RIDGE Center for Targeted Studies @ the SRDC now accepting 2012 research grant proposals

The RIDGE Center for Targeted Studies @ the SRDC, in partnership with USDA Economic Research Service, has released its 2012 request for proposals for both its Doctoral Dissertation Research Grant Program and its regular Food Assistance and Nutrition Challenges in Rural America Research Grant Program.

Now in its second year, the Doctoral Dissertation Research Grant Program supports research in the United States by graduate students pursuing doctoral research in areas that closely align with the priorities of the RIDGE Center for Targeted Studies. Students currently enrolled in a Ph.D program from an accredited U.S.institution of higher education who have reached the “All But Dissertation” stage are eligible to apply. Proposals must be postmarked by May 18.

The Food Assistance and Nutrition Challenges in Rural America Grant Program seeks to invest in innovative research that explores the social science-based dimensions of the food and nutrition issues impacting residents or communities in rural America. The program is especially interested in proposals that focus on Native Americans, Hispanics, African Americans, and other racial/ethnic minorities, as well as children and low-wealth individuals/households. Proposals must be postmarked by May 4.

For full information on these opportunities, please visit http://srdc.msstate.edu/ridge/grants/.  

Developing and Implementing an Effective E-commerce Program Webinar

December 16th, 2015 9 a.m. CT/ 10 a.m. ET

Effectively using the Internet and broadband technologies are crucial for many rural small businesses; however, many of these businesses do not have the necessary experience or knowledge. This webinar will introduce the Oklahoma State University E-Commerce program that addresses this gap by providing businesses with the tools and hands-on experiences necessary to become active online. This webinar will highlight workshops, teaching approaches, success stories and evaluation metrics.

Link to Webinar    |   November 17, 2015

Getting Community Stakeholders to Identify Water Quality Issues and Priorities Using Liberating Structures Webinar

November 10th, 2015 1pm CT/2pm ET

Cooperative Extension professionals have a long history of providing public issues education and encouraging civic engagement with the intention of inspiring local leadership to address challenging and often controversial issues. Public issues deliberation often creates strife among community residents with different groups struggling to come to consensus on how to tackle local problems. Cooperative Extension professionals pride themselves on their “toolbox” of methods for helping communities overcome such challenges. The method of Liberating Structures is one method for hosting inclusive meetings that generate ideas from everyone rather than the vocal minority. In Arkansas, Extension specialists led local residents of impaired watersheds to set priorities for addressing nonpoint source pollution management. This is often a difficult task to achieve between a broad base of stakeholders that includes agricultural producers, land owners, conservationist and agency personnel. Arkansas Extension specialists used this method to get residents of local watersheds to see how they share common interests rather than opposing perspectives on local issues with water quality.

This webinar will provide attendees with an overview of the liberating structures methods used in the Arkansas Nonpoint Source Pollution Management water quality stakeholder forums, highlights from the water quality forums, recommendations for using liberating structures in other public issue engagement forums.

Learn More    |   November 4, 2015

New Director of the NCRCRD

jakesOn behalf of Dr. Ray Hammerschmidt, Director, Michigan State University Extension we are delighted to announce that Dr. Mark Skidmore has been named director of the North Central Region Center for Rural Development (NCRCRD). He will take over the duties from Dr. Scott Loveridge effective January 1, 2016. We look forward to him continuing the NCRCRD’s work with Extension professionals, researchers and their partners to enhance rural development outcomes in the 12-state north central region (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Ohio, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin).

Learn More    |   October 21, 2015


Presenter:  Scott Chazdon, Ph.D., Evaluation and Research Specialist, Extension Center for Community Vitality, University of Minnesota

Description: How do we articulate our impact? Quantitative evaluation data informs, but does not necessarily inspire.  A good story evokes strong feelings, and often endures in memory. This webinar highlights a qualitative evaluation method that combines a public value framework with storytelling.

The presentation will review key lessons learned from the Most Significant Change project, implemented in the Fall 2014 in University of Minnesota Extension's Central region. This project collected, reviewed and selected the stories from across Extension that demonstrated the most public value -- the direct and indirect, deep impact Extension programs have on individuals, families, groups, communities and ultimately the common good.

At this session, you will hear about the process used to collect impact stories, see examples of stories, and learn about the "public value impact story rubric," a tool for writing and evaluating the public value components of an impact narrative.

