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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Happy Holidays!

The Alumni Site will be taking a break heading into the new year. We hope you also take time to rest and recharge heading into 2016.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Learn - Webinars on Positive Trends Impacting the Great Plains States

Extension Research Associate Ben Winchester will be part of an upcoming opportunity to learn about trends impacting rural communities. In his words:
Starting January 13, 2016, the Rural Business Program at the University of Texas at San Antonio – Institute for Economic Development is teaming up with the University of Nebraska, Sam Houston State University and the University of Minnesota to bring you a quality rural webinar series.
This no-cost webinar series will focus on positive trends impacting the Great Plains states from Minnesota to Texas and places in-between. This monthly series is offered to local elected officials, economic development specialists, housing agencies, and others engaged in rural development practices. These webinars are educational in focus and will lead up to the Minnesota Symposium on Small Towns June 8-9, 2016 and the Texas Rural Challenge on June 9-10, 2016.

Save the Dates. Here’s a sneak peek at the upcoming webinar series. All webinar times are Noon - 1pm.

Jan 13             Welcome: Rewriting the Rural Narrative
Feb 24             Brain Gain of the Newcomers to Rural America
Mar 23             Leadership Demands in Rural America
Apr 6               Baby Boomers and the Rural Housing Supply
May 4              Rural Entrepreneurship and the Quest for an Empowered Rural Economy
June 1             Great Plains Opinions and Attitudes

Please RSVP via this link:
Virtual seating is limited and registration will close on January 8. Links to webinar will be provided the day before each session.
You can register for as many as you can make

Monday, December 14, 2015

MARL program alumni making impacts locally, internationally

Kudos to Minnesota Agricultural and Rural Leadership (MARL) program alumni who are giving back to their fields and building leaders. A SOURCE magazine article examines how Rich Miska worked with local farmers as a mentor to strengthen their practices and production. Keep up the good work, at home and abroad!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Congrats to Connecting Nicollet County

The Association of Minnesota Counties recently honored the Connecting Nicollet County leadership program with its Outstanding County Achievement award. A partnership between Nicollet County and University of Minnesota Extension, the leadership program was recognized for effectively nurturing new leadership, increasing community connections, and deeper involvement in the county. Check out the full write up.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Millennials and Minnesota's Economy

On November 24, I had the chance to be in the room for Senator Amy Klobuchar's Summit exploring Millennials and the changing economy in Minnesota. Given that Minnesota projects a 100,000 worker shortfall within the next 5 years, the Senator convened the meeting to understand what Minnesota can do to appeal to the demographic that now comprises the largest percentage of the workforce - Millennials.

Opening remarks were provided by Sen. Klobuchar detailing the ways that federal law makers are working to improve the situation of Millennials in the economy. Two items she mentioned specifically were policies regarding myRA and increasing benefits for Family Leave. myRA is an idea that an individual's retirement account will move with them as they transition jobs rather than starting fresh with each new employment opportunity. Increasing benefits for family leave is partially in response to the trend that many Millennials are waiting to start families due to uncertain finances and small time away post delivery.

The keynote address was provided by Jen Mishory, Executive Director of Young Invincibles. Her address included some context and data about Millennials entering and participating in the workforce. For instance, Millennials in Minnesota that graduate with a four year degree on average have over $30,000 in student debt. She also advocated for policy to relieve student debt (e.g. - student loan refinancing), increased workplace benefits (especially around family leave), and adjustments to health care to increase access and coverage for uninsured young people.

A panel comprised of Merrill Irving, Jr. (President, Hennepin County Technical College), Diane Tran (Founder, Minnesota Rising), and Matt Lewis (Strategy Manager, Make It. MSP initiative) shared some of their thoughts regarding the situation facing Minnesota, including:
  • Many of the shortages are in technical industries and trades. Hennepin County Technical College has a 94% placement rate for graduates and still isn't able to fill demand for workers - even for companies that are willing to reimburse tuition for students who commit to working for them afterward. So where is the breakdown?
  • In Greater Minnesota, Millennials who participated in focus groups on the topic expressed interest in workplaces that offer front-loaded benefits, opportunities to receive mentorship or apprenticeship, and flexible working schedules.
  • Millennials generally eschew categorization and instead identify with causes. How are communities, industries, and companies making it known what kinds of impacts they seek and create?
Break out discussions among attendees were beginning (including folks from multiple sectors including academic, for profit, and non profit). The three questions groups were asked to address were:

  1. How can workplace policies/benefits better fit the needs of millennial employees?
  2. How can our diverse Minnesota industries who are facing workforce shortages (from high tech to manufacturing) better recruit and retain millennial employees?
  3. How s student debt impacting the major life decisions of Millennials?

