December 2005 // Volume 43 // Number 6

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Editor's Page

Some JOE Style Points: Confusing Article & Research
"Some JOE Style Points" talks about the confusion between articles about research and the research, itself. "December JOE" highlights two articles in this issue and one in the October issue and also points to a number of recurring themes among the other articles.

Feature Articles

The Craft of Cross-Cultural Engagement
Hassel, Craig A.
How might Extension professionals become proficient in engaging communities with knowledge that does not correspond to our own scientific understandings? Cross-cultural engagement (CCE) requires a commitment toward building trust as a foundation for greater relationship and asks us to think within other worldviews in order to understand divergent knowledge. This is quite different from learning about other worldviews from a familiar or scientific perspective. CCE brings diversity of perspective and with it new possibilities for innovation at land-grant universities.

Is 10% Good Enough? Cooperative Extension Work in Indian Country
Hiller, Joseph G.
The Cooperative Extension system delivers local programs in virtually all of America's counties. Extension's intergovernmental model capitalizes on resources of counties, states, and the federal government and provides an institutional framework for county Extension work. The Extension system and model is not as applicable, however, for members of America's 562 Indian tribes, particularly those living on 314 major Indian reservations. This 90 year-old template is woefully inadequate for Indian Country Extension work. This article presents background on how this situation evolved and suggests that national-scale dialogue to develop program equity for this underserved and place-bound audience is needed.

Limited Resources--Growing Needs: Lessons Learned in a Process to Facilitate Program Evaluation
Aguilar, Cristobal; Thornsbury, Suzanne
Extension educators face the challenge of delivering reliable information as input to the decision-making process of clientele groups. This article draws on a process used to evaluate member perceptions of program effectiveness for a commodity organization where the program beneficiaries are also the funding source. While vast literature covers evaluation procedures and theory, there is little information on practical evaluation examples linked with this theory, a gap this article addresses. We use a recent project with the Michigan Apple Committee (MAC) to illustrate the process and draw attention to critical steps for a successful evaluation.

A Multipurpose Evaluation Strategy for Master Gardener Training Programs
Swackhamer, Emelie; Kiernan, Nancy Ellen
A multipurpose evaluation, developed to measure impact of master gardener training in Pennsylvania, quantitatively measured both learning and increase in confidence, applying data from before and after the training. The authors demonstrate how the same data can be summarized in different ways to better achieve program improvement or demonstrate accountability. The evaluation compiled feedback from a 16-county area, including a majority of trainees in the state. This uniform evaluation strategy eliminated duplication of effort by county educators, provided a high quality tool for the state, and serves as a model for evaluating multi-topic programs taught by many instructors.

Extension Connection: Workforce Development and Cooperative Extension Working Hand-in-Hand
Jackson, Ruth C.; Hoelscher Day, Sharon
The Extension Connection enhances life skills to support workforce development of low-income families by providing education promoting self-sufficiency. This program helps develop life skills that provide structure within the family and community. Project STRIDE supports workforce development in a high-crime, at-risk area with education. Project STRIDE increases stability within the family, helps families be productive in their community, and helps them overcome barriers to entering the work force, achieve job stability and advance in life for themselves and their families. Families also learn nutrition for healthy living and money management.

Cooperation Between Secondary Agricultural Educators and Extension Agents
Grage Ricketts, Kristina; Place, Nick T.
The study reported here explored cooperation between agriculture teachers and Extension agents and characterized the environment surrounding interdisciplinary cooperation. A researcher-developed questionnaire was used to explore individual perceptions regarding cooperation, behavioral intentions, and individual experiences with cooperation. Means and standard deviations were compared between disciplines. Results indicated that agriculture teachers and Extension agents seemed to have very similar ideas concerning personal perceptions, motivations, and experiences regarding cooperation. Recommendations include joint preparation for teachers and agents, pre-service and in-service incorporation of different facets of cooperation, and assembling an integrated discussion group where future interdisciplinary associations could be discussed.

Financial Security in Later Life: A National Initiative and Model for eXtension
Porter, Nancy M.; DeVaney, Sharon; Poling, Richard L.; Stum, Marlene S.; Schuchardt, Jane
A national Extension initiative on Financial Security in Later Life was established to strengthen the Cooperative Extension System's capacity to deliver personal finance education leading to financial security in later life. The initiative articulates the research that provides the foundation for Extension programs and models the use of the Internet for program design, delivery, and evaluation. The contributions of the initiative are enhanced capacity of Extension educators, shared resources, and aggregated evaluations. The development of the initiative provides insights for eXtension.

