University of Minnesota Extension

Extension > Extension e-news > Archives > Events & Training Archive

Recently in the Events & Training Category

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar will host a "Women In Agriculture" summit from 2 to 3:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 27 in Room 105, Cargill Building. The senator is hosting the event to discuss experiences women in modern agriculture face and how best to encourage women to seek careers in agriculture. Joining Klobuchar for the event are:

  • Keynote speaker Krysta Harden, deputy secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • Panel discussion participants Shelly DePestel, dairy farmer and board member of Minnesota Milk Producers; Pakou Hang, executive director, Hmong-American Farmers Association; Alise Sjostrom, owner of Redhead Creamery; and Kristin Weeks Duncanson, owner of Duncanson Growers.

The event is free. RSVPs are requested, but not required, at the senator's office: RSVP@klobuchar.senate.gov. Registration opens at 1:30 p.m.; attendees can park in the Gortner Avenue ramp.

The 2015 Program Conference will be Oct. 5-7 at the Mall of America Hilton in Bloomington. Please mark your calendars and plan to attend this important opportunity for professional and staff development, collaboration with colleagues and building organizational unity.

This is also your call for session proposals. Please consider presenting to your peers or suggesting a session by completing the submission Qualtrics form. Include as much information as you can, and submit by Friday, June 5.

The program conference committee and I look forward to your thoughts and ideas for creating a productive conference.

Brent Hales
Senior Associate Dean

Interested in a Center for Family Development update? Join Associate Dean Karen Shirer and Assistant to Associate Dean Trish Olson in a webinar from 10 to 11 a.m., May 11 to learn more about FD staff, programs and the year at a glance. Join the webinar by logging into https://umconnect.umn.edu/fdupdate.

Karen Shirer
Associate Dean, Family Development

Are you looking for good examples from colleagues at the University and Extension about how they use WebEx to support their work? Do you want to learn more about using WebEx in a flipped classroom? Join us for these upcoming events.

WebEx for Extension education (special event for Extension)


  • 1-2 p.m., Tuesday, May 19, delivered via WebEx
  • Tiffany Schreiber, higher ed WebEx specialist from Cisco, discusses ideas and answers questions about WebEx in Extension work.
  • Please register here to attend WebEx for Extension

WebEx panel discussion (University-wide)


  • 10:30 a.m.-noon, Tuesday, May 19, 131B, Bruininks Hall (previously the Science Teaching and Student Services building), 222 Pleasant St. S.E. East Bank and broadcast via WebEx
  • Hear use cases and tips for using WebEx to support your teaching, research and outreach activities.
  • Please register here to attend panel discussion

Using WebEx in the flipped classroom (University-wide)


  • 10:30 a.m.-noon, Wednesday, May 20, or 1-2:30 p.m., 50B Humphrey, West Bank
  • Schreiber discusses using WebEx in a flipped classroom.
  • Please register here for the discussion


Additional information about WebEx is available here.

Amy Baker, Chief Technology Officer
Karen Matthes, Director of IT Training and Support

The U of M Tourism Center invites colleagues to a light lunch and poster session from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., May 6 in the Cherrywood Room of the St. Paul Student Center to celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week. RSVPs are due May 1. More information is available from Ingrid Schneider.

Ingrid Schneider
Director, Tourism Center

The inaugural P&A professional development forum brings together thought leaders from across the University and the greater community. The forum features a discussion on contemporary trends in University administrative leadership and P&A's strategic role.

The first event, Preparing Ourselves to Meet Grand Challenges, is from noon to 2 p.m., 402 Walter Library, Twin Cities Campus, East Bank. Register by Friday, April 24. Or you can join via WebEx at https://z.umn.edu/pdrforum.

Extension Technology continues offering one-hour WebEx orientation training as part of the University's web conferencing transition from UMConnect to WebEx. UMConnect will be discontinued after Aug. 31. Orientation dates and registration are on the Extension Technology intranet page.


Check out the latest QuickBytes article for some WebEx tips!

Karen Matthes
Director, IT Training and Support

Two webinars are scheduled for April and open to all employees:

How to build collaboration with your communities
This webinar will provide attendees with the strategies for identifying, connecting with and formalizing partnerships.

Creating an engaging work environment: Tips for managers
This course is designed to provide supervisors and managers the information needed to improve employee engagement.
Diana Martenson
Organization & Program Development Specialist

All Extension faculty and staff are invited to two webinars in March.

