“Summer is always the best season for 4-H. The summer is filled with camping trips all across the state including Rock Eagle 4-H center,” Perkins said. “Bartow 4-H also hosts several summer day camps that include trips to the zoo, White Water, Rome Braves and vet science just to name a few.
“Toward the end of summer is state congress. This event is the culmination of a year of project work, presentation preparation and placing first or second at the district level. This year we will have the largest delegation, nine 4-H’ers, attending in the district ... that Bartow has had in eight years vying to earn Master status.”
Occupation/title: Bartow County Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Family: Celebrating 10 years with husband Dave Perkins and children Ava and Charlie.
Education: After graduation from Sequoyah High school in Canton, I attended the University of Georgia earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science and a Master of Agricultural Leadership.
City of residence: Taylorsville
When did you take on the position of county agent for 4-H?
A: I began my work with UGA Cooperative Extension as a county agent in 2006.
Can you explain the role of county agent?
A: The 4-H County Extension Agent is responsible for implementing educational programs for 4-H and youth. The responsibilities of this position include program development for the designated youth audience (youth ages 9 to 19), coordinating and delivering in-school educational programs in Bartow County schools and through after school opportunities, supervising and working with one 4-H program assistant, collaborating with schools and community agencies, helping youth with projects, program, and activities, and managing the daily operation of the 4-H program.
What do you enjoy most about working with 4-H and were you a 4-H’er yourself?
A: Being an educator with 4-H is special because you are able to work with youth for eight to 10 years. During that time you are able to be a part of not only teaching them but you are a part of their achievements. For one student that could be talking in front of a group for the first time, another it could be addressing a community need and for another it could be becoming a four time Master 4-H’er. Growing up I did not have the opportunity to become involved in 4-H. It was not until college that I became involved with the 4-H horse program as a judge for horse quiz bowl, judging teams and benefit horse sales.
Why do you feel that 4-H continues to be one of the most sought-after civic and activity groups for Bartow County students?
A: A co-worker said it best, 4-H has something for everyone. Students can choose to participate in programs that teach about animals, shooting sports, public speaking, leadership, technology and more. The common thread in these programs provides youth the opportunity for mastery, generosity, belonging and independence, which are essential elements of youth development.
What do you consider your greatest personal or professional achievement?
A: Of course on a personal level, my family has been my most meaningful achievements. This fall I hope to run my first half-marathon, which would be a feat for me. Professionally speaking, I was awarded the National Extension of 4-H Agents Achievement in Service award last fall at the conference in Pennsylvania.
Where is your favorite place to be in Bartow County?
A: Spending time at home with my family and animals ranks at the top of the list. Yet, being at the softball fields with my family and Crossfit Adrenaline are great places too.
Do you have a personal philosophy?
A: Having been in my current role as a public service faculty member for almost eight years, I have discovered two that have been the most prominent in following and teaching: “The more you help others the greater your own success will be” and “You get out of something what you put in.”
What is something people would be surprised to learn about you?
A: While attending the University of Georgia, I was a varsity athlete on the first equestrian team.