Sixty-six 8th grade students have been selected to participate in the 8th annual Cumberland County Government Day on Thursday, May 20. This event, which is being held in recognition of National County Government Month held in April is sponsored by the Cumberland County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the 4-H Youth Development Program.
This program will provide an opportunity for 8th grade boys and girls to learn about county government; to explore career options within Cumberland County Government; to develop leadership skills and to introduce them to the 4-H program. The students will shadow a county employee and learn about their job; what skills are required; what subject areas are stressed; and the importance of working well with other people. Approximately 24 county departments/divisions will be hosting one or more students.
Freeholder Director Louis Magazzu, who initially proposed this event, said “County Government Day provides a wonderful opportunity for youth to experience county government at work. We are excited that interest in this program has increased.”
Empowering youth and developing leadership skills is an important part of this program. Jeannette Rea-Keywood, County 4-H Agent will facilitate hands-on activities, which will give youth a chance to explore leadership styles, skills and characteristics.
Seven students who indicated an interest in public office will shadow one of the Cumberland County Freeholders. These students are Brezhauna Maceia and Zamarah Corley from the ExCEL Program; Emily Austen from the Cumberland Christian School; Samantha Malestein from Hopewell Township School; Craig Ricci of Downe Township School; Tyler Skye of Stow Creek School and Taylor Magee from Woodruff School. These students will have an opportunity to discuss and vote on some mock resolutions in consultation with their freeholder mentor during the Youth Freeholder Meeting on Thursday evening.
Four other students will be serve in special positions and participating in the Youth Freeholder Meeting and will serve as Deputy Clerk under the guidance of Ken Mecouch, Deputy Director/County Administrator; County Counsel with the County Solicitor, Brendan J. Kavanagh, Esquire; the County Treasurer with Treasurer, Gary Simmerman and Chief Financial Officer under the guidance of the County Chief Financial Officer, Marcella Shepard.
Program participants represent 12 schools from throughout the county. Certificates will be presented to the students who participate in County Government Day during the Freeholder Meeting on Thursday, May 20, 7:00 PM at the Court House on Broad Street, Route 49 in Bridgeton.
The 4-H Youth Development Program is part of Rutgers Cooperative Extension, a unit of the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station. 4-H educational programs are offered to all youth, grades K-13
(one year out of high school) on an age appropriate basis, without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, sexual orientation or disability. For more information about County Government Day or the Cumberland 4-H Program contact the 4-H Center at 856-451-2800.
4-H is a community of young people across America learning leadership, citizenship and life skills!