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Informational Essays Over 4 H

Youth report that 4-H impacts in their lives

4-H’ers share their thoughts about 4-H in their 4-H Mark of Excellence essays.

Posted on March 6, 2014 by Connie Lange, Michigan State University Extension

Each year Michigan 4-H members between the ages of 11 and 12 are encouraged to write an essay entitled, “Because of 4-H I can….”  Counties can submit up to two essays to receive recognition on the state level of     4-H.  For 2014 Branch County 4-H members, Asya Modert and Bryan Foote, wrote essays that were chosen to represent Branch County in the awards program.  The words of these young people are the best way to explain how 4-H impacts their lives. Michigan State University Extension will share their stories.

Asya essay included:
“Because of 4-H I can learn and grow.  Over my three years in 4-H I have learned to be more responsible and how to care for my animals.  I have also learned how to manage my time when it comes to my other projects and getting them done on time.  4-H has given me the confidence that I probably wouldn’t have if I wasn’t involved.  All of these things will help me as I continue to grow.  I have learned that I can take on more livestock projects and how to budget the money when it comes in to help care for them.  4-H has made a big impact on my life.  Now I know that I can try something new and give it a hundred percent and not be afraid if I’m not the best because practice is what makes the best better.  I want everyone to know what 4-H can do for them. I gained so much confidence that I was junior secretary and junior president of my club.  I now serve on our county’s leaders’ council. I have already started thinking of career plans, what I want to be and where I want to go.  If you were wondering I want to be a veterinarian and attend Michigan State University.  I already have my plans to reach my goals and 4-H is a part of my plan.  Some may say those animals look like a lot of work and to them I say  ‘it’s work, your right, but it’s also how I make new friends, have fun and learn great life experiences.’  One day I hope to change the world through 4-H; I can and will do this.”

Bryan’s essay shares similarities with Asya:
“Because of 4-H I can now improve upon many life skills that will help me grow and become a compassionate, responsible and respectful adult. 4-H has taught me this in several ways from participating in community service projects, attending area workshops and completing my craft projects. One of the many reasons that I joined 4-H was because of the community involvement and strong family values. With me being an only child, I feel like I have a large extended family with many brothers and sisters. I have really enjoyed the community service projects that my clubs have participated in. One of my favorite community projects was the Bronson Sportsman Dinner where my club helped prepare different types of wildlife dishes and helped with the set up and cleanup of the event. By participating in this community service event it taught me not to be afraid to sample different types of wild game dishes and secondly, being that just because I’m younger I can still help out and make a difference in my community.

My projects that I have completed over the past three years have taught me a great deal of life skills. The Lego kits, taxidermy mounts, woodworking and color-pencil drawings all have increased my critical thinking skills, self-confidence, organizational skills, time management and patience. All of these life skills that I have learned I have used in school and while playing sports. When I have self-confidence and a positive attitude I can then spread it throughout my classroom and my team which makes learning much more entertaining and winning a lot more fun. I can remember one day while I was doing a craft project at a club meeting I was having a lot of difficulty getting my project to look just right. One of my leaders told me she had a lot of faith and confidence in me and to just take a big deep breath and close my eyes for a few seconds to relax. I will always remember this  advice she gave me when I’m struggling with a difficult math problem or when I’m on the pitching mound pitching for my baseball team trying to get that final strike out of the inning.

4-H has taught me so much about the importance of having strong family values, life skills and the importance of being active role model in my community. Through many 4-H activities and events I have learned many skills and have built many memories with my personal family and my 4-H family. So because of 4-H I can I can share and teach the important life skills that I have learned to those that are younger than I am by setting an example and being a role model for them.”

Youth interested in participating and having similar experiences to Asya and Bryan can visit the Michigan 4-H website, or contact their local MSU Extension office.

This article was published by Michigan State University Extension. For more information, visit To have a digest of information delivered straight to your email inbox, visit To contact an expert in your area, visit, or call 888-MSUE4MI (888-678-3464).

