Melanie A. Fuhrmann
Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership
Community Leadership - Community & Extension Education
Melanie Fuhrmann’s most valuable learning experience was her time spent working with LiFEsports at Ohio State. Within this organization, she was able to volunteer at sports clinics throughout the year, mentor a member of the Youth Leadership Academy (YLA), and work as a “Chalktalk” leader during the summer camp. Working with at-risk youth has been very rewarding and eye-opening for Melanie.
The ventures Melanie found most fulfilling were her opportunities to travel and participate in two Buck-I-SERV programs. The first trip was to New Orleans, LA, where she worked with Habitat for Humanity and the Louisiana SPCA. Learning about how people are still struggling with housing years after major catastrophes have occurred was extremely enlightening to her. During her second trip, she worked solely with Habitat for Humanity in Pensacola, FL. Being able to provide labor to expedite the process of rebuilding homes was very uplifting, and it was amazing to her to be a part of such an important endeavor.
In the course of Melanie’s Early Field Experience at the Scioto County Extension Office, she assisted Extension Educators by teaching various clinics, planning and completing 4-H project judging, and helping to run livestock shows, weigh-ins, and sales during the Scioto County Fair. In one instance, she led a STEM Clinic for youth, during which she created lava lamps, lightsabers, and more, as a unique way of teaching the content. Overall, her involvement was a terrific way for Melanie to practice the community leadership skills she hopes to use in the future as a 4-H Youth Development Extension Educator.
Melanie’s most impactful work experience has been assuming responsibilities at her family’s farm. Her family owns an apple orchard and attends three farmers markets from June until September every year, and she helped manage and operate each of the farmers markets weekly, promoting buying local and talking to customers.
Identifying Dr. Jerry Davis as her mentor, Melanie said, “Jerry was my professor for a social work class and he is also the Director of LiFEsports. He introduced me to the organization through that class and helped me to be on the path I am today. LiFEsports has truly changed my life, provided me with key teaching experiences, and reassured me that I am on the correct path in my life and career. Jerry helped me along the way and has always been someone I knew I could rely on and go to if I need[ed] help.”
After graduation, Melanie plans on getting her master’s degree in the ACEL Department at The Ohio State University to accomplish her goal of becoming a future 4-H Youth Development Extension Educator.
Service, involvement, and accolades: ACEL Distinguished Senior | Agricultural Education - Society Community Outreach, McCaslin chair | Scioto County 4-H Program | OSU Bowling Club | Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church Choir | Motor Development Assistant: G Tyree Head Start Center |OWL Program - Ohio State Welcome Leaders | Buckeye Library Leaders | Columbus Community Kitchen | LiFEsports Initiative, Youth Leadership Academy Mentor | Metro School Agricultural Club | 4-H Camp Counselor at Canter’s Cave 4-H Camp