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New internship to help youth discover their ‘spark’ in 4-H

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For anyone who has previously been involved in 4-H, they know all the love and support that goes into the program. To continue to provide opportunities in agriculture, the Kansas 4-H program and the state’s Department of Education are introducing an internship program this summer to support Kansas youth.

Interns will have a unique opportunity to help youth further their learning outside the classroom.

“We’ll be doing lots of STEM and natural resource programming, as well as direct career and college readiness programing,” said Shane Potter, a youth development specialist with the Kansas 4-H program.

Potter said the strong infrastructure of Kansas 4-H will help adults network with professionals and engage with communities during the 12-week summer internship.

The summer program will directly seek to address learning loss as a result of loss of instructional time,” Potter said. “This is not only an opportunity for youth to have more direct education, but also to find what inspires them through 4-H project activities.

“The program has multiple benefits,” he added. “Not only will it help the youth in our communities, but through the adult interns we are building the next generation of potential extension workers so they can explore what it’s like to work in positive youth development and Kansas extension.”

Potter called K-State Research and Extension a “connector” between the community, research, and the university. Potter said adult interns will have the opportunity to help their community and see what it is really like to be an extension educator.

“We’ll be working with schools, after school programs, libraries and a lot of community partners to reach a large diverse group of youth,” Potter said. The ideal candidate is driven, wants to help their community, and further explore a career in extension education to apply for the internships.

“Through increased youth and adult partnerships the internship program will provide, we are helping youth identify goals and develop an open mind and try new things, which can help youth achieve greater academic success and employability,” Potter said.

More information about the Kansas 4-H summer internship program can be found online, or at your local extension office.

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