Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Exploration Days 2011

Registration Books and Forms are now available at the Marquette County MSU Extension office or may be downloaded (see "Forms" below).

About 4-H Exploration Days
More than 2,500 students and adult chaperones will be on the Michigan State University campus June 22-24 for the 42nd annual 4-H Exploration Days.  Participants stay in residence halls and attend sessions in their areas of interest ranging from veterinary medicine to Web design, performing arts, how to start their own business, organic farming and many more. Nearly 200 hands-on classroom and field trip sessions are offered.   Participants from Marquette County must have turned 12 years old before January 1, 2011 in order to participate in the event.

Exploration Days, Michigan’s largest annual 4-H event, is designed to help students learn new ideas and techniques while exploring career options and developing decision-making, independence and teamwork skills. They also meet and interact with people from different backgrounds and areas throughout
Michigan. 4-H volunteers and staff are on hand to offer oversight and guidance.

“Exploration Days gives 4-H youth an authentic collegiate experience,” says Judy Ratkos, MSU Extension 4-H Youth Development program leader and coordinator of the event. “They are exposed to things they cannot get at the local level. Information learned in a session may spark their interest in a college major or career.”

When not in sessions, students will have a plethora of recreation and learning choices. This year’s Exploration Days features tours of the MSU Skandalaris Football Center, Breslin Student Events Center, the MSU Dairy Store, the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, the 4-H Children’s Gardens and a planetarium show. The opening night entertainment on June 22 features “4-H’s Got Talent!” with performances by a variety of talented groups and individual 4-H’ers and alumni at the Wharton Center Great Hall. The annual State 4-H Awards Celebration, a formal event celebrating the accomplishments of more than 160 Michigan 4-H members, takes place June 23.

Cost and Scholarship Information

The options above show the cost for youth to participate in the event.  The costs include a $165.00 Exploration Days Registration Fee,  a $23.00 early arrival fee, a $50.00 bus fee, and (for youth not currently enrolled in 4-H) a $10.00 Participation Fee.  In addition to these fees, participants are also responsible for 3 meals while traveling to and from East Lansing.  Some sessions also require that participants pay a "session fee".  See registration booklet for more info.  

The Marquette County 4-H Council and the State 4-H Office provide financial assistance to support the participation of Marquette County youth in this event.  
New this year:  Youth must complete scholarship applications in order to receive financial assistance.  

Marquette County 4-H Council Scholarship

The Marquette County 4-H Council will provide $113.00 scholarships to youth who complete a Marquette County 4-H Council - Exploration Days Scholarship Application Form.  The form must be received by the Marquette County MSU Extension office by April 22, 2011 in order for youth to get this scholarship.

State 4-H Scholarship

Each year the State 4-H office awards each county a limited number of Exploration Days Scholarships.  These $40 scholarships are available to full time youth participants only.  These scholarships are to support participation of financially limited youths who would otherwise not attend and to encourage and support youth who have not participated in Exploration Days in the past.

Registration Instructions and Deadlines

Please note: All participants MUST include 8 session choices on their registration form.  You will not be registered unless your form has all 8 session choice lines completed. 

Everything you need to register for Exploration Days is in the Registration Book.  You can download the book (or only the forms) from this blog.  Printed books are also available at the MSU Extension office.  Feel free to stop by and pick one up or contact the office and we can mail you the book and forms. 

Sessions are assigned in the order that registrations are received, so early registration is highly encouraged!  For the best chance of getting assigned to the sessions of your choice, have all paperwork completed and turned in to the Marquette County MSU Extension office no later than March 18, 2011.   Scholarship applications are due April 22.  The final day to register is April 29, 2011.

Registration Book

Registration Forms Only
Registration Check List
Marquette County 4-H Scholarship Application Form

State 4-H Scholarship Application Form

For more information about 4-H Exploration Days, visit