"Process Improvement: LEAN 101"
10 to 11 a.m., March 11
Presenter: Toni Smith, education director, Association of Minnesota Counties

Lean management has long been used to eliminate waste in work processes in manufacturing and is now becoming quite popular in the public sector and Minnesota counties. The webinar will give you some basics about Lean, show how counties are using the techniques and provide information for additional Lean training.

"Rewriting the Rural Narrative"
1 to 2 p.m., March 12
Presenter: Ben Winchester, Extension research fellow, Center for Community Vitality

The story of rural America since 1970 is rich and diverse, with positive trends occurring under the radar. Learn how these important positive changes that have been occurring across the rural landscape require us to rewrite the narrative of rural community change.

Diana Martenson
Organization & Program Development Specialist

All Extension faculty and staff are invited to two webinars in February. Both offer a chance to review and discuss priority topics for Extension. They are:

"Overview for Ripple Effect Mapping (REM): A Participatory Strategy for Measuring Program Impacts"
10-11 a.m., Feb. 11
Presenter: Scott Chazdon, evaluation and research specialist

The webinar introduces a group process designed to document the results of program efforts within complex, real-life settings. REM engages people to reflect upon and visually map the intended and unintended changes produced by a complex program or collaboration. The webinar includes examples of REM across Extension. More information and registration.

"Curriculum Development for Diverse Audiences: Community Vitality"
1-2 p.m., Feb. 26
Presenters: Tobias Spanier, educator; and Michael Darger, specialist

Minnesota's increasingly diverse population has implications for programmatic efforts by educators in Leadership and Civic Engagement (LCE) and Community Economics (CE). The course will cover a variety of topics on cultural competence, increasing program participant diversity, curriculum, marketing and more. More information and registration.

Ying Iverson
Professional and Organization Development Director

Diana Martenson
Organization and Program Development Specialist

The following Extension webinars will be held in December:

Extension webinars are held every month and offer Extension faculty and staff a chance to review and discuss priority topics within Extension. To access webinar recordings and to view information about upcoming topic webinars, visit the professional development section of the intranet.

Ying Iverson
Director, Professional and Organizational Development

Please encourage your student workers to join Dean Bev Durgan for pizza on Friday, November 21 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in 120 Coffey Hall. Each semester, the dean invites student workers to join her for an informal lunch to discuss Extension's broader mission and programs, and to learn about students' ideas and perspectives. Students should feel free to come and go as their schedule allows.  

Please forward the registration link to the students you work with, including a note encouraging them to attend this important event. For more information, visit the Student Engagement section of the intranet.

Diana Martenson
Organization and Program Development Specialist

The November Extension cultural agility webinar, "Curriculum Development for Diverse Audiences," will take place on November 13, 2-3 p.m.

Presenters Michelle Grabowski, Extension educator, horticulture; Jeffrey Hahn, Extension entomologist; and Cindy Tong, Extension post-harvest horticulturist, will discuss how they have created relevant program materials for home gardeners and immigrant farmers. This is an opportunity to learn from colleagues about changes they have made to curriculum and engagement format to meet the needs of program participants. Register for the webinar.

Ying Iverson
Director, Professional and Organization Development

The U of M Office of Human Resources is sponsoring an on-campus lecture by national retirement expert and author Jean McLaughlin. Jean is the associate director of Institutional Leadership Group at American Council on Education and co-author of "Faculty Retirement: Best Practices for Navigating the Transition."

Her lecture on supporting faculty through transition to retirement will be held Friday, November 7, 9-11:30 a.m. in 402 Walter Library. The lecture is free and open to the public, and will be streamed live via UMConnect for those unable to attend in person.

Leslee Mason
Human Resources Director

If you're on Facebook or Twitter or other social media platforms, please support the National 4-H Week campaign, #iam4h.

Beginning the evening of Sunday, October 5, and all dayMonday, October 6, you can help build enthusiasm for the campaign by tweeting and posting your "selfie" on social media using the hashtags #iam4h and #mn4h. As part of a nationwide campaign, social media users are asked to print out and hold the #iam4h sign while taking a selfie. You can continue to post throughout 4-H Week, which concludes October 11.   

Any 4-H supporter can participate; club membership or alumni status isn't required. Although the official campaign begins Sunday, some posting is already underway onFacebook and Twitter.

