Learn more about 4-H news and updates for your county!
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 Michaela Castens, 4-H EPC
 

We've made it to February! There are a lot of exciting upcoming opportunities for our 4-H families. Check in on the Extension events page, and be sure to connect with us by following us on Facebook. Information is also updated on the 4-H website on a regular basis. If you have questions, feel free to reach out to me at (618) 443-4364 or mes379@illinois.edu.

Michaela Stewart- Castens, Randolph County 4-H Extension Program Coordinator

 
 
 
 
piggy bank 
 

The Randolph County Foundation is offering $500 scholarship opportunities for Randolph County 4-H members. Download and complete a copy of the application at go.illinois.edu/randolphscholarships. Scholarship applications must be post-marked by March 1, and recipients will be announced in May.  

 
 
 
 
 artwork
 

Randolph County 4-H, are you ready to get creative? Sharpen your colored pencil, break out your markers, or fire up your computers! We are looking for a unique and imaginative art piece to use for the cover of our 4-H Handbook. The art can be hand-drawn or digitally created. Please send a copy of your picture to Michaela before February 11.

 
 
 
 
cows eating 
 

The 2021 4-H and FFA Livestock and Dairy Judging Contest will be held virtually on March 3 – 4, 2021. All individuals MUST register to receive a link and access code, which will be emailed to participants.

Register Today


The virtual contest link will open on March 3 at 8 a.m. and close on March 4 at 5 p.m. Youth will be judged in the following categories:

  • Junior 4-H Livestock Judging & Question Contest (Non-Reasons) (open to third-grade through eighth-grade students)
  • Senior 4-H Livestock Judging & Question Contest (Non-Reasons) (open to high school students)
  • FFA Livestock Judging & Question Contest (Non-Reasons)
  • Junior 4-H Dairy Judging (Non – Reasons) (open to third-grade through eighth-grade students)
  • Senior 4-H Dairy Judging (Non-Reasons) (open to high school students)
  • FFA Dairy Judging (Non-Reasons)

All contests are judged individually. 4-H and FFA Team names must be emailed to Rhonda Shubert at by Feb. 26.  Teams will consist of four, scoring three.  For questions, email Rhonda or contact her at (618) 317-7302.

 
 
 
 
 horse
 

Save the date for our Regional Hippology & Horse Bowl Contests on March 13, 2021! The program will be held virtually. Only youth who qualify in a regional contest may compete in the state horse bowl and hippology contests.

Contest rules and additional information will be made available on the 4-H hippology and horse bowl websites. Registration is due by Feb. 18.

 
 
 
 
graduation cap 
 

The 2021 IAA Foundation Scholarships are now open! This great lineup includes 78 scholarships totaling $124,000 in tuition support. Application link and all supporting materials including eligibility can be found on the IAA Foundation website and applications can be submitted through Feb. 15!

 
 
 
 
 Student writing
 

4-H members who are Illinois High School Seniors with agricultural career aspirations planning to enroll in an agriculture-based college curriculum next fall can apply for one of 30 $2,000 scholarships. Two under-represented minority student applicants will be recognized as Diversity in Agriculture Scholars. Applications are due March 12. Learn more or apply at Farm Credit Illinois.

 
 
 
 
 
 

Register to participate in the 4-H Volunteer Café Conversations Illinois 4-H recently launched a platform for 4-H Volunteers from across Illinois to meet virtually and discuss topics of interest and share both ideas and challenges. Volunteers will gain access to tools and techniques to support their volunteer efforts, strengthening 4-H club and member learning experiences. 4-H will address two topics during each Café Conversation, so come with your ideas, questions, and since this is a Café Conversation, feel free to bring a snack as well! Upcoming conversation dates:

  • Register for Thursday, February 18, 2021; 7 PM
  • Register for Thursday, May 20, 2021; 7 PM

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

During this time, when 4-H members find themselves experiencing restrictions associated with gathering with friends and club members face-to-face, having the opportunity to be part of an engaging and fun virtual meeting might be the highlight of their week! Register now for upcoming Volunteer Training – Leading in a Virtual World! The training will be held Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. CT. 

This webinar will help you become comfortable interacting in a virtual meeting format and  support you as you include every part of the club meeting virtually. You can conduct club business; engage members in group decision-making; create positive learning experiences, and give members an opportunity to laugh and have fun together! Be sure to encourage your 4-H members in leadership roles to participate as well. 

 
 
 
 
standing in corn field with iPad 
 

At the National 4-H Youth Summit on Agri-Science, high school students develop the skills and knowledge needed for the challenges facing agriculture, food security, and sustainability. Students will work with each other and experts in the agricultural community in this collaborative, hands-on educational setting. The summit will be an opportunity to meet like-minded peers from across the country, learn more about career opportunities, and network with professionals in the field of Agri-science. As a cornerstone of the experience, participants are challenged to identify and develop action plans that address agriculture issues in their community. For more information, click here or contact Mark Becker

 
 
 
 
 speaking for 4-H text
 

We’re looking for 4-H members interested in spreading the great news about 4-H. Members 14 years of age or older can join the Speaking for Illinois 4-H team. There will be a virtual training offered on Saturday, March 6.

This virtual training, provided by the Illinois State 4-H Youth Leadership Team, gives you the chance to explore your own 4-H history and why you are involved, put that story into words, and learn the best ways to approach donors, civic groups, elected officials, and others to talk about 4-H. Learn why 4-H believes in Positive Youth Development and how we emphasize the essential elements of Belonging, Independence, Generosity, and Mastery. All of this – and more – is a part of Speaking for Illinois 4-H! Once you are trained, you will receive an invitation to participate in our Legislative Connection events. Those interested should register by March 5.

 
 
 
 
community grant 
 

It is time to roll up your sleeves and make a positive impact in your community! Farm Credit Illinois is inviting 4-H Clubs to apply for a $500 grant to assist club members in being positive change agents by making their local communities better places to live. Eligible clubs are those located in one of the counties served by Farm Credit Services Illinois in Extension units in southern & central Illinois. Those interested should apply no later than March 12.

 
 
 
 
 international 4-H
 

Host a Japanese youth this summer through 4-H International! Expand your family’s cultural understanding, learn about new foods and customs, and possibly learn a new language all while sharing your own. Your children will build lifelong friendships and will gain new perspectives on their own country too! Hosting takes place from mid-July through mid-August with a recruitment period of January through May or until all placements are made.  Hosting requirements include:

  • Families hosting a youth must have a child the same gender and approximate age (12-18) as the incoming youth.
  • Youth must have a separate bed; a separate room is not required.
  • Host family selection is dependent on the completion of an application and screening process, as well as student availability and personality compatibility.

Apply Today at: https://www.states4hexchange.org/apply/host/

 
 
 
 
 
 

If you are curious as to what college or career is right for you, plan now to join us and discover new possibilities at the Illini Summer Academies (ISA)! At ISA you can expect a fun and exploratory experience featuring a virtual academy session and a variety of new workshops and fun virtual activities. For questions, contact Illinois 4-H.

 

 
 
 
 
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