January 2023 program update

Agriculture and Natural Resources

  • CropsTV returns for a third season in 2023. This educational program delivers crop production information directly to farmers and agribusinesses and provides the convenience of crop production education at home, in the office, or anywhere there is an internet connection. All episodes will be available for on-demand viewing, providing flexibility for busy viewers. The Season Three program features 33 episodes covering a variety of crop management, pest management, nutrient management, and soil and water management topics.
  • More than 14,000 people, including school-age youth, visited Iowa State University’s Research and Demonstration Farms in 2022. Nearly 70 field days were held across the state, with topics that pertained to corn rootworm, forage management, tar spot, nitrogen management, turfgrass management, specialty crops and livestock production.

Community and Economic Development

  • The 2023 Community Visioning Program is moving into the community assessment process. Participating communities are Denison, Dysart, Gilmore City, Glenwood, Independence, Marquette, McGregor, Slater, Vinton, and West Burlington. During January ISU program staff will be conducting transportation focus groups with students in Marquette, McGregor, Glenwood, and Denison. ISU program staff also will be conducting training in focus group facilitation and bioregional assessments for Trees Forever field coordinators and private-sector consultants.
  • In January CED specialists will be conducting Township Trustee training for Floyd, Johnson, Madison, Howard, Pottawattamie, and Mitchell counties. The township clerk and the township trustees are the locally elected officials who are responsible for seeing that these services are delivered effectively and economically. Their job is important, and they represent the heart of local government for township residents. Yet many trustees and clerks assume their jobs with little or no training and experience. CED’s Office of State and Local Government Programs offers township trustee and clerk training upon request for township trustees, township clerks, and elected and appointed county officials.

Human Sciences

  • In fall 2022, the ACT Raising Safe Kids series was presented virtually via Zoom to Iowa parents and caregivers. The series is an interactive violence prevention program developed by the American Psychological Association Violence Prevention Office. The goal of the program is to strengthen families and improve parenting skills and practices. ACT Raising Safe Kids reached a diverse group of mothers, fathers, foster parents, grandparents, and guardians. Average attendance during the 9-week series was 29 participants. Program evaluation included pre- and post-instruments, and participants demonstrated improvements in areas such as paying attention to what they do in front of their children, limiting violence their children see in media, calming themselves down when angry, and controlling their anger when having difficulties with children.
  • Human Sciences reached 694 children in grades K-5 in three counties and 43 high school age youth in three counties with direct nutrition education. Evaluation data show that 68% of K-2, 86% of 3-5, and 62% of 9-12 youth improved their diet quality. Human Sciences also reached 1,178 adults with EFNEP and SNAP-Ed direct education. This reflects a rebound to pre-pandemic service levels. Evaluation data show that 92% of participants in “Buy, Eat, Live Healthy” and 81% of those in “Plan, Shop, Save, and Cook” improved diet quality.

4-H Youth Development

  • Iowa 4-H works with States’ 4-H Exchange and IFYE (formerly known as International 4-H Youth Exchange) to create opportunities for 4-H’ers and alumni to travel abroad. Cultural immersion is a hands-on way to learn and understand a different culture or viewpoint quickly and meaningfully. The 2023 Iowa States’ 4-H Exchange program is seeking host families for 12 Japanese youth delegates who will visit Iowa this summer.
  • Eighteen youth in the Career Pathways Academy and five AmeriCorps members participated in “Find Your SPARK” workshops in December at Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa and Northwest Iowa Community College in Sheldon focused on learning about education and career pathways in the skilled trades. College staff and faculty provided a tour, engaged youth in an activity, and shared information about specific programs such as manufacturing, construction, machine technology, welding, and ag science. AmeriCorps members led a STEM Sparks lesson about circuits. Youth also joined AmeriCorps and staff for a virtual workshop to continue learning about college and career opportunities.

December 2022 goodbye … and welcome

In December, we said goodbye to the following individuals who left ISU Extension and Outreach:

  • Billie Shahan, Franklin County K-12 youth coordinator
  • Alexandra Monaghan, Jones County director
  • Jill McKeen, Floyd County nutritionist

We welcome the following new staff:

  • Paige Burgett, Lucas County youth coordinator
  • Kerstin Thoms, Plymouth County youth coordinator
  • Kimberly Feltes, Dubuque County office manager/assistant bookkeeper
  • Deann Lentz, Buchanan County office assistant
  • Shelby Kaestner, Plymouth County K-12 program coordinator
  • Susan Bugg, Lee County youth coordinator
  • Reann Hildebrand, East Pottawattamie County office assistant
  • Stephanie Alanis, program assistant II, 4-H Youth Development
  • Joann Mason, budget and finance specialist I, Finance Extension
  • Silvia Benitez-Richards, extension specialist I, Human Sciences
  • Christie Gerken, extension specialist I, Human Sciences

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