Allison Sandve
News Media & Public Relations Manager

Participate in challenging discussions that interest you, enhance your programmatic objectives, and create deeper connections with colleagues across the University. Join University faculty members and program staff at the monthly Engaged Scholar Critical Community Engagement roundtable sessions to learn from their experiences, challenges, successes and resources related to topics of community engagement and partnerships.  

All sessions will be held in Morrill Hall from noon to 1 p.m. on the dates listed below. Bring your brown bag lunch; treats and a topic for a vibrant discussion will be provided.

The next roundtable will be held on November 5: "Hidden Subjectivities in Our Academic Disciplines."

Registration is required. For more details and future session topics and dates, visit the U of M Public Engagement website.

Diana Martenson
Organization and Program Development Specialist

The Extension Citizens' Advisory Committee and representatives of the Association of Minnesota Counties held an interactive input session for Extension Reconsidered onAugust 27. County commissioners, community members and Extension leaders generated ideas on the purpose, promise and future of Extension. Participants suggested ideas about how Extension could help meet the needs of the 21st Century, including making Minnesota better with a strong sense of statewide mission; preserving the past by being "historically proud" while being responsive to the future; continuing excellence in delivery of research; and actualizing human capacity in the community.

The next two Minnesota Extension Reconsidered sessions will be held at the Extension Program Conference on Monday, October 6, 1-2:30 p.m., and Tuesday, October 7, 1:15-2:45 p.m. Please join one of the two discussions if you are attending the conference--no need to register for the sessions.

For questions, or suggestions, please contact Dan Gilchrist.

Dan Gilchrist
Assistant Statewide Director
Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships

The "Introduction to Equal Opportunity & Affirmative Action (EOAA)" workshop, presented by Kimberly Hewitt, director, and Tina Marisam, associate to the director, Office of EOAA, provides practical tools for supervisors and staff to identify, prevent and respond to potential discrimination, harassment, retaliation and nepotism.  In this highly interactive workshop, participants will practice identifying inappropriate behaviors in hypothetical scenarios and explore effective strategies for responding to complaints from supervisees, coworkers and volunteers.  Participants are required to view pre-recorded modules before attending the webinar.

The workshop will take place on September 11, 1-2 p.m. Register today.

Ying Iverson
Professional and Organizational Development Director

If you have a chance to go to the "Great Minnesota Get-Together" be sure to drop in on Extension colleagues, volunteers and participants. Visit Extension's In the News site for updates on our coverage at the fair. Stories will also be shared via social media sites for Extension and 4-H.

University of Minnesota building

  • Extension will host two spaces in the U of M Building on Sunday, August 31, 9 a.m.- 9 p.m. The exhibits will feature 4-H Science of Agriculture with the poultry project, and Master Gardener plant diagnostics.

4-H building & barns

  • More than 6,000 4-H exhibits and performing arts shows feature the knowledge and skills 4-H'ers have acquired throughout the year. About 2,200 "blue ribbon" kids exhibit livestock in the animal barns. See the 4-H State Fair website for daily highlights and results.

  • Exciting scientific activities to try in the 4-H building include drones used in agriculture and Rube Goldberg machines. Watch "Chef for a Day" cooking presentations, offered twice daily.

  • Livestock highlights include a 4-H beef exhibit in the Warner Coliseum on Friday, August 22, and the Purple Ribbon auction in the Ag Star arena on Saturday, August 23.

  • New this year is the free "4-H at the Minnesota State Fair" app, guiding you through event schedules, results, announcements and maps. Download and install it to your iPhone or Android device.

Agriculture-Horticulture building

  • Master Gardener volunteers will answer gardening questions each day, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Watch gardening presentations throughout the day on The Dirt Stage.

  • The Honey Bees program team, including Gary Reuter, Extension entomologist, will show off a "bee beard" on Wednesday, August 27 at 1 p.m.

Eco Experience building

  • Gary Wyatt, Extension forestry educator, will present "Natural foods and decoratives from the woods or backyard" on Friday, August 22 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

DNR building

  • Gary Wyatt, Extension forestry educator, will present "Controlling woody invasive plants" on the DNR stage on Sunday, August 24 at 11 a.m.

  • Jeff Hahn, Extension entomologist, will discuss "Invasive insects in Minnesota: Are they in your yard and garden?" on Sunday, August 24, at 1 p.m.

