Out of more than 300 universities, OSU ranked in the top 10 for online baccalaureate programs for the second year in a row. We were ranked number three for land grant universities.

OSU’s Ecampus, part of the Division of Outreach and Engagement and Educational Outreach, is growing. Did you know that the number of Ecampus learners has grown to 19,000?

Learn more about why Lisa Templeton, director of Ecampus, believes OSU is continuing to rank highly by watching the video.

Students learn how art can work hand-in-hand with Oregon communities

The mission of OSU Extension Service essentially is to understand the needs of Oregon communities then develop collaborative partnerships to find ways to solve community challenges with research-based solutions. Historically, much of the outreach has been based in agriculture, but that has been changing. This blog introduces you to Extension Reconsidered.


photoExtension Reconsidered (ExtRe), an Outreach and Engagement initiative introduced at OSU in 2014, addresses community needs via the arts, humanities, design and humanitarian engineering. By working with new and traditional partners, ExtRe explores the ways in which the OSU Extension Service can evolve to best support the people of Oregon.


2015-11-20 10.35.14In fall 2015, the Art 406 course was offered for the first time. The course — a partnership between OSU Extension and the College of Liberal Arts — teaches both arts engagement methods and studio art techniques in a single class. The course is designed as a collaborative arts experience that engages and supports OSU arts students, Tillamook High School students and the Tillamook County Pioneer Museum.


2015-11-20 17.53.25The innovative course involved mentoring partnerships between the OSU and Tillamook students and culminated in a joint art exhibit curated by all the students at the Pioneer Museum. Coastal identities experienced as residents of Tillamook and the Oregon Coast emerged as themes in many of the high school students’ art pieces.


In tune with OSU’s Marine Studies Initiative, the OSU students built on a tradition of arts involvement in coastal discussions. They took part in the State of the Coast conference, which brings together communities of people that live, work or study the Oregon coast. Through their participation as artists, resulting work and subsequent inspiration, the OSU students contribute to the evolving understanding of Oregon’s coastal environment.


OSU plans to offer Art 406 again in spring 2016.


2015-11-20 13.32.44To learn more about the innovative approach Extension Reconsidered takes to engage and serve the needs of communities, talk with Charles Robinson. We’ll be hearing more from him as we approach the dates of the maker fair in April. Charles works with the College of Liberal Arts, the Division of Outreach & Engagement, the Graduate School and The CO.


Martin Luther King, Jr. asked the question: What are you doing for others? To honor his life, service and sacrifice, take a moment to learn about several ways the 13,000 OSU Extension Service volunteers serve the people of Oregon.


Honey bees are crucial pollinators for blueberries, pears, cherries, apples and some vegetable seeds. (Photo by Lynn Ketchum.)

Without pollinators, most plants cannot produce fruit and seeds. Pollinators such as bees, bats, butterflies and birds help pollinate over 75% of our flowering plants, and nearly 75% of our corps.1


The almost 500 people that have enrolled in the Oregon Master Beekeeper Program understand the importance of bees to our food supply. OSU Extension Service created the program to help people help our struggling bee population. Participants are paired with mentors in cities around the state. They learn to harvest honey, treat for pests and diseases, and help colonies survive the winter.2


Graduates of the beekeeper program serve others: each is required to share their new knowledge, for example with beekeeping clubs and schools.


Speaking of feeding Oregonians, unemployment and the increasing cost of living are forcing more Oregonians to seek food assistance. To help stretch limited budgets, the OSU Extension Service and the Oregon Food Bank launched the Seed to Supper program, a free, five-week gardening course taught in English and Spanish. The course enables novice gardeners to affordably grow some of their own food.


Seed to Supper
Participants in the Seed to Supper classes improve their diets with fresh vegetables. (Photo: Hannah O’Leary)

Extension-trained Master Gardeners teach participants where to find free and reduced-cost soil, compost, seeds, starts, trellis materials, mulch, tools, garden space and OSU Extension gardening publications.2 Master Gardeners also serve the people of Oregon with their knowledge, passion for gardening and a minimum of 70 hours of volunteer service (though many dedicated Master Gardeners volunteer many times the expected hours).


Master Woodland Managers share their knowledge with other landholders. About 70,000 small woodland owners hold title to nearly 5 million acres, or 40 percent, of the state’s private forestland. Each year, they harvest about 11 percent of the state’s annual wood production. But not all of them have a background in forestry or know what to do with their land.


To help small private landowners, the OSU Extension Service created the Master Woodland Manager Program, which educates these owners on topics such as management planning, ecology and forest inventory methods. In return for 80 hours of instruction from professional foresters and forestry instructors, the trainees agree to volunteer a similar number of hours to help other small woodland owners. On average, most Master Woodland Managers have volunteered for almost 10 years. Some have served for more than 20 years!


