Walker
Accounting Coordinator
317-396-2727

Melanie is Indiana Youth Institute’s Accounting Coordinator, providing support and financial expertise throughout the organization. She understands well-equipped youth workers are essential to creating measurable and meaningful impacts on the lives of Indiana’s youth. 
 
Melanie earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from Prairie View A&M University and a master’s degree in public administration nonprofit management from Capella University. She has more than 15 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. 
 
Melanie spends her free time traveling with friends and family. 


Highlights

Economists estimate that in 2031, the nation will have 171 million jobs.

However, only 30% of them will be open to workers without college degrees.

 

Source: Lytle, 2022

2022 High School Graduation and Drop Out Rates

The number of high school students graduating on time in 2022 was 86.6% compared to 88.1% in 2018. The 2022 dropout rate was 7.5%, compared to 5.2% in 2018.

Source: Indiana Department of Education
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Selected Resources

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Programs

Section One
Bloom Project
The Bloom Project, Inc is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that offers group mentoring, college preparation, service learning, character development, and career exploration opportunities. We currently serve in Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, Ind. It is our mission to prepare young males, ages 12-18, for secondary education and their knowledge within a career pathway.
Bowen Center
Bowen Center provides high-quality, comprehensive healthcare to address the emotional, physical, and social well-being of our patients no matter their ability to pay.
Built to Succeed
The Indiana Careers in Construction Association (ICCA) represents more than 60 different construction apprenticeship training facilities throughout Indiana. The mission of the ICCA is to educate career-bound and college-bound Hoosiers about educational and career opportunities in the construction Industry.
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College Raptor
Discover affordable schools, choose your major and career, find scholarships, compare costs, pay for college, and realize your dreams.
College Savings Accounts
529 plans were established to help parents and grandparents save money for post-secondary or higher education. Their many unique features – from low fees to tax-advantaged investing – make them one of the most popular ways to save for college.
Counselor1Stop
Counselor1Stop is an AtoZ compendium of resources for and by K-12 school counselors.

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