  • Gary Reuter, Extension entomologist, will discuss "Honey bees, beekeeping and research" on the DNR stage on August 24 at 5 p.m.

  • Master Naturalists will be available each day in the wildlife wing to answer questions about wildlife in Minnesota.

Minnesota Public Radio

  • Mark Seeley, Extension climatologist, will appear on MPR's Daily Circuit Thursday, August 28, at 11 a.m. MPR broadcasts from the corner of Judson and Nelson. Mark will also appear on tpt's Almanac, being taped there at noon on August 22.

For a complete schedule and map of University events that will be taking place at the fair, see U at the State Fair.

Catherine Dehdashti
Communications & Public Relations Manager

This year, Extension will host the annual program conference in Bloomington, October 6-8. The conference brings together more than 300 Extension faculty, educators and program staff for three days of networking and professional development. This year's conference features two keynote speakers, more than 30 breakout sessions and center-specific gatherings.

The deadline to register is September 12. You also are encouraged to present a poster and a lightning talk at the conference. More information can be found on the program conference website.

During the conference, Dean Bev Durgan will present the annual dean's awards for outstanding contributions by Extension faculty and staff. Associate deans and department heads are encouraged to submit nominations by September 15.

Ying Iverson
Professional and Organizational Development Director

As part of the University of Minnesota's commitment to providing relevant professional development opportunities, they are again offering University Professional (UP!) Circles, a leadership program started in 2011. This program offers an affordable professional development opportunity for faculty and staff who want to advance their professional goals, hone interpersonal communication and networking skills, and effectively bridge barriers.

UP! Circle participants need to commit to two meetings per month over seven months, from October 2014 to April 2015. The monthly large group sessions will include expert presentations on topics from communication to organizational change, while a monthly small group meeting will focus on advancing targeted goals using a professional circles model. Due to the time commitment, supervisor approval is required to participate.

Apply online by September 12. The participation fee is $50. For questions, send an email to orgeff@umn.edu.

Leslee Mason
Human Resources Director

This September, take advantage of two Extension webinars that will hone your H-index and cultural agility skills:

Understanding your H-index, and locating journals for publication
September 3, 10-11 a.m. Kristen Mastel, Extension's outreach & instruction librarian, will teach participants how to compute an individual's H-index using Web of Science and Google Scholar and how to find a journal's impact factor. Learn how these numbers are tabulated to better understand what they tell you about your impact and journal publishing.
Register for "Understanding your H-Index"

Introduction to EOAA (Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action) toolkit
September 11, 1-2 p.m. Kimberly Hewitt, director, and Tina Marisam, associate to the director, both in the U of M Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, will provide practical tools for supervisors and staff to identify, prevent and respond to potential discrimination, harassment, retaliation and nepotism. Participants are required to view pre-recorded modules before attending the webinar.
Register for "Introduction to EOAA Toolkit"

Ying Iverson
Professional and Organizational Development Director

To maintain eligibility as a principal investigator (PI) at the University of Minnesota, PIs must complete Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) continuing education. The following workshops satisfy RCR continuing education awareness/discussion requirements.  

  • Know your rights: Copyright essentials for authors and creators
    Friday, April 11, 10 a.m. - noon. Online-only interactive session
    In this session, authors and creators learn more about their rights in their creations, and how to manage those rights to achieve their goals. Primarily intended for faculty, researchers, and graduate students engaged in the scholarly writing and publishing process.

  • Can I use that? Dealing with copyright in everyday life
    Wednesday, April 30, 10 a.m. - noon. Online-only interactive session
    Learn about options for using materials created by others--in writing, presentations, remix videos and beyond. Primarily intended for faculty, researchers, and graduate students engaged in the scholarly writing and publishing process.

All Extension faculty, educators and others who are interested in applying for grants are required to complete the University's eligibility process. For more information about PI eligibility, visit the Grants section on the Extension intranet.

Kristen Mastel
Outreach & Instruction Librarian
and
Dianne Sivald
Grants Manager

April is the national "Month of the Military Child," a time to honor youth impacted by deployment. Extension 4-H and Operation: Military Kids invite you to "Purple Up! For Military Kids!" We encourage everyone to wear purple on the third annual national event Tuesday, April 15 to show support and thank military children across the country and in Minnesota for their strength and sacrifices. Purple is the color that symbolizes all branches of the military, as it is the combination of Army green, Coast Guard blue, Air Force blue, Marine red and Navy blue.


