Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communication, Department of


First Advisor

Kathleen Lodl

Date of this Version


Document Type



A thesis presented to the faculty of the Graduate College at the University of Nebraska in partial fulfillment of requirements for the degree of Master of Science

Major: Leadership Education

Under the supervision of Professor Kathleen Lodl

Lincoln, Nebraska, December 2010


Copyright 2010, Karen Bloomquist


The purpose of this study was to identify relationships between youth involvement in 4-H and self-image. The study also explored whether there were relations between self-image and development of the 5 C’s (confidence, competence, caring, connection and character) of Positive Youth Development. The study focused specifically on the differences in self-image between youth who participate in 4-H and youth who do not.

Participants included 180 youth from grades eight through twelve in the state of Nebraska. Demographic responses indicated that 47% of respondents were male and 53% were female. Approximately 72% of the respondents were not participants in a 4-H program, while 28% were 4-H participants.

Indices were formed to measure each of the 5 C’s. Three indices were also created in order to measure global self-image and its components, which for the purposes of this study included physical appearance and personality/social acceptance. Descriptive statistics, independent samples t-tests, and Pearson’s correlations were used to analyze the data.

Results of this study did not indicate a significant relationship between participation in 4-H and self-image. Significant correlations were found between Competence and self-image, and between Caring and self-image, but no other significant correlations were found between the 5 C’s and self-image.

Although this study found no significant direct relationship between participation in 4-H and self-image, the results do indicate a relationship between development of the 5 C’s and self-image in young people. The data suggest that 4-H can still be a useful tool in helping to develop a positive self-image in youth, and that it is important to provide program options which emphasize development of each of the 5 C’s and positive self-image.