Research in Brief

Fun and Friendship in the Natural World: The Impact of Oregon 4-H Residential Camping Programs on Girl and Boy Campers
Arnold, Mary E.; Bourdeau, Virginia D.; Nagele, Janet
This article presents the results of a multi-site evaluation of Oregon's 4-H Camps. The evaluation assessed 3 main areas: 1) personal growth, 2) life skill development, and 3) camper satisfaction. Questionnaires were administered at the end of each camp, with the data aggregated and analyzed across camps. Results revealed significant changes in personal growth and the development of selected life skills. Results also indicated that the campers enjoyed camp and their camp counselors. The results are confirming of what we know about the impact of camp and are important for sustaining investments currently made in camp programs.

4-H Experiences Contributing to Leadership and Personal Development of 4-H Alumni
Radhakrishna, Rama B.; Sinasky, Megan
The study reported here examined the contribution of 4-H experiences on leadership and personal development of Pennsylvania 4-H alumni. A total of 168 4-H alumni responded to a mail survey. Stepwise regression analysis identified six variables (challenges and responsibilities, benefits of 4-H participation, number of years in 4-H, animal science projects completed, usefulness and total number of 4-H projects completed) contributing to leadership and personal development. The variables explained 69.5% of the total variance. Pennsylvania 4-H alumni view their 4-H experience as very beneficial. The experiences they had in 4-H continue to influence them in later life.

Training Methods and Needs Related to Volunteer Management Competencies of Extension 4-H Youth Development Agents
Seevers, Brenda S.; Baca, Jacqueline S.; Van Leeuwen, Dawn
The purpose of the descriptive study reported here was to describe professional and personal training experiences related to volunteer management and development. A mail questionnaire was sent to a random sample of 4-H Youth Development Agents nationally. 4-H Youth Development agents reported low-levels of participation in volunteer management professional development activities during a 24-month period. However, when asked to identify specific areas of training needed, a long and varied list was generated. Primary needs identified were in the areas of recruitment and motivation, conflict management and liability issues, evaluation, and time management.

What Motivates Volunteers to Serve in a Youth Literacy Program?
Schmiesing, Ryan; Soder, Jeff; Russell, Susan
This article examines volunteers' motivation to commit to a successful, yet intensive, youth literacy program. Volunteers in a one-on-one youth literacy mentoring program were motivated by the values function of volunteerism; that is, they volunteered in order to exercise their altruistic values. This is a departure from much of the literature on volunteer motivation, which finds affiliation to be volunteers' primary motivation for volunteering. The article offers suggestions on recruitment methods that promote the value function of volunteerism and will be most successful in attracting individuals willing to make sustained commitments to youth.

Evaluating the Impact of a Community Agricultural Leadership Development Program
Diem, Keith G.; Powers Nikola, Mary
A variety of agricultural leadership development programs have been offered throughout the nation, but the impact of many has gone unevaluated or unreported. This article outlines a process used to measure the long-term benefits of the New Jersey Agricultural Leadership Development Program (NJALDP), a 2-year, Extension-led collaborative program created to help members of agriculture-related professions sharpen business skills, establish an extensive agricultural network, and develop effective marketing and communication skills. Participants from classes completing the program since 1996 were surveyed to determine the difference NJALDP has made on their lives and careers.

Drinking Water Issues in the Pacific Northwest
Mahler, Robert L.; Simmons, Robert; Sorensen, Fred
This article contains drinking water information from a region-wide survey designed to collect base line data about water issues in the Pacific Northwest. The major findings were: (1) over 90% of survey respondents feel that their home drinking water is safe for consumption, (2) minerals were the most often cited pollutants in drinking water supplies, (3) approximately 25% of residents have installed filters on their sink faucets to improve water quality, and (4) over 25% of residents use bottled water for drinking purposes. These survey results will be used to develop relevant drinking water educational programs for citizens of the Pacific Northwest.