Extension 4-H delivers Operation: Military Kids programs to help youth discover positive ways to cope with their loved ones' deployment, and feel connected, active and supported.


Amber Greeley
Extension 4-H and Operation: Military Kids Program Specialist

As part of the Extension Cultural Agility webinar series, Anne Phibbs, director of education, Office of Equity and Diversity and Susan Aase, associate to the director, Disability Services, will present the webinar, Advancing access for everyone: Introduction to disability and disability service on April 10, 1-2 p.m. These experts join Extension for a second month to offer participants insight into what disability is, how to recognize visible and invisible disabilities, and how to address barriers and advocate for solutions so all individuals have equal access to a healthy and inclusive work environment.


Join your Extension colleagues from across Minnesota for a vibrant and engaging discussion. Registration is required.

Ying Iverson
Director, Professional Development

One Health in the 'real world' takes people, time, commitment and collaborations. This year's One Health Partnerships workshop, held on April 30 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Minneapolis, will explore One Health from concept through everyday realities on the ground.

The workshop begins with a plenary session addressing what One Health is and the actors who make the One Health system work, followed by an on‐site panel discussion at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds to address animal-human interactions in public settings (highlighting recent outbreak of H1N2v swine influenza that caused influenza in humans in 2012). The workshop will end in an interactive learning room where participants will delve into the realities of how One Health works in the 'real word' and how we can build on this with synthesis of insights and improving One Health partnerships. Workshop participants will have the opportunity to carry these insights forward in a published synthesis document that can be used to inform stakeholders who bring One Health to the realities of disease.

Register today for this one-day workshop as a single event, or as part of the larger International Conference on One Medicine, One Science (iCOMOS) conference.

Kris Junker
Center for Animal Health and Food Safety
Several professional development opportunities are scheduled in February to increase awareness and understanding of important Extension initiatives and topics. The following sessions will be held live via UMConnect webinar; registration is required:
  

Promotion-related

Cultural agility

As always, the webinar recordings for these sessions will be available on the intranet after the session date. Recordings for all past webinars are available on the Professional Development section of the Extension intranet. The most recent webinars include "Overview of Extension promotion" (Jan. 29), and "Extension development" (Feb. 5).

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

Kick off the new year by getting acquainted with Moodle, the University of Minnesota's online course management system. Moodle can be a wonderful platform for enhancing your online outreach and supporting learner engagement with rich interactive tools. To get started with Moodle, request a site, dig in, and test out the platform anytime! For information on how to request a site, how to apply the Extension theme to your site, and to view Moodle training videos, visit the Moodle section of the Extension intranet.

You can also take advantage of the University's Moodle training offerings on the Twin Cities campuses (with some limited availability online).  

For experienced Moodle users, please note that Moodle 2.2 sites will be retiring soon and will need to be upgraded to the newest Moodle instance. If you still have courses in Moodle 2.2 and need more information about the transition, contact Alison Link as soon as possible.

Alison Link
Academic Technologist

A new Extension webinar series has been created that focuses on supporting Extension educators as they go through the promotion process. The first webinar of the series, "Overview of Extension Promotion," will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 29, from 10 to 11 a.m. via UMConnect. Presenter Renee Pardello, assistant dean, will provide an overview of promotion goals, process, timelines, and roles and responsibilities. She will also briefly discuss promotion guidelines and provide answers to commonly asked questions from educators.

This session is open to all Extension staff and educators who are involved in the promotion process. Please note that you need to register for the webinar via ULearn, the University's learning management system. You will receive a confirmation email and have the choice of adding the webinar on your Google calendar upon registration. If we have less than 10 people registered, the webinar will be rescheduled. If you have additional questions, please contact Tiffany Ralston.

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

A webinar recording is now available for the January 8 Extension Topic Webinar:

"Libraries' makeover," presented by Kristen Mastel, Extension Librarian. In this webinar, Kristen demonstrated how Extension staff can navigate the new Libraries' website to effectively search for articles and materials within their program area.

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

Starting in January 2014, the Extension Topic Webinar Series will move from bi-monthly to monthly, covering topics of interest to all staff.  


