Art of Ranching: Engaging Youth in Community History Expansion

Front Range Region



(Douglas, Morgan, Weld)

Primary Topic:

Youth and Family Development

Other Topics:

Food and Agriculture, Natural Resources and Sustainability

Lead Mentor:  

Jacie Rex

4-H Youth Development

Internship Overview:

Colorado has strong 4-H programs and an important agricultural legacy, especially when it comes to ranching. Many 4-H youth in the state are deeply engaged in agriculture in their communities and many of those agricultural operations are multi-generational. The Art of Ranching (AOR) project engages 4-H youth in examining the significance and diversity of agricultural production in their own community, through multi-generational oral histories. The shared authority protocols (producing histories through collaboration) inherent in oral history collection, archival historical research, and public history interpretation allows participants to co-create and interpret their own past. Oral history collection by 4-H youth engages multiple generations, often within the same family, in sharing and transferring knowledge to younger generations.

Goals, Scope and Objectives:

This Extension internship builds upon the existing work of the Art of Ranching Project, which is one of the Office of Engagement and Extension’s Rural Initiative projects, from Summer 2022. The overall goal of the internship is to A) provide the intern with opportunities to develop their youth engagement and programming skills and B) provide the intern with opportunities to build upon their public history and public communication skills. During the course of this internship, the intern will: 1) support and assist in the training of 4-H youth in oral history interviewing; 2) engage in site visits to properties; and 3) conduct archival research, work with local historians and city planners as needed. Travel is expected in late May and at one additional time. Travel outside CSU will be covered. Accommodations for any overnight stays will also be provided.

With which stakeholder group(s) will the intern work?

The intern will be working with counties participating in the Summer 2023 AOR project, supporting 1) 4-H youth supervised by 4-H volunteers, 2) family/Centennial ranches as identified by the lead mentor; and 3) local historians and history institutions as identified by the lead mentor.

What student learning outcomes do you anticipate and what are the opportunities for professional development?

At the end of the internship, the intern will be able to 1) facilitate oral history training with 4-H youth; 2) collaborate with local historians and history institutions to produce accurate interpretations of agriculture/ranching histories; and 3) contribute to a public/digital history project that involves community members, local historians and history institutions, and that accurately reflects the histories and interests of participants.
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