Fifth Annual Iowa 4-H Reporters Program Offers Youth Hands-On Learning at Iowa State Fair

August 6, 2021, 8:57 am | Valyn Bodensteiner, Clark Colby

Iowa 4-H Reporters.AMES, Iowa – On Wednesday, Aug. 4, selected youth from across Iowa gained invaluable communications and media skills from professional mentors in the industry. After their training session in the newly renovated Bruce L. Rastetter 4-H Exhibits Building on the Iowa State Fair fairground, this new cohort of Iowa 4-H Reporters is well prepared to cover the Iowa State Fair.

The Iowa 4-H Reporters program, now in its fifth year, is an opportunity for youth who have an interest in media and communications to learn more about the industry and develop news media during the Iowa State Fair. As part of the program, 12 Iowa 4-H youth were invited to a one-day training workshop where they received instruction from Iowa PBS professionals.

Paul Yeager, producer and Iowa PBS host of Market to Market and Iowa PBS Sports, noted, “I always think it’s fun to relay tips and tricks I’ve learned from covering the fair for so many years to these youth. It’s exciting to set people up with knowledge and see what they do with it.”

Topics of the training included capturing action shots and still images, shooting B-roll video, interviewing best practices, and digital and social media. Participants were able to view a virtual tour of the Iowa PBS station and practice using professional media equipment during the training.

Mahaska County participant Abby Drost remarked, “I’ve learned how to create a clip through a video and work with high-tech cameras. I’m involved in communications events at both the county and state level in 4-H, so this training is helpful.”

This year’s selected Iowa 4-H Reporters are: Madison Craig, Johnson County; Rebekah Craighton, Franklin County; Abby Drost, Mahaska County; Alaina Gebel, Allamakee County; Gracie Harvey, Webster County; Bridget Johnson, Polk County; Teagan Johnson, Worth County; Cadence Koenigs, Monona County; Thea Larsson, Poweshiek County; Emmaline Mitchell, Union County; Amber Myli, Tama County; and Ashley Yedlik, Johnson County.

“This training is an awesome 4-H opportunity for youth who want to learn more about media, like me,” said Rebekah Craighton, from Franklin County.

“I want to pursue a career in 4-H in the future and was interested in this program to strengthen my communication skills,” said Ashley Yedlik, from Johnson County. “I’m excited to see the fair in a new perspective and get to meet new people.”

Look for these youth showcasing their new media knowledge by covering fair features and 4-H stories at the Iowa State Fair. For more information on the Iowa 4-H Reporters program visit the Iowa 4-H website at

Shareable photo and caption: Youth learn how to operate media equipment during the Iowa 4-H Reporters training with David Miller from Iowa PBS.


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