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The National Urban Extension Leaders Award recognizes Extension leaders who have made exceptional contributions to urban programming. This year's NUEL Award winner is Nicole Debose, Area Leader and Program Director for Ohio State Extension in Cuyahoga County.

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Nicole Debose has over 15 years of experience working with nonprofit and public organizations to meet the needs of Cuyahoga County residents. With a strong knowledge of program development, project management and fund management she promotes the strengthening of families, enhancement of agriculture systems and the expansion of local business opportunities.

Nicole serves communities in the Cleveland area, creating an innovative interdisciplinary program and raising $1.2 million to support this work. She chaired the NUEL North Central Regional Network from 2018-2021.

Prior to joining OSU Extension, Nicole worked for Cuyahoga County Health and Human Services, where she developed and managed many community-based programs and initiatives. Nicole holds a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Planning, Design and Development, a Master’s in Public Administration with a concentration in Nonprofit Management, and a Master’s in Healthcare Administration with a concentration in Informatics. Learn more about Nicole's Award. Learn more about NUEL.

The National Urban Extension Leaders (NUEL) Professional Development Action Team is focused on enhancing and supporting the professional growth of urban Extension professionals by focusing on opportunities to improve recruiting and retention. NUEL is currently seeking input from Extension professionals working in urban and metropolitan communities about their professional development needs and thoughts on how Extension can improve employee recruitment and retention. It will take less than 5 minutes to complete NUEL’s survey:

Additionally, NUEL is moving its communications to a new closed social media site through the Extension Foundation’s Connect Extension platform.  If you haven’t joined this group, please join today: Home | National Urban Extension Leaders | Connect Extension.  The NUEL Connect Extension group is open to all Extension professionals interested in news, resources, professional development, calendar events and networking around urban Extension topics.

The U.S. Census Bureau released new statistics from the 2016–2020 American Community Survey (ACS) 5-year estimates. Following pandemic-related data collection disruptions, the Census Bureau revised its methodology to reduce nonresponse bias in data collected in 2020. After evaluating the effectiveness of this methodology, the Census Bureau determined the standard, full suite of 2016–2020 ACS 5-year data are fit for public release, government, and business uses. These statistics boost the understanding of the social and economic characteristics of the U.S. population.

“While the COVID-19 pandemic posed significant challenges for the 2020 ACS data collection, we have worked tirelessly over the last few months to refine our methodology and reduce the impact of nonresponse bias in the 2016–2020 ACS 5-year data products,” said Donna Daily, division chief of the ACS Office.

Read highlights from this release on income and poverty.

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The Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Education and Workforce Development (EWD) focuses on developing the next generation of research, education, and Extension professionals in the food and agricultural sciences. In 2022, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) requests applications for the AFRI’s Education and Workforce Development program areas to support

  • professional development opportunities for K-14 educational professionals;
  • non-formal education that cultivates food and agricultural interest in youth;
  • workforce training at community, junior, and technical colleges;
  • training of undergraduate students in research and Extension;
  • fellowships for predoctoral candidates and postdoctoral scholars; and
  • special workforce development topics.

Follow this link to learn more about the opportunity and application deadlines.

The National Urban Extension Leaders (NUEL) recently presented a detailed 2021 Accomplishment Report to the ECOP Program Committee. NUEL focused its work in 2021 around expanding and enhancing communication with Extension professionals working in urban environments, working with Extension professionals nationally to identify a set of priority issues for Extension’s urban work, providing leadership for the development of the new ECOP Urban Agriculture and Food Systems Program Action Team, and continuing to build national partnerships in support of Extension urban focused work. The complete report, along with NUEL accomplishment reports from previous years, can be accessed at NUEL Accomplishments website.

Today, as the economic challenges of the pandemic continue to change shape, muddle the conventions of economic thought, and disproportionately impact people and places that have long been disadvantaged, the value of equity-focused place-based economic development is as important as ever. But so too is understanding the effectiveness of these strategies during a period in which many place-based efforts have had to shift to focus toward meeting basic needs amid prolonged crisis rather than dismantling the long-standing root causes of economic inequity. Read this brief that presents early outcomes and lessons from five cities that have implemented community-centered economic inclusion for at least one year: Los Angeles, Indianapolis, Detroit, San Diego, and Philadelphia.

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America’s rural-urban divide, it seems, has never been greater, a point reinforced by large geographic disparities in support for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election. But it is also the case that big cities and rural communities are more tightly integrated than ever and are increasingly interdependent, both economically and socially. That’s the starting point for this free webinar drawn from the focus of the July issue of The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. The webinar features the two guest editors of that special issue, Dan Lichter and James Ziliak, as well as Shannon Monnat and Mark Partridge, giving an overview of the divide and the bridges as well as the economic, labor force and social welfare implications of the nexus. Link to podcast recorded November 29, 2017.

More than ever, cities and metro areas matter for America’s future says Amy Liu, vice president and director of Brookings Metro. They are at the forefront of demographic change, innovation, competitiveness, adaptation to climate change, and more. Follow this link to the podcast and transcript.

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The National Urban Extension Leaders are proud to present the 2022 National Urban Extension Conference hosted by Rutgers Cooperative Extension in Camden, New Jersey (part of the Camden-Philadelphia metro area). 

Registration packages allow participation in all four days of the conference, including presentation sessions, the Welcome Dinner & Awards Ceremony, site visit tours, catering provided during the conference, and access to conference recordings. Registration is $495 and ticket sales are capped at 300 attendees. Register now to secure your ticket. Follow this link for conference details.

A new publication - Engaging Communities Through Issues Forums: A How-To Guide for Onsite and Online Community Engagement - is available from the Extension Foundation.

The publication explores the use of issue forums as a community engagement tool in Extension work. Both a process guide and content publication, it is a comprehensive “how-to” designed to help Cooperative Extension professionals successfully develop and implement issues forums in both onsite and online settings. Each section of the publication includes Our Story, a narrative of the key lessons learned by the authors. This publication will be of value to Cooperative Extension professionals and other organizations and institutions that are considering ways to increase community engagement to collaboratively address issues. The authors include Shoshana Inwood and Nicole Wright from The Ohio State University. Read more.

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