In addition to numerous other benefits, Michigan 4-H precollege programs help prepare youth for higher education. Michigan 4-H is the state’s largest youth development organization and is operated by Michigan State University (MSU) Extension. According to a 2013 survey, 4-H alumni are more likely to go to college than their same age peers in 88 percent of Michigan counties. Their 4-H experience also prepares them to do well in college: 73 percent of 4-H alumni reported a GPA of 3.0 or higher after their first year of college. While these results alone are commendable, many 4-H members also find their involvement can lead to financial gains as each year, MSU awards $150,000 in 4-H scholarships.
4-H teen leaders will help "steer" youth in the right direction at the Iron County fair this year through the Commodity Carnival game, which walks young people through the steps of bringing steers and other cattle to market. Held Aug. 28-31, this interactive game will help young people understand the economics of agriculture—from balancing the costs of feed, labor, transportation and electricity to preparing for changes in weather and dealing with new regulations and other unforeseen obstacles.
Youth demonstrated their skills to judges at the Michigan 4-H/FFA Meat Judging Contest July 25 with their ability to evaluate and identify cuts of meat. With the assistance of the Michigan Livestock Expo (MLE), youth were able to see the animals at the show and watch them win before viewing and evaluating them in the meat cooler. For the first time, many youth were able not only to see the MLE spotlight animals but to compare and apply the differences in what they saw at a show in a meat judging contest.
At the 2014 Michigan 4-H/ FFA Livestock Judging Contest, July 17 at the MSU Pavilion, a record 140 Michigan youth competed. At the contest, held in conjunction with the Michigan Livestock Expo (MLE), participants judged eight classes of livestock, answered questions and provided oral reasons. Competing gave contestants a chance to enhance their livestock evaluation and selection skills and improve their communication and decision-making skills.
Members of the Michigan 4-H Youth Conservation Council (M4-HYCC) will present an oil spill response plan to Michigan Senate committees on Thursday.
Michigan State University (MSU) Extension staff traded in Spartan green for purple to honor military families at the fourth annual PURPLE UP! Day event on April 15. Attended by more than 40 military families, the event was hosted by Extension’s 4-H Military Partnerships Operation: Military Kids and offered a day of fun, camaraderie and enjoyment for the families of our state’s service-members.
Youth and their families attending the Lansing Lugnuts game on April 26 will enjoy more than a day of baseball. For the third year in a row, the Lansing Lugnuts have teamed up with Michigan State University Extension 4-H Youth Development Programs to host 4-H Science Day atCooley Law School Stadium.
The Consumers Energy Foundation has funded a $50,000 grant to support the Michigan 4-H Foundation’s Kettunen Center waterfront stewardship and recreation project.
GreenStone Farm Credit Services has approved a $50,000 grant to the Michigan 4-H Foundation to support 4-H volunteer recognition and training over the next five years.