Administration News from Glen:
Change … Change … Change – The pace of change the last year has seemed dizzying at times; particularly as it has been accompanied by budget reductions. No change has seemed more disorienting than the new accounting system and the dramatic philosophical shift in its underpinnings. That said, I do see many benefits as I begin to organize my work within it. I’ll report a benefit here. We have struggled with the problem of timely reimbursements all my years at UW. It has caused real problems for employees, particularly newer employees. Well here is a success story. Shortly after the system went live, I forced my way through to submit two travel expense reports I had been holding since late June. It took me a couple of hours and some help to complete the first one and thirty minutes to finish the second. I informed Joleen Pantier of my inputted expense report on Thursday, July 20th. She checked it over (and maybe fixed it) and submitted it. The reimbursement was in my account on Tuesday morning – July 25th. That is an improvement! I guess we can be optimistic that other aspects of change at UW will work out as well.
In my April News Briefs I laid out a plan to complete a strategic plan for UW Extension. If you paid any attention to our time schedule you would know that we have not followed it very closely. There are many reasons for that but the big one was our emerging understanding of what an Extension plan should look like as it is developed to nest within the university and college plans. The university plan was recently approved by the trustees and a draft of the College of Ag and Natural Resources plan will be shared soon. We have been working on a draft plan that fits the format and expectations for a current 2017-2022 strategic plan for Extension and takes into consideration the stakeholder input and effort put into the development of our aborted 2014-2020 academic plan. We will have a draft of the University of Wyoming Extension Strategic Plan 2017-2022 to you soon for your consideration and input.
It is fair season, the best time of the year for most of us in Extension. I am looking forward to State Fair. Maybe I’ll see you there.
Safe Travels, Glen
Cent$ible Nutrition Program News from Mindy:
The Cent$ible Nutrition Program is excited to welcome two new employees to our team. Shelley Balls is the new CNP Assistant in Afton and started on July 31st. She will be covering North Lincoln County, Teton County, and Sublette County. Shelley just completed her internship with Utah State University to become a registered dietitian and spent the summer working as an AmeriCorps volunteer with the summer feeding program in Afton.
Sandra Biller is the new program manager at the state office on campus and started this position on July 31st. She comes to us from the Albany County Extension Office where she was the CNP Assistant. Her experience as a CNP educator and enthusiasm for reporting, direct education, and multi-level interventions will make her instrumental in training new employees, continuing training for all CNP staff, and conducting site visits across the state. Welcome Shelley and Sandra!
We will have two new positions coming available in the month of August- a CNP Assistant in Albany County and an Office Associate at the state office. These positions will be posted at https://jobs.uwyo.edu. Please share with anyone who may be interested.
August and September will be busy as we wind down the last two months of our 2017 grant. On August 14, a new Food and Physical Activity Questionnaire will be released across the county. This questionnaire will take the place of our current entry and exit survey, and will be implemented in the 2018 grant year. The new questions focus more specifically on targeted behavior changes in the areas of diet, food safety, and food resource management. In September, we will hold the first part of Initial Training in Casper. Six new educators will be attending this training.
As UW continues to cycle through changes, we would like to take a moment to sincerely thank Ann Tanaka and Theresa Chavez for all of their support of CNP and look forward to working with them in their new roles at Information Technology. Ann and Theresa, you have helped all of us more times than we can count and it is always a pleasure working with you. Thank you for all you do!
Have a great August!
Welcome Selena Gerace to UW Extension. Selena will serve as the Outreach Coordinator for a recently funded NSF EPSCoR Track II research and extension project exploring the socio-economic and ecological implications of reducing carbon emissions in the upper Missouri River Basin. As Outreach Coordinator, Selena will work with project team members across UW, Montana State, and the University of South Dakota to deliver project-related outreach and to engage with regional stakeholders. Selena, originally from Mt Shasta, CA, completed her BA in Politics at Whitman College and just completed her MS in Agricultural and Applied Economics at the University of Wyoming. She has worked with the Ruckleshaus Institute at UW on the Wyoming Public Lands Initiative, and has experience in facilitation and negotiation. Selena is located in the Agricultural and Applied Economics department, room #218. Her phone number is 766-5615 and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org as well.