As a land-grant institution, The Ohio State University has the three-part mission of supporting the learning and growth of students, the creation of knowledge, and improving the lives of Ohioans through outreach and community engagement. OSU Extension provides the structure by which Ohio State maintains a presence in all 88 counties. Although the programs of OSU Extension represent a substantial part of the institution’s total outreach and engagement portfolio, we also know that there are outreach and engagement programs of the university that do not involve OSU Extension, but are focused on similar goals. Clearly there is a need for all of the individuals involved in this important work to have opportunities to learn about each other’s work and explore opportunities for collaboration. It is also important that we raise the profile of outreach and engagement both within the university and across the state of Ohio.
OSU Extension is working closely with the Office of Outreach and Engagement to establish an annual week of learning and celebration focused on Ohio State’s outreach and engagement mission. A part of that week will include a university-wide outreach and engagement conference that will build upon the success of the Extension Annual Conference.
The first day of the conference will include many of the activities and events that have historically been a part of the Extension Annual Conference. For example, Extension awards will be presented on Tuesday, January 23 at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center. Time for associations to meet will also be available on Tuesday. The remainder of the conference will be held at the Ohio Union and will focus on networking, learning, and innovation as it relates to advancing the outreach and engagement work of Ohio State.