News for employees

MU Extension Insider
July 15, 2013


In the news

Upcoming events

Coming and going


MU Extension Insider is published on the first and 15th of the month by the MU Cooperative Media Group. Send feedback and comments to Karen Dickey.

In the news

American made

MU Extension helps company develop international markets


When Harley-Davidson domestic sales began to slow to an idle, employees of RK Stratman Inc. of Wentzville knew they had to rev things up. They turned to the University of Missouri Extension for help.

Stratman, one of the original 12 Harley licensees, produces more than 4 million T-shirts annually for the motorcycle giant’s dealers. With the help of specialists from MU Extension’s Small Business and Technology Development Centers (SBTDC), the company has been able to roll into the growing international market. Read more.


It’s award application time!

Some faculty have already started the application process for the University of Missouri Extension Performance Awards, says Lisa Wallace, statewide awards chairman.

“Don’t let the summer get away from you,” she says. “Plan now to gather information to submit an application for you or colleagues. You are doing great programming. Tell us about it so we’ll all know!”

MU Extension Performance Awards recognize the commitment and dedication of extension employees in carrying out the extension mission — serving the people of Missouri with research-based education that meets their highest priorities.

There’s an award category for everyone…don’t miss out!

The Vice Provost's Award for Outstanding Achievement recognizes excellent performance by a University of Missouri campus or regional faculty or professional member in planning, conducting and evaluating a multi-year outreach program.  One award is given to an on-campus faculty and one to an off-campus faculty member.

The Vice Provost’s Diversity Award recognizes individuals or groups providing leadership in the area of diversity. This may include excellence in programs or other initiatives.

The Carl N. Scheneman Excellence in Teaching Award recognizes an individual University of Missouri Extension faculty member for planning, conducting and evaluating an extension educational activity in a one-year period.

The County Program Director Excellence Award recognizes distinguished performance and educational contributions to University of Missouri Extension and clientele by a CPD. 

The Extension Teamwork Award recognizes University of Missouri and Lincoln University campus and regional faculty and professional staff members who have collaborated on an interdisciplinary and/or cross-campus team to develop, implement and evaluate a specific educational response to a specific need of the people of Missouri.

The Missouri Farm Bureau Federation presents three Outstanding Specialist Awards to local faculty members for their contributions to local communities. Specialists in agriculture, 4-H and human environmental sciences are nominated jointly by the county Farm Bureau and extension council, but the award is not based on joint programming with Farm Bureau.

The Pat and Tom Buchanan Endowment Award is awarded each year to a University of Missouri Extension faculty member to support professional development opportunities.  Because of Pat and Tom’s work with Human Environmental Sciences and Business Development preference will be given to Regional Extension Specialists in these subject matter areas.

The Ronald J. Turner Global Education Award is awarded each year to a faculty or staff member within University of Missouri Extension to support global education opportunities.  The award may be used to assist in funding exchanges to Ireland, South Africa, Thailand, Costa Rica or other locations as requested.    

The Missouri Extension Business Award, presented by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry, recognizes faculty and professional staff members whose educational programming supports the economic viability of Missouri businesses.

The Missouri Extension Industry Award, presented by the Associated Industries of Missouri, is awarded to an individual who demonstrates leadership in providing educational programs that support the economic viability of Missouri firms.

How do I apply?  You can access all the award applications at

When’s the deadline?  Applications and supporting materials must be postmarked by Friday, Sept. 6, 2013.  Send to Janice Perkins, 109F Whitten Hall, Columbia, MO 65211.

Is money awarded?  Yes. The largest cash award is $5,000 for the teamwork award.  Several others have an award of $500, $1,000 and $2,000.  Check out the awards and please take the time to apply.

When will the awards be given?  The awards will be presented at our Fall Extension Conference in Columbia, Oct. 28-30.  Please take time to nominate yourself or a deserving colleague.

Toot your own horn!  Many good things are happening in extension in Missouri.  Toot your horn or honor a colleague by nominating their great programming.

Take a little time for a big reward.  The deadline is Friday, Sept. 6, 2013

Questions? Contact Lisa Wallace at or 660-885-5556, or other statewide award committee members:  Vera Massey, Randa Doty, Bud Reber, Dave Baker, Candy Gabel, Virgil Woolridge, Kay Gasen-Thenhaus or Paul Rainsberger.


Wealth in Missouri report contains valuable data for councils

By Cynthia Crawford, director of donor education

A new report from the USDA and the Community Foundations of America, “Wealth in Missouri and its Counties,” includes county-specific data on the amount of wealth expected to be transferred from one generation to the next over the next few years and decades.

It is a substantial amount of wealth. The report suggests that directing just 5 percent of that wealth to philanthropic efforts at the community level would make a tremendous difference in those communities.

Think about how this information would be appropriate for county, regional and state extension councils.  For example, it would make a great program for your county’s annual meeting.

If you’re interested in using this data to inform discussion and guide development efforts, let us know how we can work with you. Please contact me or Cat Comley, director of development.

You can download the report as well as the data, methodology and other supporting information at


Make accessibility part of the event-planning process

As you plan events for the summer and fall, please consider how to ensure inclusivity, says Julie Middleton, director of organizational development and AA/EEO officer.

Instead making accessibility an afterthought, think about how you might plan the event using the Universal Design approach.

