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University of Illinois Extension serving DeWitt, Macon and Piatt Counties

Macon County
3351 N. President Howard Brown Blvd.
Decatur, IL 62521
Phone: 217-877-6042
FAX: 217-877-4564
Hours: Monday - Friday 8 am to 4:30 pm

DeWitt County
8425 Katie Road
Clinton, IL 61727
Phone: 217-935-5764
FAX: 217-935-8932
Hours: Monday - Friday 8 am to 4:30 pm

Piatt County
210 South Market Street
Monticello, IL 61856
Phone: 217-762-2191
FAX: 217-762-2703
Hours: Monday - Friday 8 am to 4:30 pm (Closed 12 - 1pm)

News Release

Decatur, Charleston Students take First in Millikin 4-H Science Fair

Central Illinois students took it to the next level with the second Science Explorers Club Science Fair that was held February 24 at Millikin University. This innovative program gives 4-H members the chance to explore a science topic of their choice and participate in a science fair for the first time.

Alison McCrady, a junior at MacArthur High School, took first place in the high school division and won a $1,000 scholarship to Millikin and a $100 cash prize with her project “Measuring the Effectiveness of Various Purification Methods on Raw Lake Water.” Ryan He, a fifth grader at Jefferson Elementary School in Charleston, took first place in the junior high division with his project “The Effect of Dye Silking Time on Dye Sensitized Solar Cells.”

High school and junior high students from throughout Central Illinois have been meeting at Millikin as part of the Science Explorers 4-H SPIN Club since January 18. Anne Rammelsberg, an associate professor of Chemistry and volunteer 4-H leader, led the club and science fair.

Students were invited to identify and explore their own scientific interests and follow the 4-H model of learn by doing by making science fun and educational. Project topics ranged from “Bacteria in Makeup” to “Equine Learning and Memory” and they can also be presented at the 4-H Show, school science fairs or scholarship opportunities.

Funds for $400 worth of cash prizes were made available thanks to an Advocate Grant provided by the Society for Science and the Public as well as $3,500 in Millikin University student scholarships.

The 4-H program is provided through University of Illinois Extension and is open to youth ages 8 to 18. Youth learn skills for living by participating in individual or group learning experiences related to more than 200 project areas. More information about Extension and 4-H is available at or find Macon, DeWitt and Piatt County 4-H on Facebook.
University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. If you need reasonable accommodation to participate in a program, please call 217.877.6042.

Local Contact: Rebecca Hugo, Program Coordinator, 4-H Youth Development,