W2023: Understanding Recruitment and Retention in the 4H Club Program

(Multistate Research Project)

Status: Active

W2023: Understanding Recruitment and Retention in the 4H Club Program

Duration: 10/01/2023 to 09/30/2028

Administrative Advisor(s):

NIFA Reps:

Non-Technical Summary

Statement of Issues and Justification

Statement of Issues and Justification


Statement of Issue

Throughout the United States, 4-H clubs have been instrumental in providing transformational, experiential, and community- centered education since the inception of the land grant system. 4-H youth are reported to earn higher academic grades, demonstrate increased civic engagement, and are considered to partake in less risk-taking behavior than their counterparts who are not involved in 4-H (Lerner & Lerner, 2013). With an impressive record of positive youth development impacts, such as long-lasting behavior change, Extension programs (4-H), can only remain effective if youth participate in the programs longitudinally (Pratt & Bowman, 2008). Additionally, youth engagement occurs when there is an increase in dosage and duration which also gives youth opportunity to receive higher degrees of experiences (Hensley, 2022).


A review of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)USDA 4-H enrollment data (United States Department of Agriculture, 2014) from 2010 to 2014 indicates that 61% of states and territories in the US reported declines in 4-H club enrollment, which amounts to a loss of over 725,000 youth enrolled across the nation. One of the primary indicators of a low level of youth retention is the youth being a first-year member (Astroth, 1985; Hamilton, Northern, & Neff, 2014; Harder, Lamm, Lamm, Rose, & Rask, 2005; Hartley, 1983). Additional research reveals that youth leave 4-H due to: 1) busy schedules with sports or other organizations, 2) unhappiness with their clubs or projects, and 3) less involved parents (Harder, et al., 2005; Hartley, 1983; Ritchie & Resler, 1993).


Demographic factors, such as gender and enrollment longevity also influence youth dropout levels (Astroth, 1985, Harder et al., 2005), as well as entering the program as an adolescent (Defore, Fuhrman, Peake, & Duncan, 2011; Ritchie, & Resler, 1993). Additionally, youth who identify as a member of historically underrepresented populations, such as youth with disabilities and youth of color, have been reported to be less engaged with 4-H programming due to lack of information provided about the program to culturally diverse communities (LaVergne, 2013). By investigating the influence of these characteristics, we can increase the quantity of youth able to fully experience the long-term positive impacts of 4-H programs; thus, increasing the level of civic engagement in local communities. In addition, recommendations by USDA to increase and expand 4-H membership could be addressed, in part, by youth retention.


This research activity strengthens and advances the body of knowledge investigating the reasoning and implications of 4-H youth re-enrollment rates. Subsequently, we will explore the influential factors that contribute to high youth retention levels. By analyzing these elements, we will continue building supplementary materials and systems that increase the number of youth and families that engage in 4-H youth development programming over time.


This research will be conducted in multiple states throughout the country. As the demographics and socioeconomics of our society evolve, 4-H continually must develop deeply integrated systems to better understand and serve the ever-shifting societal culture of their respective communities. A multistate approach will enable the collection of perspectives from a greater diversity of communities, thus yielding more generalizable findings. As such, we will be able to implement and utilize effective strategies to engage and retain more youth in 4-H programming. Consequently, more youth will receive the short- and long- term benefits of 4-H, including the knowledge, attitudes and skills needed to become competent, caring, and contributing citizens of the world, as well as thriving and successful adults. This research study directly benefits 4-H youth and families, as well as potential youth and families by improving the program internally. Further, the finding that a majority of states and territories have experienced a decline in 4-H enrollment from 1996 to 2003 and 2010 to 2014 demonstrates the recruitment and retainment dilemma is not only situated in a local state context or environment. It suggests there are robust factors that parallel between state 4-H programs. We need to ascertain the factors contributing to decreased enrollments and identify similarities and differences in recruitment and retention between states.




