Youth Development and Juvenile Justice Conference

For information and registration for the 4th Annual Conference on Youth Development and Juvenile Justice, please visit

Rutgers Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice

Third Annual Conference on Youth Development and Juvenile Justice

Thursday, June 7, 2018: Afternoon Talk & Panel Discussion
Friday, June 8, 2018: Full-Day Conference
Rutgers University, Newark, NJ

The Third Annual Conference on Youth Development and Juvenile Justice will highlight the critical issue of racial disparities in the juvenile justice system from a variety of perspectives spanning journalistic coverage of juvenile justice reform efforts, legal and political historical perspectives on race and crime, and social science research on youths' experiences with the justice system. Join the Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice at Rutgers University-Newark for this important scholarly event in Newark, NJ.

Advance registration has closed. Participants can register on-site on June 8 for $40.00 per person.

Featured Speakers

The Dark Side of Juvenile Justice

Nicole Lewis, Youth Development and Juvenile Justice Conference Speaker

Nicole Lewis
The Marshall Project

Read More About Nicole Lewis

Nicole Lewis is a Tow Reporting Fellow for The Marshall Project. Previously, she wrote for The Washington Post's The Fact Checker and The Fix. Nicole is a graduate of the University of Michigan and CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She was the recipient of the 2016 Education Writers Association National Award for Education Writing in magazine and feature writing for her contribution to a series on desegregation in the public school system. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, VICE, The Clarion Ledger, Scientific American, and elsewhere.

Locking Up Our Own: Crime And Punishment in Black America

James Forman, Youth Development and Juvenile Justice Conference Speaker

James Forman Jr., JD
Yale University School of Law

Read More About James Forman Jr., JD

Professor Forman attended Yale Law School. After he graduated, he worked as a law clerk for Justice Sandra Day O'Connor of the U.S. Supreme Court. After clerking, he took a job at the Public Defender Service in Washington, D.C., where for six years he represented juveniles and adults in felony and misdemeanor cases. Frustrated with the lack of education and job training opportunities for his clients, Forman helped to start the Maya Angelou Public Charter School, an alternative school for dropouts and youth who had previously been arrested. At Yale Law School, where he has taught since 2011, Professor Forman takes his teaching behind prison walls, offering a seminar called Inside-Out Prison Exchange: Issues in Criminal Justice, which brings together, in the same classroom, 10 Yale Law students and 10 women incarcerated in a federal prison. Professor Forman's first book is the critically-acclaimed Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America, which was long-listed for the National Book Award and named one of the 10 best books of 2017 by the New York Times.

Adolescence Incarcerated: Healing the Wounds of the School-to-Prison Pipeline

Kelsey Jones, Youth Development and Juvenile Justice Conference Speaker

Kelsey Jones, PhD
University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education

Read More About Kelsey Jones, PhD

Dr. Kelsey M. Jones is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania's Graduate School of Education, working within the department of Human Development and Quantitative Methods and the Racial Empowerment Collaborative. Her interests include the school-to-prison pipeline, dis/ability and giftedness in the narratives of and about Black and Brown youth, and racial literacy education for children and adults in teaching and learning relationships. Prior to beginning her fellowship, she earned her doctorate in Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Development from the University of Pennsylvania. Her current research focuses on the development of accessible racial literacy materials for children, adolescents, caregivers, and educators under the Preparing Educators to Address Racial Literacy and Stress (PEARLS) Program. She also uses qualitative methodologies and methods to understand the emotional and social effects of the school-to-prison pipeline on children, families, and educators from Kindergarten through high school.

Conference Details


June 7: Free to attend, but seating is limited and advance registration is required

June 8: Advance Registration - $30.00 per person / On-site Registration - $40.00 per person. Advance registration closes on June 5. After that date, participants must register on-site on June 8.

Cancellation Policy: Registrants will receive a refund (minus $25.00 cancellation fee) through 4:00pm on May 24.


June 7: Paul Robeson Campus Center, University Club (Second Floor), 350 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Blvd., Newark, NJ 07102

June 8: Center for Law & Justice, Lower Atrium – B070, 123 Washington Street, Newark, NJ 07102

Parking: Vouchers are available for discounted parking at Deck 1 or Deck 2 located at 200 University Avenue/166 Washington, Newark, NJ 07102. If you plan to park at this location, please indicate that you would like to receive a parking voucher when you register.


June 7: Light refreshments will be provided.

June 8: Continental breakfast and box lunch will be available for all attendees. If you would like a vegetarian lunch, please indicate your preference when registering.


Social Work CE Credits: This conference is approved for 2.5 CE hours on Day 1 and 5.5 CE hours on Day 2. If you wish to receive these credits, you must sign up and submit payment separately for each day through the Rutgers School of Social Work. After you complete your registration for this event, check your confirmation email for social work CE instructions and links.

Continuing Legal Education Credits (CLE): NJ: 4.0 | NY: 4.0 | PA: 3.0

Registrants interested in CLE credits will have to bring a check the day of the conference made payable to: Rutgers Law School.

$70 for attorneys seeking CLE credit
$35 for public interest attorneys



Hotel accommodations are available at a special low rate at the Best Western Robert Treat Hotel (just a few blocks from campus).

Individuals should call the hotel at 973-622-1000 (option 1 for reservations) and reference the group by name to make reservations. Alternatively, they may make reservations online.

