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Stories about... 4-H

Christing Mehr (center) gives some advice to a couple of students building their egg-drop apparatus.Clinton 4-H Group Visits Campus, Experiences STEM at Illinois

March 20, 2019

On March 4th, ten junior high and high school students, members of Clinton County’s 4-H Federation leadership group, traveled up from southern Illinois to spend the day on the Illinois campus. During their visit, they participated in STEM hands-on activities and briefly toured a number of campus buildings, including the IGB. While here, they were exposed to several STEM disciplines, dabbling a bit in Mechanical Engineering, Math, Aerospace Engineering, Molecular and Cellular Biology, and Entomology. Plus, they got to interact with a number of Illinois students to find out what being a student at Illinois might be like, as well as some possible career options.

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Keith Jacobs watching through the camera as he pilots one of his drones.4H STEM Specialist Keith Jacobs Shares His Passion for Technology With Illinois Youth

Feburary 6, 2019

Entrenched in front of a newly-acquired, huge flat-screen tv that serves as his computer monitor, and surrounded by his tech toys—myriad boxes of cutting-edge technology including drones, virtual reality headsets, and 3D printers courtesy of Google, Microsoft, and other tech giants—Illinois 4-H STEM Specialist Keith Jacobs imparts his tech savvy to youth all over the state. In his free time, he’s developing drones to provide medical services to folks in remote areas. And while these two passions might seem to be totally unrelated, they’re really quite interconnected.

For instance, when Jacobs was in college, he couldn’t quite decide what he wanted to do careerwise. So he dabbled in this and that, studying several seemingly disparate fields, which actually contributed to him getting to where he is today. After taking a rather round-about route, he’s presently doing two things he’s quite passionate about—developing medical drones and educating young people about STEM.

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Two contestants competing in the 4-H Robotics Competition4-H Robotics: Working to Make a STEM Career Down the Line Automatic

May 13, 2013

"My whole goal in this is to get more kids in STEM," 4-H Educator Bob Smith unashamedly acknowledges. In charge of 4-H Robotics for the state of Illinois, Smith provides training, expertise, and curricula for county-level 4-H club leaders and also oversees 4-H's state-wide robotics competition.
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4H robotics club member competes at Robotics Competition4-H Exposes Youth to STEM Via Informal Education

May 7, 2013

Fifty years ago, 4-H used to be synonymous with youngsters competing to see who could raise the largest pig or bake the tastiest pie for the county fair. No longer your father's 4-H (or your mother's), some of the youth-development organization's clubs today are devoted entirely to STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and have 20th Century topics, such as geospacial technology, video film-making, computer science, wind power, and even robotics.
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