Youth in Sullivan County are invited to design and build an aerodynamic craft designed to deliver a payload of food to natural disaster victims as part of 4-H National Youth Science Day (4-H NYSD), the world’s largest, youth-led science experiment.

Cornell Cooperative Extension Sullivan County (CCESC) 4-H is offering this opportunity on Wednesday, Oct. 8 at 5:30 p.m.

The activity, called Rockets to the Rescue, was designed by University of Arizona Cooperative Extension and selected as the winning experiment for the seventh annual 4-H NYSD.

Youth all over the nation, and some globally, will also conduct the same experiment at hundreds of local events taking place in all 50 states. Registration is required by calling (845) 292-6180.

The national rallying event for 4-H Science, 4-H NYSD is an interactive learning experience intended to get youth excited about science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), and spotlights the many ways millions of youth are engaging in 4-H Science programs year-round.

Sullivan County 4-H youth will conduct the Rockets to the Rescue experiment at the CCESC Gerald J. Skoda Extension Education Center on 64 Ferndale-Loomis Road in Liberty.

Participants will respond to a fictional scenario: A natural disaster has left people without food on a remote, isolated Pacific island, and the youth have been asked to build a rocket that can be launched from the mainland, travel over the ocean and deliver high-energy food to the population.

The experiment combines two 4-H issue areas—science and food security—and incorporates aerospace engineering concepts to help youth design a rocket out of everyday materials, including recyclable two-liter bottles, cotton balls, pipe cleaners, rubber bands, and a protractor.

A recent longitudinal study conducted by Tufts University, The Positive Development of Youth: Comprehensive Findings from the 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development revealed 4-H programming does indeed get young people more connected to science.

According to the study, 4-H’ers are two times more likely to participate in science programs during out-of-school time (grades 10-12) and 4-H girls are two times more likely (grade 10) and nearly three times more likely (grade 12) to take part in science programs, compared to girls in other out-of-school time activities.

The national sponsors of 2014 4-H NYSD are Lockheed Martin, Hughes (HughesNet Satellite Internet) and John Deere.

Other partners include Dow AgroSciences, NBC Learn, Afterschool Alliance, and NASA who have all collaborated on this event.

Since 2008, more than five million youth have completed 4-H NYSD experiments and 4-H science projects in robotics, agricultural science, rocketry, wind power, environmental science and alternative energy.

To learn more about 4-H NYSD, visit www.4-h.org/nysd.