Nora Luna, as part of University of Nevada, Reno Extension is working as the 4-H Youth Development coordinator for Clark County, as well as for Pahrump and Lincoln County.
As a youth development coordinator, Luna is providing management and support for the 4-H Youth Development Program in southern Nevada, including development of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) programs, after-school programs and college access programs. Additionally, she works with the Nevada System of Higher Education to ensure that the programs offered by 4-H are helping participating students succeed in school. Luna hopes these programs will increase enrollment in advanced placement and honors classes, which are high-level high school classes designed for college preparation, and reduce the need for remedial classes. She is also working to implement these programs in schools to help foster essential skills in students, such as teamwork, leadership and college-readiness skills.
Luna has a long history of serving the community through the University. She worked in the University’s Center for the Application of Substance Abuse Technologies 1998 to 2008, leaving as a project manager coordinating programs and trainings on youth substance abuse prevention. In 2008, she joined Extension as a school retention specialist, conducting needs assessments for the next three years aimed at preventing student dropout and implementing community-based programs to help students stay in school. Luna then worked for Nathan Adelson Hospice as the director of diversity and grant funding, where she managed community outreach programs and focused on diversity and inclusion.
“After learning about 4-H and youth development programming, I was really excited to return to Extension,” Luna said. “Working with the community to help develop and create new programming for students holds so much potential for the future of 4-H and our state’s youth.”
Going forward, Luna’s priority is to conduct a needs assessment for Clark County and southern Nevada to better understand which areas 4-H programming should focus on to provide the most benefit to the community. She also wants to conduct focus groups with 4-H members and volunteers, along with the wider community, to understand youth’s needs. Overall, she wants to incorporate community input into the development of programs.
“Nora brings a wealth of experience,” Eric Killian, Extension southern area director, said. “She has an ability to reach and engage diverse audiences in 4-H.”