Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Sociology and Rural Studies


Two segments of the American population are the objects of special concern and study at the present time. This study is focused on the other end of the continuum, on the teen-ager who is struggling through the mist and dew of the morning of his day. Possessed of “youth, speed, dexterity, physical strength and endurance,” he, too, finds himself looking for a job. These hundreds of thousands of boys and girls can only expect monotonous and intermittent employment, unless they are assisted in developing the skills which available jobs require. The estimated loss to the economy of these unemployed youth is at least one billion dollars a year. The financial magnitude of youth unemployment and juvenile delinquency suggests insurgent reason for research. A great deal of research and study in these areas has been done, especially relating to juvenile delinquency, and numerous articles and reports have been published. The ultimate objective suggested here is to discover exactly how a community is “structured, organized, and operated, and what this portends for the everyday life of youth and for their ambition, values, and sense of self-worth. The immediate objectives of this study are as follows: to empirically project a hypothesis concerning social process and structure as it relates to the assimilation of youth in a rural community, to ascertain the usefulness of sociometrics in identifying youth who may be encountering difficulty in becoming assimilated into the socio-economic system.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Social surveys
Juvenile delinquency -- United States
Rural youth -- United States
United States -- Rural Conditions


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University