Skip to main content

5 Reasons Why 4-H is Lifelong

1.  Education:  4-H is education for life that uses a hands-on approach.  4-H prepares youth for higher education and potential careers by emphasizing life skills such as problem solving and critical thinking.  When members participate in activities such as creating a project or developing a nutritional plan for livestock, learning is taking place without being noticed.  4-H has a special way of creating many learning experiences that are fun and engaging for 4-H members.  It has been proven that 4-H members are two times more likely to get better grades in school and are two times more likely to attend college than individuals that don’t partake in 4-H.

2.  Companionship:  4-H members share many common interests with one another such as static projects, livestock, or working exhibits.  There is always another 4-H or family member that shares the same interests.  Common interests are quite often the foundation for creating lifelong friendships and memories.  Friendships like these will follow through a life journey beginning with sharing the accomplishment of a first 4-H project to the acceptance of a first job.  Over the years, these friends may drift in different directions but one thing remains in common –the 4-H experience.

3.  Interpersonal Communication:  It would be very hard to believe that a 4-H member had never felt the slightest bit nervous when approaching a judge that would make the decision on the outcome of their project.  Or that they never worried about answering any of the judge’s questions and providing good explanations.  Little do 4-H’ers know, that these interactions are similar to real world interview experiences.  Goal cards transform into resumes, projects turn into work experiences, and judges are now potential employers.  It may get a little nerve-racking when participating in this kind of confrontation, but through previous experiences through 4-H, confidence can be gained for future endeavors!   

4.  Leadership:  It’s easy to think back to when the first leadership experience obtained was being the vice president of a 4-H club.  Leadership responsibilities of being the vice president of a 4-H club were taken very seriously.  Today, job responsibilities are similar to that of the responsibilities of a 4-H club vice president previously.  4-H members were inspired by leadership in the same way co-workers are inspired by the leadership of a boss.  The 4-H program helps to make 4-H members the best leaders that they can be.

5.  Steadfast Determination:  When walking out of the show ring with what seems to be nothing, the value of raw determination was learned.  These 4-H experiences have taught something that the best rewards in life are not being the champion and winning the trophies, but setting the mind to do something and putting forth the best effort.  In life, we can’t change things we don’t have control over, but we can control how we respond to them.  Having the determination to set and achieve goals is yet another benefit of the 4-H program.  Youth have the potential to succeed with their goals when they set their mind to it.


Popular posts from this blog

Alumni Spotlight: Maureen Hanson

Maureen HansonPatience, responsibility, compassion, and cooperation. These are just a few words that come to mind when Maureen Hanson thinks of the values she learned through 4-H.
Maureen was an active member in Clinton County, Iowa for nine years as a member of the Junior DD and DDD, better known as DeWitt Darling Daughters, in DeWitt, Iowa. She also was a member of the DeWitt Hustlers, which at the time was considered a “boys club”, in order to show her livestock.
Maureen has multiple favorite 4-H memories, but the best was attending Intermediate Camp at the Iowa 4-H Camping Center at Madrid.
“I still vividly remember so many details of that week, and it was a life-changing experience, all for the better,” she says.
Maureen is still very active in 4-H activities, serving as a Clover bud leader in Benton County for seven years, a leader of the Bruce Boosters 4-H Club for almost nine years, and assisting with the Benton County Livestock Judging team, and it doesn’t stop there! She has…

Alumni Spotlight: Julie (Wolterman) Burroughs

From State Fair Queen to baby food producer, our December Alum of the Month has used the skills gained from her 4-H experience to propel herself to success. Julie (Wolterman) Burroughs was a member of the Garfield All-Stars 4-H Club for nine years in Ida County. Some of her projects included; showing cattle, quilting, knitting, woodworking, child development and much more. She also participated in Clothing Selection, Fashion Revue and 4-H Council. 
Julie’s favorite 4-H memory was when she was crowned the 1993 Iowa State Fair Queen.  “The competition was such a valuable experience and my year as Queen, representing Iowa, was phenomenal,” said Burroughs. “The opportunity was such an honor and defined my 4-H experience.” Burroughs went on to coordinate the Iowa State Fair Queen Competition of 14 years.
Another fond 4-H memory Burroughs has is showing livestock. “I loved the energy and sense of community on livestock show day. The entire Club worked together to get the cattle washed and g…

Alumni Spotlight: Eric Hanson

Award winning KCCI 8 News morning anchor, Eric Hanson is our November Alum of the Month. Hanson graduated from Roland-Story High School. He grew up on a farm with his parents and his three siblings, who were all involved in 4-H in Story County. “4-H is important to me because it strengthen my communications skills,” said Hanson. Hanson also says the 4-H taught him confidence, leadership and communication.

He was an eight year member of the Howard Rockets and participated in swine, dog, rabbit, woodworking, rocketry, photography, communication, leadership and much more. Hanson’s favorite 4-H memory was during dog obedience class. “Dog obedience class was every Tuesday night in Ames,” said Hanson. “My 4-H leader picked me and my dog up, drove us to class with 100-ish others and we’d always go to Burger King afterwards, bonding as a group.” Hanson also met First Lady Barbara Bush in 1991 at Living History Farms and gave her a one on one presentation about tractor safety. After high school…