Delaware delegates attend National 4-H Congress

Seven Delaware 4-H youth represented Delaware as delegates to the National 4-H Congress over the 2015 Thanksgiving weekend. The 94-year tradition recognizes a career of 4-H leadership and project work. In order to be eligible, 4-H’ers must be 14 to 19 years of age and submit a state 4-H record book that chronicles the scope of their leadership, community service and project work acquired through their years of involvement as a Delaware 4-H member.

The delegates from the First State joined approximately 1,000 other delegates from the U.S. and its territories. Delegates participated in leadership development workshops, and engaged in a hands-on, service-learning experience. Delegates met other 4-H members and exchanged best practices from their states on how 4-H Youth Development is implemented.

“Our 4-H delegates represented Delaware well,” said Jill Jackson, 4-H agent and chaperone for the event. “From being active in group discussions and getting to know teens from all over the United States, this group impressed me with their skills and knowledge.”

Sussex County:
Laurie WrotenLaurie Wroten, 17, is an 8-year member of the Dublin Hill 4-H Club, and member of the Sussex 4-H Junior Council. She is  a junior at Sussex Technical High School. Laurie’s main 4-H projects are Foods & Nutrition, Arts & Crafts, Leadership and Citizenship. Other projects include Sheep, Photography and Horticulture. Wroten is actively involved in several 4-H activities including Junior Leader Weekend, State Teen Conference, State 4-H Camp and the Delaware State Fair. When asked to write about her most memorable 4-H experience, it was hard for Wroten to choose just one. Wroten credits her camp counselors and older 4-H members with helping her to come out of her shell and participate in many activities. She believes 4-H isn’t an assortment of memories, it is a single, collective experience that shapes your life and changes you for the better. Wroten resides in Greenwood with her parents Randy and Robin Wroten.

Shawn MitchellShawn Mitchell, 16, is active in Delaware 4-H through his main 4-H projects of Foods & Nutrition, Sheep, Citizenship, and Leadership. He is also involved in other project areas including Arts & Crafts, Horticulture and Photography. Mitchell is a sophomore at Sussex Technical High School and has been an 8-year member of Dublin Hill 4-H Club where is has held roles as a Junior Leader, Treasurer of Sussex 4-H Junior Council, and also as a 4-H Camp Counselor. Mitchell looks up to his brother and older 4-H’ers for their leadership and camp counselor skills. The 2014-2015 4-H year gave Mitchell many opportunities to improve his leadership skills while he served as Assistant Treasurer for Sussex 4-H Jr. Council, attended State Teen Council meetings and helped plan the State Teen Conference. Mitchell also had the opportunity to serve as a counselor at Fall Overnighter, Younger Member Weekend and 4-H Day Camp. For his hard work and dedication as a leader, Mitchell was  awarded with the “Hands” award for Sussex 4-H as well as the Future Blue Hen Award. Mitchell is enthusiastic about 4-H and cannot wait to see what 4-H has in store for him. Mitchell resides in Greenwood with his parents are David and Melissa Mitchell.

Kent County:
Micaela HarveyMicaela Harvey, 19, is a sophomore at Delaware Technical and Community College, and an 11-year member of the Peach Blossom 4-H Club. She is an active leader for her local club serving in roles of President, Vice President and Reporter, and participates on various committees for club projects and activities throughout her 4-H membership. Harvey is involved in her community and provides many volunteer hours annually. Harvey’s 4-H project work has included Photography, Clothing, Foods, Dairy, Shooting Sports, Citizenship and Leadership. Harvey attended national events including the National 4-H Dairy Conference as well as the National Youth Engineering Challenge. She serves as a Junior Instructor for Shooting Sports and has also been very involved with County and State Judging Contests, Demonstrations and Clothing Showcase events as well as the County Public Speaking Contest. Micaela indicates the Delaware 4-H Program provides her many outstanding experiences and she is hopeful that other youth in Delaware will have the same opportunity and experiences, also. Harvey resides in Frederica and is the daughter of Derek and Robin Harvey.

