Justin Morrill
Justin Morrill

Guest post by Dave Landkamer, Sea Grant Aquaculture Extension Specialist

“Let us have colleges as might rightfully claim the authority to scatter broadcast that knowledge which will prove useful in building up a great nation — great in its resources of wealth and power, but greatest of all in the aggregate of its intelligence and virtue.” – Representative Justin Smith Morrill, pleading for passage of the Morrill Act of 1862

When Abraham Lincoln signed the Morrill Act in 1862 and the subsequent Hatch Act of 1887 the foundation of the Land-Grant College System, which would transform our nation into an agricultural, industrial, and social powerhouse, was in place. Continue reading

Lynette BlackName: Lynette Black

Position: 4-H Youth Development, Wasco County, OSU Extension Service

Hometown: The Dalles

# of years at OSU: 9

Best part of your job: Everything! I love the variety this job affords me. Though there are many events and activities we do yearly (like camps and fair), they are never the same because different challenges and benefits arise each year. I enjoy working with people of all ages from children to senior citizens. People are the spice of life!

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: I was destined to be 4-H Faculty. My life experiences have prepared me for this position by shaping me into a well-rounded person (which, I understand, is better than a well-squared person). My childhood was spent participating and living the 4-H program (9 year 4-H member and daughter, niece and grand-niece of Extension Agents). Question for those who know me – What is my legal name and/or my given name? I don’t “go” by either of them.

Favorite book/movie/album: I love books and would be hard pressed to share a favorite. I enjoy a good story based on history, on psychology, on disasters… I am not a good movie watcher – I’d rather read the book. With that said my favorite movie is Fiddler on the Roof. I like ‘oldies’ songs that have a moral to the story. Harry Chapin was one of my favorite artists.


Jenny_RudolphName: Jenny Ahlers Rudolph

Position: Instructor, Extension Family & Community Health, Columbia County Extension Service Office

Hometown: Southlake, Texas

# of years at OSU: Just celebrated my 10th year with OSU Extension!   I started in February of 2003 as an AmeriCorps Member doing health and safety outreach to migrant farmworkers out of the Washington County Extension Service office.

Best part of your job: I really love that I get to learn new things every day in my job.  I’ve done everything from teaching Spanish-speaking farmworkers how to use a backpack pesticide applicator, to teaching folks how to safely can their own salsa.  I’ve also had some wonderful mentors in Extension that have given me the skills and knowledge I needed to help me grow as a professional.

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: I once leapt from a 40 foot high waterfall in the Amazon rainforest.  The resulting wedgie was truly epic.  What can I say – people do stupid things when they’re 20!

Favorite book/movie/album:

Books: Anything written by or about Jane Austen.

Movies: Sense and Sensibility, Emma, Pride and Prejudice, and (of course) Clueless.

I also love blues and jazz music.


Nicole StrongName: Nicole Strong

Position: Master Woodland Manager Program Coordinator; Women Owning Woodlands Program Coordinator; Senior Instructor, Forestry and Natural Resources

Hometown: I was a military “brat”; we lived all over the world. I’ve lived in Oregon longer then anywhere, and I consider this Home.

# of years at OSU: 8

Best part of your job: The people! Our clients are so inspiring, their creativity, dedication to forest stewardship, and their achievements in their non-forestry lives never ceases to astound me. Working statewide, I get to some pretty beautiful and remote places. I’m also really grateful for my co-workers. People go into Extension because they care about helping communities and people, and getting to collaborate with such positive people makes all the weekends and evenings worth it.

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: Most of the forestry community knows me for hurdling myself up and down mountains via bikes and skis, but they probably would be surprised to know that I play classical piano, and am an avid fan of the Central Oregon Symphony.

Favorite book/movie/album: Two of my favorite artists hail from the Pacific Northwest, Tom Robbins and Brandi Carlisle.

Melissa WhitneyName: Melissa Whitney

Position: Enrollment Services Specialist, Extended Campus

Hometown: McMinnville, Oregon

# of years at OSU: 2 years

Best part of your job: I get to talk to prospective students from all over the world, every day! Being someone who went back to school later in life, I feel like I can really relate to the stories I hear from people working hard to accomplish their life goal of completing their education. Enrollment Services is the first point of contact for prospective students, and it is awesome to work with such an amazing team who want to make sure they have the best first impression of Oregon State Ecampus possible.

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: I absolutely love swimming. I swam butterfly for my high school varsity swim team for 4 years and have swam across the Columbia River three times. I love to travel and have been to 26 states and 10 countries. I also like to explore and photograph ghost towns.

Favorite book/movie/album: My favorite book is my ‘Weird Oregon’ book, my favorite movies (because I can’t pick just one) are Return of the Jedi, The Count of Monte Cristo, Napoleon Dynamite, The Goonies, Shawshank Redemption, Indiana Jones and Billy Madison, to name a few. Music is a pretty big part of my life, so I don’t know if I could begin to pick a favorite album, but I love the Beatles album Rubber Soul.


By Beth Emshoff, Director, Oregon Open Campus

We have a lot going on with Oregon Open Campus (OOC) these days, and I wanted to take this opportunity to share some exciting news.

On March 18 Oregon State University, through the OOC initiative, and Klamath Community College (KCC) signed a memorandum agreement to pilot a new degree completion program in agricultural sciences.