Master Woodland Managers
Oregon’s forestland owners manage almost 5 million acres. (Photo by Lynn Ketchum.)

Since its inception in 1983, nearly 500 landowners have completed the program, volunteered close to 96,000 hours and reported over 130,000 contacts with the public, family forestland owners and various organizations.2


Thank you to the OSU Extension – and its many volunteers – for serving the people of Oregon and providing meaningful ways for volunteers to pursue their areas of interests and passions while also serving the people of Oregon.


Tell us your favorite story of service! Don’t be shy.


1 www.fws.gov/pollinators

2Source: Bridges to Prosperity

Opportunities Exist to Collaborate on Educational Modules

Collaborating with Extension and on-campus faculty to develop learning modules and open textbooks is at the core of Open Oregon State’s activities. Open Oregon State was formed in 2013 to create online educational resources that can be accessed freely by students and teachers in digital media collections around the world. It is part of the Division of University Outreach and Engagement and falls under the umbrella of OSU Extended Campus.

[Note: Open Oregon State is different than OSU Open Campus, which is also part of the Division of Outreach and Engagement.]


Open Oregon State Learning Module
Photo: startupphotos.com

Learning Modules

Open Oregon State enhances learning experiences by incorporating emerging technologies.

“Early on, our multimedia developers and instructional designers created open modules in the agricultural sciences and STEM fields, some with dual-language functionality,” said Dianna Fisher, director of the unit. “Now we’re branching out and doing work with other colleges on campus and we are also working on projects with Oregon Community Colleges. We’re proud of the quality and creativity we bring to making knowledge accessible and learning engaging and effective.”

New Spanish language modules will help women start businesses, and a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) is being developed in collaboration with the department of Horticulture and Professional and Continuing Education (PACE), also part of the Division.

To experience the educational possibilities, check out this featured module:

Water Crisis

This module explores water-related issues, current and future work to supply the water necessary for society, and offers an opportunity to hear from OSU experts.


Open Textbooks

Open TextbookResearch shows a direct relationship between textbook costs and student success. Why? Textbooks can cost up to $1,200 a year for a full-time student, sometimes forcing students to choose between paying rent or buying food and buying a textbook.

The university’s open textbook initiative is a collaboration between OSU Libraries, OSU Press and Open Oregon State. It provides financial, technical and editorial support for faculty members to create texts that will be freely accessible online to any student in the world.

Open Oregon State has made impressive headway in developing free online textbooks. (Online textbooks are also available in low-cost print versions for essentially the cost of printing.) The inaugural textbook, “Living with Earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest,” is by Robert S. Yeats, a professor emeritus in OSU’s College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences. At least four more open textbooks are scheduled to be published by the end of 2016.

“Online textbooks do more than save students money,” said Dianna. “As new information and science emerges, online textbooks can be updated immediately. Multimedia elements can also be added to enhance the learning experience.”

To learn more about module and open textbook opportunities and requirements, click here. Open Oregon State offers funding of up to $2,000 to foster faculty participation in providing content and working with the development team to design and produce modules and short courses. Proposals are accepted and evaluated for funding once per term.

Funding for the unit comes from grants, the Division of Outreach and Engagement, Oregon State Ecampus and student fees. For more information about existing online educational resources or new opportunities with Open Oregon State, please contact:

Dianna Fisher, Director
Open Oregon State

Dave Hansen photoDavid Hansen accepted the role of Interim Associate Provost of the Division and Associate Director of the OSU Extension Service effective January 1, 2016, on a 0.6 FTE basis. He will retain a 0.4 FTE role as Outreach and Engagement Lead for the Oregon Sea Grant Program.

“This is an opportunity for me to see the Division from a different perspective,” said Dave. “I am looking forward to viewing and interacting with the Division outside of a program perspective. I have worked with Extension’s Regional Administrators as a member of the Program Council, but look forward to expanding my geographic boundaries. The interim position also provides an opportunity for me to interact with more programs within the Division and Extension.”

Dave is veteran of Extension outreach and engagement work. He was an associate professor of soil and environmental quality and Extension Program Leader for the Agriculture and Natural Resources program at the University of Delaware before coming to OSU in 2010.

He is a member of Oregon Sea Grant’s leadership team and oversees a large and diverse outreach and public engagement team, including Sea Grant Extension faculty on the coast and on campus with expertise in a wide range of matters related to Oregon’s ocean and coastal resources, natural and human. In addition, he manages Sea Grant’s small team of professional science communicators who serve the program’s needs for print, web, video and other media to inform and educate the public.

