Junior High 4-H Academic Conference

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

June 11-14, 2024

Welcome to the Tennessee 4-H Junior High Academic Conference!
As a participant, you will be involved in educational programming on the campus of the University
of Tennessee in Knoxville (UTK). Delegates will receive extensive, hands-on training in project
areas under the supervision of university scientists and specialists on the UTK campus. The
conference will provide a variety of rewarding and fun-filled experiences including classroom,
outdoor, and laboratory settings.

Junior High 4-H members (6th-8th graders, as of January 1) enrolled in one of the following project areas are eligible to attend the conference. Delegates may only attend in a project area once.

• Beef
• Citizenship
• Communication/Public Speaking
• Companion Animals
• Computers &Technology
• Consumer Education
• Creative Arts and Design
• Dairy Cattle
• Entrepreneurship
• Food Science/Dairy Foods
• Forestry/Wildlife/Fisheries
• Goat
• Horticulture/Gardening
• Horse
• Nutrition/Health/Fitness
• Outdoor Recreation/Shooting Sports
• Performing Arts
• Poultry
• Sheep
• Swine

To recognize outstanding 4-H members and leaders
• To provide academic training related to the 4-H members’ project area
• To offer opportunities for career exploration in agriculture and family and consumer sciences
• To meet other 4-H members with similar interests or in the same project area
• To experience campus life and facilities firsthand

The scientists and specialists who will be conducting the program are experienced UT faculty members with national reputations in their areas of specialization. They have been chosen for the conference on the basis of their experience and ability to work with youth.


  • Arrival
  • Registration
  • Meet and Greet, Icebreakers
  • Dinner
  • Welcome/Opening Event


  • Breakfast
  • Project Work
  • Lunch
  • STEM Fair
  • Trip to Main Event
  • Pizza Party


  • Breakfast
  • Project Work/STEM Fair
  • Lunch
  • Off-Campus Field Trip
  • Graduation Banquet
  • Movie and Pool Party


  • Depart for Home

You will be housed in air-conditioned comfort of the UT Knoxville residence halls – just like real college students! Most of your meals will be on campus with some in a university cafeteria, one by the Knox County 4-H Honor Club, some by the UT Collegiate 4-H/FFA Club, and a Pizza Party. The Graduation Banquet is a fancy shindig so pull out your best dress for this.

You will need to fill out the application for Academic Conference and a Section A form for the portfolio for all project areas except Citizenship. If you are applying to attend Academic Conference in the Citizenship project, you will fill out the application for Academic Conference and a Section C form. Both forms need to be sent to your 4-H Agent by March 31.

What You Should Bring:
• Sheets, blanket, pillow and/or sleeping bag for a twin bed
• Towels and washcloth
• Soap, shampoo, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, other toiletries
• Comfortable walking shoes (2 pairs)
• Raincoat or umbrella
• Light jacket
• Appropriate clothing (sports clothes in good taste will be appropriate for most of the conference. No cut-offs, tank tops, inappropriate words/images on attire or short shorts)
• Girls – a “dressy” dress or suit will be appropriate for the graduation banquet
• Boys – a suit or sport coat with tie will be appropriate for the graduation banquet
• Alarm clock, watch
• Bathing suit (this should be appropriate)
• Closed toe shoes (for all participants in animal projects)
• Old shoes that can get wet or dirty (specifically for those in the Forestry/Wildlife/Fisheries project)
• Consider bringing some type of work clothing for your 4-H Project Classes (many of you will be involved in hands-on learning experiences with plants and animals)
• Spending money and money for lunch on the way to and breakfast on the way from the event
• Water bottle
• Prescription medications (must be in the original bottle) and F-600 Health Form (with photograph)

The registration fee to attend Academic Conference is $100 per delegate. Because our sponsors think it is important for you to attend this conference, each delegate is only paying a portion of the total fee. Once you are notified of your selection as a delegate, please pay the $100 fee to your County Extension Office.

As an official delegate representing your region, you should be on your best behavior and act as a model 4-H member. Here are a few things you can do to ensure success during this conference:
• Make it a point to be on time or ahead of time for each session or event
• Be a good listener. Impress your scientists or specialists with your ability to pay attention
• Tobacco products, drugs, weapons, and chewing gum are not permitted at this conference
• Writing thank-you notes to sponsors, leaders, agents, and parents is greatly appreciated
• Share your experiences with others when you return home. Take notes and be prepared to give an interesting and worthwhile account of your experience on the UTK campus

The conference is conducted through a cooperative effort by UT Extension, the University of Tennessee Herbert College of Agriculture, the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine and UT AgResearch. This event is sponsored by gifts from a variety of donors with an interest in giving youth an in-depth project experience on the University of Tennessee campus including the following:
• Tennessee Farmers Cooperative
• Tennessee 4-H Foundation
• Tennessee Pork Producers Association
• Charles Weber
• Ezell/Purity Endowment
• Greever Memorial Fund
• Stanfill Memorial Fund
• University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture

Upon selection, delegates will receive more information regarding their attendance at Academic Conference. If you have any questions, feel free to visit the Academic Conference webpage on the Tennessee 4-H Website: https://4h.tennessee.edu/academic-conference/. Also, feel free to email Lynne Middleton, Interim State 4-H Curriculum Specialist, at LMiddle2@utk.edu.

Have questions? Any suggestions?