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West Virginia teens to get the ‘tea’ on challenges, opportunities posed by the pandemic

A teen girl waves to a male friend on her laptop using conferencing software.

Youth voices offer unique perspectives, innovative ideas and valuable insights. As West Virginia continues to move through the pandemic, teens want to know more about issues surrounding the public health crisis – now and in the future. A panel of experts will give young people the “tea” (teen slang for “the scoop”) on a host of topics surrounding the pandemic during a special panel discussion on April 12, 2021, at 4 p.m.

The WVU Extension Service 4-H Youth Development Teen Council, in partnership with West Virginia State University and the West Virginia Joint Interagency Task Force for COVID-19 vaccines, will host “Here’s the Tea: Where do we go from here,” a virtual panel discussion for West Virginia youths and young adults ages 12 to 21. The panel will feature experts who will answer questions from teens on a variety of topics, including the science behind COVID testing, vaccinations, future pandemics, economy implications, education and other issues related to the pandemic. The event will be moderated by members of 4-H’s Teen Council and Collegiate 4-H members from WVU and WVU Tech.

"The pandemic has changed our world. Our young people have been very engaged in their communities, schools and state. Providing them with opportunities to learn about these important topics, ask questions and be engaged in what is going on is so important,” Barbie Little, WVU Extension Service agent in Raleigh County, said. “This event is driven and led by young people. We want other youths to join us in taking a break and really talk about this important issue – from their perspective – as we navigate the pandemic and other issues moving forward.”

Youths and young adults ages 12 to 21 who are interested in participating in this free panel discussion must register online by noon on April 12. Participants also will have an opportunity to submit questions when registering for the event. To get “the tea” on this event, visit the event website for full details.

“During the past year, youth voices have helped guide our programming and activities,” added Megan Midcap, WVU Extension Service agent in Lewis County . “We are so proud of the way they have shown initiative and leadership during this very challenging time. Our older members are excited for the opportunity to hear from experts in the field and contribute to future conversations about how we move forward with life after the pandemic.”

Youths involved in WVU Extension Service’s Teen Council and QuaranTEEN groups have been instrumental in identifying topics for this event. During the past year, both groups worked with various groups to develop educational programming, activities and outreach that provide unique learning and networking opportunities for young people in the state.

To learn more about WVU Extension Service programs, visit, or contact your local WVU Extension Service office. Keep up with the latest in WVU Extension Service news on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by following @WVUExtension.



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Tara Curtis
WVU Extension Service