Urban Extension Professional Development Guide

Published – 20 June 2022 By Gavin Beever

This guide gives a thorough understanding on Urban Extension and where it is similar to Rural Extension and how it differs.  All Extension Professionals will benefit from the resources section, useful links and the eight excellent case studies.

The case studies documented in the guide provide key examples of the many and varied work of Urban Extension officers.

“Each case study illustrates the ways in which Urban Extension offices address the multitude of issues and priorities in their particular metropolitan area.”

The case studies include examples of work with farmers markets and farm tours, setting the basis for achieving education goals such as kindergarten readiness and career field investigation and other areas such as sharing horticultural knowledge through arboretums and nature centres.

“Urban Extension is also actively moving to address issues of sustainability across cities and regions — for example, engaging in environmental education, urban forest canopy cover assessment, and sustainable community initiatives, as well as advancing community engagement through the construction of a film series on environmental issues, and working with a city to replace sidewalks with pervious pavement, thus saving trees and improving water filtration.”

The guide is presented as a flipping book by the Extension Foundation. The editors for the guide were Jody Norman and Cynthia Pierfax, who completed their work during their roles as the 2019 National Urban Extension Leaders (NUEL) Fellows.

The guide is full of a range of information and resources for Extension Professionals, curated and reviewed by a national team of American experts in Extension.

“The heart of the publication, and the crux of the story, revolves around what professional development is like in Urban Extension, how it is achieved, and how it advances the work of the institution and serves the needs of the communities in which it is embedded.”