• New Videos Showcase Civic Engagement Successes

    Learn More

  • National Agricultural and Rural Development Policy Center (NARDeP) Releases New Policy Resources

    Read More

  • Phase V of SET Launching in January 2015

    Read More

College degree gap widens between cities and rural America

SRDC's Roberto Gallardo and the Daily Yonder collaborated in a study to measure the changes in educational achievement over the last 40 years. In many ways, rural America has caught up with the rest of the United States in terms of educational achievement. But over the past 40 years, the gap in the percentage of adults with college degrees has increased between urban and rural counties.

Despite a near three-fold increase in the percentage of rural adults who have college degrees, the gap in bachelor degrees between the cities and rural America has widened between 1970 and 2010. In 1970, there was a 6-point difference between urban and rural counties in the percent of people over 25 years of age who had college degrees. (Rural stood at 5.7 percent; urban was 11.6 percent.) By 2010, the gap was nearly 15 points.

The loss of young, well-educated residents is a long-standing problem for rural communities.

"'One of the problems that rural areas face is that in order to get a college education, young people have to leave," says Judith Stallman, an economist at the University of Missouri. "Once you leave, that introduces you to other opportunities that you might not have seen had you not left."

The good news for rural America is that it has caught up in every other measure of education.

To view the full article and corresponding data graphs, visit Daily Yonder .

SRDC Annual Report

SRDC is constantly moving forward to create a better future for a better South. The 2014 SRDC Annual Report captures how to create communties by the variety of Extension and Research activities spearheaded by the Center over the past year in partnership with its land-grant university colleagues and key external collaborators

The report devotes special attention to SRDC projects that broaden the voices of the people who are working together to make life better for their communities and regions. Our Turning the Tide on Poverty initiative, Stronger Economies Together (SET) program, and ReadyCommunity training all promote citizen engagement and community vitality.

Please take a look and explore the accomplishments and highlights in the 2014 SRDC Annual Report.

Learn More    |    February 18, 2015

Community Behavioral Health Early Warning System - Index Partner Communities - Call for Proposals 2015

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, and the Regional Rural Development Centers are partnering to implement a national program of early warning systems with respect to community-level incidence of behavioral health issues (e.g. substance abuse, mental illness). Increasing behavioral health issues impose costs on communities via treatment, law enforcement, and long-term impacts on individual and family productivity. The incidence of these issues and how they are expressed varies by place and across time, so local monitoring and intervention techniques are important.

Learn More    |    February 18, 2015

Bonnie Teater Award Nominations are Due April 1

The Southern Rural Development Center is pleased to announce that nominations are being sought for the Bonnie Teater Community Development Early Career Achievement Award for 2015. This award honors the work of a "rising star" who has already achieved great things in his/her early career in community development.

Learn More    |    January 26, 2015

Phase V of SET Launching in January 2015

Stronger Economies Together, a partnership between Cooperative Extension Service, USDA RD, the four Regional Rural Development Centers, NIFA, and Purdue Center for Regional Development, is launching Phase V. SET V is taking a brand new approach based on an extensive review of the program. Significant improvements to engage participants has been made; a civic engagement module added which will increase stakeholder involvement and buy-in; and a more streamlined approach which reduces the number of modules and gives greater flexibility to adapt to the capacity of that region. Most importantly, significant time will be devoted to launching the plan into implementation.

Learn More    |    December 11, 2014

Understanding Communities: Online course offers tools for community development

Would you like to understand how communities work? Are you curious about why good ideas sometimes fall flat? Do you watch groups struggle to make decisions without adequate data? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions we invite you to register now for Understanding Communities and Their Dynamics.

Learn More    |    December 1, 2014