Strategic Impact (team)

Work Force Readiness project

Lynette Black and Dani Annala

When it comes to getting kids exposed to 4-H science and technology, Dani Annala and Lynette Black are pioneers. Their efforts have made 4-H science and technology resources accessible to youth year-round through in-school, afterschool and summer programming.

Schools in the mid-Columbia region wanted to improve youth’s problem-solving and critical thinking skills, yet they faced serious funding challenges that limited the amount of STEM programming they could provide. Many students and their families also face similar financial challenges. Lynette and Dani saw the opportunity for 4-H to step up to meet these challenges in their community, and provide extracurricular opportunities in science and technology.

Early results of their outreach and engagement demonstrate the strategic impact of their programming: evaluations show an increase in knowledge, skills and attitudes in the area of the sciences and technology for local youth, and a 200% growth in afterschool science programs.

4-H is all about sharing. After seeing a 400% enrollment growth in Hood River County 4-H programs in just four years, Lynette and Dani decided to make their resources available to other communities. They developed train-the-trainer courses for educators of all levels and resource libraries with educational STEM kits. Now, many elementary classroom teachers are using their STEM education kits, including the OSU Open Campus Juntos program.

Please join me in congratulating Dani Annala and Lynette Black for putting some real 4-H steam into STEM!

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