Over the past year, with leadership from Willie Riggs – the OSU Extension Service regional administrator and director of the Klamath Basin Experiment Station – OOC has been working in partnership with KCC to finalize the details of this program.

Our ultimate goal is improved student success and retention.

Currently KCC students have the option to enroll in the Degree Partnership Program, which allows them to be jointly admitted and enrolled at KCC and Oregon State. Through this new degree completion program, students in Klamath and Lake counties who are interested in pursuing a degree in agricultural sciences can now travel a straight path from high school to an Oregon State degree, all without leaving the Klamath Basin.

The program, which begins this spring, makes it possible for high school students to earn 11 college credits, move to KCC’s agricultural sciences program, then complete Oregon State’s agricultural sciences program offered online through OSU Ecampus.

One unique component of this program is the “high touch” cohort model.

Students will meet regularly with Oregon State and KCC faculty, giving them access to mentoring, advising, ongoing encouragement and tutorials throughout the program.

This seamless approach should significantly reduce the

cost of an undergraduate education. KCC college credits in high school come at no cost, community college credits are about one-third the cost of university credits, and eliminating the relocation costs for students by staying in their home communities further reduces the total cost of an undergraduate degree.

We are currently exploring how this model might be replicated in other communities.

Oregon Open Campus in Tillamook County is in conversation with Tillamook Bay Community College to find a way for their students to transfer into OSU’s fisheries and wildlife sciences online degree program. Similar conversations are taking place on the south coast with Southwestern Oregon Community College.

For more information, check out the Klamath Falls Herald and News article. If you have questions or would like to discuss anything related to Oregon Open Campus, please contact me.

Willie Riggs (Regional Admin, OSU Extension Service), Beth Emshoff (Director, Oregon Open Campus) and Keith Duran
Willie Riggs (Regional Administrator, OSU Extension Service), Beth Emshoff (Director, Oregon Open Campus) and Keith Duren (Department Chair Natural Resource Systems, KCC)
Scott Reed (Vice Provost, OSU Division of University Outreach and Engagement, Dan Arp (Dean, OSU College of Agricultural Sciences) and Roberto Gutierrez (President, Klamath Community College)
Scott Reed (Vice Provost, OSU Division of University Outreach and Engagement), Dan Arp (Dean, OSU College of Agricultural Sciences) and Roberto Gutierrez (President, KCC)

Jennifer AlexanderName: Jennifer Alexander

Position: Publishing Manager, EESC

Hometown: Humboldt, Iowa

# of years at OSU: 2 ½ years

Best part of your job: Since I grew up involved in 4-H and studied horticulture, journalism, and agricultural education in college, working in Extension communication is a perfect fit. My dad is a former county Extension agent and current state 4-H specialist in Iowa, and I have great respect for our OSU Extension faculty and staff across the state, who spend every day (and many nights and weekends) serving others. Getting to use what I do well to help others share their work with the world is an honor and a privilege.

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: I’ve kissed the Blarney Stone.

Favorite book/movie/album:

Book: Where the Sidewalk Ends (Shel Silverstein)

Movie: The Blues Brothers

Album: anything by Tori Amos

free the textbookLast week we celebrated Open Education Week, an annual worldwide event to raise awareness of the Open Educational Resources (OERs) movement and the opportunities that OERs create for teaching and learning around the globe. So, you may be wondering …

Who is doing open education?

We are! Universities worldwide are creating and using OERs. Land grant universities in particular are taking on the creation of OERs as a part of their mission to educate and share research with the public and K-12 schools that might need access to materials for high-achieving students. The OER Commons is a great place to see what is out there and search for items that others are creating.

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Name: Scott Leavengood

Position: Director, Oregon Wood Innovation Center

Hometown: Born in Cincinnati, OH, grew up in suburban Chicago

# of years at OSU: 18

Best part of your job: Helping people combined with variety in my daily tasks – In Extension, every day is unique.  One day I might be assisting an entrepreneur with a new product idea, the next I might be in a sawmill helping the quality control manager with tools and techniques for evaluating product quality, and the next day guest lecturing in a course, etc.

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: People are often surprised to learn that I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago.  I can only guess this is because they are surprised that someone from a very urban place would choose to study wood science/wood products manufacturing and live in a far more rural state (but that’s a really great way to be from Chicago…)

Favorite book/movie/album:  My favorite book is the USDA Wood Handbook: Wood as an Engineering Material – just kidding.  I’m not sure I have a favorite book or movie but for album, showing my age a bit, I’d say it’s Boston’s first album (1976).

Name: Janean Creighton

Position: Extension Specialist, Forest Science Delivery FES Dept., College of Forestry

Hometown: Edmonds, Wash.

# of years at OSU: 3+

Best part of your job: As Administrative Director of the NW Fire Science Consortium, I have the good fortune of working with a wide variety of people from federal, state, non-profit, and private organizations; which can be quite challenging, but who doesn’t like a challenge?  The best part of my job is being able to interact with fire resource managers and researchers in the field.  It’s nice to be able to get out of the office and into the woods once in a while!

Something someone might be surprised to know about you: I used to be a professional actor.  That was a whole other life ago!

Favorite book/movie/album: My favorite movie is Blazing Saddles; probably because I grew up the only girl along with 3 older brothers.  They helped shape my sense of humor.