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Showing posts from February, 2018

Matthew Schmidtbauer: "4-H taught me the skills to be a CEO."

4-H was a place of exploration for Matthew Schmidtbauer. Throughout his time in Anoka County 4-H, he tried several different project areas.

"Beekeeping, coin collecting, firearm safety, electronics and more. 4-H gave me such a wonderful opportunity to explore new topics," said Matthew during a recent conversation with fellow alum Laura Wyatt. "I was always encouraged to try different things."

For many years, Matthew took a project to exhibit and be judged at the Minnesota State Fair. "I can still remember how excited and proud I was for being awarded a state fair trip with one of my projects. It was a new, unique, and exciting experience to be able to spend the night on the fairgrounds. After going my first year, I worked extra hard on my projects the next year to earn a spot back!"

Matthew applied what he’d learned in 4-H to be successful in college and develop his career. Now an entrepreneur and CEO, Matthew has reconnected with 4-H as a judge for our …

Joe Rand helps rural LGBT youth to find each other - and themselves

Joe Rand is an Extension Educator in central Minnesota. He uses a portion of his work time to improve conditions for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth living in rural areas. In urban areas, LGBT+ youth have greater access to resources and can meet each other and find programs in which they feel comfortable. In rural areas, those safe spaces are harder to find, which can affect their development and their mental well being.

How is life different for rural LGBT+ youth versus those who live in urban areas? In rural areas there just aren't a lot of resources, even less than in urban areas. There is a lack of access to role models or safe spaces where youth can ask questions and develop relationships with other people who are like them.