4-H Cit­i­zen­ship Cer­e­mony cel­e­brated

The Covington News - - OBITUARIES -

New­ton 4-H’ers were part of the record 117 par­tic­i­pants in the 55th 4-H Cit­i­zen­ship Cer­e­mony at State 4-H Coun­cil last month.

Each year, high school 4-H’ers gather at State 4-H Coun­cil to elect Ge­or­gia of­fi­cers, make any con­sti­tu­tional changes, com­pete against the other dis­tricts, and, of course, to make new friends. While the com­pe­ti­tions and the dance mu­sic have changed a bit over the years, tra­di­tions such as the Cit­i­zen­ship Cer­e­mony haven’t changed in more than a half-cen­tury.

Harold Dar­den, re­tired as­so­ciate state 4-H leader emer­i­tus, wrote the cer­e­mony in 1959 to charge 4-H’ers com­ing of vot­ing age to take their place in the po­lit­i­cal process. In the cer­e­mony, youths are told that “eter­nal vig­i­lance is the price of democ­racy. The bless­ings it be­stows come not with­out obli­ga­tion. Ac­tive, in­tel­li­gent par­tic­i­pa­tion rather than blind al­le­giance is de­manded of us.”

They then take the fol­low­ing oath:

We, in­di­vid­u­ally and col­lec­tively, pledge our ef­forts

We will never al­low tyranny and in­jus­tice to - ence to our du­ties as cit -

We will strive for per­fec

We will de­vote our tal -

We will en­deavor to - ter­ity, not merely as we

From my year in the cit­i­zen­ship cer­e­mony, I re­memb e r get­ting to stand at the front of the Rock Ea­gle au­di­to­rium with a flag as we took the oath, a huge flag fly­ing on the stage be­hind us.

I made sure to reg­is­ter to vote in Mr. Charles Woods’ class­room at New­ton High as soon as I turned 17.5, so that I could vote the day I turned 18 if there were an elec­tion (there wasn’t, but I was aw­fully ex­cited when my voter regis­tra­tion card turned up promptly af­ter my birth­day). Even as a col­lege stu­dent in Athens, I re­quested each and ev­ery ab­sen­tee bal­lot from New­ton County elec­tions.

I also made sure I was aware of what we were vot- ing for well be­fore the elec­tion, do­ing my re­search so that I could vote for the ideals I held most im­por­tant. My par­ents have chap­er­oned the State 4-H Coun­cil del­e­ga­tion for many years, and said they’ve heard a lot of dis­cus­sion on the way home each year about what it means to be a good cit­i­zen. They said the 4-H’ers no­tice that it means more than just ac­tive and in­tel­li­gent par­tic­i­pa­tion in vot­ing, or even serv­ing as soldiers.

It’s also things they’re al­ready prac­tic­ing as youths — like leav­ing our com­mu­nity more beau­ti­ful than we found it through ac­tiv­i­ties with Keep Cov­ing­ton/New­ton Beau­ti­ful, the Great Amer­i­can Clean-Up and Rivers Alive.

Our Youth Sum­mit team used a grant to pur­chase a “lit­tle free li­brary” to bring book lend­ing to this com­mu­nity, which will be in­stalled by the fall.

4-H’ers con­trib­ute to our com­mu­nity’s recre­ational and so­cial needs through ser­vice such as at the In­de­pen­dence Day cel­e­bra­tion on the square this week.

And as each of th­ese youths moves off to col­lege, they’ll take some part of this cit­i­zen­ship oath with them, con­tin­u­ing to serve our com­mu­nity, state, coun­try and world for the rest of their lives.

It’s easy to see the re­sults in our com­mu­nity by the num­ber of 4-H alumni serv­ing not only on ev­ery elected board in our county, but also by the in­cred­i­ble num­ber of peo­ple ready to share a fa­vorite 4-H mem­ory ev­ery time you at­tend a com­mu­nity event or ser­vice pro­ject. Aca­demic hon­ors

The fol­low­ing stu­dents were named to the dean’s list at the Sa­van­nah Col­lege of Art and De­sign, Sa­van­nah, for spring quar­ter 2013: Samelia Bankole of Cov­ing­ton; Am­ber Jones of Cov­ing­ton; Jamie Lane of So­cial Cir­cle; Robert My­ers of Ox­ford; and Maria Zu­rita of Cov­ing­ton.

Full-time un­der­grad­u­ate stu­dents who earn a GPA of 3.5 or above for the quar­ter re­ceive recog­ni­tion on the dean’s list.

The fol­low­ing stu­dents were named to the honor list of Ox­ford Col­lege for the 2013 spring se­mes­ter; Robert Hight of Cov­ing­ton; El­iz­a­beth Dobbs of Cov­ing­ton; Michelle Eady of Ox­ford; and Kevin Chil­dress of Cov­ing­ton. Stu­dents must have a cu­mu­la­tive grade point aver­age of 3.5 or higher to be named to the honor list.

The fol­low­ing stu­dents were named to Ox­ford’s merit list, de­not­ing a GPA of 3.0 or higher dur­ing the pre­vi­ous se­mes­ter: Stephanie Hern­don of Cov­ing­ton; Michela Man­ning of Cov­ing­ton; and Tyler Moon of Cov­ing­ton.

The fol­low­ing stu­dents were named to the dean’s list of Emory Col­lege of Gill grad­u­ates

Joshua Gill grad­u­ated last month from the IE Busi­ness School (Madrid, Spain) and Brown Univer­sity in Prov­i­dence, R.I. He is the son of Kevin and Kathy Gill of Ox­ford and a 1997 grad­u­ate of New­ton High School. Of­fered jointly by both schools, the IEBrown EMBA blends tra­di­tional busi­ness ed­u­ca­tion with lib­eral arts to go be­yond busi­ness and ad­dress a wide range of non-mar­ket is­sues that af­fect to­day’s busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment. Gill, who also grad­u­ated from the Univer­sity of Ge­or­gia with a bach­e­lor’s de­gree is 2001 and a mas­ter’s in 2004, lives in Wash­ing­ton, D.C., with his wife Tara, and their 3-year-old daugh­ter Delia.

Sub­mit­ted photo /The Cov­ing­ton News

New­ton 4-H’ers Brad­ford Porter of New­ton High and Mary Lathem and Mal­lori John­son of East­side High at­tended State 4-H Coun­cil at Rock Ea­gle.

TERRI KIM­BLE

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