Officer training can help 4-H youth officers be successful

4-H youth officers build confidence and a foundation of knowledge by participating in a basic officer training, now offered Feb. 17 and 22, 2018, in Berrien County.

Berrien County 4-H has rescheduled the Berrien County 4-H Officer Trainings for February 2018, which were supposed to happen the beginning of January when lots of snow fell upon southwest Michigan. If you are serving as a 4-H officer, especially a treasurer, or want to be a treasurer in the future, you should attend an officer training. Join us as we offer officer trainings on Feb. 17 from 9:30 a.m.–12 p.m. or Feb. 22 from 6–8:30 p.m. Sessions will be held at Berrien County MSU Extension Office, 1737 Hillandale Road, Benton Harbor, MI 49022.

There is no cost for the training, but we do require registration by Feb. 12. Register online at Berrien County 4-H Officer Trainings or contact 4-H program coordinator Kelly Stelter at 269-927-5674 ext. 4015. These trainings are taking place across Michigan with generous funding from Chemical Bank to the Michigan 4-H Foundation. Light refreshments will be provided.

As previously shared in the Michigan State University Extension article, “Launch into the New Year with 4-H treasurer and officer trainings,” a training of this type helps participants understand the roles of 4-H officers and benefits of developing useful skills for their future, including decision-making, communication, responsibility, leadership, attention to detail and record keeping. 

It is common for 4-H groups to have a president, vice-president, treasurer and secretary. Teamwork, communications and learning to work collaboratively together are just some of the skills we teach officers to use that can also be beneficial later in life as you plan your future. The treasurer’s role is especially important and has changed over the years because of all of the policies and procedures not-for-profit organizations have to follow.

4-H treasurers learn money handling expectations. This includes the importance of receipts, timely deposits and bill payments, and budgeting. They learn and practice writing checks and reconciling accounts. In addition, treasurers have to create and present reports. 4-H does fundraising, too, so treasurers need to know the right and wrong way to manage and facilitate a fundraiser. A responsible treasurer works collaboratively with their fellow officers so the whole team understands what is happening with the 4-H group’s funds.

All of these tasks and skills just mentioned should be applied to everyday life and at work—whatever job or career path you choose. Being ready to contribute to the workforce and able to take fiscal responsibility in your personal life is part of what MSU Extension hopes young people learn as a part of their 4-H experience.

MSU Extension and Michigan 4-H Youth Development help to prepare young people for successful futures. To learn about the positive impact of Michigan 4-H youth career preparation, money management and entrepreneurship programs, read the 2016 Impact Report: “Preparing Michigan Youth for Future Employment.”

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