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Thursday, October 12, 2017

Recent grad becomes a 4-H volunteer

This year, Dan has volunteered at his home county fair
and the Minnesota State Fair with 4-H
Daniel Hayes recently completed his years as a 4-H member. So recently, that this is his first year as a 4-H adult volunteer. And he took no time finding ways to make a difference for youth who are coming after him. He has since come back as a volunteer focusing on the livestock programs in 4-H. When asked why he says, "I really just want to give back. This program gave me so much growing up."

Growing up as a member of Nicollet County 4-H, Dan was involved in many projects. From restoring a tractor to showing swine, he dipped his 4-H toes into a little bit of everything. Through the 4-H swine project, Dan developed a strong passion for the livestock industry and earned multiple opportunities to exhibit his pigs at the Minnesota State Fair. Since graduating out of the program, he has been able to carry out his passion through new roles as a volunteer.

Taking on new challenges in his local 4-H community helped Dan grow leadership skills.  As a volunteer he has given back to his community in a multitude of ways. Dan lives on a swine farm, and through that has given other youth in his county the opportunity to house pigs on his property. Dan says that,"giving them this opportunity to learn about the industry and grow has been a great opportunity." This has given youth who may not otherwise have the chance to exhibit livestock.
His county 4-H program coordinator, Katie Johnson, recently observed, "Dan always has a smile on his face. He's willing to help others and continues to share his passion of the 4-H program and how the program has impacted his life." Katie adds that he continues to carry himself in a positive manner and has become a positive role model for the youth and now serving as a 4-H volunteer." He has also worked as a volunteer at his county fair and a Gopher Dairy Camp Counselor, a 4-H run week long camp. Gopher DairyCamp is a fun 3-day workshop for teens who want to improve their dairy cattle skills. The camp is open to all youth who have completed grades 6-9. Working in this capacity has given him perspective in his long term plans.

Dan is currently a junior at the University of Minnesota -Twin Cities pursuing a degree in Agricultural Communications and Marketing with an emphasis in Crops and Soils. He hopes to give back to his county 4-H program as a general livestock judge and just jumping in to help wherever he is needed.

Dan's advice to new 4-H'ers? "Take advantage of every opportunity that you can. There really isn't a bad opportunity in 4-H."


Written by Janelle Hueners
University of Minnesota student
Chisago County 4-H alum
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