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October 29, 2010

October 29 Message

Good Morning: I hope you have had a good week. A few things to share this week:

Furlough schedule: As you know, U of M AFSCME and CCBU employees will be on furlough December 28- December 30. These employee groups include Program Coordinators and Nutrition Education Assistants in County Extension Offices. December 27th is a designated U of M Floating Holiday. This date is not a holiday in most Counties. December 31 is an observed Holiday for New Years. So, County Employees in County Extension Offices, (Support Staff), will have a regular work week December 27 - December 30th, unless the County Support Staff is using vacation time during that week. In that case the County Extension Office will need to close.

I ask that County Support staff let me know if you are planning to work the week of December 27th, or use vacation time that week and close the office. Please let me know at your earliest convenience.

Google Migration Days to remember:

November 8 and 9: County offices in our region migrate
November 10, Google In-Service for County Extension Support staff, (Marshall Regional Office).

Extension Committee meeting schedule: Big Stone CEC meets next week, November 4.

Have a good Weekend and happy Halloween!


October 22, 2010

October 22 message

Good Morning: I hope you have had a good week. A few things to share today:

Google Migration: County Extension Offices will be invited to migrate from Microsoft Outlook to Google Applications beginning November 8. We are asking that the counties in our ten County Region migrate November 8 or 9, (prior to the November 10 training at the Marsahll Regional Office.

November 1 training: As I have discussed in this blog over the past few weeks, a Google application training will be held at the Marshall Regional Office on Wednesday, November 10. This training is for the County Office Support Staff in the 10 county region. The training will be presented by the Marshall Regional Office Support staff. If you have not rsvp'd your attendance to Mary Jo Fox, please do so at your earliest convenience. She needs this for the lunch arrangements, (lunch will be provided).

-Prior to November 8, have staff in your office, (and yourself) clean up their e-mail, and prepare for the migration

Extension and Social Media:
If you haven't had a chance yet, please check out new Social Media Policies from the U and from Extension. There are a number of things we all will need to pay attention to if using Facebook, Twitter, etc. in our programs, including using "University of Minnesota Extension" in official page names, getting on the registry, and including the equal opportunity statement.

Upcoming Extension Committee meetings: Swift County Extension Committee meets Weds, October 27th.

Have a good weekend.


October 15, 2010

October 15 Message

Good Morning: I hope all of you have had a good week. A few things to share this week:

Google Migration: We are getting closer to the time when all of us will make the change from Outlook oracle connector to UMGoogle Applications. Over the past few weeks in this blog, I have talked about this upcoming change. Here are a few more details to think about:

Prepare; as we all know, cleaning up our e-mail needs to be done prior to the migration to Google. Please review the Tips for Cleaning Up.

We suggest that you print your calendars. We anticipate that there will be some issues with reocurring scheduled events and distribution lists.

Migration schedule: Hutchinson Regional Office migration is scheduled for October 26. Marshall Regional Office is scheduled for November 1. We ask that County offices in our ten county region migrate on November 8 or 9. Step by step instructions are available.

The Regional Office Support staff will be available by phone to help you with any challenges you have during this process.

Regional Training: County Support staff are invited to a training session on Wednesday, November 10 from 9:30 a.m. through lunch at the Marshall Regional Office. Lunch will be provided. Please rsvp your attendance to Mary Jo Fox, foxxx055@umn.edu

The training will provide an overview of Google so you:
• can read, send and organize email messages in Gmail
• can create a new calendar event, invite guests and share their calendar with others
• be a resource to support the other staff in your County Extension office on Google Applications
• Identify and resolve any issues of concerns.

Dealing with County E-mails: County Support staff also need access to electronic messages sent through the county system to their County E-mail addresses. At this time, we do not think this will be an issue as most if not all counties in our region have messages sent to their county e-mail addresses forwarded to their University e-mail address.

If you have questions or concerns, please give me a call.

Have a great weekend,


October 8, 2010

October 8 Message

Good Morning: I hope you have had a good week; A few things to share today:

Emerald Ash Borer: Yesterday we mailed Emerald Ash Borer resource information to each County Office in our region. The accompanying letter from Dr Jeff Hahn gives direction for how to use these resources in each County office. Please contact me if you have any questions.

Furlough clarification: I call your attention to the article in this week's Extension Weekly that clarifies questions about the mandatory furlough for Extension Civil Service and Bargaining unit staff. These employee groups include 4H Program Coordinators and Nutrition Education Assistants in County Extension offices.

Important Google Migration dates:

October 26: Hutchinson Regional Office Google Migration Day
November 1: Marshall Regional Office Google Migration Day
November 8: County Offices migrate this week
November 10: Google app in service training for County staff in the 10 county region (Training at Marshall Regional Office)
November 19: All Google Migration must be completed.

Holiday: A few of our county office are closed Monday for Columbus Day. The University offices (including Regional Offices) are open.

Have a good weekend,


October 1, 2010

October 1 message

Extension IT is working with Extension Regional Directors to lead the Google Migration effort in all regional and county offices. All Extension faculty and staff will be expected to make the move to U of M Google Apps between October 25 and November 12, with migration to be completed by November 19. Extension IT has posted a detailed migration schedule, based on office location, to the Information Technology Google Apps section of the employee website.

County Office staff are scheduled to migrate the week of November 8. We will send more information, including complete migration instructions as that date draws closer. Please contact me if you foresee any issues with this timeframe.

County Support Staff are also invited to attend a UMGoggle application training on November 10 at the Marshall Regional Office, (Details were sent in a previous message)

Clean-up Reminder (for region AND county)
Cleaning up your current email system will be the single most effective way to ensure a smooth transition to GMail. Large emails (over 25 MB), more than 6 GB of total emails in your mailbox, and folder names that are longer than 39 characters will all cause issues when migrating.

Extension IT has encouraged all Extension faculty and staff to complete their email cleanup effort by Friday, October 1. If you have not yet taken the time to clean-up your mailbox, please do that immediately.

Thank you for your support in this initiative. For questions or comments related to the Extension migration to Google Apps, please contact me or the Regional Support staff.