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Results of a study on how urban youth feel about work have been published in a noted psychology journal, and includes a St. Lawrence graduate among its authors.

Julia Whitcavitch-Devoy '90 is among the authors of the article "Conceptions of Work: The View From Urban Youth," published in the July 2004 edition of Journal of Counseling Psychology. The authors are all associated with Boston College; Whitcavitch-Devoy is an instructor of developmental psychology at Boston College's Lynch School of Education.

The article abstract states, "This study sought to examine how poor and working-class urban adolescents conceive of work as well as the work-related messages they receive from their families. Data were collected to understand how 9th-grade urban students perceive work using an exploratory and qualitative research methodology. Although the data suggested that urban youths' conceptions of work were complex and varied, the conceptual array of urban youths' perceptions of work suggested that work does not generally represent a means of self-concept expression or the expression of one's interest in the world of work. Specifically, urban youth tended to define work in terms of external outcomes (e.g., money), which was also a common theme among the messages they received about work from their families."

A government/religious studies major at St. Lawrence, Whitcavitch-Devoy earned a master of education degree and a master of theological studies degree at Harvard University. She is a member of the Executive Council of the Alumni Association at St. Lawrence, and was a member of Kappa Delta Sigma sorority as a student. Among her many University activities, was participation in St. Lawrence's programs in Vienna, Austria, and Washington, D.C.

Posted: September 23, 2004