Susanne Skeen has been involved with 4-H nearly her entire life. She was recently recognized for 35 years of volunteering her head, heart, hand, and health.
Skeen enjoyed participating in the national club when she was younger. She particularly remembers her sewing clubs and also participating in home development clubs. As she got older she wanted to stay a part of the organization and give her daughter, Diane, the same great 4-H experience she had enjoyed.
After taking a class on refinishing wood, she organized a 4-H club to teach other generations the skills she had learned. Skeen led that first club in Hooper. She then moved to Morgan and has led in our valley for three and a half decades.
With excellent sewing ability, Skeen gathered her daughters’ friends and taught them the skill. She didn’t stop volunteering when Diane grew out of the program. Instead, she continued her service and was able to teach her granddaughters and their friends. Through the years she has enjoyed teaching a variety of clubs including foods, sewing, gardening and cake decorating. Susanne and Diane have been able to work together on clubs through the years.
Skeen has also served outside of clubs. She tries to volunteer to judge at least one fair a year. “I enjoy doing that,” Skeen explains. She finds it exciting to see what the other counties are doing in 4-H.
Skeen continues to support 4-H in other ways including assisting at cooking camps. She and a neighbor, Lyletta Searle, work with 4-H leaders to plan and present camps for youth to learn and practice food preparation skills.
One of her favorite parts of being involved in 4-H has been working with the different people over 4-H. She has fond memories of each one and was inspired by their hard work and determination. Each of the leaders had their own style and talents and Skeen thoroughly enjoyed working with each of them. “They are all hard workers and put in a lot of time,” Skeen said.
Selfless in her desires, Skeen’s favorite aspect with working in 4-H is seeing the accomplishments of the kids. One particularly fond memory she has is when her granddaughter, Kacie, won the foods contest at Utah State University when she was in high school. She has enjoyed watching youth learn new things and working on projects.
Thirty-five years of service exceeds expectations of volunteering. Her caring personality and devoted work ethic have touched many youth over the years. Morgan is proud to have a caring leader such as Susanne Skeen and 4-H is lucky to have her.
For more information on how to get involved with 4H contact the Morgan Extensions Office, 48 West Young Street, Courthouse. Office: (801) 829-3472. Office Hours: Monday - Thursday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Did you know?
The 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development, a longitudinal study conducted by the Institute for Applied Research in Youth Development at Tufts University, shows youth engaged with 4-H are:
•Nearly two times more likely to get better grades in school;
•Nearly two times more likely to plan to go to college;
•41 percent less likely to engage in risky behaviors; and
•25 percent more likely to positively contribute to their families and communities.