“I hope to change the youth of tomorrow in the most positive way I can.” This task does not come lightly to Joey Gedgaud, a senior at Moorhead High School in Moorhead, Minnesota. Along with taking AP classes and tutoring students at his high school, Joey has become a very important member to Clay County 4-H. Clay County 4-H Ambassadors are a group of youth leaders that receives specialized leadership training to further the youth development mission of 4-H. As a Clay County 4-H Ambassador, Joey has been given the opportunity to take part in numerous service learning projects, attend many 4-H leadership camps, and to develop the skills necessary to make him stand out among his peers. Recently, Joey was selected to be a State 4-H Ambassador, an opportunity that will help achieve his goal of affecting the youth of tomorrow in a positive way. Whether he realizes it or not, he, too, will be changed by this experience.
I asked the Clay County 4-H Program Coordinator, Jennifer Rehder, what makes Joey stand out. Her response, “His hair.” All joking aside, Joey has proven time and time again that he is willing to do whatever it takes to make an impact on his peers and his community. Whether Joey walks into opportunities on his own or if he has been persuaded into them, he is always willing to take on new challenges.
To be an art dealer or auctioneer while having the ability to do philanthropy across the world would be Joey’s ultimate dream job. “Really helping people get going, and give them the tools needed to make their own lives better,” says Gedgaud. Joey truly believes that after he attends North Dakota State University, and works towards a career in marketing, his life will be full of “doing new things and helping others.”
Mildred Barthel once said, “Happiness is a conscious choice, not an automatic response.” Joey’s response to why this is his favorite quote was, “we choose to be happy… so if you don’t want to be bored, or jealous, or mad, then choose not to be, it’s simpler than you think.” Every time I see Joey, he has an enthusiastic smile on his face. His closing sentence in an email he recently sent me was this; “smile, it makes the day better.”