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Disrupting Engagement or Engagement, the Disrupter?

Disrupting Engagement or Engagement, the Disrupter?

Dave King, Professor Emeritus, Oregon State University Photo by Fabio Bracht on Unsplash When the analog-to-digital information evolution began in the mid 1990s, Extension and engagement—as functions of higher education—appeared to be likely targets for disruption. Yet, today, fundamental aspects of Extension and engagement appear to be untouched by disruptive competition. Or do they? “The past is prologue,” wrote William Shakespeare. So a quick review of Extension and the digital evolution, and what we can learn from history, might be…

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Leadership-It’s All About Everyone

Leadership-It’s All About Everyone

Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University Essayist William Gibson recently reminded us, “The future is here. It’s just not widely distributed yet.” The same sentiment is reflected by the Institute for the Future in discussions of leadership in a world characterized by explosive connectivity and disruption and describes literacies for leading in a “VUCA” world: Volatile/Uncertain/Complex/Ambiguous. The Institute further observes that in the next ten…

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Crises of Legitimacy of Science –What can be done?

Crises of Legitimacy of Science –What can be done?

Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University Photo by Vlad Tchompalov on Unsplash A lot can be done and is being done.  In our previous blog we underscore the self-evident importance of science in the US.  Science has become a required knowledge creating and disseminating force in the economy, public and personal healthcare and general social well-being, our personal lives.  21st century societies depend upon the…

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Crises of Legitimacy of Science-Are we with science or not?

Crises of Legitimacy of Science-Are we with science or not?

Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University Providing Evidence-based knowledge is a foundational raison d’être among Extension mission statements.  This blog and the next address the social and political delegitimation of science over the past few decades, as well as the acceleration of attacks on science as an academic and social enterprise.  There is a public crisis of legitimacy for science.   Simply stated, science is becoming…

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University-wide Engagement and the Transdisciplinary University

University-wide Engagement and the Transdisciplinary University

Photo by Hans-Peter Gauster on Unsplash Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University Blah blah ‘…..disciplinary’ – what’s the difference?  Each is quintessential in their power to produce knowledge.  It is not a matter of which type of academic inquiry is better than the others.  But one of these, a single author writing within the narrow foci of a single sub-discipline tends to be the classic…

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The Quest for Talent Equity: Engagement in the Regional Talent Pipeline Ecosystem

The Quest for Talent Equity: Engagement in the Regional Talent Pipeline Ecosystem

Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash.com Eric Dunker, Associate for Business Strategies, Associate Vice President and Dean: Business, Technology, and Workforce Partnerships, Arapahoe Community College As our society becomes more diverse, businesses and communities have moral and economic reasons to create systems with talent equity outcomes across the educational and labor market continuum. Higher education is rightly focused on educational equity, but this pandemic has demonstrated large disparities in the labor market that stems from a deep disequilibrium in our…

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Transformational Engagement in an era of Reskilling and Economic Recovery

Transformational Engagement in an era of Reskilling and Economic Recovery

Eric Dunker, Associate for Business Strategies, Associate Vice President and Dean: Business, Technology, and Workforce Partnerships, Arapahoe Community College For over 100 years, universities and community colleges have brought practical research and relevant education to their local communities and industry stakeholders. Presently, models for higher education engagement are more in line with 20th century emphases on academic disciplines and serving historical community needs. These models often lack the agility to be nimble and responsive to present day realities. In the…

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Engagement and Extension-public PR fodder or real?

Engagement and Extension-public PR fodder or real?

Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University External perceptions of universities, or more specifically for their staff and students, can tip the scales toward deeper and sustained public legitimacy.  Public universities self-proclaim the importance of sharing their extraordinary talents with their publics.  Ostensibly, academic engagement matters.  The value engagement holds for universities is evident in the legacies and present values of Land Grant University (LGU) Extension…

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American Democracy and University Engagement

American Democracy and University Engagement

Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University It seems commonplace, even self-evident, that public universities are cultural centers for and accountable to our most fundamental sets of beliefs.  Professor James Hansen’s work on Colorado State University’s 150-year history chose the framing title of ‘Democracy’s University’.  During the last decade, CSU went beyond its traditional mission statement to declare a set of ‘Principles of Community’ to govern…

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Time for Extension to Go BIG!

Time for Extension to Go BIG!

It’s time for Extension Services to go BIG Scott Reed, Vice Provost Emeritus, Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State University Lou Swanson, Emeritus Vice President of Engagement, Colorado State University After more than 100 years of ably serving America’s agriculture and natural resource issues, it is past time for Cooperative Extension to step into university-wide leadership roles. With an established presence in more than three thousand county offices, Extension can directly link human and community issues to the intellectual capital of…

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