Through retention efforts that reduce youth dropout rates in 4-H programming, more youth can experience the benefits that 4-H provides. Past research has shown that youth involved in 4-H programming develop critical life and leadership skills such as problem-solving, goal setting, communication, considering the perspective of others, public speaking, viewing themselves as a community resource, responsibility, and developing a sense of belonging and purpose (Brennan, Barnett, & Lesmeister 2007; Calvert, de Montmollin, & Winnett, 2015; Dodd, Follmer-Reece, Kostina-Ritchey, & Reyna, 2015; McElprang & Nash, 2014). Additionally, compared to non-4-H youth, those affiliated with 4-H are more likely to contribute to their communities; participate in science, engineering, and computer technology programs; make healthier choices; and report higher academic competence (Lerner & Lerner, 2013). Youth in 4-H also develop critical skills to be informed and active citizens, such as developing knowledge about local government and discussing local issues with others (Calvert et al., 2015). Furthermore, 4-H alumni report that through 4-H, they developed essential life skills such as public speaking, self-discipline, civic responsibility, and self-esteem (Fox, Schroeder, & Lodl, 2003; Maas, Wilken, Jordan, Culen, & Place, 2006). In addition, former 4-Hers reported that they volunteer, hold leadership positions in community organizations, and continue to be a part of 4-H as adult volunteers (Merten et al., 2014). They have also been found to be more skilled at developing nurturing relationships and working in teams, skills needed to transition and persist in college (Ratkos & Knollenberg, 2015). Finally, research has demonstrated that participants who had been involved with 4-H for a more extended period were significantly better able to make decisions, communicate, and think critically (Haas et al., 2015). The vast amount of previous research shows that engaging youth in 4-H has the potential to shape their lives positively. In turn, youth that are retained will make more significant contributions to their community by remaining engaged, volunteering, and maintaining employment. Long-term engagement in 4-H benefits not only the youth but their communities as well. Finding ways to retain youth in the program for more than a year can profoundly impact society because of the skills developed and opportunities provided to youth in 4-H.In examining why 4-H enrollment and retention have decreased across the country, this project will fill a variety of gaps in the literature about 4-H involvement. We have yet to understand the underlying reasons that explain 4-H retention rates. Based on preliminary data in California, we know that many youth are only enrolled in 4-H for one year (approximately 50%). In Florida, enrollment decreases the most among middle-school aged youth (DeCubellis & Barrick, 2020). This decreased involvement has implications for the 4-H program. For example, there may be less money distributed to the program, as well as more difficult in attaining private funding if we are not serving our diverse populations. In addition, dissatisfied youth and families may encourage others to leave or not join the program. Understanding experiences with the program can help ensure the future of the 4-H program.


This proposal aims to build upon the previous five years of work of the Youth Retention Stud.y: Specifically, we will continue to look at and build upon the questions: How do the experiences during the first year in 4-H affect retention? How does that compare in other youth development programs? Does the 4-H experience vary by different backgrounds with the program, such as those that are brand new (first generation) versus those with a family history in 4-H (e.g., fifth generation)? What are the components of the 4-H program that attract or deter youth and their parents? What are the factors that influence whether a youth member stays in the 4-H club program? In what ways does culture—both the cultural background of participants and the culture of our 4-H organization—impact youth recruitment and retention? How do positive youth development principles align with member retention?


Answers to these questions will deepen our understanding of the complexities at work in retaining 4-H youth and inform how best to address the issues. The project will then explore strategies at the local, state and national levels, to address retention. The project fits the Extension model of research informing practice to better the lives of youth and families by having more youth and families engaged in 4-H, and the communities in which they live, through the positive impacts youth experience in 4-H over multiple years.


Retention phenomenon is not unique to any one state and therefore this multistate project will substantially contribute to the identification of underlying factors that help explain the context surrounding youth dropout (or retention) in 4-H programs.

Other investigations of youth retention have been restricted to data within states or counties with application to programming and youth often limited to those geographic boundaries (e.g., Harder et al., 2005; Russell & Heck, 2008; Defore et al. 2011; Pipkin, 2016; Ellison & Harder, 2018). This multistate 4-H youth retention study increases the heterogeneity of the youth population and thus the generalizability of the findings would be greater than single-state studies. A multistate approach provides an opportunity to identify factors that cut across contexts and populations that National could address, and provides the diversity needed to gain a nuanced picture of what matters and for whom. A team of Cooperative Extension staff from California, Florida, Louisiana, Tennessee, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Washington have been examining retention in these states and are proposing to continue and expand this research.



