4-H/Youth Development: 4-H Teen Conference gets a makeover
Source: Rachel Noble, extension specialist for 4-H youth development
This year, Kentucky 4-H will host the 94th Annual 4-H Teen Conference. This leadership opportunity has offered senior 4-H members the chance to continue to grow and better prepare themselves for college or the workforce. This year, conference organizers are offering exciting new options for members.
Much like an incoming college freshman, young people who attend this year’s conference at the University of Kentucky, will get to choose a major and will also have a minor. Their major selection will be in one of 4-H’s core content areas and will be similar to the tracks that the conference has offered in the past. Core content areas include communications/citizenship; natural resources; health; expressive arts; agriculture; science, engineering and technology; and family and consumer sciences. 4-H members will receive six hours of instruction from subject experts recruited from UK or surrounding agencies during the conference.
The member’s minor will focus on leadership development. Teens will participate in two hours of activities designed to help strengthen their skills as leaders, focusing on communication, teamwork skills and appreciating diversity. All participants will experience a common leadership experience. Additionally, they will participate in a community service project in the Lexington-Fayette County area. The Bluegrass Community Foundation is funding the community service project.
Teens will also have the opportunity to learn a new skill or hobby during the conference’s funshops.
As in years past, 4-H Teen Conference participants will elect Kentucky 4-H state officers for the upcoming year, along with the leadership tagline for the 2019 program year. During the conference, participants will hear the inspirational story of keynote speaker H.K. Derryberry, attend events in the new UK Student Center and watch the Kentucky 4-H Fashion Revue and the Kentucky 4-H Performing Arts Troupe Showcase.
Teen Conference is a time for celebrating 4-H members’ success by honoring those who participated in the 4-H Achievement Program. The
Kentucky 4-H Foundation will also award deserving 4-H members with scholarships to apply to post-secondary education, and the 2019 state-level leadership boards will be announced. Participants will close out the conference dressed in formal attire at the closing dance held at Kroger Field’s Woodford Room.
4-H Teen Conference is June 11-14 and is open to youth who have completed the eighth grade through high school. More information on 4-H leadership opportunities is available at the Woodford County Cooperative Extension Service.