Date of Award

1993

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Education

First Advisor

Michael F. Burnett

Abstract

The primary purpose of this study was to identify program and agent characteristics which are related to changes in 4-H enrollment. The target population of the study was defined as agents of the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service (LCES) assigned to work with the 4-H program who had been in a 4-H position for at least one year. The research instrument (questionnaire) was mailed to a random sample of 64 agents. One agent was randomly selected from each of the 64 parishes in Louisiana. Sixty-three agents (98.43%) responded to the questionnaire. Major findings of the study included: (1) A significant difference was found in 1985-86 percentage enrollment change and in overall percentage enrollment change by Job Assignment. Those who were assigned full time to 4-H work had a higher percentage enrollment change than those assigned part time to 4-H work. (2) Over 90% of the respondents indicated that 4-H work is fulfilling, exciting, motivating, and can be a career. (3) The agent's perception of how well he/she was prepared in the area of Program Development and Implementation (in-service), the agent's perception of how well he/she was prepared in the area of Youth Development and Communication Skills (prior-to-employment), job assignment, and years as an agent entered the multiple regression equation consistently in at least two of the time periods in the study. (4) The agent's perception of how well he/she was prepared in the area of Program Development and Implementation (in-service) entered the multiple regression equation consistently in three of the time periods in the study. A model was identified for each of the percentage enrollment change measures. The variable, the agent's perception of how well he/she was prepared in the area of Program Development and Implementation (in-service) is influential in explaining parish 4-H percentage enrollment changes. The researcher recommended that the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service should pay particular attention to those areas within the Program Development and Implementation (in-service) where the agents felt less prepared. Agents felt less prepared in the areas of working with inner city youth, multicultural education, and contacting school administrators.

Pages

213

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