Local 4-Hers visit S.C.’s state capital | News | The Press and Standard

by | April 15, 2017 5:00 pm

Last Updated: April 13, 2017 at 9:37 am

More than 250 4-Hers, their family members and Clemson Cooperative Extension agents gathered at the South Carolina Statehouse to share the impact the youth development organization has on their lives.

While surround by a crowd adorned in 4-H green jackets and four-leaf clovers, the South Carolina House of Representatives voted to recognize March 14 as 4-H Day at the Capitol.

Gennefer Sweatman, an 18-year-old 4-H member from Colleton County, told those present that she appreciated the opportunity to speak to state leaders about issues that are important to her, like legislation related to state scholarships for education. Sweatman plans to attend technical college this fall and hopes to receive a bachelor’s degree in animal science or agricultural education.

“I hope our state leaders know that 4-H is truly an impactful organization,” said Sweatman, who has been involved with 4-H since she was 6. “It has an impact on so many kids’ lives throughout South Carolina, teaching them life skills, organization, time management. 4-H has really taught me a great deal of responsibility. It’s a program I hope they will always support.”

“One big misconception about 4-H is that people think it is just about livestock and farming, but 4-H is one of the most diverse youth-development organizations today. There is a club for everyone. I would like everyone to understand how many opportunities are available through 4-H,” said 17-year-old Wilson Pressley of Spartanburg County.

South Carolina 4-H, the youth development arm of the Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service, visits the state capital each year to expose 4-H members to the legislative process and offer an opportunity many of them have never had — the chance to tour the capitol and meet with government officials.

Attendees met with state lawmakers from their districts throughout the afternoon and attended committee hearings. Many local 4-H clubs were officially recognized in the capital galleries during meetings of the S.C. General Assembly.

More than 92,000 young people in South Carolina participated in 4-H programing last year. Programs cover animal science, agriculture, science, engineering, natural resources, healthy living, leadership and much more.

To learn more about the South Carolina 4-H programs contact Dawn Stuckey, Colleton County 4-H Agent, by email at dstucke@clemson.edu or phone at 843-549-2595, Ext. 128.

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