Hardin County students attend APES

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Each year the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service and Nolin RECC, along with many other local businesses and volunteers, have sponsored the American Private Enterprise program.  Working closely with counselors from North Hardin, Central Hardin, John Hardin, Fort Knox High, Elizabethtown High, Faith Home School and North Hardin Christian School, more than 40 high school juniors attended an interactive two-day seminar that increased their knowledge of the American economic system.


Students participating in the program take an active role in the business world, exchange ideas and listen to community business leaders discuss America’s economic systems and how it applies to them. With today’s competitive job market, it is important that youth have insight on what it takes to succeed in the world of business as it applies to their educational and career decisions.

On day one, students listened to John Scott talk about the legal aspects of business, telling students success is partly dependent on knowing what the average consumer will buy.  Other speakers on the first day included Wes Mudd from First Federal Savings Bank, who discussed corporations; Tim Goblirsch, administrative law division Fort Knox, spoke on how America does business; Neil Atcher, State Farm Insurance, discussed individually owned businesses; and Patsy Whitehead with Nolin RECC, presented a lesson a cooperatives. 

On day two, students were actively engaged when listening to Michael Coyle from ECTC as he discussed awareness of bias in the work place. During her presentation on social networking, guest speaker Jenny Oldham, Hardin County attorney, surprised the students with information she shared about them after finding it all on Facebook.

Students also were challenged by working through and presenting board cases, where they acted as board of directors and worked as a group making decisions in the best interest of their company and its employees.

Special thanks are expressed to Jacob Aydelott, John Hardin High School, and Beth Adams, Faith Home School, who served as youth scholar leaders. Local sponsors include Zaxby’s, First Federal Savings Bank, Nolin RECC, Magnolia Bank, First Citizens Bank, Coca-Cola, Clark Jewelers, Preferred Memorial, Faith Home School Group, DeVeau Appraisal Service and Lincoln Trail Homebuilders Association. The APES seminar is totally self-funded by local businesses and community partners each year and their support and contributions are much appreciated.  Thanks also is extended to APES committee members Gail Dunkelberger, Caroll Perkins, Tara Graziano, Jo Lynn Shipp, Tanya Corder, Scott Curley, Lisa Mudd, Cindy Vaughn, Sue French, Debbie Hardin and Patsy Whitehead for helping make this a very successful and outstanding program. 

The top six students based on their total quiz scores attending the Kentucky Youth Seminar at the University of Kentucky in June 2013 include Anna Cecile Pepper, Elizabethtown High School; Robert Bell, Fort Knox High School; Anna Huffman, Bradley Larimore and Kitty Timbers, Central Hardin High School; and Brooke Moody, North Hardin High School. Anna Cecile Pepper and Robert Bell earned the distinction of outstanding young female and male by completing the seminar with the highest overall test scores. Both students were awarded watches from Clark Jewelers, who has contributed to the local program for more 30 years. Mia Wiersema was selected by her peers to receive the People’s Choice Award while Matthew Nelson was presented with the Cooperative Spirit Award. Congratulations to all of the students who participated in this year’s program at Nolin RECC in Elizabethtown.

If you would like information on the APES Program or the 4-H Program, contact the Hardin County Extension Office at 765-4121.