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Wadena County 4-H'er Anna Johnson receives Kern Scholarship

Meet Anna Johnson, a graduate of Sebeka High School, 4-H youth from Wadena County and 2015 recipient of the Kern Scholarship from the Minnesota 4-H Foundation.

Anna has been an active member Wadena County 4-H. She’s filled several leadership roles as president, secretary, and treasurer for both her local club and Wadena County and Horse PDC. She is very passionate about the importance of citizenship and leadership experience, and has strived to keep the afterschool 4-H program at Sebeka School available to non-traditional 4-H’ers. She has served as an After School 4-H assistant and instructor since the sixth grade.

“I hope to inspire students to achieve their highest potential and become productive agriculturists. No matter what state I end up in, I plan to continue to volunteer my time with the local 4-H programs and continue to ‘Make the best better’.”

During Anna’s 12 years in 4-H (coming up on her 13thyear!), she participated in a plethora of unique projects ranging from the creative arts and quilting to veterinary science and flower gardening. She has received numerous awards for her leadership, involvement, and service at both county and state levels, some of which include the MN 4-H Key Award, the Outstanding Ambassador Award, and State Fair Beef Interview Winner and Finalist. 

Outside of 4-H, Anna was very active in Sebeka High School’s FFA program. She has served as Chapter Secretary, Chapter President for two terms, and the Region 2 FFA Reporter. She enjoys music, participating in solo and ensemble, and a variety of bands. She also was involved with Business Professionals of America, and was a member of the top 5 placing state parliamentary procedure teams, finishing in the top 20 of all her events at the state contest. She was also active in National Honor Society in high school, and held the role of vice president her senior year. 

“While Anna is clearly a leader in the classroom, she is also a leader in activities and involvement,” said Rachel Kern, a school counselor for the Sebeka Public School District. “If something needs to be done, Anna will step up and do it, and she never seeks praise or attention for her efforts. It is why we call her one of Sebeka’s ‘unsung heroes’.” 

Anna has just begun her freshman year at University of Minnesota – Crookston and plans to graduate with degrees in both agronomy and agriculture education. She has a passion not just for agriculture, but for getting students involved and interested in what they're learning. She hopes to provide students with both real world experience and a reason to stay in school.

“I strive to be the reason behind a student saying ‘Ag class is the reason I graduated from high school’,” Anna said in her application.

“She is a highly active 4-H member and a youth leader of the highest caliber,” praised Virginia Hendrickx, 4-H Program Coordinator for Wadena County. “To say that she is a busy young lady is an understatement, but she manages to do it all with ease.”

Congratulations to Anna Johnson for winning the Kern Scholarship award!

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Each year the Minnesota 4-H Foundation distributes more than $20,000 through a competitive scholarship application process. If you are interested in helping to provide scholarships for college-bound 4-H’ers, please contact Erin Kelly-Collins at 612-624-7667 or

Applications for the Kern Scholarship from the Minnesota 4-H Foundation are due on April 15th. Minnesota 4-H youth who are interested in applying can learn more by visiting our website. 

by Eunice Lin
Minnesota 4-H Foundation

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