What is an Extension program?
What a fantastic question (thank you for asking, blog subscriber!) Here is a question that could very well require the full subscribership to adequately address. To get the conversation started, here are two of the most common ways we see “Extension program” described:
- An event and/or a collection or series of events
- An initiative or effort designed to address an issue, concern, and/or opportunity
We know such events and efforts pack a full range of resources that are intentionally and strategically invested to yield an anticipated outcome or result. The Extension program logic model provides a framework for organizing these resources and evaluating their impact. Using this model to describe our efforts, our programs are the product of:
- financial support (think federal, state, and local – as well as grants, contracts, and fees)
- stakeholder input and support (such as advisory committees, program committees, commodity groups, etc)
- materials and resources informed by research and evidence (such as factsheets, bulletins, curriculum, webpages, and other published media)
- our time! (think of time spent planning, coordinating, communicating, engaging, teaching, tracking, evaluating, reporting, etc)
If we really stop and consider the full range of what we do, in some way or another, all of us engage a wide variety of partners to build better lives, businesses and communities throughout Ohio. This is Extension programming. This is the essence of how and what we do to fulfill the engagement aspect of our land-grant mission.
So, now it is your turn. What is an Extension program?