Play with your carrots

This website encourages you to play with your food.


Ring in the New Year with a resounding chorus of carrot chimes! Play a little as you contemplate changing your diet for the better, exercising more, and meeting all those personal goals you set out for yourself. It’s easy. Just swipe your mouse across the carrots. And if you have little ones in the house? Let them play with their carrots, too!


Check out other interactive food-related activities such as the melon meditation, grape galaxy, Brussel sprout ballet, or the pomegranate pinata.


Tell us which ones are your favorites.

Calvin & Hobbes quote

The faculty and staff of the Division of University Outreach and Engagement make the lives of others better every day of the year. It may be difficult in the moment to see your impact, but as we look back, “everything is different,” as the wise cartoon characters Calvin and Hobbes suggest.

Each of you is celebrated for the energy you give and the work you are doing as 2015 comes to a close and all the possibilities of 2016 open before us.

“Making a difference starts with one step, with one foot, then the next.” Hope Galaxie

Happy New Year!

Share greetings with your colleagues and community partners.

Fish Taco
Photo: FoodHero.org

Throughout the North Coast and South West Extension Service Regions, the adult and childhood obesity incidence is greater than the Oregon average. In fact, few Americans consume the minimum recommended amount of whole grains, vegetables or fruits.

“Tastes great and so easy!! Will make it again and again,” said one fan of the fish taco recipe on FoodHero.org, a website jointly funded by OSU Extension Service and USDA Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Fish Tacos is one of 286 recipes posted on the Food Hero website. The vetted, healthy recipes can be sorted by number of ingredients, meal preparation time, cooking method, kid approved (yes, they actually survey kids to see if they like the food!) and more. Cooking tips and tools, including how to balance calories and shop on a budget, are also offered on the site.

“Food Hero is a research-based social marketing campaign aimed at parents who use the Internet and have kids under the age of 18 living in their homes,” stated Lauren Tobey, OSU nutrition specialist. The goal is simple: show parents and their kids how easy it is to eat more fruits and vegetables, whether fresh, frozen or canned.

A partnership with Grocery Outlet put flyers featuring two potato-based Food Hero recipes — Chicken, Potato and Pepper Bake and Superhero Shepherd’s Pie — and a coupon for a free 10lb. bag of russet potatoes (with a $10 minimum purchase) in Oregon newspapers in December. Another flyer/coupon will run in January.

The OSU Extension Service North Coast Region (Columbia, Clatsop, Tillamook and Lincoln counties) and South West Region (Lane, Douglas, Coos and Curry counties) teamed up to submit coordinating proposals for two full awards of $25,000 each (totaling $50,000) through the Moore Family Center Healthy Communities Outreach Project grant. Led by Jenny Rudolph, Lead Principal Investigator, the proposal was based on a strong partnership with the state SNAP-Ed team along with county-based Family Community Health (FCH) and 4-H faculty, and many local partners.

In March 2015, the campaign team partnered with OSU Interactive Communications to produce a series of short videos. The videos feature local families making healthy, whole-grain recipes together. The videos, which can be seen on FoodHero.org, are designed to empower low income families to prepare healthy meals together, demonstrate easy, fun ways for kids to help in the kitchen, promote the use of low-cost whole grains in family meals, and to increase awareness of the FoodHero.org website as a resource for healthy recipes and tips.

A 30-second commercial was also produced in English and in Spanish. The English version was distributed in a media buy campaign along the North Coast and South West regions, appearing June 12 through August 6 as a preview ad at theaters in Astoria, Lincoln City, Newport, Seaside, Springfield, North Bend, and Roseburg, including the opening weekend of Jurassic World. Audience estimates totaled 537,000.

In Southern Oregon, local Coordinated Care organizations (CCO) are very supportive of the OSU SNAP-Ed programs. “They have similar community health goals to  reduce obesity, improve nutrition choices among children and adults, and increase food security,” said Cheryl Kirk, community health instructor at Josephine County Extension Service.  “When I showed the Food Hero video segments to my partner at  All Care CCO, she was excited about the possibility to run the 30-second spot in local theaters.  So I basically connected the dots with OSU media, Sally Bowman, program manager for Family and Community Health/SNAP-Ed, and the CCO. We were all excited that this could happen during the busy holiday movie season and the release of the new Star Wars movie.” Theater ads will run December 18 through January 8 in Medford, Grants Pass and White City. The campaign coincides with the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. An estimated audience of 105,000 will view the video commercial.

An online media buy featured the video commercial, which linked back to the Food Hero website. The online campaign was targeted to the North Coast and South West Regions June 12 through August 10 creating an estimated 524,000 impressions.

Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) is distributing the videos to their county offices for caseworkers to use in DHS lobbies. And all county SNAP-Ed units across the state are encouraged to use the videos at local events.

The video project team received the 2015 OSU Extension Association Oscar Hagg Communications Award in recognition of superior and distinguished achievement in effectively utilizing creative communications techniques.

According to Sally Bowman, the Oregon Department of Education is scaling and crediting Food Hero recipes for meal programs in schools and childcare settings. At least 100 credited recipes meeting Federal guidelines for school meals will be available to school kitchens.

If you’re tired of the same old recipes, or want to start eating a healthier diet on a budget, you will find many new recipes — from Almond Rice Pudding to Zucchini Zowie — to try throughout the new year.


Share a favorite recipe loaded with fruits, vegetables or whole grains in the comment section below.




For the Fish

2 pounds cod fillets

3 Tablespoons lime juice (about two limes)

1 tomato, chopped

1/2 onion, chopped

3 Tablespoons cilantro, chopped

1 teaspoon oil

1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

1⁄4 teaspoon salt


For the Slaw

2 cups shredded red cabbage

1⁄2 cup green onions, chopped

3⁄4 cup nonfat sour cream

3⁄4 cup salsa


2 cups shredded red cabbage

1⁄2 cup green onions, chopped

3⁄4 cup nonfat sour cream

3⁄4 cup salsa


8 corn tortillas (6-inch), warmed


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place fish in baking dish.
  3. Mix lime juice, tomato, onion, cilantro, oil, peppers, and salt and spoon on top of fillets.
  4. Cover loosely with aluminum foil to keep fish moist.
  5. Bake 15-20 minutes or until fish flakes.
  6. Mix cabbage and onion; mix sour cream and salsa and add to cabbage mixture.
  7. Divide cooked fish among tortillas. Add 1/4 cup of slaw to each. Fold over and enjoy!
  8. Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours.


  • Freeze extra lime juice to use later.
  • One reader added some canned chilies to the baked fish and a little ranch dressing to the slaw. The substituted green cabbage because it was on sale.

See nutrition information at: https://www.foodhero.org/recipes/fish-tacos#sthash

Sources: FoodHero.org, Oregon Whole Grain Heroes Video Campaign 2015 Impact Statement, Sally Bowman, Cheryl Kirk and Jenny Rudolph



millennialsThe boomers are aging, the millennials are the next big economic and social power group, and now there is the founder generation (at least according to MTV and Red Peak Youth who surveyed post-millennials to find a name for this new generation).


The Division of University Outreach and Engagement serves every generation in many different ways. Consequently, we need to understand the needs of each generation, how they learn and the best ways to engage them.


Of course, there is a danger in making wide, sweeping generalizations about any generation. Individuals are much more nuanced. Yet, seeking insights into the mindset of the approximately 79 million millennials, which are generally viewed as ages 18 to 34, is necessary to the Division’s work.


Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, according to the Pew Research Center. We want their kids involved in 4-H programs and we need them to lead those clubs. The generation is the prime audience for OSU enrollment in on-campus or online learning programs. Also according to the Pew Research Center, in the past five years more than half of newly arrived immigrant workers are millennials. Oh, and we need them in our workforce. There’s no question that the millennial generation will influence our work.


Jeff Hino, Learning Technology Leader in Extension & Experiment Station Communications (EESC), shared this presentation on Engaging Millennials to Outreach and Engagement’s ECAN Advisory Board. (ECAN is the acronym for the Extension Citizen Advisory Network, a network of geographically diverse volunteers who advocate locally and on a statewide basis on behalf of Extension. They also are the voice of our communities and, as such, offer counsel to Scott Reed, vice provost of the Division and director of Extension.)


Jeff searched for meaningful insights that are likely to impact the outreach and engagement work of the Division. Click through the presentation to learn about all of his insights, but here are a few highlights:


  • Millennials are the first generation that never knew a time there wasn’t an Internet
  • Millennials prefer online engagement
  • Millennials are more individualistic – perhaps even rebellious – and independent than past generations
  • Millennials are a passionate and connected generation
  • Millennials need immediacy, depth, the fun factor, personal reward, and they want to be heard
  • Millennials want to create or co-create their knowledge


millennials 2Jeff even tells us what the implications are for the Division, suggesting we need to:


  • Be tech savvy
  • Go where they are (which is online)
  • Get them involved in learning
  • Use a variety of education media
  • And whatever we do, it can’t be boring, or they will go elsewhere


Excelling in these areas is no small task, yet engaging millennials is vital to the success of the university’s outreach and engagement work. The Division needs to partner with the millennial generation to create healthy people, a healthy plant and a healthy economy.


How should our outreach and engagement efforts embrace the millennial generation? Post a comment.