Importance of Study

The United States is becoming more diverse with Latinos estimated to comprise 28% (Census, 2018) and African Americans 15% (Vespa, 2020) of the population by 2060. Ethnic minority populations are resilient when facing a variety of risk factors, such as poverty, discrimination, and social determinants of health (Braveman, 2011). Understanding the cultural values and norms of diverse populations is important for youth development programs to understand so that we may best meet their needs. While families help buffer youth against challenging circumstances, 4-H youth development programs can play an important role in helping families thrive. For example, youth who participated in California’s 4-H program were found to be more satisfied with their mental and emotional health (76%) compared to the general population (57%) (4-H Alumni Study, 2021). California 4-H alumni were also found to be twice more likely to feel financially stable and optimistic about their future compared to the general population (4-H Alumni Study, 2021). These results provide evidence that 4-H can help youth buffer against social determinants of health.


While 4-H can help youth thrive, retention in the program can ensure higher dosage of developmental contexts, such as positive relationships that provide youth with a sense of belonging (Arnold, 2020). Retention in the 4-H program can help provide certain with multiple sources of positive developmental contexts that support their wellbeing over time. Because of cultural differences among difference racial and ethnic groups in the United States, more understanding is needed about which factors shape youth’s retention in the 4-H positive youth development program.

Related, Current and Previous Work

The Youth Retention Study team has spent the last five years conducting research and deveoping scholarhip to share with colleagues in the field of postive youth development. The intention is to build upon this work by creating an intervention Community of Practice, whereby we're working with extension professionals to implement lessons learned from this current study. Below is a list of related past work. 

Peer-reviewed journal articles 

Lewis, K. M., Borba, J., Hill, R. D., & Miller, J. C. (2019). Effective Communication of 4-H Program Essentials to 4-H Families. The Journal of Extension, 57(3), Article 8. https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/joe/vol57/iss3/8 

Lewis, K. M., Ewers, T., Miller, J. C., Bird, M., Borba, J., Hill, R., ...Trzesniewski, K. (2018).Addressing retention in youth programs: A survey for understanding families' experiences  Journal of Extension, 56

Lewis, K.M., Hensley, S., Bird, M., Rea-Keywood, J., Miller, J.C., Kok, C.M., Shelstad, N. (In Press) Why Youth Leave 4-H After the First Year: A Multistate Study. Journal of Human Sciences and Extension.

Conference Seminars, Research Reports, Posters. 

Parental Expectations and Volunteer Engagement: Results from a Multi-State Youth Retention Study. Research Seminar to be presnted at National Exgtension Conference on Volunteerism (May 2023). Rodriguez, M., Elprang, M., Franks, M., Miller, J.C.

Multi-State 4-H Youth Retention Study: Qualitative & Quantitative Findings. Poster to be presented at National Extension Confernece on Volunteerism (May 2023) Rea-Keywood, J., Miller, J.C., Hensley, S.T., Pracht. D. 

Multi-State 4-H Youth Retention Study: Qualitative & Quantitative Findings. Poster presented at Extension Leadership Conference (January 2022) Rea-Keywood, J., Miller, J.C., Hensley, S.T., Pracht. D. 

Recruitment Strategies for 4-H: Evidence from the Youth Retention Study. JoLynn Miller, University of California; Jeannette Rea Keywood, Rutgers University; Sarah Hensley, University of Florida; Kendra Lewis, University of New Hampshire; and the Youth Retention Study Team Members (January 2022) Poster NAE4-HYDP.

YRS Data Party: Illinois. 10 slides. (April 2022). JoLynn Miller, Sarah Hensley, Marianne Bird, Missy McElprang, Meggan Franks, Kendra Lewis.

Finding Harmony From Qualitative Data Analysis. (January 2022). 27 slides Sarah Hensley, University of Florida, Jeannette Rea Keywood, Rutgers University, JoLynn Miller, University of California, Cindy Wells, University of Missouri, Youth Retention Study Team

A Youth Retention Study of First Year 4-H Members. Poster presented at the Joint Council of Extension Professionals Extension Leadership Conference, Virtual. Kok, C.M., Bird, M., Hensley, S., Wells, C., and Miller, J.C. (2021, February).  

