How did the Indiana 4-H Foundation put the final touches on its year-long celebration of its 50 years of existence? It did it by doing what the Foundation was started for in the first place- help 4-H'ers achieve higher goals. In this case that meant awarding more than 30 scholarships, most for $1,100 to $2,000 each, to students who have excelled in various program areas of 4-H.
The program areas ranged from sewing to beef cattle. The celebration was held at the Indiana State Fairgrounds, in conjunction with the Indiana 4-H Congress and meeting of state Junior Leaders. The 4-H'ers spent a good part of the weekend there attending sessions, while many more adults flooded in for the noon luncheon that officially marked the 50th anniversary. A luncheon is held every year to present these scholarships to young 4-H'ers. This year was the perfect time to combine it with a special celebration of Foundation activities, notes Sherry-Bingle Coffman, executive director of the Indiana 4-H Foundation.
Chuck Hibberd, Purdue University Director of Extension, and officially the person that 4-H organization falls under at the state level, praised the value of 4-H to the crowd, which included winning 4-H members plus many donors and sponsors of not only the luncheon, but the scholarships.
"We are very proud of what 4-H has accomplished," Hibberd says. "We hope for many more successes in the next 50 years. We are seeing 4-H continue in the traditional areas, but also expand into new, exciting areas and reach more members."
Each award presented was sponsored by either a corporate or individual donor. Awards are selected based on forms that the 4-H'ers put together and submit. Winning members ranged from juniors in high school to those already in college.Congratulations to each scholarship winner!