The RTC for Pathways to Positive Futures aims to improve the lives of youth and young adults with serious mental health conditions through rigorous research and effective training and dissemination. Our work is guided by the perspectives of young people and their families, and based in a positive development framework.
There are eight research projects included in the Pathways RTC. Each of the projects is grounded in the best available research, and all adhere to a single conceptual framework that is based on a synthesis of research evidence together with positive development and recovery approaches. This framework guides an intervention approach focused on building young people's assets in four areas: 1) self-determination and positive identity, 2) youth-and young adult-directed decision making, 3) skills needed for adult roles, and 4) supportive relationships with peers and adults. Three of the research projects focus on testing the efficacy of an intervention to improve outcomes for transition-age youth and young adults with serious mental health conditions. Two projects focus on developing assessment inventories, and two projects use large, national data sets.
These research projects are surrounded by a rich array of training, technical assistance and dissemination activities. A training collaborative develops graduate and undergraduate course modules appropriate for individuals who plan to work with transition-aged youth, as well as modules for in-service delivery. A national State-of-the-Science conference, the annual review Focal Point and collaboration with vocational rehabilitation, mental health, education and other relevant organizations furthers the wide dissemination and application of products and findings.