PRYDE at the NY State Fair
Summer is a busy time for 4-H youth. Many of them are competing in local and county fairs to showcase their talents and hobbies that they have worked hard to develop through 4-H programs all year round. The height of these activities occurs at The Great New York State Fair inside the special youth building where the very best of their work is showcased for public viewing. The PRYDE Scholars began their fall 2017 semester by going to the youth building and learning about the various 4-H programs.
The 4-H exhibitions at the fair really testify to the diverse and well-rounded programing of 4-H. Displays varied from dog photographing contests to goat showmanship to virtual reality glasses demonstrations. What really stood out from the exhibits, however, was the atmosphere of inclusion and support for the youth, an expression of the 4-H mission. Qualities such as “leadership” and “curiosity” were displayed on banners all around the building.
For the PRYDE Scholars who research youth development, visiting the youth building was an eye-opening experience. Delaney Ding, junior cohort scholar in Policy Analysis and Management, says, “It helped me understand the joint relationship between youth engagement and development, and the significance of PRYDE’s partnership with 4-H.” Building on this, Saige Connor, senior cohort scholar in Human Development, commented by saying, “It was really incredible to meet the youth who we spend so much time talking about and theorizing in class. The PRYDE program really gains a new meaning when you get to see the 4-H program in action and recognize the real life effects that programs like these have on youth.”
Going to the fair gave the PRYDE students a chance to see how 4-H strives to continue on its legacy of improving the lives of youth and what impacts the scholars might have on positive development through their translational research efforts.
By Esther Kim