How would your community businesses and industries respond to these questions? How are you having success with Millennials in your community?

Photo from Senator Klobuchar's Photo Gallery

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Sharing gratitude

We at Extension show our gratitude to all the people working to make Minnesota communities great. Thanks for who you are and what you do!

Image adapted from Flickr user Shannonkringen in accordance with the Creative Commons License

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Learn - Four Actions for Citizen Engagement

Civic engagement and participatory process can take many different shapes. All involve citizens at some level. Matt Hall has developed a tool that could be helpful for evaluating engagement efforts.

Visit the image and explanation to learn about four easy questions you can ask to define and measure citizen engagement efforts.

Photo credit flickr user nasa_goddard

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Give to the Max Day - Support community leadership!

Give to the Max Day, Minnesota's annual giving extravaganza, is November 12. You can support Extension Leadership Programs by visiting the University's giving portal at and choosing to "Give Now." By using the University's site, know that 100% of your gift will go to support the program of your choice  - there are no administrative fees!

Extension Leadership Funds include the Patricia and Francis Buschette Leadership Fund (statewide support) and the Vijay Sethi Leadership Fund (northwest Minnesota support).

If you have questions about Give to the Max, or about giving any time through the year, contact Jane Johnson, Extension development director.

To learn more about how gifts to Extension research and education can make a difference in Minnesota, visit the Donate to Extension website.


Thursday, October 29, 2015

Opportunity - Grants for rural and greater Minnesota

The Minnesota Council of Nonprofits recently highlighted a number of grants available through their Grants Alert email (if you would like to receive it, you can sign up for it here).

Two grants specifically targeted rural areas and small towns across Minnesota. They include:

Monday, October 26, 2015

Event Recap - Southwest and Southeast Minnesota Water Quality Summit on Civic Engagement

On October 15, 39 water quality professionals from across Southeast and Southwest Minnesota gathered together in Mankato to go deeper into their civic engagement practice. Examining civic engagement as defined in Extension's model, the two facilitators for the day provided examples of participatory practices that have worked to engage the public in improving water quality.

Dr. Ryan Atwell, currently with the National Park Service at Yellowstone as their Social Science Coordinator, shared his experience in using social science and civic engagement techniques to change land practices to improve water quality. His research highlights the layers of social complexity that layer on top of the ecological complexity, necessitating an engaged approach. He advocated for a style of work that allows community members to build a dream together rather than being forced to adopt a pre-determined plan.  Dr. Atwell posed the question that if research suggests adoption of new practices is based primarily on subjective values and social norms diffused through interpersonal networks, what does that mean for the work of water quality specialists?

Extension educator Tobias Spanier reinforced those lessons with an overview of different levels of participation, referencing the Spectrum created by the International Association of Public Participation. He led participants through an activity to depict their engagement with people in their watershed and place it on the spectrum. He wrapped his time by providing participants with a Strategic Doing tool for use with community so that the community can collectively own the work that needs to be done to improve water quality.

At the end of the day, participants left the event with a vision for what civic engagement might look like in their watersheds. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Learn - Tips for Effective Online Participation

Going Viral presentation - 7 minute highlight reel from IAP2 2015 from MetroQuest on Vimeo.

When embedding civic engagement into your approach to work, it is important that the public can participate through a number of avenues. Dave Biggs here lays out eight practices that have led to successful participation. The video is only seven minutes long so check it out!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Learn - Non-Traditional Leadership: Pictures of Impacts

This post is the third in a series of three detailing the learning and reflections I experienced during Creating Space XII - a conference focused on learning from non-traditional leaders. The first can be found here and the second here.