Restoring the Chesapeake--A Watershed Education and Restoration Project for Virginia Youth
Kirwan, Jeffrey L.; Williams, Mary Elizabeth; Kirwan, Matthew L.
A watershed education and restoration project was started in the Virginia portion of the Chesapeake Bay watershed in 2002. Over 37,000 hardwood seedlings were distributed to school groups and 4-H leaders in 19 counties. A geographic information system (GIS) identified subwatersheds in greatest need of riparian restoration. A Web site provided educational material and facilitated communication. Results indicate 3 years are needed to develop partnerships necessary for large-scale projects such as this one. Hands-on activities like planting trees result in large knowledge gains. Use of land-use maps and a Web site also result in knowledge gain about watersheds.

Individuation Revisited: Implications for Parent Education
Dworkin, Jodi; Lee, Chih-Yuan S.
Researchers have suggested that adolescents' increase in autonomy is accompanied by maintaining close relations with parents. In this article, we explore this process of individuation from the perspective of mothers. Nearly 900 (n=878) white mothers of children aged 2 to 14 were interviewed via the telephone about their child's independence and their perception of parent-child connectedness. Analyses revealed that from the perspective of mothers, while independence increased across childhood, parent-child connectedness decreased. These data suggest the need to support parents in remaining connected to their children as they enter adolescence. Implications of these findings for parent education are considered.

Attitudes and Practices of Virginia EFNEP and FSNE Educators Toward Teaching About Childhood Overweight
Serrano, Elena; Cox, Ruby
The main objective of the study reported here was to assess the attitudes, practices, and needs of Virginia EFNEP and FSNE educators toward addressing childhood overweight. Written questionnaires were administered to 40 educators. Nearly 80% considered childhood overweight a "growing problem"; however, only 12 indicated they had taught classes on childhood overweight and nearly one-third were considered in pre-contemplation or contemplation (based on Stages of Change). The biggest perceived barrier was lack of resources and information, followed by lack of interest of class participants. The findings demonstrate the need for curricula and a stage-based training on childhood overweight for Extension.

Adoption of Integrated Pest Management Practices by South Carolina Cotton Growers
Robertson, M. J.; Zehnder, G. W.; Hammig, M. D.
The project reported here assessed the level of adoption of integrated pest management (IPM) by South Carolina cotton growers. A mail survey of growers was used to provide data on specific IPM practices utilized. Growers were categorized as low, medium, or high IPM adopters based on the frequency with which they implemented specific practices. The majority of growers fell into the medium or high IPM rankings. However, only 7% of respondents attained a high IPM ranking in the Cultural Pest Management section. This suggests that future cotton IPM Extension efforts should be directed towards increasing grower adoption of cultural IPM practices.

Ideas at Work

The Pesticide Notification Network: An E-Source for Agriculture
Thomas, Jane M.; Daniels, Catherine
The Pesticide Notification Network (PNN) is WSU's unique way of distributing information about changes in pesticide registration to the agricultural community. The PNN uses a Web-based computer program to build a targeted distribution list for each notification and then distributes the notifications via e-mail. PNN users tailor their subscriptions by both crop and pesticide type. Using the PNN's capabilities, a tree fruit entomologist can elect to only receive notifications about insecticides for use on tree fruit, while the Washington Hop Commission receives every hop-related PNN notification. Using programming capabilities the PNN distributes the right information to the right people.

Using Technology to Survey New Audiences
Carroll, Natalie; Lovejoy, Stephen
A touch screen computer was set up at a state fair to assess citizen water quality concerns. Over 500 people took the survey. The researchers were able to reach citizens from both urban and rural areas. Respondents were aged from 18 to over 75. Most respondents (41%) felt that clean drinking water the most important water quality issue.

The Meskwaka Tree Project: Ten Years of Community Forestry Volunteer Development
Ricard, Robert M.
Connecticut is highly urbanized, with dense tree cover, and this produces tree-versus-people conflicts that include public safety issues. Yet communities lack sufficient resources to develop community forestry programs. This article reports on the development, implementation, and outcomes of the Meskwaka Tree Project, an outreach education program for community forestry volunteers developed based on Roger's Diffusion of Innovations communications model. In 1992, the Meskwaka Tree Project began to equip community volunteers with the knowledge, skills, and contacts needed to create or improve community forestry programs and address public tree issues. Data shows that Meskwaka-trained volunteers helped conserve public trees and improved public safety.

