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By: Lisa Pollock,
Grady County 4-H Agent and
CEC/4-H & Ag Agent
During the weekend of June 4th-5th, six Grady County 4-H’ers attended Junior/Senior Project Achievement at Rock Eagle 4-H Center. For those of you unfamiliar with Project Achievement, this is 4-H’s public speaking competition and in our opinion 4-H’s most valuable program for a young person to participate in. The “life skills” a 4-H’er will learn by participating in project achievement will benefit them for the rest of their lives.
Once a 4-H’er decides to compete in project achievement, they start by selecting a project area that interests them, research their topic and then put together an eight to twelve-minute presentation. Supporting materials are then created and finally, they learn how to correctly present their presentation to the judges. Project areas can range from dairy foods to animal projects to performing arts.
Presenting a demonstration is only part of what a 4-H’er has to do to compete in project achievement; they also have to complete a portfolio of their 4-H activities. The portfolio is like their resume of all the 4-H activities they participated in and project work they have done for the past year. For the Junior’s final score, the demonstration counts 60% and the portfolio counts 40% of their total score. For the Seniors, it is a 50/50 split. So, as you can see, the participants need to be as active as possible the entire year.
In the junior competition of 7th & 8th graders, we had three competitors. They were Talisa Dean, Devon Rehberg, and Daniel Sheffield. Talisa placed 1st in the Performing Arts – General project, Devon placed first in the Safety project, and Daniel placed first in the Sports – Individual project.
The senior-level competition of 9th-12th graders is a lot stiffer as the 4-H’ers are competing for a trip to State 4-H Congress and a chance at becoming a “Master” 4-H’er. This year, we had three seniors who competed in Senior Project Achievement. They were Jae Long, Malik Monds, and John Sodrel. Jae placed 3rd in the Fruits, Vegetables, & Nuts project, Malik placed 1st in the Housing project, and John placed 1st in Plant & Soil Science. By placing first in their project, Malik and John earned a trip to State 4-H Congress. They will travel to Atlanta later in July to compete on the state level for a trip to National 4-H Congress.
Congratulations go out to each of the 4-H’ers who competed. It takes a lot of courage and self-discipline to get up in front of a group of people and present a speech or perform. Each of you did an outstanding job and the Grady County 4-H Staff was certainly proud to have you representing the Grady County 4-H Program.
The Grady County 4-H Staff would also like to say a special “Thank You” to Mrs. Yvonne Childs for helping our 4-H’ers prepare for DPA. We would also like to thank Mrs. Jill Long, Mrs. Lynda Sodrel, and Teen Leader Lizzy Thompson for volunteering to attend DPA and assisting with the weekend activities.
If you would like more information on 4-H’s Public Speaking Program, please feel free to give me a call at 377-1312 or stop by the 4-H Office in the Agri-Center.