By Rachel Kendrick, 2015-16 Virginia 4-H state cabinet president
I bring you greetings from the Virginia State Cabinet. I am Rachel Kendrick, the newly elected president of the 4-H Cabinet. Nine years ago, my mom registered me to participate in 4-H camp in Jamestown, Virginia. It was my first time away from home, and the experience was life-changing for me. Every moment was exciting, and I hated to leave. 4-H camp left an imprint on my heart, and I knew that 4-H would forever be a part of my life.
I’ve been a teen counselor for the past five years. I became very involved with my local Extension office and teen club. I serve as a youth member on our local Extension Leadership Council and started attending State 4-H Congress as soon as I was eligible. For two years, I observed the congressional process as a delegate, learning about the process before running for ambassador and finally president. Some might say I bleed green because 4-H is in my blood. Becoming involved with 4-H is a little-known opportunity that is available to kids everywhere. As cabinet president, my objective is that my cabinet members and I spend quality time putting a face to all that 4-H has to offer in our communities. We are committed to exposing as many people as possible to the benefits that mentoring and supporting and participating in our local community with 4-H can provide. We are planning events throughout the year to foster better visibility and involvement. 4-H is available to everyone, and I am proof of that. I am so thankful to my mentors — Bethany Eigel, 4-H agent, and Tonya Price, 4-H youth development specialist — who saw something in me that I never knew existed. The positive encouragement they offer is available to everyone. 4-H is so much more than what meets the eye. It is community involvement; it is service, leadership, and, most importantly, 4-H is opportunity. The possibilities are endless when you are involved in 4-H.
I look forward to meeting you in the coming year.
Maker Movement and Virginia 4-H: As I researched the “Maker Movement” across America and explored the results of a first 4-H grant cycle in four states, I looked for relevant connections to 4-H and have concluded that this form of unchartered creative thinking and doing is definitely a step into the future of Virginia 4-H, if the field finds it as exciting as I did! It is based on the core of what we already do so well in 4-H — hands-on minds on learning — yet stretches us to find common ground with a culture of creative tinkerers in authentic environments who find solutions to relevant needs and problems. What a blast for kids who want clothing that lights up with different dance movements or kids who want to play music through celery sticks and other vegetables or those who want to build their own solar model car beyond the kit. Think of the camps and clubs and projects, oh my!
I’ll offer a few points of reference and my support/encouragement to explore and include the Maker way of thinking and doing as a part of your 4-H programming. Maker activities are effective ways to thread STEM across all programming areas. They can also serve as exciting “hooks” into deeper content learning in any program area. Make is a relevant, engaging way to capture the interest of kids and enlist the support of community “do-it-yourselfer” volunteers. It also provides a new lens through which to look for volunteers. Please Kathleen Jamison if you want to learn more about Make. I will send a follow-up email to the system with attachments and weblinks.
Virginia 4-H Makers will be one topic of discussion at a STEM committee meeting being scheduled during the 2013 Symposium on Friday. Also, a Master Track session to explore this topic with Dr. Phyllis Newbill, professor from the Institute of Creativity, Arts, and Technology at Virginia Tech, is offered at the symposium. Connect with those who attend for more information. Another source of information is Rita Schalk (Hanover County) who was involved in a Maker Grant that offered collaboration among K-12, 4-H, and an already established mentoring grant in her locality. Additional funding is being sought for interested agents in a variety of 4-H settings.
If Maker piques your interest, start searching Maker Movement, Make Magazine, DYI Movement, 4-H Makers, and get excited! Sift through ideas and activities to choose the ones that fit into your intntionally planned program and integrate them as needed to sprinkle some excitement. Look for my email that provides some 4-H connections and a short lit review from a colleague in CA. I love this stuff!
WEI brochure 2013-2014
Virginia 4-H in partnership with the DEQ have been awarded a grant from NOAA to train professionals to be Certified Watershed Educators. This grant will cover the fees and travel expenses for training for up to 10 Agents/4-H Center Program Directors and will also provide funding to conduct a meaningful watershed experience in your locality when the training is completed. Many of you are already doing good work in watershed education and this would be a perfect fit for you. I am sending this to both ANR and 4-H Agents as it may be appropriate for either. Selected participants will commit to completing 5 workshops which will be conducted over the next year and will take place in the James River Watershed area. The first workshop will be on October 25th at Camp Albemarle in Albemarle County. A brochure is attached which explains the institute in more detail with workshop dates and locations for your information. If you are applying to be selected for funding, please do NOT register directly by using the registration link on the brochure. In order to know who will receive support I will need to submit a separate list to DEQ of the ones participating. To apply for funding please complete the survey link below by Friday, October 4th. You will be notified by Wednesday, October 9th of your acceptance status.
Robert F. Kube, Board President of the Northern Virginia 4-H Educational Center presented Win Iden with the President’s Award for Excellence at the Annual Board Meeting and Banquet in April.
The President’s award was started by John Mayhugh several years ago when he was Board President to acknowledge outstanding service by a 4-H Center Employee. The individual needs to show initiative and interest in the 4-H Center and a willingness to go the second mile of the way when needed. The individual recognized needs to be cooperative, have good work habits, have a good attitude and be willing to work with all 4-H Center departments.
Win camped at this 4-H Center as a 4-H’er and also served as a teen leader for Warren County 4-H camp. After graduation from college, he worked in the Warren County Extension Office as an Extension Technician from 2001 – 2005. Win served as Program Director at the Southwest 4-H Educational Center in Abingdon from 2005 – 2010. He returned to the Northern Virginia 4-H Educational Center to serve as Program Director in 2010.
Win with his mentor Sam Fisher at the Awards Banquet
Please pass this information onto adults (and teens ages 16 and older) interested in being certified as 4-H Shooting Education Instructors.
The next Virginia 4-H Instructor Certification will be held the weekend on March 22 – 24, 2013 at Airfield 4-H Center. The following disciplines will be offered:
– Teaching the Game of Sporting Clays
A Fact Sheet, schedule and application are posted on the VA 4-H Shooting Education Website under “Events.”
Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
The recorded Webinar for 4-H 201 is now available on the 4-H Military Partnership website at http://www.4-hmilitarypartnerships.org. Click on Professional Development in the left column, then click on Recorded Webinars. It is the first Webinar listed – Introducing 4-H 201.
The 4-H 201 curriculum and power point slides are also available on the same website. Click on Curriculum Resources and then on 4-H 201.
New 4-H Agent Training will take place March 5-7, 2013 at the W.E. Skelton 4-H Center in Wirtz, VA. Training will start at 10 a.m. on March 5 and will conclude by 11:30 a.m. on March 7.
Please contact me with any questions you may have.