Mary Beth RobbinsMary Beth Robbins, 17, is a 12-year member of the Peach Blossom 4-H Club and is currently a senior at Lake Forest High School with plans to pursue a career in architecture. During her 4-H membership, Robbins is involved in the 4-H project areas of Foods and Foods Preservation, Swine, Dairy, Clothing, Citizenship, and Leadership as well as others. Robins has served in several leadership roles; a leader of her local club fulfilling  various officer roles including Vice President, Treasurer, as well as on the county level serving as President of the Kent County Junior Council, and serving as a camp counselor for both 4-H day camps and the State Environmental Camp. She attended National 4-H Dairy Conference in 2014 and National 4-H Conference in 2015. She has been an outstanding volunteer in her community providing in excess of 350 hours of service annually. Robbins is active in Public Speaking, Demonstrations, Favorite Foods, and Judging Contests at both the county and state levels, and has been very active in a variety of other 4-H program activities. Robbins enjoys working with younger members with Public Speaking in an effort to relieve the fear they have in speaking, as she knows this is an important life skill to learn and develop. Robbins is the daughter of Kevin and Kim Robbins and she resides in Harrington.

Spring VaseySpring Vasey, 16, is an 11-year member of the Pure Country 4-H Club. She attends Watergirl Academy and is in the 11th grade. She has been active in the 4-H project area of Foods, Clothing, Dairy, Swine, Sheep, Entomology, Citizenship and Leadership. She provides leadership to her club serving in the roles of Vice President and Secretary, and is also active at the county level and currently serves as Vice President of the Kent County Junior Council, as well as the Kent County Representative for the State 4-H Teen Council. In addition, she is an active participant on many county committees each year. Vasey contributes in excess of 200 hours of volunteer service annually and enjoys helping others when she can. Spring has been active in county and State Judging contests, Demonstrations, Favorite Foods, Public Speaking and the Clothing Showcase event. She  enjoyed serving as a counselor for various 4-H camps at the county and state levels and especially enjoys having the opportunity to work with younger members in many facets of the 4-H program. She recently served as a delegate to the National 4-H Dairy Conference. Vasey lives in Lincoln and is the daughter of Dean and Jody Vasey.

New Castle County:
Rose ReynoldsRose Reynolds, 16, is a senior at The Charter School of Wilmington. An active member in the Foods and Nutrition, Health Rocks, Swine, Citizenship and Leadership 4-H project areas, Reynolds participated in the 4-H Health Rocks Youth Training and served as an instructor of this curriculum to other youth in the New Castle County. As a 6-year member of the Meado-Larks 4-H Club, she has served in various officer roles including President and Secretary. Reynolds served as a State 4-H Environmental Camp counselor, participated in the Food Smart Families Program, and assisted with Ag Day at the University of Delaware. She is an active volunteer in her community and enjoys helping others whenever she can. Reynolds resides in Newark and is the daughter of Philip and Lupe Reynolds.

Alexandra SwanAlexandra Swan, 17, is a 9-year member of the Porter Gang 4-H Club. Her 4-H project work includes participation in Swine, Sheep, Clothing and Textiles, Foods, Leadership and Citizenship. A senior at Conrad Schools of Science, Swan embraced the Delaware 4-H Program with her participation in Demonstrations, Clothing Showcase, Judging Contests, Favorite Foods, Exchange Group, State Fair and serving as a Day Camp Counselor. She has provided leadership to her local club while serving as Vice President, Song Leader, and as a member of many club committees. Swan frequently  volunteers in her community and participates in many events and activities during her years as a 4-H member. She really believes 4-H is a family affair and has enjoyed her many experiences as a member of this program and the time she has been able to spend with family members and friends while learning so much. Swan lives in Wilmington and is the daughter of Chris Swan and Marc and Kim Klair.

Jackson said that many of the guest speakers emphasized the importance of youth finding their passion and being authentic. “I believe many of the teens took this to heart and will apply “being YOU” to their goals for the future.”

“This is a capstone event in the 4-H career of our teens,” Jackson added. “They worked hard and have become excellent leaders throughout their years in Delaware 4-H.”

Please visit our photo gallery to see more pictures from the 2015 National 4-H Congress:

2015 Delaware 4-H Congress Delegation