Ready to travel? Don’t forget your passport!

- Thursday, July 30, 2020
Photo credit: dlritter from freeimages.com

The Extension mission is supported by many, and as a result, our efforts are funded a wide variety of ways. For over a century, Ohio’s Extension efforts have been made possible by a cooperative arrangement involving federal, state, and local funding (historically county-based). More recently, these three funding sources have been joined by another funding source which has become an ever-increasing share of the total – called “Other”.

“Other” funding has really enabled us to go farther. It includes what you might charge as a program fee or meeting registration and helps to cover the cost of the meeting room, materials, travel expenses, etc. It includes what we think of as “fees for service” or contracts for specific trainings or types of engagement (think of Pesticide Education, SNAP-ed, BR&E programs, etc). This “Other” category also includes all of our funding administered through the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) that helps cover the cost of our scholarly efforts.

When we engage in Extension scholarship we are trying to learn or investigate something. We typically do this in collaboration with others (e.g. farmers, campus-based researchers, other Extension professionals in Ohio and beyond, etc.). When such scholarly efforts receive funding that is coordinated through OSP, we are considered investigators and at least one of our team must serve in the role of principal investigator (PI).

Faculty automatically have PI status upon hire. All other Extension professionals who pursue such OSP-coordinated Extension work must apply for PI status. Like getting your passport well in advance of any specific plans to travel abroad, having PI status well in advance of your pursuit of such external funding makes a ton of sense too (who wants to be far from home standing in line at customs without a passport???).

Let’s get you ready to travel! You can learn more about the process at https://extension.osu.edu/policy-and-procedures-handbook/iv-financial-and-business-practices/principal-investigator-status. And if you can’t remember if you applied for (and received) PI status previously, you can verify at https://orapps.osu.edu/studyteamlookup/ and/or simply contact Terri Fisher (fisher.456).

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