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Community Promise Week – Thank You Volunteers!

To celebrate our amazing volunteers, we are recognizing the work they’ve done. This April 24-30 is our #CommunityPromiseWeek, where we’ll be highlighting a few key leaders that make our programs possible. Thank you to Carol, Sandy, Ellen, Kim, Peg and Rich for all that you do! Stay tuned throughout the week as we highlight more of our volunteers.

Carol LeBlanc Sandy Eggers

 

Ellen PaineKim Osga

Peg HallRick Page

‘Handbook for Increasing Ocean Literacy’ now available

A Handbook for Increasing Ocean Literacy: Tools for Educators and Ocean Literacy Advocates, developed by the National Marine Educators Association, with the support of NOAA, is now available to help educators and other ocean advocates teach, learn, and communicate about the ocean.

CT Sea Grant Education Coordinator Diana Payne is one of the editors of the book, along with Catherine Halversen, Lawrence Hall of Science, University of California, Berkeley (emerita); and Sarah Schoedinger, NOAA Office of Education.

The handbook provides a much needed resource comprising two highly regarded tools to use alongside Ocean Literacy: The Essential Principles and Fundamental Concepts for All Audiences (NOAA, 2020) to advance ocean literacy.

It contains both Scope & Sequence and NGSS alignment; available online with screen reader capabilities or order hard copy via email to NOAA Outreach education@noaa.gov)

The handbook can be found here.

Post written by CT Sea Grant

Job: Educational Program Assistant – Part-Time in Fairfield Co.

Search #: 496223Work type: Part-timeLocation: Fairfield County Extension CtrCategories: Academic Programs and Services

JOB SUMMARY

The UConn Extension Center located in Bethel, CT is seeking applications for a part-time Educational Program Assistant 1 position (50%).  This position is responsible for supporting and helping implement high-quality, comprehensive, Extension programming at different program sites throughout the region, with specific support to Urban Agriculture, EFNEP/Community Nutrition, Master Gardener, and 4-H programs. The Educational Program Assistant will report to the Center Coordinator to prioritize programmatic work assignments.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES 

  1. Assists and provides support to Extension Educators working with programs which may include but not be limited to Urban Agriculture, EFNEP/ community nutrition, Master Gardener, and 4-H programs.
  2. Assists in developing educational programs, recruiting, explaining, and providing program information and processes to Extension volunteers and participants.
  3. Works with and helps develop and refine program databases using programs such as Excel and Access, as well as national and federal databases such as 4-H, Z-Suite, and WebNEERS to extrapolate relevant data sets, maintain program enrollments, membership, and volunteer records and provide program reports to the Extension educators as required.
  4. Maintains accurate records on each program and assembles databases and prepares statistical and/or historical reports for Extension educators/Program Coordinators based on program outcomes.
  5. Performs office support functions, in support of educational programs; processes paperwork, records, and files which may be computerized or confidential in nature.
  6. Supports Extension Educators/Program Coordinators in implementing and providing off-site educational activities in the community to improve practical understanding and accomplish program goals.
  7. Provides assistance in assembling, arranging, organizing, and dismantling program event and activity set-ups and arrangements at various locations and venues, i.e. classrooms, fairgrounds, community centers, etc.
  8. Supports media relations activities for various programs; works with others to write and edit program and promotional materials for hard and soft copy publications and social media platforms.
  9. Assists Extension Educators/Program Coordinators in assessing clients’ capacity to participate in programs and helping to incorporate related knowledge into program activities for greatest learning opportunities.
  10. Assists Extension Educators/Program Coordinators in developing and implementing programs to enhance learning and provide appropriate content-based experiences to accomplish program goals.
  11. Under supervision, provides educational training and conducts related support services on an ongoing basis, and assists in resolving problems in assigned area of responsibility.
  12. Assists with increasing community collaborations with partner groups.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS 

  1. Bachelor’s degree in related field and up to one year of related experience or an Associate’s degree and two to three years of related experience; or four to five years of experience utilizing profession based standards in urban agriculture, community nutrition, gardening, 4-H or related fields.
  2. Demonstrated written and verbal communication skills and ability to work effectively with communication technologies and the media.
  3. Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite including Excel and Access and other database activities.
  4. Demonstrated sensitivity towards diverse youth, families, and volunteer clientele to be served.
  5. Must be detail-oriented. Demonstrated experience providing organizational support in a team environment including but not limited to filing, database management, and administrative processes.
  6. Must be able to regularly lift, carry, load, unload, and transport equipment, supplies, and/or program materials for educational events and workshops such as laptops, projectors, tables, chairs, displays, paper media, etc.
  7. Must be willing and able to work flexible and irregular hours, including occasional nights and weekends to help conduct programs at off-site locations.
  8. Must have reliable transportation to meet in-state travel requirements (mileage allowance provided).

PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS 

  1. Knowledge and familiarity with the Cooperative Extension System.
  2. Demonstrated success in public relations utilizing electronic, social, and print media platforms.
  3. Experience working with large databases, and generating reports including 4-H online registration.
  4. Experience participating with collaborative community partnerships.
  5. Experience working with UConn administrative processes.
  6. Experience with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) technology.
  7. Multilingual – Spanish and English preferred

Physical Requirements: Incumbents must possess the ability to perform the required duties set forth above.

APPOINTMENT TERMS 

This is a part-time (50%, 17.5 hours) position based in Bethel, CT. The annual salary will be prorated according to the percent of employment.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF EMPLOYMENT

Employment at the University of Connecticut is contingent upon the successful candidate’s compliance with the University’s Mandatory Workforce COVID-19 Vaccination Policy.  This Policy states that all workforce members are required to have or obtain a Covid-19 vaccination as a term and condition of employment at UConn, unless an exemption or deferral has been approved.

Employment of the successful candidate is contingent upon the successful completion of a pre-employment criminal background check.

TO APPLY

Please apply online at https://hr.uconn.edu/jobs, Staff Positions, Search #496223 to upload a resume, cover letter, and contact information for three (3) professional references.

This job posting is scheduled to be removed at 11:55 p.m. Eastern time on May 1, 2022.

All employees are subject to adherence to the State Code of Ethics which may be found at http://www.ct.gov/ethics/site/default.asp.

The University of Connecticut is committed to building and supporting a multicultural and diverse community of students, faculty and staff. The diversity of students, faculty and staff continues to increase, as does the number of honors students, valedictorians and salutatorians who consistently make UConn their top choice. More than 100 research centers and institutes serve the University’s teaching, research, diversity, and outreach missions, leading to UConn’s ranking as one of the nation’s top research universities. UConn’s faculty and staff are the critical link to fostering and expanding our vibrant, multicultural and diverse University community. As an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity employer, UConn encourages applications from women, veterans, people with disabilities and members of traditionally underrepresented populations.

Advertised: Apr 01 2022 Eastern Daylight TimeApplications close: May 01 2022 Eastern Daylight Time

Waterbury 4-H Youth Mentoring Program is Thriving

Waterbury 4-H youth dance squadWaterbury’s 4-H program is going strong! As we all know the past two years have been far from ordinary. While Waterbury Youth Services, Inc. (WYS) has been facilitating 4-H programing for 30 years, we have had to face new challenges and with them, new joys. While in person programming was not an option, our team of mentors put together bi-monthly activities which we mailed to our 4-H families. Just like if we were in person, our activities were seasonally themed and encouraged members to get outside, collaborate with their families and communities, and hopefully learn a thing or two while having fun. We sent out monthly challenges, in which youth would send back evidence of a completed “challenge” such as a scavenger hunt or science experiment, each submission an entry to a gift card drawing.

This summer, our summer camp had a blast integrating 4-H Healthy Living activities into our camp day. We ate food from every color of the rainbow, reminded each other to drink plenty of water, and even prepared “go-bags” that members were able to take home and discuss emergency plans with their families. They were so excited to receive achievement awards from our UConn Extension collaborators (Ms. Peggy and Ms. Maryellen) at the end of summer.

4-H youth with a mentor working on codingOur dance program is back in full swing with our new dance coach Ms. Tatiana. Their first performance was at Waterbury Youth Services annual Back to School Rally in August, a citywide event where families can get free backpacks, school supplies, and resources for their students. The 4-H dance team’s debut was a huge success, with an original performance followed by the team leading the crowd in line dances like the cha-cha, slide and cupid shuffle. They also put together an original dance for our Halloween family night as well as our Winter Holiday family night.

