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Goats, origami, virtual reality and more at the State Fair!

Tags: 4-H,   CCE,   NY State,   NY State Fair,   Rachel Dunifon,   youth,   youth development,  

composite image of girl holding goat, girl making origami, girl wearing award ribbons holding chicken, woman wearing virtual reality headset

The goat exhibition, origami activity, chicken competition, and Rachel Dunifon wearing a virtual reality headset

By Sheri Hall for the BCTR

Hundreds of 4-H youth from across New York State showed off their skills and accomplishments at the State Fair this year in everything from a fashion review to cooking competitions, a robotics challenge and the traditional animal exhibitions.

Human Ecology Interim Dean Rachel Dunifon toured the 4-H Youth Building, enjoying the embryology exhibit and testing out virtual reality glasses. She was joined by College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Ronald P. Lynch Dean Kathryn Boor and Cornell Cooperative Extension Director Chris Watkins.

two young women speaking to a man and woman in a 4-H booth

Chris Watkins and Rachel Dunifon touring 4-H booths at the State Fair

“I loved the chance to tour the 4-H building, talking with my incredibly impressive tour guide, holding baby chicks, and getting a sense of the breadth and impact of the 4-H program across the state,” Dunifon said.

Also notable this year, New York State 4-H and Future Farmers of America, or FFA, hosted a special day to highlight their organizations. The day included presentations by youth focused on Science Technology Engineering and Math, or STEM, animal science and healthy living and an ice cream social.

This year, New York State 4-H added an “Activity Zone” to the youth building, which provided fairgoers a chance to participate in activities related to 4-H values, including robotics demonstrations, a reading nook and a project to make quilts for children who are seriously ill or experience trauma.

4-H Youth participated in every division of animal science exhibition including horses, dairy and beef cattle, goats, sheep, pigs, rabbits, guinea pigs, dogs and poultry.

4-H partners from the Cornell campus participated by providing demonstrations including Planetary Imaging, the Paleontological Research Institute and Cornell iGem, a team of undergraduates that use find biological solutions to important problems.

“We are working closely with our local Cornell Cooperative Extension offices to ensure that he State Fair is a showcase for the diversity of New York’s 4-H program, puts young people out in front and provides them with a valuable learning experience,” said Andy Turner, director of 4-H in New York State. “Our Cornell partners have been right behind us in this effort, helping create pathways for youth to explore, experiment and step onto STEM pathways that can lead to college and career opportunities down the road.”

(0) Comments.  |   Tags: 4-H    CCE    NY State    NY State Fair    Rachel Dunifon    youth    youth development   

4-H at the 2015 New York State Fair

Tags: 4-H,   media mention,   NY State,   NY State Fair,  

Cornell President Elizabeth Garrett visits with 4-H members at the State Fair.

Cornell President Elizabeth Garrett visits with 4-H members at the State Fair.

As always, the 4-H building at the New York State Fair was lively with activity and VIP guests. The ever-popular Dairy Cattle Birthing Center featured many 4-H youth with their cows. Visitors could view a domed incubator with hatching chicks. Another favorite annual event, the Robotics Challenge had teams competing for prizes. For the Junior Iron Chef competition, youth took Fair foods with little nutritional value and added healthy ingredients to create a new, tasty, and nutritional dish. A Fashion Revue featured runway models working 4-H youth designer creations.

Cornell President Elizabeth Garrett stopped by the 4-H Youth Building and was interviewed by 4-H members, saying,

[This is] a great opportunity to learn leadership skills, gain confidence and the ability to speak in public, and to think on your feet. It’s really great to see how many women are involved in 4-H – along with some terrific young men. My sister was involved in 4-H … and it seems to me it’s really changing from how I knew it 30 or more years ago. It has many more women involved than when I remember – and I’d like to see that continue.

College of Human Ecology Dean Alan Mathios also dropped in and was interviewed by 4-H youth.

Nearby the Fashion Revue Cornell researchers offered a glimpse of fashions and fabrics of the future including clothing that illuminates in sync with sound. Juan Hinestroza, associate professor of fiber science and apparel design, showcased work from his Textiles Nanotechnology Laboratory, including functional cotton that repels bacteria, eliminates noxious gases, and conducts electricity.

4-H Media Corps interview with Juan Hinestroza:

The New York State 4-H Facebook page has many more videos from the Fair, including the Fashion Revue, Robotics Challenge, and Dog Show.

Garrett savors New York State Fair's Cornell connections - Cornell Chronicle
Future fabrics dazzle at New York State Fair - Cornell Chronicle

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4-H at the 2013 State Fair

Tags: 4-H,   NY State Fair,   video,  

NYS FAIRIn 2013 the New York State Fair (NYS Fair) opened an exhibit in the Grange Building celebrating its history. That exhibit included a video created by 4-H Youth Development showing 4-H presence at the State Fair over the years (see below).

4-H youth development plays an integral role in shaping communities across New York State. For twelve days 4-H'ers from around New York state have come together to work and play as exhibitors, members of Press Corps, and Junior Superintendents at the State Fair. Educators and 4-H'ers alike demonstrated their skills and earned recognition in 4-H's three mission mandate focus areas: civic engagement, healthy living, and science, technology, engineering, and math.

4-H  fair exhibit evaluations are based on the Danish system of judging. Within the Danish system, each exhibit is compared to the ideal for that exhibit given the exhibitor’s experience and age. Exhibits are not placed in a ranking, rather each item is judged on its own merit. Participants receive either a blue ribbon (excellent), red ribbon (good), or white ribbon (worthy work). The emphasis is placed on learning. 4-H'ers who do exceptional work earn purple rosettes.

In Press Corps, 4-H'ers capture the magic of the 4-H exhibits in the youth building by writing articles and taking photos. Check out the results and the news articles by 4-H'ers from the state fair.

For more information on New York State 4-H and their programs, check out their website , contact your local Cornell Cooperative Extension 4-H office, like 4-H on Facebook and follow 4-H on Twitter.

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