Adult Perceptions of First-Year Experiences in 4-H. Poster presented at the Joint Council of Extension Professionals Extension Leadership Conference, San Antonio, Texas. Hensley, S., Rea-Keywood, J., Miller, J., Cummins, M. & Hill, R. (2020, February).  

Understanding Recruitment and Retention in the 4-H Club Program: A multi-state Research Project. Research Roundtable Session at the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents Conference, Boise, Idaho. Hensley, S., Rea-Keywood, J., Miller, J., Kok, C.M., Cummins, M., Pracht, D., Bird, M., Torbert, S., and Fox, J. (2020, November). 

Understanding Recruitment and Retention in the 4-H Club Program: A multi-state research project. Research session at the National ESP Conference, Virtual. Hensley, S., Rea-Keywood, J., Miller, J. & Pracht, D. (2020, October). 

Enhancing Your Program’s Peak Performance by Engaging Stakeholders in Data Interpretation. Research Presentation at Epsilon Sigma Phi Conference, Colorado Springs, Colorado. Hill, R., Rea-Keywood, J., Hensley, S. and Fox, J. (2019, October). 

Adult Perceptions of First-Year Experience in 4-H. Poster Session at Epsilon Sigma Phi Conference, Colorado Springs, Colorado. Rea-Keywood, J., Hensley, S., Miller, J., Kok, C. Cummins, M. Pracht, D. (2019, October). 

Understanding Program Recruitment and Retention: Lessons Learned from 4-H Youth Development. Seminar at Epsilon Sigma Phi Conference, Colorado Springs, Colorado. Fox, J., Cummins, M. Rea-Keywood, J., and Miller, J. (2019, October). 

Perceptions of First-Year Experience in 4-H (Adult). Poster Session at Epsilon Sigma Phi Conference, Colorado Springs, Colorado.  Rea-Keywood, J., Fox, J., Hill, R., & Hensley, S. (2019, October). 

4-H Youth Retention Study. State and National 4-H Staff Meeting, National Association of Extension 4-H Agents Conference, Columbus, Ohio. Rea-Keywood, J., Espinoza, D. & Shelsted, N. (2018, October). 

Awards and Recognition 

National Susan Barkman Research and Evaluation Award. (J. Miller, J. Rea-Keywood, S. Hensley, K. Lewis & Youth Retention Study Team), NAE4-HYDP, (2020). 

National Outstanding Poster Presentation Award - Adult Perceptions of First-Year Experience in 4-H. (J. Rea-Keywood, J.C. Miller, S. Hensley, J. Fox, R. Hill, & K. Lewis), Epsilon Sigma Phi, (2019). 

ANR Distinguished Service Award: Outstanding Research. Awarded by University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources. (2018). 

Excellence in Teamwork Award. Awarded by National Association for Extension 4-H Agents at the State (California), Regional (Western), and National levels. (2017). 


  1. Examine the differences of first year participants and their parent/guardians between counties who are participating in the educational intervention provided via a community of practice.
  2. Examine if and how the 4-H culture (rules, policies, procedures, rituals, language, etc.) impacts a first-year participant and their parent/guardians' perceived experience in respect to their culture of origin, race, ethnicity. Understand if and how the 4-H culture creates opportunities and/or barriers for youth to reenroll beyond their first year.
  3. 3. Understand and investigate the perceptions of 4-H educators/agents who participate in an educational intervention via a community of practice regarding practices that influence re-enrollment of first year families and subsequently member retention. Including perceived behavior change by volunteers.
  4. Explore any other facets of retention that arise to determine if specific variables (iI.e. leadership or service programs, etc.) are desired or needed to keep older youth members engaged in 4-H.



The proposed multi-state research project is a continuation of the approved Youth Retention Study. #W1203 The current study includes participation from eight states and has proven to produce findings applicable Nationwide. The continuation of this project will expand the previous research to further investigate if an intentional educational intervention with a focus on the variables that influence the perceived 4-H experience as identified in our previous study will impact future retention. The team has identified specific variables through four years of data collected across ten states that impact a family's intent to re-enroll in 4-H a second year (see citation). This quasi-experimental study proposes to collect baseline data across all states, followed by a programmatic intervention in select counties/parishes through a community of practice (COP) model, and to continue annual data collection efforts. The educational intervention will be defined as a COP offering strategic training for 4-H professionals in techniques and tools they can use to train their respective volunteers. Additional data will be collected qualitatively from Extension Agents/Educators participating in the COP across the participating states.