Creative arts has been working on seasonal decorations for our WYS hallway now that peopleWaterbury 4-H youth coding project are back in the building. From paper crafts to painting to sculpture, there is no limit to this group’s creativity. This spring they will be taking on photography, and we cannot wait to see what the capture.

Our new Coding group is thriving. We are balancing computer activities with “unplugged” computer science, such as coding your own name, designing and troubleshooting a maze, and finding the computer science skill of error detection to be quite helpful in magic tricks.

Waterbury Youth Services is proud of our 4-H groups and look forward to many more years of collaboration!

Article and Photos: Amanda Augeri, 4-H Mentoring Coordinator

 

Black History Month 2022 – Health and Wellness

Black History Month image
Have your ever wondered about the history of Black History Month? Dr. Carter G. Woodson is credited with bringing to the forefront the importance of teaching about Black History, Culture and Life. Carter G. Woodson, was the son of former slaves, and as a child, worked as a sharecropper, a miner and other odd jobs to help support his large family. Although he entered high school late, he graduated in two years; he attended Berea College in Kentucky, then worked in the Philippines for the U.S. government as a superintendent. He attended the University of Chicago and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree. Subsequently, he made history as the second African American to earn his doctorate degree from Harvard.
To promote the scientific study of black life and history, Dr. Woodson along with Alexander L. Jackson, George Cleveland Hall, William B. Hartgrove and James E. Stamps, founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH) in 1915, which later became the Association for the Study of African American History (ASAAH). Desiring to educate young African Americans about ancestral history, heritage and achievements, Dr. Carter along with his college fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, started ‘Negro History and Literature Week’ in 1924. Two years later, Dr. Woodson expanded the recognition as Negro History Week in February of 1926.
Dr. Woodson chose February, the birth month of President Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Frederick Douglas, both recognized in as significant figures in African American History. During the 1940’s and before his death in 1950, Dr. Woodson conveyed that black history was too important to be pigeon holed into a limited time frame and was an early proponent of Negro History Year. Dr. Woodson often spoke in West Virginia and blacks there became early adopters of the February celebration as Black History Month. Frederick H. Hammaurabi, a Chicagoan cultural activist, began promoting Black History Month in the mid-1960s. With increasing awareness of African consciousness by black on college campuses, there was an appeal to the ASAAH to change with the times; the Association used its influence for a transformative shift to institutionalize the celebration from Negro History Week to Black History Month in 1976, on the 50th Anniversary of the first Negro History Week. The 2022 Theme for Black History Month is Black Health and Wellness.
Please visit our UConn Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) for health and wellness resources.
02/22 By U.R. Taylor, MS, RDN, CDN
UConn Educator/EFNEP Supervisor
Graphic credit: Jiawei Zhou, UConn NUSC Student

2021 Highlights of Extension Report

 

2021 Highlights of Extension cover

The past two years have challenged us more than anyone could have predicted. Extension adapted our services and programs to continue serving our audiences. We are addressing critical issues related to agriculture and food, climate adaptation, enhancing health and well-being, social justice, and sustainable landscapes. 

Extension is unique because the services we provide are place-based. This place-based perspective allows us to customize solutions for Connecticut residents and we offer programs in all 169 cities and towns. The broader impacts provide our communities with science-based, results driven solutions. Our educators understand the unique challenges that Connecticut faces and co-create solutions for critical issues with those communities.  

Our Highlights of Extension emphasizes the regional work we do in the state. This includes the Coastline, Capital Region, Litchfield Hills, and the Quiet Corner. We share the results of our collaborative partnerships with other state agencies and organizations. Extension’s geographic connection to Connecticut impacts everyone in the state, and we also share the stories of a few of our people and programs that are improving lives.  

Extension continues providing transformational learning experiences to all our audiences. We adapt and collaborate to find solutions for human, environmental, and agricultural issues. 

Thank you for collaborating with us, we are here to serve you. 

Read the full report: s.uconn.edu/highlights21

Baby Food Making Class Series

EFNEP is running a new series for mothers with infants 6 months and older helping families learn to prepare homemade baby food. This program is in partnership with Walnut Hill Community Food Pantry. Each participating parent will receive a baby food making toolkit that includes a food processor and other essential cooking equipment. Each parent also receives a grocery bag with pantry and freezer staples like lean meats, beans, rice and peanut butter to assist in preparing meals for their family!