The next webinar, "Libraries' makeover: Get a sneak peek of our new website and search interface," will be presented by Kristen Mastel, outreach and instruction librarian, on January 8, 10-11 a.m. via UMConnect or in-person at Coffey Hall, Room 401. Learn how to navigate the new Libraries website efficiently and effectively in your program area. MNCAT Discover features a "blended search" interface that will allow you to search the overwhelming majority of articles and other materials currently licensed by the Libraries, including books and other holdings. In addition, participants will view MNCAT Discovery's filter capability that offers more than Google Scholar.  


The February topic webinar, held on February 5, will feature Jane Johnson and Cara Miller who will present information about "Extension Development." All 2014 topic webinar dates and information can be found on the Program Resources section of the Extension intranet.


These webinars are open to all employees. Registration is required via ULearn, the University's learning management system. For additional questions, contact Ying Iverson.


Ying Iverson

Director, Professional Development


A webinar recording is now available for the December 12 Extension webinar, "Introduction to the Public Value of Extension Programming," presented by Laura Kalambokidis, state economist & Extension economist. In this webinar, Laura discussed how to understand and demonstrate the public value of Extension programs.

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

All Extension staff are invited to attend the next Extension webinar: Introduction to the Public Value of Extension Programming, by Laura Kalambokidis on December 12, 10-11 a.m. via UMConnect (online only). In Extension, we can readily provide evidence of our program's private value to participants, but we also create public value when our programs benefit others in the community. By understanding and demonstrating the public benefits our programs provide, we can prioritize our efforts and secure public support for Extension. This presentation will introduce the public value approach to anyone who develops, delivers, evaluates or seeks funding for Extension programs. Join us for this important topic!


Ying Iverson
Director, Professional Development

The University's Public Engagement Issue Area Networks initiative was created to help the University build a more unified systems approach to public and community engagement.  They do this by networking existing community-engaged research, teaching, and public service efforts on nine key societal issues: art; economic development; diversity and inclusion; environment and sustainability; food; health; poverty; transportation; and youth and education.

On December 13 a Design Thinking work session will connect individuals, groups and units that have interest in or are conducting community-engaged research, teaching and/or outreach work on similar issues. The session will engage participants in a design thinking process facilitated by Virajita Singh, an expert on design thinking and senior research fellow in the College of Design.

Diana Martenson
Organization and Program Development Specialist

More than 300 Extension faculty and staff from across the state participated in Extension's program conference in Duluth for professional development and organizational networking. Many sessions materials are now available for download on the Extension intranet.  

As part of the Step-It-Up Challenge, there are three grand prize winners based on their total step counts: Paulo Pagliari, nutrient management specialist, crops; Sarah Schieck, Extension educator, livestock; and Julie Sievert, Extension educator, ag production systems. They will each receive a copy of Voyageur Skies by Extension's Don Breneman and Mark Seeley.

The program conference survey is open until November 14. Please complete the survey. Your feedback will be used in planning next year's conference!

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

Next week, more than 300 Extension faculty and educators will gather in Duluth at the Extension Program Conference for three days of networking and professional development.

Our Extension conferences, including Youth and U, Nutrition Education Conference, and Staff Day, all provide valuable opportunities to learn about the research and education, emerging issues, and initiatives that are happening in Extension. They are an important investment for our statewide organization.

Bev Durgan
Dean

All Extension faculty and staff are invited to attend Community Day, a celebration of University/community partnerships, at the University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center (UROC) from 2 to 7 p.m., Thursday, October 17 at UROC, 2001 Plymouth Avenue North in Minneapolis.  

Learn about UROC's latest research projects and its lasting commitment to public accountability and transparency. Enjoy refreshments, live music, tours, displays and demonstrations. Extension staff in health and nutrition, family resource management, and 4-H youth development will have displays, presentations and information available for interested community members. Special guests include University President Eric Kaler, Provost Karen Hanson, newly appointed Vice President for Equity and Diversity Katrice Albert, and Vice Provost for Student Affairs Danita Brown Young.

The event is free and open to the public. Visit the UROC website for details.

Kim Boyce
Regional Director, Central

On August 15, Extension hosted a webinar, "Communicating Extension's Value," presented by Aimee Viniard-Weideman, assistant dean and director of communications and public relations. During the webinar, Aimee provided an overview of the Extension communications team and its roles within the organization. She discussed the importance of communications for Extension and its programming, such as branding, media relations, etc.  To access the recording of this webinar, visit the Extension Topic Webinar section of the intranet.