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2018 4-H Beekeeping Essay Contest
Announcement and Rules

Sponsored by
The Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, Inc. and the Georgia Beekeepers Association

Each year, Georgia 4-H and the University of Georgia's Entomology Department organize the 4-H Beekeeping Essay Contest. This contest is a national competition offered by the Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, Inc. The University of Georgia's Entomology Department will determine the top three essays in Georgia and send the first ranked winner on to compete on the national level, competing against states across the nation. The national winner will be announced by the end of the first week in May.

The deadline for the 2018 contest is Thursday, March 1st, 2018. Please submit all entries electronically to Tim Collings, State 4-H Program Specialist at If you have any questions, please call the Georgia 4-H office at (706) 542-4444 or email

Click here for rules and awards for the national contest

2018 Beekeeping Essay Contest Topic

“What's So Super About the Super Organism in the Honey Bee?”

The honey bee continues to be on everyone’s mind. From beekeepers to scientists to the public, the honey bee is a great super organism. What does this mean to you, to your community and to the world? Put on your thinking caps and GO! (please do not reference Albert Einstein in your work)

The scope of the research is an essential judging criterion, accounting for 40% of your score. The number of sources consulted, the authority of the sources, and the variety of the sources are all evaluated.

Personal interviews with beekeepers and others familiar with the subject are valued sources of information and should be documented. Sources, which are not cited in the endnotes, should be listed in a “Resources” or “Bibliography” list.

Note that “honey bee” is properly spelled as two words, even though many otherwise authoritative references spell it as one word.

*Applicants are encouraged to practice scholarly writing by synthesizing information from several reputable sources. Plagiarism, or directly copying information without proper citation, is unacceptable. For help with proper citations please reference


  • Cash Prizes to the top 3 State Winners:
    - 1st Place: $250
    - 2nd Place: $100
    - 3rd Place: $50
  • This year's State award money was generously made possible by the Georgia Beekeepers Association.
  • Each State winner will move forward to to compete on the national level.
  • Cash Prizes to the top 3 National Winners:
    - 1st Place: $750
    - 2nd Place: $500
    - 3rd Place: $250
  • In addition, the National winners' essay will appear in an issue of the American Beekeeping Federation's Newsletter.
  • This year's National award money was generously made possible by The Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, Inc.


1. Contest is open to active 4-H Club members only. 4-H'ers who have previously placed first, second, or third at the national level are not eligible; but other state winners are eligible to re-enter.

2. Requirements (failure to meet any one requirement disqualifies the essay) -
- Write on the designated subject only.
- All factual statements must be referenced with bibliographical-style endnotes.
- A brief biographical sketch of the essayist, including date of birth, gender, complete mailing address,email address, and telephone number must accompany the essay.
- Length – the essay proper: 750 to 1000 words.
- The word count does not include the endnotes, the bibliography or references, nor the essayist's biographical sketch – which should be on a separate page.
- Preparation for National Judging: ELECTRONIC SUBMISSIONS ONLY. Prepare your essays double-spaced, 12-pt. Times or similar type style, following standard manuscript format. Submit as a Microsoft Word compatible document.

3. Essays will be judged on: (A) scope of research - 40%; (B) accuracy - 30%; (C) creativity - 10%; (D) conciseness - 10%; and (E) logical development of the topic - 10%.

4. Individual essayists should not forward essays directly to the Foundation office. Each state 4-H Office is responsible for selecting the state's winner and should set its deadline so state judging can be completed at the state level in time for the winning state essay to be mailed to the Foundation office before March 3, 2017. No essay received after March 1 will be considered.

5. Each state may submit only one entry.
6. Final judging and selection of the National Winner will be made by the Foundation's Essay Committee, whose decision is final.
7. The National Winner will be announced by the week of May 1st.
8. All National entries become the property of the Foundation and may be published or used as it sees fit. No essay will be returned. National winning essays will be posted at: