John Lawrence’s message from May 14, 2019
Teach kids to code today – and make it fun – and before you know it, they’ll be the computer programmers, scientists and engineers of tomorrow. That’s the premise supporting Wonder League, a global robotics program that 4-H Youth Development offers for youth in grades K-3. The youth develop problem-solving and creativity skills while they build meaningful relationships with their peers. Did you know?
- Over the past year, 21 Iowa Clover Kids teams participated in Wonder League. The theme was oceanography, leading teams through five, story-based missions under the sea.
- In April, 17 Clover Kids from four counties participated in the Iowa 4-H Wonder League Robotics Exposition on campus. Teams programmed robots to return a sea creature to its natural habitat and launch sea turtle eggs into a nest.
- Mahaska County has nine Wonder League teams and held its own expo last week. Additional expos will be held throughout the state.
- Youth teams also may participate in a Clover Kids robotics experience Sunday, Aug. 11, at the Iowa State Fair.
Providing 4-H STEM activities for K-3 youth builds their school and career readiness skills, such as collaboration, communication and critical thinking. 4-H is creating a wonder league of learners and leaders for Iowa’s future.
Goodbye … and welcome
In April, we said goodbye to the following individuals who left ISU Extension and Outreach:
- Brianne Johnson, Clinton County youth coordinator.
- Margaret Murphy, Lyon County horticulture educator/regional food coordinator.
- Sherry McGill, Region 5 director.
We welcome the following new staff:
- Hilary Lanman, Wapello County program coordinator.
- Kyler Waddle, Louisa County office manager.
- Ashtyn Danker, East Pottawattamie County office assistant.
- Kelli Anders, Wapello County local foods program coordinator.
- Emily Belvel, Keokuk County program coordinator.
- Jenna Koenigsfeld, Hardin County office assistant.
- Erin Parker, Johnson County program coordinator.
- Abby Boysen, Louisa County program assistant.
- Alycne Boban, Mills County youth coordinator.
- Chris Kick, communications specialist II, Agriculture and Natural Resources.
- Jill Goldsmith, clerk III, Extension Information Technology.
- Prashant Jha, associate professor, Agriculture and Natural Resources/Agronomy.
Congratulations to the following ISU Extension and Outreach faculty and staff who will be honored during the university’s annual awards ceremony in September:
- Regents Award for Staff Excellence: Malisa Rader, human sciences specialist, family life.
- Inclusive Excellence: Angela Shaw, associate professor of food science and human nutrition.
- Inclusive Excellence: Barbara Woods, special projects manager, Human Sciences Extension and Outreach.
- Achievement in Economic Development in Iowa: Mark Edelman, professor of economics.
- Professional and Scientific Outstanding New Professional Award: Mackenzie Johnson, human sciences specialist, family life.
- Distinguished Service in Extension and Outreach: Kim Brantner, human sciences specialist, family life.
- Outstanding Achievement in Extension or Professional Practice: Anna Johnson, professor of animal science.
- Early Achievement in Extension or Professional Practice: Shelley Oltmans, community development specialist.
- R.K. Bliss Extension Award: Gene Mohling, Region 15 director.
One more note: The Office Professionals Conference is set for Oct. 8 on campus. Save the date!
— John D. Lawrence
Iowa State University Vice President for Extension and Outreach