eXtension Announces Four New Communities of Practice

As a result of the recent call for proposals, eXtension has announced the funding of four new Communities of Practice:

Community, Local and Regional Food Systems
This Community of Practice will focus on community, local, and regional food systems (CLRFS) that are important to individuals, families, businesses and communities for health, economic and educational reasons. Members will collaborate on developing comprehensive, web-based resources relevant to Extension educators nationwide. The primary contact for this community is Deno W. De Ciantis from Penn State with leadership represented from West Virginia State; University of Vermont; Ohio State University; University of Wisconsin; University of California, Davis; Delaware State University; USDA/NIFA; North Carolina State University; Michigan State University; University of Wyoming; University of New Hampshire; and Colorado State University. For more information or to join this Community of Practice contact: Deno De Ciantis at dwd5@psu.edu.

Marine Aquaculture. This Community of Practice will better enable Extension agents across the nation to better serve local, regional, and national aquaculture industries as a whole. Members will utilize federal (NOAANMFS, NIFA), regional (Regional Aquaculture Centers), state (Sea Grant, Cooperative Extension System, Land Grant Institutions), and local (County Extension Agents) resources to provide up‐to‐date science based information and resources, as well as facilitate the exposure of the Community of Practice nationally. The primary contact is Anoushka Concepcion with Connecticut Sea Grant and University of Connecticut’s Cooperative Extension System. The leadership team has representation from University of Maryland, Rutgers University, University of Arkansas, Cape Cod Cooperative Extension, University of New Hampshire, Oregon Sea Grant Extension Programs, National Sea Grant Office, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service, and USDA/NIFA. For more information or to join this Community of Practice contact Anoushka Concepcion at anoushka.concepcion@uconn.edu.

Prescribed Burning. This Community of Practice will use prescribed fire as a systematic application to the land to achieve a specific management goal or objective. The associated fire effects from prescribed fire and even wildfires are very important to the management of natural resources. The primary contact is John Weir at Oklahoma State University. Their leadership team represents the New Mexico State University, USDA/NIFA, University of Tennessee, the National Park Service, Cal Poly University, Oregon State University, Tall Timbers Research Station, Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center, the Noble Foundation, Texas Agrilife Extension, USDA/NRCS, University of Nebraska, Purdue University, American Forest Foundation, USDA/ARS, The Nature Conservancy, Kansas Forest Service and USFWS. For more information or to join this Community of Practice contact John Weir at john.weir@okstate.edu.

Volunteerism. This Community of Practice is designed to reach beyond the traditional audience of 4-H volunteer specialists to encompass Extension staff who work across program areas that engage volunteers. Ultimately, the Community of Practice goal is to bring together Extension professionals who work with volunteers and other nonprofit volunteer managers to share expertise with one another. Expanding the opportunities to a wider audience by acting as a clearinghouse for resources on volunteer management will increase the depth and breadth of the conversations. Online micro-courses focused on specific volunteer topics, webinars, web-based chats that serve as round tables on various subjects, and local, regional, statewide, and national workshops and conferences will be offered and promoted. The primary contact for this CoP is Molly Frendo at Michigan State University. The leadership team represents the University of New Hampshire, Michigan State University, Washington State University, Virginia Cooperative Extension, University of Maine, USDA/NIFA, University of Illinois, University of Florida, and Bays Mill Community College. For more information or to join this Community of Practice contact Molly Frendo at frendo@msu.edu.