Ramsey County Extension
4-H Youth Development

Ramsey County partners with University of Minnesota Extension to deliver practical education and research residents can use at home, at work and in the community.

4-H Youth Development 

University of Minnesota extension 4-H Youth Development is a hands-on learning program for Minnesota youth. Participants explore a wide range of interests, from agronomy (the science of soil management and crop production) to space exploration and creative arts to outdoor adventures. In 4-H, caring adults support learning and leadership.
Ramsey County 4-H takes a goal-orientated approached when designing their program. The program aims to achieve:
  • Achieve equitable participation across diverse communities.
  • Help youth develop confidence in who they are and how they relate to others.
  • Help youth develop a plan for post-secondary education.
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2022 Program participation

Diversity drives 4-H

Goal: Achieve equitable participation across diverse communities.
Ramsey County 4-H relies on relationships and partnerships out in the community to ensure all youth, regardless of their background, race, national origin, religion, gender, disability, etc. can thrive, belong and to have their voices heard. Meeting young people and families where they are at has made all the difference in 4-H's commitment to equity and diversity.

Inclusive youth leadership

Goal: Help youth develop confidence in who they are and how they relate to others.
Through cross-cultural events, programs, workshops and day camps, 4-H youth are provided with immersive experiences that prepare them to thrive and develop confidence in who they are.
Youth said of their Ramsey County 4-H experiences:
  • 97% learned something new in a 4-H program.
  • 95% used their communication skills and made decisions for themselves.
  • 85% had an opportunity to be a leader.
  • 50% identified needs in their communities and worked to solve them.
Data collected from the 2022 Youth Outcome Survey.

Aspirations for higher education

Goal: Help youth develop a plan for post-secondary education.
4-H provides opportunities for kids and teens to higher education. Campus Immersion is a week-long summer camp experience that supports youth in reimagining what is possible for their future. It helps teens make plans for their future. All youth participants at Campus Immersion in 2021 said they felt more confident in their abilities to reach their educational goals after the program.

Ramsey County 4-H is continuing to add opportunities throughout the year for young people to explore their personal pathways to higher education through afterschool programs, campus visits, and day-long workshops. Many of these opportunities are supported by current college students who share their personal experiences with youth.

Campus Immersion participants at the University of Minnesota.
“Campus Immersion is important to me because I will be graduating soon and I have learned a lot about college. It is important to plan things out and reach out to people for help”.
-4-H Youth participant

Participation has grown in numbers, diversity

Ramsey County 4-H provides many opportunities for youth to engage in hands-on events, workshops, day camps, clubs, after-school programs and more. Using a learn-by-doing model, youth gain skills that they'll use throughout their lives, like problem-solving, decision making, communication and how to respond to the needs of others.
Felicia Lee, a Ramsey County 4-H volunteer, was awarded a Minnesota 4-H Northern Lights award, which recognizes champions of diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility, who create spaces of belonging and empowerment for youth of all identities. Lee teaches Minnesota 4-H youth about American Sign Language and deaf culture.
Many young people and families are connected to Ramsey County 4-H through clubs and community partner sites. All of these are led by adult volunteers. 4-H clubs provide a space for youth to meet regularly to explore interest, develop leadership skills and build relationships with other youth and families in the county.
Community partner sites allow Ramsey County 4-H to meet young people where they are at and facilitate after-school and evening programming focused on the interests of the youth.
Ramsey County 4-H could not exist without adult volunteers and leaders who provide their time, talents, expertise and support for positive youth development in the county.
Learn more about U of M Extension in Ramsey County for more information.