Marvil attends National 4-H Congress

December 19, 2006|by BETH BUBACZ

National 4-H Congress is one of the great out-of-state trips available to youth in the Maryland 4-H program.

National 4-H Congress was held Nov. 24-28 in Atlanta.

For 80 years, youth from the United States and its territories have participated in this youth leadership development conference.

The gathering provides youth, ages 14 to 19, a quality, educational and cross-cultural experience that exceeds what any state independently provides. This year's theme was "Lead, Learn, Grow."

During Congress, youth participate in seminars, discussion groups and a service learning experience.

Washington County was represented well by Seth Marvil, 16. Seth is the son of Charles and Mary Ann Marvil of Sharpsburg. He is a member of the Sharpsburg 4-H Club and has been in 4-H for seven years.

To participate in National 4-H Congress, a 4-H member delegate from each Maryland county and Baltimore City must be chosen after an application process.


"Seth always steps up to leadership roles in our club," said Sharpsburg 4-H club leader Renee Price. "He is very good at organizing events and I can always depend on the Marvil family." Recently, Seth helped organize the club's annual Christmas caroling event to senior citizens in Sharpsburg.

One of the components to National 4-H Congress is community service. Participants can choose from a variety of activities.

Seth said he chose the Festival of Trees event held at the Georgia World Congress Center. The festival was a fundraising holiday event for the Children's Health Care System. For their part, 4-H'ers helped organize and place trees, wrap presents, place props around displays, and string lights.

In addition to Seth's work in his community club, he is a member of the Rifle Club and a teen leader at the 4-H Resident and Day Camps.

At the Maryland 4-H State Smallbore Rifle Match this past September in Marriotsville, Md., Seth earned an Individual Proficiency Award for the Senior Division.

Washington County's team, coached by Norris Diefenderfer, took the overall first place award in the senior division.

Seth also holds 4-H projects in aerospace, photography, computers, citizenship and gardening.

Said his mother, Mary Ann, "4-H has done so much for Seth over the years. It is a place where he can truly be himself."

The trip to Atlanta was Seth's first trip on an airplane. He said he was nervous at first but was excited about the opportunity.

At the Congress, "just being able to meet delegates from across the country was enjoyable in and of itself," he said. "I really liked meeting and talking to new people."

Beth Bubacz is an Extension educator, specializing in 4-H youth development, for the University of Maryland Cooperative Extension. She is based in Washington County. She can be reached weekdays by telephone at 301-791-1404, ext. 24, or by e-mail at

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