Group No: 1460
Group: Youth Development & Juvenile Justice

Conference Agenda


4:00 pm: Registration and light refreshments

4:20 pm: Event Welcome

Paul Boxer, PhD, Director, Rutgers-Newark Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice

4:30 pm: Afternoon Talk - The Dark Side of Juvenile Justice Reform

Nicole Lewis, The Marshall Project
Introduction by Paul Boxer

The number of children incarcerated in the United States has plummeted by more than half since 2000. But racial disparities in the juvenile justice are actually getting worse — in part because alternatives to incarceration, as well as "risk-assessment" tools, are designed for and more available to white kids. Meanwhile, incarceration is being replaced by systems of widespread surveillance — probation and GPS monitoring — that also primarily affect black and brown children. This talk will describe some of The Marshall Project's on-the-ground reporting on what these new forms of discipline and monitoring look like.

5:30 pm: Panel Discussion

Confirmed panelists: Robert W. Snyder (Journalism Program, Rutgers-Newark), Kristina Kersey (NJ Office of the Public Defender), Fred Fogg (Youth Advocate Program). Moderated by Paul Boxer and Laura Cohen.

FRIDAY, JUNE 8, 2018

8:30 am: Registration and light refreshments

9:15 am: Conference Welcome and Welcome Address

Paul Boxer, PhD, Director, Rutgers-Newark Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice
Marcia W. Brown, Vice Chancellor for External and Governmental Relations, Rutgers-Newark

9:30 am: Morning Keynote - Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America

James Forman, JD, Professor of Law, Yale University
Introduction by Laura Cohen, JD, Clinical Professor, Rutgers School of Law

How did the United States come to lock up more of its citizens than any other nation on earth? What can we do to change that? Drawing on the best-selling book (one of the New York Times' "Best of 2017"), Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America, James Forman, Jr. will explore how African-American leaders over the past 50 years wrestled with rising crime, violence, and incarceration rates. Forman will outline America's criminal justice crisis with data and human stories, and will provide concrete ideas about how we can all contribute to change.

10:30 am: Panel Discussion

Confirmed panelists: Rachel Godsil (Rutgers University School of Law), Andrea McCoy-Johnson (Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice), Byron Price (Medgar Evers College, City University of New York), Alexander Shalom (American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey). Moderated by Laura Cohen.
Thought leaders from Rutgers-Newark and the greater Newark community will respond to and discuss the morning keynote address, with questions and comments from the audience.

11:15 am: Break

11:30 am: Community Programs Showcase

Confirmed panelists: Michele Williers (Big Brothers Big Sisters of Essex, Hudson, and Union Counties), Jasmine Harden (Newark Community Solutions), Ken Karamichael (Project RISE / Rutgers University Office of Continuing and Professional Education), and Dennis Porter (Prodigal Sons and Daughters). Moderated by Paul Boxer and Laura Cohen.
"How do local programs for justice-involved youth address race bias and race disparities for their clients?" Presentations from panelists and moderated Q&A from the audience.

12:45 pm: Lunch

2:00 pm: Afternoon Lecture - Adolescence Incarcerated: Healing the Wounds of the School-to-Prison Pipeline

Kelsey M. Jones, PhD, University of Pennsylvania
Introduction by Paul Boxer

This presentation will review racialized mass incarceration and the overrepresentation of Black and Brown students in special education as they relate to the school-to-prison pipeline. Using a model of racial literacy--the ability to read, interpret, and resolve racial stress--as an intervention, we will address racialized deficit-thinking in the classroom and the role of racial literacy strategies in improving teacher-student relationships and disrupting the school-to-prison pipeline.

3:00 pm: Panel Discussion

Confirmed panelists: Esther Canty-Barnes (Rutgers University School of Law- Education and Health Law Clinic), Jacquelynn Duron (Rutgers University School of Social Work), Luis Rivera (Department of Psychology, Rutgers-Newark), Paul Hirschfield (Department of Sociology, Rutgers-New Brunswick). Moderated by Paul Boxer.
Thought leaders from the Rutgers faculty community will respond to and discuss the afternoon lecture, with particular attention to how their own research in the areas of race bias and race disparities could be brought to bear on the problem of racial inequities in juvenile justice. Panelists will reflect specifically on the findings presented regarding the "school to prison pipeline" to consider how their fields might contribute to policies and practices that could disrupt the pipeline.

4:00 pm: Closing Remarks

Paul Boxer, PhD, Director, Rutgers-Newark Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice


Rutgers-Newark Office of the Chancellor

Rutgers-Newark Office of University-Community Partnerships

Rutgers School of Social Work

State of New Jersey - Juvenile Justice Commission

Rutgers Newark Department of Psychology

Rutgers Law School

Rutgers Institute for Professional Education

Northeast Juvenile Defender Center

About the Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice

Rutgers Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice

The Rutgers University-Newark Center on Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice (RUN-CYVJJ) is a collaborative center based on a strong foundation of existing community partnerships and faculty research and aimed at making Rutgers-Newark the premier academic hub in the nation for engaged scholarship on youth violence and juvenile justice with both local and national impact.

The RUN-CYVJJ is an engine for enhancing services to youth and families in the Newark community and beyond; expanding educational and training opportunities for faculty, students, practitioners, and policymakers; and securing large-scale, long-term external funding for integrated and interdisciplinary research-service activities.