Alcona County program highlights 2018
MSU Extension supports family health and nutrition, empowers youth, promotes agriculture, engages youth in science, develops the community and much more.
Family Health & Nutrition
MSU Extension offers programs to empower Alcona residents through evidenced-based education, skill-building and support to improve and maintain their health. For example, Eat Healthy Be Active and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed). 153 Alcona residents (youth + adults) participated in SNAP-Ed in 2017. Three ServSafe certification courses were offered in Alcona County during 2017. These classes teach about foodborne illness, how to prevent it and how to train employees about the latest food safety issues.
Empowering Alcona Youth
From 4-H to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) Programs to livestock auctions and mock interviews, MSU Extension provides learning opportunities that help prepare youth for work, especially for jobs in STEAM.
40 Alcona County 4-H youth attended Exploration Days in June 2017 . This program offers youth a chance to explore college life. They chose classes from ‘Cooking Matters’ to “Future Doctors’ to “Social Justice” and everything in between.
Agriculture & Agribusiness
During the past year in Alcona County, MSU Extension provided farm support and agricultural education through individual consultation, workshops, research opportunities, evaluation of practices, articles and training for employees. Topics included field crop & pest management, Extension Master Gardener training, organic soybean and farm education, northern Michigan Small Farms Conference, Christmas Tree grower education and training on Bovine leukemia virus in cattle. Over 81 Alcona County residents attended, participated or consulted in these programs.
MSU Extension & Place-based Stewardship Education (PBSE)
Over thirty four Place-based Stewardship Education Project Teams across eight counties including Alcona were active, supported through the regional NEMIGLSI (NE Michigan Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative) network, and directly engaged students in PBSE activities with community partners. PSBSE efforts provide opportunities for teachers and students, through their learning, to engage in and lead environmental stewardship projects in partnership with their communities.
Engaging Youth in Science
Research demonstrates that young people who participate in positive youth development programs are significantly more likely to exhibit academic competence. In May of 2017, 88 Alcona County youth (K-6th grade) participated in a day-long exploration of water science and ecosystem studies at Harrisville Harbor. Sixth-grade students served as mentors to kindergarten students who also joined in exploring water science studies on this day. The kindergarteners discovered aquatic ecosystem life, enjoyed educational games and collected litter to help address marine debris pollution at the harbor and along the shoreline.
MSU Extension offers community engagement education and government finance & policy education such as Current Issues Effecting Local Government webinars and workshops, Regulating Medical Marijuana Facilities education, Citizen Planner, Parliamentary Procedure, Public Policy and more. In 2017, many of these programs were available to and attended by Alcona residents via workshops, seminars, webinars, etc. These programs are open to everyone and often serve as a great resource for elected county and township officials.