The MU Office Accessibility and ADA Education  has tips and checklists to help you ensure the accessibility of your event at

If you have questions about how to plan your event, please contact Julie Middleton at 573-882-3407 or, or Lee Henson, MU ADA coordinator, at 573-884-7278 or


Virtual meeting etiquette

By Don Nicholson, transition team leader

Like it or not, virtual meetings, virtual teams and virtual committees are here to stay. While we may prefer face-to-face meetings, online tools like Adobe Connect and Lync are part of the modern workplace and we have a professional responsibility to learn to work efficiently and productively in this virtual environment. 

For effective communication and collaboration in online environments, it’s important to understand some key differences between virtual and face-to-face meetings:

Here are some recommendations for making the best of the limitations and drawbacks of virtual interaction: 

If you're presenting information, practice in advance for your first few online meetings so that you become comfortable with chat pods and options and features that will help you facilitate and present.

If you’re leading a discussion, learn to tolerate silence now and then.  As mentioned earlier, there is no nonverbal communication during virtual meetings.  In face-to-face discussions, body language can often tell us that the other person is considering a reply or formulating a thought. A discussion leader needs to be prepared to give people a chance to think before moving on to the next point or topic. That said, if you are a participant and have nothing to contribute, and you sense the leader is seeking input, be responsive.  At the very least, engage by putting “I have no thoughts” in the chat pod.  Don’t just leave your leader or facilitator dangling in an unresponsive silence.

Here are some links that might help you prepare for your next online meeting:

Adobe Connect Visual Quick Start Guide:

Getting Started with MS Lync 2013:


On the radio, be brief and repeat often

A communications tip from Duane Dailey 

In 1969, Presidential sound bites on the evening news averaged 41 uninterrupted seconds. Now they average less than 10 seconds. News reports shrank.

Extension specialists aiming at mass audiences face the same demands for brevity.

Farm broadcaster Monte Schisler at KRES in Moberly shared tips with state specialists. Rob Kallenbach, forage specialist, took his advice.

When Rob has a print news release going out, he knows he will get calls for a sound bite to go with the story on radio. “I take about 10 minutes to think up a 20-second sound bite that reporters will be asking for.”  It works, Rob says. “Being prepared, I can do three interviews in the time it took to do one.”

Mass media newscasts build awareness. They’re not for detailed instructions. The brief messages bear repeating. Often.

Listeners won’t take notes. They must be reminded.


Get your Black and Gold on Aug. 30

Come see us if you can!

The day before the first home game is traditionally College Colors Day. MU Extension looks forward to being a part of the campus tradition.

Many county offices will be participating as well. Wherever you are on Aug. 30, please wear your black and gold proudly.

For those of you who can visit campus, there will be an open house in Whitten Hall from 10 a.m. to noon for friends and retirees of MU Extension.

We want to greet you!   You’ll be pleased to see the renovations  in Whitten Hall and experience how the place is bustling to meet the needs of people all across Missouri.  Come join the fun!

We also encourage you to stop in 1110 S. College Ave. the morning of Aug. 30 to say hi and see the new location of 4-H state offices, Fire and Rescue Training Institute, and Extension Technology and Computing Services.  You may remember this building as being a former Missouri Department of Conservation office.  It is at the northeast corner of College Avenue and Stadium Boulevard in a beautiful wooded setting.


Volunteers wanted for Missouri State Fair  

MU Extension will again have a booth at the Missouri State Fair August 8-18.  If you are interested in working a shift, please contact Becky Mott at


Call for proposals: Technology Assistance

MU Extension administration is seeking proposals for using tablet technology to enhance the mission of Extension.  Tablet technology can further our reach, improve our programming outcomes or increase our efficiency and effectiveness.

There are three areas under which you may submit a proposal:

The proposal may include any or all of these areas, but you may only submit once. It is also suggested individuals research current technology/tablets before completing the request.  

If you have questions regarding your proposal, please contact Rhonda Clayton at

The proposals will be accepted through Aug. 30.

Applications are accepted online. Log in using your university PawPrint and password.

Each proposal will be considered on its merits. There is no specific limit to the number of funded proposals.  If your proposal is funded, you will be required at the end of the year to submit an evaluation on the use of technology and subsequent outcomes. It is anticipated that, based on outcomes and evaluation, proposals for technology assistance will be an annual application.


Upcoming events

Fee-generation workshops set

Workshops have been scheduled to explain additional functions and updates to the Fee Generation Worksheet-Online Tool. Register through ISE for the following workshop dates:




2-3 p.m.


Other dates to remember

July 17: Breimyer Seminar, Columbia.

Aug. 4-7: Missouri FilmFest 4-H, Branson.

Aug. 30: Application deadline for MELD VI.

Aug. 30: College Colors Day.

Aug. 31: Deadline for UMEA awards nominations.

Sept. 1: Deadline for Quarterly Teamwork Award nominations.

Sept. 5: Bradford Research Center Tomato Festival, Columbia

Oct. 1: NTT Training for Applicants 2, “Last Minute Tips with Questions and Answers.”

Oct. 28-30: Extension Fall Conference, Columbia.


Coming and going

Please welcome

Cary Creach, project director, WC-FNP.

Sammy Dean Lower, 4-H specialist, WC-Youth.



If you have items to include in future issues, please send them to Karen Dickey, Curt Wohleber, or Phil Leslie in the Cooperative Media Group. If you have questions, contact Dennis Gagnon, director, MU Extension Communications and Marketing.