4-H’ers make splash at Southwest District Project Achievement

Published 5:24 pm Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Decatur County 4-H’ers distinguished themselves at Rock Eagle on February 3-5, 2017. Nine  students from Decatur County joined with over 500 students to participate in the Southwest District Project Achievement competition in Eatonton. Junior/Senior Project Achievement is a challenging two-part competition, in which participants practice mastery in their field of interest through portfolio and presentation.

Thomas Neal represented Decatur County 4-H in the Junior division for 7th and 8th grade 4-H’ers. Senior (9th-12th grade) participants included Savannah Padgett, Branch Austinson, Taylor Barber, Katelyn Ward, Journey Austinson, Blake Daughtry, Stacy Vulgamore and Miller Hayes.

The 4-H Portfolio is an extensive written record that encompasses a complete calendar year of involvement, leadership, and service in a selected project area. This report includes a cover letter, a two-page information sheet highlighting their work and activities, and a two-page list of supporting material, including photos and other related information.

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The portfolio composes 40-50 percent of the student’s total score in the competition.

Also, by preparing a portfolio, young people learn the skills needed to complete college applications, scholarship applications, professional resumes and proposals.

Additionally, 4-H’ers participating in Project Achievement investigate a topic and prepare a demonstration or “illustrated talk” with posters and props. Junior demonstrations are 10 minutes, and Senior demonstrations are 12 minutes. Scores are based on memorization, fluidity, presentation skills, and knowledge of the subject when questioned by the judges.

In the Junior division Thomas Neal won 1st place honors in the Beef project. Among the Senior competitors (high school division), Savannah Padgett received first place honors in Fashion Revue. Branch Austinson took second place in the Fruits, Vegetables and Nuts project. Taylor Barber placed second in the Beef project and Stacy Vulgamore was second in History. Katelyn Ward competed in the Plant and Soil Sciences project and earned 1st place honors.

Miller Hayes placed first in Sheep and Meat Goats.

Blake Daughtry competed in Outdoor Recreation and received second place and Journey Austinson placed 1st in the Food Safety and Preservation project. Savannah Padgett, Journey Austinson, Blake Daughtry, Katelyn Ward and Miller Hayes will advance to the next level of competition at the Georgia 4-H State Congress in Atlanta this summer.

4-H Project Achievement, an annual competition for 4th – 12th grade students, is a cornerstone in the Georgia 4-H program. From the first Boys Corn Club sharing their crop to today’s presentation and portfolios on hundreds of projects, Project Achievement serves to showcase 4-H’ers work and success. The diligence and dedication of Decatur County’s 4-H students supports the 4-H motto, “Making the Best Better”.

For more information about 4-H activities please contact the UGA Decatur County Extension Office at 248-3033.