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

On June 6, Extension hosted a topic webinar, "Understanding the State We Are Serving," by Ryan Allen, Extension assistant professor in leadership and civic engagement. During the webinar, Ryan led a discussion of how Minnesota's demographic shifts impact Extension's work. To access the recording of this webinar, visit the Extension Topic Webinar section of the intranet.

Extension topic webinars will be held every other month and offer Extension faculty and staff a chance to review and discuss priority topics within Extension. The next webinar will held on July 23; Dick Senese, senior associate dean, will facilitate a discussion about "Building Collaboration at Extension."

Ying Iverson
Director, Professional Development

All Extension staff are invited to attend the upcoming "Welcome to Extension" webinar on May 17, 10-11 a.m. This session aims to welcome new employees and support them in their first few months in Extension, and also serves as a refresher to existing employees about organizational and operational processes.

Staff can attend in-person on the Twin Cities campus (401 Coffey Hall) or join online via UMConnect.

For additional questions, please contact Ying Iverson at iversony@umn.edu or 612-626-3565.

Ying Iverson
Director, Professional Development

The 2013 Women's Agricultural Leadership Conference will be held on April 10, 8 a.m.-3:50 p.m. at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chaska. This year's event marks the 15th year of programming and features presentations by several local ag professionals and pioneers, including Robin Kinney, executive director, Federation Services National Cattlemen's Beef Association; and Dave Frederickson, Minnesota commissioner of agriculture. I am also honored to contribute to this event as a panel discussion speaker.   

The Women's Ag Leadership Conference is focused on exploring and highlighting the integral roles women play in agriculture. All women and men (including students) who are interested in women's agricultural leadership are encouraged to attend.

To register and for more information about the event, visit the conference website.

Bev Durgan
Dean

All Extension staff are invited to attend an upcoming webinar, "Parents ForeverTM Online Course for Parents," offered twice on April 8 and 11. Attendees will learn how the online course compliments in-person classes, similarities and differences between the two versions, what research is being conducted, how you can preview the course, where to direct requests, and more.

Both webinars are approximately 30 minutes and are intended for Extension staff, Parents ForeverTM coordinators and trainers, and other family-serving professionals. For more information and to register, visit the Parents ForeverTM website.

Ellie McCann
Extension Educator, Family Relations

April is the national "Month of the Military Child," a time to honor youth impacted by deployment. Extension 4-H and Operation: Military Kids invite you to "Purple Up! For Military Kids!" We encourage everyone to wear purple on the second annual national event Monday, April 15 to show support and thank military children across the country and in Minnesota for their strength and sacrifices. Purple is the color that symbolizes all branches of the military, as it is the combination of Army green, Coast Guard blue, Air Force blue, Marine red and Navy blue.

Extension 4-H delivers Operation: Military Kids programs to help youth discover positive ways to cope with their loved ones' deployment, and feel connected, active and supported.

Please join Extension in taking this opportunity to appreciate and celebrate these young heroes. Help spread the word to "purple up" on April 15 so that Minnesota's military youth can see the support of their community!

Amber Runke
Extension 4-H and Operation: Military Kids Program Specialist

In celebration of National Travel & Tourism Week, the Tourism Center is hosting a poster session and light lunch on Monday, May 6 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Minnesota Commons Room, St. Paul Campus. We invite you to join us to see the breadth and depth of tourism resources at the University. All are welcome. Please RSVP by April 30 to Jennifer Wagner-Harkonen at tourism@umn.edu.

Ingrid Schneider
Tourism Center Director

How we welcome and orient new employees is a vital first step toward helping them build a successful career in Extension. In December 2012, Extension began offering an orientation program to introduce new employees to Extension and provide them with the information and tools they need to become a part of the Extension community.  

This orientation consists of two offerings: a "Welcome to Extension" webinar, and a "Topics" webinar. The Welcome webinar aims to welcome new employees and support them in their first few months in Extension. The Topics webinar provides an overview of current priority initiatives in Extension. New and current employees are invited to attend both of these sessions.

The next Topics webinar, "Plan of Work and Performance Evaluation," is on April 4, 10-11 a.m. More information about this and future orientation sessions, including instructions on how to attend, is available on the New Employee section of the Extension intranet.

If you have any question, please contact Ying Iverson.