Specific study activities that support aforementioned objectives includes:


  • Collect qualitative data from randomly selected youth who have not re-enrolled in the 4-H program to determine in-depth reasons why youth are not choosing to remain enrolled.
  • Determine agents/educators from counties/parishes within each state that are interested in particpating in a community of practice (COP).
  • Collect baseline qualitative data from participating 4-H professionals engaged in a COP. This data will be used to modify and enhance training across the states and shared via various scholarly means Nationwide.
  • Collect baseline data at the end of the 4-H program year from first year members and their parent/guardian regarding their 4-H experience both within counties/parishes participating in COP and those who do not. These data will be used to examine trends across both counties/parishes and states to examine trends and guide the development of our educational intervention. This data will be collected annually.
  • Create curricula consisting of tools, fact sheets, and resources for extension professionals and volunteers that align with previously identified factors that influence a family's intent to re-enroll for a second year to be used in COP.
  •  Establish a COP based on previously interested counties/parishes using 4-H Extension Agents and Educators to participate in an educational intervention for each state.
  • Explore qualitative data from participating 4-H professionals engaged in a COP to determine if any of the variables previously identified (i.e. belonging, communication, addressing parent expectations) have a greater impact than another on intent to re-enroll or actual retention. This data will also include agent/educator perceptions of volunteers implementation of the proposed practices.
  • Analyze data for similarities and differences across county/parish lines, and states, to determine if the intervention has any impact on intent to re-enroll. Quantitative data will be tested for statistical differences between the states.

The research team will consider relevant findings and program improvements made as a result of the work of this group to help inform whether these improvements have impacted retention. Further, the work of WERA1010 "Improving Data Quality from Sample Surveys to foster Agricultural, Community, and Development in Rural America" has produced useful information regarding data collection in rural areas, specifically around mixed-mode data collection. Findings from this project (e.g., Israel, 2012; 2013; Trentelman, Irwin, Petersen, Ruiz, & Szalay, 2016) will be incorporated into our methodology to ensure we are not limiting our sample and therefore our generalizability.

Measurement of Progress and Results


  • Coordination of specific research and extension projects with multiple approved states
  • Coordination of data collection and analysis
  • Development of educational curricula consisting of tools, fact sheets, and resources for extension professionals and volunteers that align with previously identified factors that influence a family's intent to re-enroll for a second year
  • Modification of previous survey instrument based on previous YRS study Comments: Lewis, K. M., Ewers, T., Miller, J. C., Bird, M., Borba, J., Hill, R., ...Trzesniewski, K. (2018).Addressing retention in youth programs: A survey for understanding families' experiences Journal of Extension, 56
  • Produce scholarly work to disseminate across professional associations (National Association of 4-H Youth Development Professionals, American Evaluation Association, Joint Council of Extension Professionals) to increase interest in specific research and extension outreach

Outcomes or Projected Impacts

  • Increased awareness of generalizability of multistate findings for 4-H youth and family retention
  • Increased youth retention in 4-H in participating states, and in turn, more youth nationwide thriving as a result of their 4-H experience
  • Increased number of youth engaged in 4-H in the counties participating in the intervention.
  • Greater understanding of 4-H as a culturally relevant program and barriers that exist to inclusion.
  • Increased awareness by volunteers of factors that promote youth retention.


(2023):Collect baseline data on First-Year experiences from the member and the parent/guardian. The research team will use the previous survey with slight modifications based on previous years of data collection.

(2024):Develop curricula to reflect variables identified

(2024):Recruit Extension Agents/Educators to participate in a Community of Practices from select counties in each participating state who will commit to the five-year proposed intervention. Begin intervention.

(2023):Starting in 2023, annually collect data from first-year members and parent/guardians.

(2024):Starting in 2024,collect qualitative data from Extension Agents/Educators participating in the COP

(2025):Finalize data analysis and share all tools developed and findings Nationally through various means such as journal articles and presentations.

Projected Participation

View Appendix E: Participation

Outreach Plan

The findings will be shared with staff directly involved in the study to help inform volunteer development, family recruitment, youth onboarding, and club practices to improve youth retention. Information will be shared with 4-H professionals and staff through various scholarly works such as peer-reviewed publications, conference presentations and posters, fact sheets, and professional association webinars. 

