About the Author

Derek V. Schuster, Ed.D.

Dschuster@SCAN-Harbor.org

(917) 921-3053

The focus of Derek Schuster’s professional life has been on the prevention of family-related social problems. That is to say, he has shown consistent interest in addressing a social problem before it reaches an acute stage.

Derek’s Doctorate was in Social Education – – which focused on preventive social service programing. His first job was with New York City’s Addiction Service Agency, where he had responsibilities in launching drug abuse prevention programs in the public schools.

During the 1980’s Derek went on to found the non-profit organization Family Dynamics, Inc. which has been dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect. He served Family Dynamics as Executive Director for eight years. The organization went on to reduce the incidence of child maltreatment while keeping the family intact in over 96% of its cases – – historic records for the field.

In the year 2000, Derek started another type of prevention program – – this time Violence Prevention for the highly regarded organization SCAN-New York. It was never his intention to oversee such a program from a distance. The Violence Prevention Program is small in scale – – serving 90 youngsters or so a year. But its impact on its at-risk teenagers has been enormous. It has been consistently able to reduce re-arrests by over 70%. And throughout its 20-plus years in existence, Derek has maintained a personal caseload of six to ten youngsters. This means that his experiences in Violence Prevention are first-hand. As the father of six children ranging in age from 15 to adulthood and as a former teacher Derek’s life experience has prepared him in multiple ways to be the author of “Youth in Jeopardy.” He has not only preached about parenting techniques, but has used them on the home front and in school settings.    

In order for there to be a steady stream of referrals of at-risk youngsters to SCAN New York’s (now “SCAN-Harbor’s”) Violence Prevention Program Derek has reached out to various leaders involved with the social service and criminal justice fields – – including the Probation Department, the courts, and attorneys representing arrested teenagers.