Using Electrofishing Demonstrations to Increase Water Quality Awareness
Lieser, J. P.; Zoller, Chris; Clark, Renee
OSU Extension has developed a new program that utilizes electrofishing demonstrations to increase water quality awareness. Since 2001, over 2,000 participants have attended 72 demonstrations. Participants learn about water quality indicators and the electrofishing process, view aquatic wildlife and stream habitat, and discuss conservation measures that can protect and restore streams. An Extension professional does not need to be an expert on electrofishing or have any equipment to organize a demonstration. An interest and a dedicated fisheries resource person is all that is needed. Electrofishing demonstrations provide a fun, non-confrontational way to discuss water quality topics that can be controversial.

Tools of the Trade

More Tips: Communicating with Institutional Review Boards Over the Course of Your Project
Peterson, Donna J.; McDonald, Daniel A.; Betts, Sherry C.
This article focuses on the continuing review process required by Institutional Review Boards. It is a follow-up to a series of recent articles designed to help Extension Professionals navigate the university IRB process. The authors present general guidelines for the continuing review process and offer some issues and tips for success.

Intensity Weighted Ranking: A Methodology for Understanding What Clients Tell Us
Carroll, Natalie; Lovejoy, Stephen
Although rank ordering of issues for needs assessment provides some information, this method does not capture the intensity of respondents concerns. This article presents a method of going beyond rank ordering to study both the intensity of response and uncover priorities for more than a few aggregated issues. Results from a survey of attendees of the Indiana State fair are utilized to illustrate the methodology.

Polling Your Audience with Wireless Technology
Gustafson, Cole; Crane, Laurence;
New audience response systems have number of unique qualities that are particularly well suited to Extension, especially economic and policy workshops. They preserve anonymity, can be used in a manner that is more comfortable for participants, and enable discussion of sensitive personal and policy information. This article provides an overview of the technology, discusses unique applications for Extension, and reviews its use in a recent farm business planning workshop. The technology enabled tailoring of the workshop to participants' interests and facilitated discussion of minority views.

The Use of Personal Response Transmitters in Extension Settings
Massey, Ray; Jaskolski, Nick; Sweets, Laura
Personal response transmitters (PRTs) facilitate effective education by encouraging audience participation and providing the educator with immediate indication of audience comprehension. Their use in an IPM training session in Missouri provided measures of teaching impact, audience knowledge base, and direction for discussion activities. Lessons learned from initial activities taught that things such as room setup, random distribution of the PRTs, question formation, technical assistance, and familiarity with possible responses were critical to their successful use.

Orchestrating Volunteer Orientation: Introducing the O.B.O.E. Model
Culp, Ken, III; Aldenderfer, Amy E.; Allen, Lynette A.; Fannin-Holliday, Sarah G.; Ford, Raven C.; Goodwin, Carole A.
Volunteers generally come to their new role with varying levels of knowledge about the organization. An effective orientation program introduces the volunteers to the organization as a whole and to their specific job responsibilities. Orientation can be beneficial in assuring that volunteers have accurate information regarding the organization's purpose, programs, policies, and expectations. The volunteer orientation model (O.B.O.E.) can be adapted to fit any Extension program or non-profit volunteer organization. Divided into four main topics, the orientation program is easily presented in a 90-minute session. Orientation topics of the O.B.O.E. model include: an Opening, Background, Organizational safeguards, and Evaluation.

Recruiting Strategies for Short-Term Volunteers
Hart, Doug
Is there a need for episodic (short-term) volunteers in your Extension programs? A survey asked people why they weren't volunteering. Seventy-nine percent of the respondents said they would volunteer if the jobs were shorter in duration. Short-term volunteers will be more productive and will be more likely to continue in their service if they are recruited, supported, and valued as partners in the educational process. By using the information in this article, professionals who work with volunteers has the capability to increase the overall size and scope of their programs.

Roads Scholar Tours: A Marketing Tool for Building Strong Campus/Community Relationships
Maddy, Deborah J.; Stilwell, Jean A.
Roads Scholar Tours are a marketing tool guaranteed to build strong campus/community relationships for any land-grant university. The tours give campus-bound colleagues an opportunity to actively engage with Extension faculty and staff, volunteers, learners, and community leaders. Over the years, the tours have earned prestige through the selective nature of the invitation and the high quality experience. Scholars report 1) increased understanding of Extension's vision, mission and values, and 2) incorporation of what they learned about Extension into their campus assignments.