Ying Iverson
Professional Development Director

As part of Extension's recognition of National Agriculture Day on March 19, Dean Bev Durgan highlighted the role Extension's Institute for Agricultural Professionals plays in bringing the newest research and innovations to farmers. Her column, "Reaching more farmers through agricultural professionals," was distributed to news media throughout Minnesota and has appeared in newspapers and industry publications. It was also shared via Facebook and Twitter.

"According to a 2011 survey, agricultural professionals serve an average of 60 clients each, having an impact on some 48,000 acres. Just one of the Institute's educational programs impacts 4.3 million acres across the state and surrounding regions," Durgan observed. Essential partnerships among Extension, farmers and agricultural professionals were featured recently in Source Magazine.

Allison Sandve
News Media & Public Relations Manager

Now is the time to begin your preparations for this year's Galaxy IV conference, "Bridging the Centuries - A New Era for Extension," held September 16-20 in Pittsburgh, PA.  

Approximately 2,000 Extension educators are expected to attend the conference, so the earlier travel plans are set, the better rates you will get on registration and travel arrangements. Early bird registration ($450) opens May 1; after July 15, the rates go up.  In the meantime, take some time to research the main Galaxy hotels: Omni William Penn (NAE4-HA headquarters), Marriott City Center (NACAA headquarters), Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel (NEAFCS headquarters), Double Tree (ANREP headquarters), and the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh (NACDEP and ESP headquarters).

Several University of Minnesota Extension staff have been involved in planning this year's Galaxy IV conference including: Chuck Schwartau, Extension educator in livestock; Michael Darger, Extension specialist in community economics; Eleanor Burkett, Extension educator in water resource management and policy; and Kathleen Olson, coordinator for Partnering for School Success.

For more information about this event, visit the Galaxy website.

Kathleen Olson
Program Director, Partnering for School Success
&
Eleanor Burkett
Associate Extension Professor Water Resources

Copyright workshops will be available in March and April to take in-person on the Twin Cities campus and online. Nancy Sims, University of Minnesota assistant librarian, will offer the three copyright workshops, two of which satisfy RCR continuing education awareness/discussion requirements.

Visit the University Libraries website for more information and to register. Please register early, especially if attending online, as the sessions fill up quickly.  

Kristen Mastel
Outreach and Instruction Librarian

The Extension Center for Family Development is part of a national campaign, called America Saves Week, that encourages people from all income levels to save money and build personal wealth. America Saves Week runs February 25 through March 2 and is a great opportunity for individuals to assess their own saving status.

Facts about saving:

  • Fewer than 50% of Americans say they have a savings plan with specific goals.
  • Only 66% of Americans spend less than their income and save the difference.
  • Only 66% of Americans have sufficient emergency funds for unexpected expenses like car repairs or a doctor's visit.

To participate in America Saves Week, pledge a personal savings goal, and/or follow us on Facebook and Twitter for daily saving tips and resources.

Mary Jo Katras
Extension Educator, Building Healthy and Strong Families

Extension faculty and staff are invited to a special event to raise funds for Minnesota State 4-H Arts-In, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary. Funds raised will support the Minnesota 4-H State Arts-In program and make technology improvements for this program as well as other activities at the 4-H building on the state fairgrounds. The funds will be increased by a matching grant from Dean Durgan.  

Please join us on Saturday, March 2, 7-10 p.m. in the Northstar Ballroom, St. Paul Campus Student Center. Cost is $40 per person; participants must be registered and payments received by Monday, February 25. Contact the Minnesota 4-H Foundation office to register: 612-624-7971 or fdnstaff@umn.edu.

Kathleen Olson
Program Director, Partnering for School Success
and
Cara Miller
Executive Director, Minnesota 4-H Foundation

Extension faculty and staff are invited to join nearly 300 Extension professionals at the National Urban Extension Conference in Overland Park, Kansas on May 7-9. A pre-conference session will be held on May 6-7. The conference agenda is robust, and includes several keynote presentations and more than 90 concurrent sessions and posters. Ten of the sessions and posters feature staff from University of Minnesota Extension.

The event theme is "Relevant, Reliable, Responsive and Remarkable," and will highlight topics that focus on building cultural competency skills, community capacity, and strategic collaborative partnerships in urban and suburban communities.  

To view the full event agenda, and to register for the conference, please visit the event website.

Kim Boyce
Regional Director, Central