Learn More    |  Link To Webinar  |   October 8, 2015

A New Season of the Friday Chat at Power of Business Begins

November 6, 2015 11:15am CT/ 12:15 ET on Cybersecurity

Join us at 11: 15 CT every first Friday of the month.
Upcoming events are December and January on Marketing.

Register here for Novembers Live Chat

For more information on upcoming Friday Webinars please register http://powerofbusiness.net to get on the mailing list for notifications, newsletter or both.

Learn More    |    October 5, 2015

Community Resource Development Webinar Series - Youth Engagement Leadership Program (YELP)

October 16th, 2015
10:00am Central/ 11:00am Eastern

The Youth Engagement Leadership Program (YELP) is a Kentucky youth leadership program that builds partnerships with local Cooperative Extension agents, the local school district, elected officials and the business community.  The program began in 2013 as a pilot project with Appalachian Regional Commission and has now expanded to 5 counties as of August 2015 with 5 additional counties scheduled to being in the fall of 2016. 

Link to Webinar

Learn More About Yelp    |    September 22, 2015

“Why Local Food Matters: Views from the National Landscape” webinar draws national audience

Debra Tropp, USDA Ag Marketing Services, presented a wealth of information on the subject of local foods.  Among the topics explored were:  (1) What do we mean by local foods, (2) Relationship of local foods to U.S. food system, (3) What does the future of local food look like, and (4) How do Ag Marketing Services programs facilitate market access for local foods.  If you missed this phenomenal webinar, you can still access this rich information through the recorded webinar or you can access the PowerPoint to explore at your own pace.

Learn More    |    September 10, 2015

Rural Housing and Economic Development Call for Proposals

NARDeP (National Agriculture and Rural Development Policy Center) seeks proposals for a book chapter and policy brief describing research and/or outreach programs that address problems associated with housing and economic development in rural areas of the United States. Inadequate housing in many rural areas tends to impair opportunities for healthy living and suppresses economic development. We have special interest on work from the disciplines of economics, family and consumer science, planning, sociology or related fields.

Learn More    |    September 2, 2015

Funding Available for Programs in Nutrition Assistance Programs

SRDC partners with The University of Kentucky for projects that creatively increase coordination among USDA nutrition assistance programs. The Rural Child Poverty Nutrition Center at The University of Kentucky will announce available funding on July 24, 2015,The project is aimed at providing nutrition assistance to families who live in 324 persistently poor counties across 15 states. Organizations in those eligible counties may apply for $50,000 total to implement their project, and up to 25 grantees will be selected. 

Learn More    |    July 22, 2015

Latinos in the New South: Inclusive Research & Extension Programming DATE CHANGE


Hotel : The Florida Hotel
1500 Sand Lake Road
Orlando, FL  32809

August 27 : Meeting Noon – 5:00 (lunch provided)
August 28 : Meeting 8:00 – 1:00

Shuttle : The hotel is located 6 miles from the Orlando International Airport.  Transportation from the airport to the hotel is provided by Mears Transportation.  $30 round trip for shuttle service, or $27 one-way for taxi.  Call Mears Transportation Group at 407-423-5566 to book your pick up or visit online at http://www.mearstransportation.com/global/orlando/.

Learn More    |    June 24, 2015

SRDC is Pleased to Award Dr. Susan Jakes with the Bonnie Teater Award

jakesThe Southern Rural Development Center is proud to honor Dr. Susan Jakes as the 2015 recipient of the Bonnie Teater Community Development Early Career Achievement Award. Jakes is a member of the Department of Psychology at North Carolina State University.

Dr. Jakes is the Associate State Program Leader of Community and Rural Development for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service at North Carolina State University. In this capacity, she provides the strategic direction for community and economic programming for Extension and is the university’s point person for integration of economic development programming with Extension’s flagship initiatives of Agriculture, Local Foods, and Youth Development.

Learn More    |    June 3, 2015

Community Leadership Article Series

Effective community leaders know their community inside and out. They are confident, bringing residents together and passing on that same sense of empowerment. These leaders encourage diversity, different types of people working toward the same end goal, as the solution to solving community problems. A community is a group of people who need each other to survive and succeed, and effective leaders can be the catalyst to initiate change and guide community members to success. Kenneth Pigg outlines these topics in his community leadership articles.

Learn More    |    March 13, 2015