Pulaski County Extension Welcomes New 4-H Agent | Local News


There is a new face to the Pulaski County Extension Office.

Erica Spurgeon arrived on September 1 to join Jennifer Cole as the second 4-H Youth Development Officer for the University of Kentucky Affiliate Community Organization.

“Our county is so big,” Spurgeon explained. “We serve 13 primary schools and there are homeschool groups as well as several [community] clubs. Really, a county this size needs two agents to have full reach. “

Spurgeon comes to the local extension office for marketing training. She is originally from Pulaski County, grew up in Shopville, and graduated from Pulaski County High School. After her marriage, she moved with her husband Aaron – who served in the Air Force – to North Dakota.

“I got my BA from the University of North Dakota in Communication and Marketing,” Spurgeon said, adding that during this time she had started volunteering with youth groups such as Girl Scouts. . “While I was in school and doing this volunteer work, I really knew I wanted to work in youth programs to some extent.”

Spurgeon had also interned at a nonprofit organization serving rural communities, which he also liked. “I knew if I could couple nonprofit work with youth programs it would be my dream to do it,” she said. “I’m glad these things brought me here to Extension.

The new agent shared how she was involved with her elementary school 4-H club and enjoyed writing speeches and art projects. At the age of 9, Spurgeon won a blue ribbon for the duck sculpture she made as part of the program. It was just one of the fond memories that prompted Spurgeon to enroll her own children after the family returned to Eubank following her husband’s military demobilization.

Spurgeon noticed the vacancy while she was on the Extension website to see what might interest her daughter Freya, a 6th grader, and her son Strider, who is in first grade.

“It’s something I was hoping to get into someday,” Spurgeon said of the extension service. “I was just lucky that a new agent position opened and applied as soon as I saw the opening.”

Although his start date meant missing this year’s fair as well as the 4-H summer camp, Spurgeon was able to participate in a shooting invite as well as an annual cattle show and sale.

“It was a great experience watching the kids show off their animals,” said Spurgeon, adding that it was good for her to have the chance to acclimatize before the big events of next year. “I’ve been really lucky the last few weeks because a lot of people are in this position and there isn’t a second agent here already. I was really, really blessed to have Jennifer Cole here because I have was able to follow her and ask her questions… She was only welcoming and helpful, I think we are going to be a very good team.

Spurgeon’s colleagues at the Pulaski County Extension Office were also very supportive, she added. For now, she and Cole are struggling to divide tasks and projects according to their individual strengths. While country breeding and ham projects are well established locally, Spurgeon has reached out to volunteers in hopes of starting rabbit and poultry programs soon.

“We want to make sure we reach as many children as possible,” Spurgeon said.


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