Dwight Loveday, Interim Assistant Dean & Department Head
The 96th Tennessee 4-H Roundup is in the books! Three hundred and sixty-four 4-Hers, volunteer leaders and UT Extension staff gathered on the University of Tennessee-Knoxville campus for four days of learning, sharing, serving, competing, networking, recognition and having FUN. Out of state delegates from Kentucky and Virginia joined right in.
To me, the 2019 had some significant “new” things that has made it special.
- Funding and onsite support of Tennessee Broadband: This new sponsor jumped in big time in support of the Welcome event and provided “goodie bags” on the beds as the 4-Hers arrived in their rooms.
- Increased participation by Herbert College of Agriculture: Herbert College had a visible presence every day. The college assisted with many events and sponsored or co-sponsored things such as entertainment, refreshments, transportation and T-shirts.
- Increased participation by departments that support 4-H: Departments participated in the Welcome event showcasing their areas of study and career opportunities. Additionally, several departments had exhibits in the hallways on Tuesday during interviews for delegates to improve and gain knowledge and career opportunities in another project area.
- Welcome event: Tennessee Broadband, Herbert College of Agriculture, UTIA departments and some UTK departments/colleges provided a fun, educational Welcome event.
- Heightened awareness of 4-H and 4-H programming from UT upper administration: We always have many guests that support Tennessee 4-H at the Donor Reception. This year both Interim UT President Randy Boyd and new UTK Chancellor Donde Plowman were in attendance.
- Improved facilities: Delegates stayed in the relatively new, beautiful Fred Brown residence hall as well as had an assembly in the brand new Student Union.
- ePortfolios: First year for the new ePortfolio system and the incorporation of the “showcase” in the interview process was successful. Several 4-hers have expressed their “like” for the new system. Also, subject matter specialists indicated they also like the new system.
- Youth leadership: I have previously commented about our state council members leadership. This week we witnessed both state and regional 4-H leadership teams excel.
But, the bottom line is that our Tennessee 4-Hers is what makes 4-H Roundup awesome.