4-H & Youth Development

Diogenes Quote on a tie dye background, " The foundation of every state is the education of its youth"

Through 4-H and the Positive Youth Development Institute, the University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension offers young people ways to explore new skills, build self-awareness, and contribute to community legacy. Inspired by the Wisconsin Idea, expert knowledge networks, and ongoing research, 4-H Youth Development Educators design learning, leadership, and citizenship programs for local youth to thrive. These experiences expand area capacities by working in partnerships, collaborations, and public facilitation roles to interconnect citizens. Youth are empowered to address issues affecting their needs, as well as celebrate esteemable acts to motivate them forward.

The Ashland County 4-H Youth Development team connects with schools, tribal communities, faith-based groups, youth-serving agencies, and other area organizations to collaborate on developing quality youth programs throughout the region. This in turn helps our area inform different parts of Wisconsin and the nation on the special skills, wisdoms, and experiences we carry and honor in the northwoods. Youth programming in our community focuses on building personal integrity and having fun as a team, all while supporting each individual’s uniqueness and confidence. Our programs help youth to:

  • Develop and test practical living skills in a safe and supportive environment.
  • Become actively engaged in their communities and better informed about local issues.
  • Experience success in non-formal learning environments.
  • Develop communication and problem-solving skills through public presentation and group work.
  • Recognize that the skills learned through youth programs are transferable to later hobbies and careers.


Kate Wallner serves Ashland County as the 4-H Youth Development Educator. To learn more about 4-H Youth Development programming and the role of Extension in Ashland County, send her an email (kate.wallner@wisc.edu) or call 715-208-0664! You can also share ideas through the short survey found here!

An EEO/AA employer, University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension provides equal opportunities in employment and programming, including Title VI, Title IX, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act requirements. Discrimination on the basis of age, race, color, creed or religion, national origin, ancestry, gender, sexual orientation, marital or parental status, pregnancy, veterans’ status, arrest or non-job or program related conviction record or qualified disability is prohibited. In accordance with federal law and its enacting regulations, any person with limited English proficiency (LEP) has the right to request and receive information related to Extension’s educational programming and services in a language other than English. In order to receive assistance with interpretation and/or translation needs, or any other matter related to language access issues, please contact: oaic@extension.wisc.edu