The findings from the objectives may reveal information about community members not represented or underrepresented in 4-H programming. In turn, those data would inform development of strategies that mitigate the underrepresentation of such community members. The mitigating strategies could include collaboration with existing community-based organizations working with the underrepresented community and could inform issues of access, among other things. In addition, as a multistate endeavor, the findings lend themselves to other multistate activities such as materials and training for 4-H welcoming to new families


Ms. JoLynn Miller (California) and Dr. Sarah Hensley (Florida) have successfully co-led the project for the last three years with Ms. Miller being an original leader of the project and Dr. Hensley being a participant for all five years. It is recommended that they continue in the roles of Chair (Ms. Miller) and Co-Chair (Dr. Hensley) to have continuity of the project. They will delegate secretary duties. Their roles will be to coordinate monthly phone calls, take the lead on completing or delegating tasks in the project, ensure that teams members are completing tasks and contributing to the project, and all other tasks related to moving the project forward. Decisions for the project are made through a group process, generally during the project’s monthly calls, or via email. Ms. Miller and Dr. Hensley will facilitate the discussion of these decisions, and follow through with the group’s decision. If the group does not reach a consensus, or has “no opinion,” Ms. Miller and Dr. Hensley will make final decisions. They will ensure that a representative from each state is involved in the decision-making process. The present study group has formed various subgroups: qualitative analysis, quantitative analysis, examining 4-H culture, and implementation (i.e., taking results of the study and creating and implementing an action plan to address these results). Each subgroup has a lead contact; Ms. Miller and Dr. Hensley will delegate decision-making and leadership roles to the subgroup lead, but will serve as a support for that lead. Should more subgroups form as a result of further research activities, the same process will be used for these new groups. 

Literature Cited

Astroth, K.A. (1985). The Challenge of retaining 4-H members, Journal of Extension, 23(3). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/1985fall/sa4.php 

Brennan, M. A., Barnett, R., & Lesmeister, M. (2007). Enhancing leadership, local capacity, and youth involvement in the community development process: Findings from a survey of Florida youth. Journal of the Community Development Society, 38(4), 13–27. 

Calvert, M., de Montmollin, J., & Winnett, T. (2015). Youth representation on county government committees: Youth in governance in Kenosha County, Wisconsin. Journal of Extension, 53(6). Available at https://joe.org/joe/2015december/rb4.php 

DeCubellis, C., & Barrick, K. (2020). Sense of Belonging as Perceived by Youths Who Continue Participation in 4-H. The Journal of Extension, 58(3), Article 19. https://tigerprints.clemson.edu/joe/vol58/iss3/19

Defore, A., Fuhrman, N.E., Peake, J.B., & Duncan, D.W., (2011). Factors influencing 4-H club enrollment and retention in Georgia. Journal of Youth Development, 6(2). Available at http://www.nae4ha.com/assets/documents/JYDfinal0602.pdf 

Dodd, S., Follmer-Reece, H. E., Kostina-Ritchey, E., & Reyna, R. (2015). Food challenge: Serving up 4-H to non-traditional audiences. Journal of Extension, 53(4). Available at https://www.joe.org/joe/2015august/iw5.php 

Ellison, S., & Harder, A. (2018). Factors contributing to the retention of senior 4-H members: From the youth perspective. Journal of Human Sciences and Extension, 6(3), 10. Available at https://scholarsjunction.msstate.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1187&context=jhse  

Fox, J. E., & Schroeder, D., & Lodl, K.  (Winter 2003). Life Skill Development through Out of School 4-H Clubs:  The Perspective of 4-H Alumni. Journal of Extension, 41(2). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/2003december/rb2.shtml 

Haas, B. E., Mincemoyer, C. C., & Perkins, D. F. (2015). The effects of age, gender, and 4-H involvement on life skills development. Journal of Extension, 53(3). Available at https://joe.org/joe/2015june/a8.php 

Hamilton, S.F., Northern, A., & Neff, R., (2014) Strengthening 4-H by analyzing enrollment data. Journal of Extension, 32(3). Available at: http://www.joe.org/joe/2014june/a7.php 

Harder, A., Lamm A., Lamm, D., Rose, H., & Rask, G., (2005) An in-depth look at 4-H enrollment and retention. Journal of Extension, 43(5). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/2005october/rb4p.shtml 

Hartley, R. S., (1983) Keeping 4-H members. Journal of Extension, 21(4). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/1983july/a4.php 

Hensley, S. T. (2022). A qualitative study of the perceptions of Florida 4-H youth to determine program quality elements and impacts. University of Florida. Dissertation.

