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June 2021 4-H Alumni News
 Tina Veal

Greetings from Illinois 4-H! 
4-H has remained a vital and active resource for youth! 4-H has provided opportunities for youth and adults to engage in different ways this past year. As we enter a new chapter with COVID 19, we will begin to see normal activities that we all love begin to resume while taking precautions for the safety of our youth and volunteers. We have learned to adapt and try new things. We will continue to be open to change and testing new technology to reach youth in various ways, including in-person, hybrid, or online.  

4-H is at the helm of being innovative and launching programs for youth and adults to bring us back together again! As we look forward to county and state fairs, while they may look a bit different, we are excited to be reunited with our 4-H family!  

Enjoy learning about some new initiatives with Illinois 4-H and the ways we have adapted during these early summer months. Thank you for your support as 4-H Alumni to step up and assist us as we have sought input and guidance along the way! We look forward to continuing to "make the best better" in the year ahead! 

Tina Veal
4-H Alumni & Constituent Engagement Manager
Illinois 4-H


4-H Seniors Celebrated with Special Tassels   
Graduating 4-H Seniors received a 4-H graduation tassel as a memorabilia item to remember their time in the Illinois 4-H program as a special gift from Illinois 4-H, the Illinois 4-H Alumni Association, and the Illinois 4-H Foundation. We are so excited to celebrate these young men and women who have excelled in their 4-H work, managed, and overcome challenges, all while giving back to their families and communities. While some youth may have another eligibility of 4-H age, we invite them to stay connected and join the Illinois 4-H Alumni Association with a FREE membership today!


Thank you for Volunteering!
Thank you for offering your fair judging assistance for both county and state fairs.  We appreciate your willingness to assist the local and state 4-H programs as we prepare for youth judging opportunities.  

For summer 2021, we are preparing for the return to in-person events based on local conditions at that time and in conjunction with current IDPH guidelines. As the University of Illinois Extension's youth development program, our events must abide by the campus and the Illinois Department of Public Health guidelines.

Volunteer names have been shared with local and state 4-H youth development staff.  As volunteers are needed, they will reach out to you for availability.  

Thank you for helping us to "make the best better"!

Illinois 4-H Recognizes Outstanding Youth
Illinois 4-H is excited to continue to honor this year's scholarship and award recipients at the virtual Celebration of Excellence held in April 2021! With the unique challenges of this year, these award recipients overcame many challenges on the way to these achievements, demonstrating the 4-H spirit of service, dedication, and resilience throughout the past year. These awards celebrate hard work and goals being attained!  View the awards ceremony video, or view the celebration awards booklet. 

Barred Owl Nestwatch
At more than 30 sites across the state, 4-H members are currently studying the preferences of different styles of nest boxes tailored toward Barred Owls, with youth-serving as Citizen Scientists by observing, collecting, and recording data about the environment.  This data will help advance environmental stewardship and care of the world’s natural resources.


4-H Launches New Family Camp Model
Enjoy your own family cabin for a three-day, two-night retreat right in central Illinois. While at camp, families can swim, boat, shoot archery, climb the rock wall, make arts & crafts, fish, take hayrack rides, participate in S.T.E.M. activities, hike, make s’mores over a campfire, and so much more!

Ready to camp?  Sign up for the July 9-11 session here: https://go.illinois.edu/4Hcamp21 ONLY ONE CABIN LEFT!


Legislative Connection Goes Virtual
4-H Legislative Connection provides Illinois 4-H teens a unique opportunity to promote the Illinois 4-H program to elected state officials and learn about the state legislative process. Teens shared their personal 4-H stories with legislators and discussed the benefits of 4-H and local University of Illinois Extension programming in their home communities in a virtual setting this spring!


Youth fishing gets kids off screens, into the great outdoors
The new Bass Fishing SPIN Club curriculum, or Special Interest club, takes place over six weeks and will focus on aquatic ecosystems, fish biology, and STEM activities relating to fishing gear. Kids learn and take part in the sport, but they also gain various skills and knowledge as they master fishing.


4-H Alumni Profile:  Jan Cregier

Name: Jan Creiger
4-H County:  McLean County
Years in 4-H:  10 years
Post Secondary Education:  B.S. Interior Design, Illinois State University 
Career: Owner, Interior Design

Favorite 4-H Projects:  Sewing, anything craft related, interior design

How did 4-H contribute to your leadership skills today?
Working and communicating with others was learned early on in my 4-H years. During my Sr year of HD, I started a new 4-H club in my county that specialized in sewing and modeling. I continued as the club leader until after graduating college and getting married, until my husband and I moved to the Chicago suburbs. To this day, 40 plus years later, the Stylistics is still an active 4-H club. This great experience at 17 years old taught me so much about great leadership. Years later I was proud to serve as the national board President of the Interior Design Society.

Did 4-H instill a career path for you?

What advice do you have for someone interested in your career path?
Communication and listening skills are just as important in my field than the design process. Meeting with clients the first time and gathering their wants and likes, helps deliver a custom designed home exclusively for them.

What advice would you give a current 4-H member?
Try new things! Whether it be new projects, activities or club officers or county boards. You will never know the possibilities unless you step out of your comfort zone and try.

Why should young people join 4-H today?
Life skills, lifetime friendships and possibly some of the best memories from childhood.

To see more 4-H alumni profiles, visit our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/il4halumni
To submit your 4-H alumni profile, visit: https://go.illinois.edu/4halumnistory


Illinois 4-H Alumni Association Recognized with National Award
Congratulations to the Illinois 4-H Alumni Association for being recognized by the National Agricultural Alumni & Development Association (NAADA), which is comprised of land grant agricultural institutions across the nation, for being recognized as a 2nd Place national winner for the Illinois 4-H Alumni Association Facebook group in the social media category.

The feedback included that the Illinois 4-H Alumni Facebook group grew substantially to assist with 4-H alumni identification, and the membership was very engaged. Also noted was that the Facebook group is well managed, has good graphic design, and shows measurable success.

Congratulations and thank you to our 4-H alumni family for engaging online with us! 



We hope you stay connected to us!

We hope you will engage with us online and help create a network of 4-H alumni.


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