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Showing posts from February, 2018

A mentor can help you grow professionally

By Mary Jo Katras, program leader in family resiliency


It’s performance review time again. This is when we look back on what we accomplished last year and set our plan of work (POW) for the coming year. The POW includes both program goals and our professional development goals.

2018 National Health Outreach Conference coming May 2-4

The 2018 National Health Outreach Conference is coming soon, and the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Family Development is hosting! The conference, “Engaging in a Culture of Health: Making Waves in the Land of 10,000 Lakes,” is set for May 2-4 at the Radisson Blu Mall of America Hotel in Bloomington, Minnesota.

SuperShelf makes super progress

By Laura Bohen, Extension educator in health and nutrition

Last spring the University of Minnesota Department of Family Medicine and Community Health received a $3.2 million National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant to evaluate the effectiveness of the SuperShelf program. U of M Extension health and nutrition staff are assisting with the evaluation.


So how are things going, you may ask? In a word: super! I’m happy to say that the SuperShelf study is progressing at a steady clip.

Schoolyard gardens conference features Family Development connections

By Mary Vitcenda, senior editor, Center for Family Development

“Establishing Roots” is the theme of the upcoming Minnesota Schoolyard Gardens Conference, which will include several sessions with connections to the University of Minnesota Extension Center for Family Development (FD).

Three new SNAP-Ed educators join Family Development

Three new SNAP-Ed educators have joined the Extension Center for Family Development (FD): Abu Farah, Shanda Walker and Elizabeth “Liz” McLaughlin.

Any questions? Mindful Q and As help us better serve our clients and communities

By Trina Adler, program leader in health and nutrition

The other day I witnessed a couple of Family Development staff do a very courageous thing: They asked a question. They asked about some innovative, edgy work they were doing, knowing full well that the answer they receive might force them to back off from the path they were taking.

Taking the mystery out of Extension: Get to know the AR+E Team

By Emily Becher, research associate



AR+E stands for the Applied Research and Evaluation Team. We are similar to the Mission Support Team in that our role is to support the work of the Center for Family Development (FD).

Extension's finance education for Latino immigrants spotlighted at national meeting

By Antonio Alba Meraz, Extension educator in family resiliency

Last fall, four Extension educators in family resiliency, including myself, presented a special series of workshops and one-to-one consultations on personal finance to Mexican and other Latino immigrants living in rural Minnesota.

The series, which emphasized building credit, budgeting, and banking, was based on the Ventanilla de Asesoria Financiera (Financial Empowerment Window) model. The workshops and consultations were made possible through a grant from the Consulate of Mexico in St. Paul.

Food Charter in Action events bring together 100s in support of healthy food access

By Stephanie Heim, associate program director

As lead partner of engagement of the Minnesota Food Charter Network, University of Minnesota Extension supported nine “Minnesota Food Charter in Action” events in November and December 2017.

Reporting on the Food Charter in Action event in central Minnesota

By Serdar Mamedov, Extension educator in health and nutrition, and Molly Zins, executive director, University of Minnesota Central Regional Sustainable Development Partnership

On November 17, 2017, more than 70 people representing different stakeholder groups in local and statewide food systems in Minnesota came together at St. Cloud Technical and Community College to discuss a very important topic for Minnesotans – access to healthy food for all.

'One Extension' website redesign project moves into site building phase

By Michael Brott, communications manager

As reported in the Jan. 18 Extension e-news, communicators and web professionals from across Extension are continuing their work on Extension’s new website, which will launch this spring. Those of us who have been working on the website redesign have completed the planning phase and are beginning site building, content writing and transition work.

Joining in the fun at the Super Bowl Snack Challenge Kids Tailgate Party

There were lots of events going on in the Twin Cities the week before the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 4, and Cristofer Ramirez, grandson of SNAP-Ed Educator Letty Rodriguez, was part of the scene. Cristofer was one of 10 Super Bowl Snack Challenge finalists invited to the Kids Tailgate Party held Jan. 31 at the Target Center.