Beyond Participation: The Association Between School Extracurricular Activities and Involvement in Violence Across Generations of Immigration
Using data for 13,236 adolescents from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, these authors explored how the relationship between extracurricular activities and youth violence varies by type of extracurricular activity profile (sports alone, non-sports alone, and a combination of sports and non-sports) and by generation of immigration. Of the sample, 9.3 percent were first-generation youth, 15.7 percent were second generation, and 74.9 percent were third-plus generation (i.e., non-immigrant). Results reveal that adolescents from the third-plus generation who participate in non-sports alone or sports plus non-sports have lower odds of involvement in violence than adolescents from the same generation who do not participate in extracurricular activities. For first- and second-generation adolescents, however, participation in extracurricular activities is associated with higher rather than lower odds of violence. These findings challenge the view that participation in mainstream extracurricular activities as afforded by US schools is equally beneficial for all youth. Modified Author Abstract.