Leadership skills, civic engagement boosted through 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus

BROOKINGS — Forty-one South Dakota 4-H youth learned about political processes in the vibrant, living classroom of the nation’s capital, Washington D.C., as part of Citizenship Washington Focus, an intensive 4-H civic engagement program for high-school youth held at the National 4-H Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.
“Citizenship Washington Focus opened my mind to possibilities and what makes 4-H and being an American great,” said Andrew Rommann, a 4-H member from Minnehaha County.
For more than 50 years, Citizenship Washington Focus has brought 4-H members from across the nation to Washington D.C. During the conference, youth participate in civic workshops, committees and field trips.
“Citizenship Washington Focus not only strengthens young people’s understanding of the government’s civic process, but it also boosts their leadership skills, communication skills and overall confidence,” said Amanda Stade, SDSU Extension State 4-H Events Management Coordinator.
Youth who attended the 2018 conference were selected through an application process.
During the week-long conference, teens get a behind-the-scenes look at the nation’s capital while meeting with members of Congress to learn more about how their government works.
At the end of the program, youth draft step-by-step action plans to address important issues in their communities.
“CWF is a great opportunity for young people to come together, talk about the problems they see in their communities, and identify solutions to make their communities stronger,” said Jennifer Sirangelo, president & CEO, National 4-H Council. “The experiences these young people gain during CWF gives them the tools and confidence to grow and thrive as leaders.”
The South Dakota 4-H members who attended included:

Casondra Gerlach, Aurora County; Nathan Gauer, Beadle County; Frank Huber, Bennett County; Naomi Thayer, Bennett County; Jensina Davis, Brookings County; Regan Heine, Clay County; Nicole Hauck, Clay County; Callie Flemming, Codington County; Callie Mueller, Codington County; Bailey Schlotterbeck, Codington County; Talitha “Tali,” Jones, Custer County; Hannah Miller, Davison County; KendraJohnson, Day County; Riley Johnson, Day County; Collin Amundson, Day County; Curt Spilde, Deuel County; Sydney Miller, Fall River County; Kristopher Wagner Tubbs, Fall River County; AlyssaMeyer, Faulk County; Noah Mursu, Grant County; Kelcey Butler, Haakon County; Julie Fischer, Hamlin County; Jacob Prouty, Hamlin County; Mickeala Boyd, Hamlin County; Brandon Cordell, Harding County; Reese Jensen, Harding County; Morgan Buck, Harding County; Jacob Birkeland, Jones County; Lyndey Dean, Lawrence County; Alex Ruud, Lincoln County; Nicole Nelson, Lincoln County; Nathan Andersen, Meade County; Brady Buchholz, Meade County; Elisabeth Kluin, Minnehaha County; Andrew Rommann, Minnehaha County; Clare Klein, Moody County; Abby Moon, Pennington County; Macy Nelson, Roberts County; Grant Hamilton, Spink County; Amber Donovan, Ziebach County and Ariana Schumacher, Hughes County.
To learn more about how you can become involved in Citizenship Washington Focus 2019, contact your local SDSU Extension 4-H Youth Program Advisor. A complete listing can be found at iGrow.org under the Field Staff icon.

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