 

 

Celebrating Black History Month, The Paradigm Shift

Have your ever wondered about the history of Black History Month? Dr. Carter G. Woodson is credited with bringing to the forefront the importance of teaching about Black History, Culture and Life.

Carter Woodson
Photo courtesy of National Park Service

Carter G. Woodson, was the son of former slaves, and as a child, worked as a sharecropper, a miner and other odd jobs to help support his large family. Although he entered high school late, he graduated in two years; he attended Berea College in Kentucky, then worked in the Philippines for the U.S. government as a superintendent. He attended the University of Chicago and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degree.  Subsequently, he made history as the second African American to earn his doctorate degree from Harvard.

To promote the scientific study of Black life and history, Dr. Woodson along with Alexander L. Jackson, George Cleveland Hall, William B. Hartgrove and James E. Stamps, founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH) in 1915, which later became the Association for the Study of African American History (ASAAH). Desiring to educate young African Americans about ancestral history, heritage and achievements, Dr. Carter along with his college fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, started ‘Negro History and Literature Week’ in 1924. Two years later, Dr. Woodson expanded the recognition as Negro History Week in February of 1926. Dr. Woodson chose February, the birth month of President Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Frederick Douglas, both recognized in as significant figures in African American History.

During the 1940’s and before his death in 1950, Dr. Woodson conveyed that Black history was too important to be pigeon holed into a limited time frame and was an early proponent of Negro History Year. Dr. Woodson often spoke in West Virginia and Blacks there became early adopters of the February celebration as Black History Month. Frederick H. Hammaurabi, a Chicagoan cultural activist, began promoting Black History Month in the mid-1960s. With increasing awareness of African consciousness by Black on college campuses, there was an appeal to the ASAAH to change with the times; the Association used its influence for a transformative shift to institutionalize the celebration from Negro History Week to Black History Month in 1976, on the 50th Anniversary of the first Negro History Week.

The 2022 Theme for Black History Month is Black Health and Wellness. UConn Extension’s Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is celebrating with fun food facts, recipe and much more. Stay tuned throughout this month!

Article By U.R. Taylor, MS, RDN, CDN (02/2022)

UConn Extension Educator/EFNEP Supervisor

Dr. Jeantyl Norze Joins Extension as Evaluation Specialist

Jeantyl NorzeDr. Jeantyl Norze joined Extension as our Evaluation Specialist in January of 2022. “I am very excited to join the UConn CAHNR Extension and hopeful about my contributions to help advance the land grant mission of the university. CAHNR Extension has an amazing dynamic team who is knowledgeable and open to new ideas that help further improve the lives of the residents and communities in the state through better programming,” Dr. Norze says. He is looking forward to meeting everyone to learn more about their work and determine how he can best assist them.

Jeantyl Norze, is a Program Development and Evaluation Specialist who have authored and co-authored numerous publications in a variety of refereed national and international journals. Dr. Norze earned his DVM degree at the Universidad Agraria de La Habana (UNAH) and his master’s degree and Ph.D. degree at Louisiana Sate University where he worked as a graduate research student, post-doctoral fellow, and adjunct faculty. During his tenure at Louisiana State University, he was involved in several research and evaluation projects and taught several courses including leadership development, program development, and program evaluation to undergraduate students, graduate students, and extension educators.

Later, in 2019, Dr. Norze joined the University of Neva Reno Extension as the Program Evaluation Coordinator. In this role, he assisted Extension faculty and staff from a variety of departments including Horticulture, Health and Nutrition, Children, Youth, and Family, Natural Resources, and Economic Development with program evaluation, reporting, and needs assessments. He helped with strengthening the evaluation methods and designs, selecting and developing appropriate evaluation tools to gather credible evidence that demonstrates the contributions of each program. In addition, he participated in multiple evaluation and research projects including food insecurity among college students, educational and mental health needs among Nevadan youth, Tufts longitudinal 4-H study, HANRE needs assessment, and so forth.

He developed, in collaboration with his former colleagues, a needs assessment framework to guide statewide needs assessment efforts that seek to meet and understand the changing needs of the communities. He was also the principal investigator for a national research project sponsored by the Western Center for Metropolitan Extension and Research and the University of Nevada, Reno Extension that sought to examine career progression for urban extension professionals in the country.