Israel, G. D. (2013). Using Mixed-Mode Contacts in Client Surveys: Getting More Bang for Your Buck. Journal of Extension, 51(3). Available at https://www.joe.org/joe/2013june/a1.php 

Israel, G. D. (2013). Combining mail and e-mail contacts to facilitate participation in mixed-mode surveys. Social Science Computer Review, 31, 346-358. 

LaVergne, D. D. (2013). Diversity Inclusion in 4-H Youth Programs: Examining the Perceptions Among West Virginia 4-H Youth Professionals. Journal of Extension, 51(4). https://archives.joe.org/joe/2013august/a1.php 

Lerner R. M., & Lerner, J. V. (2013). The positive development of youth: Comprehensive findings from the 4-H study of positive youth development. Chevy Chase, MD: National 4-H Council. Available at: http://www.4-h.org/About-4-H/Research/PYD-Wave-9-2013.dwn 

Lewis, K. M., Horrillo, S. J., Worker, S. M., Miller, J., & Trzesniewski, K. (2015). Retaining youth: An examination of California 4-H youth enrollment trends. Paper presented at the American Evaluation Association, Chicago, IL. 

Maass, S. E., Wilken, C. S., Jordan, J., Culen, G., & Place, N. (2006). A comparison of 4-H and other youth development organizations in the development of life skills. Journal of Extension, 44(5). Available at https://www.joe.org/joe/2006october/rb2.php 

McElprang Cummings, M., & Nash, S. (2014). Urban youth develop life skills raising livestock. Journal of Extension, 52(5). Available at https://www.joe.org/joe/2014october/iw7.php 

Merten, K., Locke, D., Williams, M., Carter, M., & Lehman, K. (2014). Impact of 4-H on alumni’s community involvement. Journal of Extension, 52(5). Available at https://joe.org/joe/2014october/rb8.php 

Pearson, L. M., Russell, C. A., & Reisner, E. R., (2007). Evaluation of OST programs for youth. Policy Studies Associates, Inc. Washington, D.C. Available at http://www.nyc.gov/html/records/pdf/govpub/3597year_2_interim_report_june_2007,_final.pdf 

Pipkin, C. P. (2016). Motivational factors impacting youth participation in West Tennessee 4-H (unpublished master’s thesis). University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN. Available at http://trace.tennessee.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=5228&context=utk_gradthes 

Pratt, C., & Bowman, S. (2008). Principles of effective behavior change: Application to Extension family educational programming. Journal of Extension, 46(5). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/2008october/a2.php 

Ratkos, J. & Knollenberg, L. (2015). College transition study shows 4-H helps youth prepare for and succeed in college. Journal of Extension, 53(4). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/2015august/a7.php 

Ritchie, R.M., & Resler, K.M., (1993). Why youth drop out of 4-H. Journal of Extension, 31(1). Available at http://www.joe.org/joe/1993spring/rb3.php 

Russell, S. T., & Heck, K. E. (2008). Middle school dropout? Enrollment trends in the California 4-H youth development program. Applied Development Science, 12(1), 1-9. 

Trentelman, C. K., Petersen, K. A., Irwin, J., Ruiz, N., & Szalay, C. S. (2016). The case for personal interaction: Drop-off/pick-up methodology for survey research. Journal of Rural Social Sciences, 31(3), 68-104 

United States Department of Agriculture (20140. Total Enrollment (Duplications Elimitnated). Washington, DC: USDA. Available at https://reeis.usda.gov/reports-and-documents/4-h-reports



Land Grant Participating States/Institutions


Non Land Grant Participating States/Institutions

University of Florida
Log Out ?

Are you sure you want to log out?

Press No if you want to continue work. Press Yes to logout current user.

Report a Bug
Report a Bug

Describe your bug clearly, including the steps you used to create it.