Terril D. Faul, Merrill, Thomas A., Morgan, Johnny W. | 4/19/2005 10:29:26 PM
News Release Distributed 5/05/04
The LSU AgCenter recently hosted a delegation of National 4-H Leadership Trust Committee members, who held their quarterly meeting in New Orleans and learned more about Louisiana’s youth development programs during the visit.
The committee is a diverse group of adults and young people that helps to guide the nationwide 4-H youth development program.
"This is actually a group that comes together to give one voice to the 4-H organization," said Terril Faul, head of the LSU AgCenter’s 4-H youth development program.
The group addresses issues ranging from the 4-H name and emblem to membership concerns to the 4-H projects that are or could be offered.
"This group allows us to bring our minds together and give one voice to the issues of the organization," Faul said.
4-H is the youth development and outreach program of the nation’s Land-Grant University System. It is operated in Louisiana by the LSU AgCenter in partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National 4-H Council.
The 4-H Leadership Trust holds quarterly meetings around the country, as well as monthly teleconferences, to help provide uniform directions for the nationwide program.
"Sometimes concerns and recommendations from the local level move up to the state level and on to the trust committee to be addressed from the national level," Faul said. "Other times, the trust committee has its own issues that it passes down to the state and local levels and asks for feedback."
The trust committee is comprised of staff from USDA and the National 4-H Council, state 4-H leaders, 4-H volunteers and 4-H members from around the country.
Louisiana is represented on the committee by Andrew Dunckelman, a former 4-H’er from Terrebonne Parish. Dunkelman is executive director of the National 4-H Youth Directions Council.
That council consists of a representative from each state, and its purpose is to increase the voice of youth throughout the 4-H system.
"I’ve been involved with 4-H for about nine years," Dunkelman said, joking that he had little choice since his mom was a 4-H’er. "It has been very rewarding for me."
In addition to that service, Dunkelman is a freshman at LSU, where he’s majoring in political science. He said his advice to young people is to explore as many different things as possible.
"When I was in 4-H, I heard about the National Beef Ambassador program. I live in the city and the only thing that I knew about beef was that I liked to eat it," Dunkelman said. "I explored it and got to be a national beef ambassador and had a chance to travel all over the country. I’d just tell them you never know where any opportunity can take you."
Faul said the purpose of hosting the group is to let trust committee members know about the programs that are being undertaken in the states they visit.
The Louisiana 4-H state staff from Baton Rouge and local 4-H agents and administrators from Jefferson, Orleans, Plaquemines and St. Bernard parishes tried to do just that.
The trust committee toured a park that was refurbished by St. Bernard Parish 4-H Junior Leaders, heard about programs targeted to urban 4-H Club members in Orleans, learned more about some Louisiana 4-H members involvement in coastal restoration efforts and were told about community service and volunteer development initiatives, as well as other aspects of the Louisiana 4-H program.