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Extension > Youth Development > Minnesota 4-H > Urban 4-H STEM Clubs

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Urban 4-H STEM Clubs

Igniting youth interest in STEM and preparing them for higher education

View the "Sites" tab below to learn more about what youth in these clubs do.

In northeast Minneapolis

After-school STEM clubs at Northeast Middle School

To join, contact Aamina Muhammad,

In Eden Prairie, St. Paul and Minneapolis

To join, visit Ka Joog Take-off STEAM clubs.



Minnesota 4-H Youth Development provides leadership to the Minnesota CYFAR Project which is a federal, five-year grant aimed at building long-term programs and partnerships. Led by principal investigator Jennifer Skuza and Extension educator Joanna Tzenis, this project supports Urban 4-H STEM Clubs, in which young people explore STEM topics, imagine their futures in higher education and set and achieve educational goals together with their peers, program leaders and parents or guardians.

The CYFAR SCP grant aims to build long-term programs and partnerships with a five-year federal grant.


Youth Development Insight

Our faculty blog about research, issues and trends in the field. Join the conversation!

See all Urban 4-H STEM Club blog posts

Urban 4-H STEM Clubs program design

Urban 4-H STEM Clubs are intended to ignite middle school aged youths’ interests in learning about Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) while preparing them for higher education. In the clubs, youth solve practical and scientific engineering problems by learning how to ask questions, imagine solutions, plan things out, create new ideas, optimize designs and improve practices. Youth will also engage in a sequence of activities that equip them with the mindset and personal leadership skills needed to pursue higher education and careers. Throughout the program, youth develop a portfolio that captures their growth over time and present it at public showcase events.

Campus Immersion

girls at a bowling alley

Each summer, youth participate in a University of Minnesota campus immersion where they learn about student life, explore academic interests, identify the steps toward college readiness and meet faculty and students in STEM fields. 



  • Youth will exhibit growth in knowledge and interest around STEM subjects.
  • Youth will demonstrate growth in critical thinking and decision making skills that form habits that can lead to educational and career success.
  • Parents/guardians will engage with their children on setting and obtaining common education goals.
  • Youth will demonstrate growth in technological literacy.


  • Youth will create a personal plan for higher education and career development related to STEM subjects.
  • The youth programs will be sustained by the community members and community organizational partners.

This project is delivered at three sites in partnership with Ka Joog, Youthprise and Minneapolis Community Education.

Ka Joog

4-H is working in partnership with Ka Joog and Youthprise to deliver community 4-H clubs at Ka Joog’s Eden Prairie and St. Paul sites.

Northeast Middle School

Minneapolis Community Education and 4-H are partnering to deliver an afterschool STEM Club at Northeast Middle School.

4-H Campus Immersion Impact Report: Imagining Futures in Higher Education

Joanna Tzenis

Results of this report indicate how participation in the 2016 4-H Campus Immersion Experience has impacted members - particularly how it has impacted their abilities to prepare for a future that includes higher education.

4-H Campus Immersion: Addressing educational inequities through local collaborations

Joanna Tzenis and Jennifer Skuza

The CYFAR team completed a five-year sustainable communities project (2008-2013)*. The team established eight youth programs for middle school aged youth and their parents or guardians of diverse backgrounds living in low income households.

4-H opens new doors

Source magazine

Youth across Minnesota -- from families who have been a part of Extension's 4-H program for generations to first-generation 4-H'ers -- are engaging in 4-H in new and vibrant ways. Today, 4-H programs are as diverse as the interests of the youth they serve.

Rethinking Program Sustainability

Joanna Tzenis and Jennifer Skuza

Demonstrates, using program theory, how the previous round of CYFAR programs were sustained in their communities.

Impact reports

2015-2016 Impact Report

2014-2015 Impact Report

Request a paper copy


Jennifer Skuza, PhD. 612-624-7798

Joanna Tzenis 612-625-9771

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