Meet the Team

Meet the team behind the EYPC program. We are here to help you and your youth make your community a better place to live, work, and play.

Candace Gunby
Project Director

Candace Gunby is the Project Director for the Engaging Youth for Positive Change (EYPC) program.

Candace received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Bradley University in Peoria, IL. There she discovered an interest in community health and development. Candace went on to receive her Master of Public Health from Saint Louis University in Saint Louis, MO. Previously, she worked in drug prevention field with middle and high school students.

Nancy Flowers
Director of Research Programs

Nancy Flowers is the director of research programs at CPRD in the School of Social Work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Nancy serves as a Program Director for EYPC. She has expertise in program evaluation, large-scale data collection, mixed-methods evaluation designs, and the dissemination of results to improve practice and support data-based decision making. She is passionate about using research and data to inform policy for youth and adolescents.

Gio Marco Talavera
Video Development Specialist

Gio Marco Talavera is an undergraduate student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, studying Technical Systems Management with a minor in Business and Agricultural Health and Safety. Although his major and minors are not related to media, he has a large interest in both photography and film. He is currently working with the Center of Innovation in Teaching and Learning as a Junior Production student. He also holds the position as the media chair for Philippine Student Association.

Scott Hays
EYPC Program Trainer and Consultant

Scott P. Hays, (Ph.D., Political Science), is Director of Research and Development with The Strategic Collaboration Group, Inc. He most recently worked with the Center for Prevention Research and Development where he and his team developed “Engaging Youth for Positive Change”. Dr. Hays has taught political science at the college level and his research has included municipal ordinance adoption in local communities, the role of policy change in substance abuse prevention and youth involvement in policy change. He is co-editor of Engaging the Public: How Government and the Media Can Reinvigorate American Democracy (Rowman and Littlefield, 1998) and his research has appeared in a variety of academic journals including Frontiers in Public Health, The Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, the Journal of Politics, the Journal of Drug Education, and in Children, Youth and Environments.

About the program

The EYPC program is a civic-engagement program that guides youth (aged 13-18) through the process of getting a policy, ordinance, or resolution passed in their community. Youth involved in EYPC will bring about positive change in their community by exploring an issue and the change they want to make, engaging in data collection and analysis to develop their message, spreading their work and engaging the community in support, and working with decision-makers to enact real change.

Facilitator Training

Thanks to the generous support of the Illinois Department of Human Services and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, all EYPC trainings and all materials necessary to deliver the program are provided to you at no cost.

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