Only so much can be said about the work of non-traditional leaders. The impacts and tangible results of non-traditional leaders' work speak for themselves. This last post includes pictures from different parts of Detroit, showing the changes and impacts non-traditional leaders are making across their community.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Learn - Non-traditional Leadership: Support

This post is the second in a series of three detailing the learning and reflections I experienced during Creating Space XII - a conference focused on learning from non-traditional leaders. The remaining post in this series will arrive next week. The first can be found here.

Passion drives non-traditional leaders to work collectively to create impact from the grassroots up. They frequently face challenges to their work. Several non-traditional leaders at the conference spoke confidently that they and their communities have the inner capacities and resolve to be successful. At the same time, the question lingered - What kind of supports do non-traditional leaders self-identify as wanting and needing?

As conversations continued throughout the event, the responses sorted into internal and external responses. Non-traditional leaders were quick to share that many of the passions and emotions that drive their work like anger, a desire for justice, and pride leave them feeling burned out over time. The need for self-care came up as a response. This didn't mean better work-life balance or time with family. For those that have faced transgenerational or  historical trauma and still deal with the effects daily, non-traditional leaders spoke about self-care in terms of healing. Jah'Shams Abdul-Mu'mim describes healing as a chance to transform the pain and hurt from trauma into strength. So "it is not healing versus pain; it is healing through our pain." Healing emphasizes the need to acknowledge and process emotions.

Allen Frimpong, an organizer for #blacklivesmatter nyc, talked about how healing is essential for him because the personal is the political. The healthier he is the healthier his leadership is and the healthier his community is.

For external support, non-traditional leaders were clear about the number one interest - connections and networks. Some spoke about this as being able to access the influence not available in their own networks. Others discussed the desire to have a community of other non-traditional leaders to be present to one another in mutual support. Non-traditional leader Billy Hebron saw connections as an access to resources. He and his partner Jerry started a community garden to provide healthy vegetables to neighborhood residents when the local groceries left their neighborhood. They were able to triple the size the of the garden when grant money provided them the opportunity to build two greenhouses.

Samantha Magdaleno, an organizer and educator, talked about the needs for funders or institutions to loosen up if they want to work with non-traditional leaders. "If you want non-traditional leaders, you have to be prepared for mistakes and you have to be prepared to let go." Other non-traditional leaders echoed this in the conference. On a panel talking about measuring the impacts of non-traditional leaders, Dr. Ebony Roberts said it was key that the communities get to define what success is.

Another external support that non-traditional leaders were unified in desiring external partners and funders who encourage non-traditional leaders and communities to exercise their own voices. Where issues of race were concerned, non-traditional leaders of color spoke of tension with white allies when the white allies wanted to insert their voices in places where voices of color should be present.

So what will support look like in your community?

Come back next week for the third part of this series examining some additional reflections and learning regarding non-traditional leaders.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Learn - Non-Traditional Leadership: The Who and The What

This post is the first in a series of three detailing the learning and reflections I experienced during Creating Space XII - a conference focused on learning from non-traditional leaders. The remaining two posts in this series will arrive in the next two weeks.

Who are non-traditional leaders? And how do non-traditional leaders define themselves? What are the hallmarks of the work of non-traditional leaders?

Throughout the three-day Creating Space XII conference put on by Leadership Learning Community, the assembled group dug into these questions. Why ask these questions? Because non-traditional leaders are catalysts. Non-traditional leaders are people on the ground responding to opportunities and needs that are present in communities. Non-traditional leaders spark change, sustain efforts, and fight for those who are often overlooked or forgotten. And frequently, non-traditional leaders desire a brand of relationships and resources that are not associated with dominant culture conceptions of leadership.

So how does a non-traditional leader self-define? Throughout the conference, some described themselves as indigenous leaders. Others used the language of grassroots leadership. Some rejected the notion that they were leaders at all. Mary Luevanos, the director of Detroit non-profit Community of Latino Artists, Visionaries, and Educators, sees herself as a "type A personality who gets hot-headed about issues."

From the assembled voices of non-traditional leaders from Detroit and other Michigan communities, some common themes emerged:
  • non-traditional leaders work from the bottom up,
  • non-traditional leaders are passion driven,
  • non-traditional leaders are primarily concerned with the well-being of others and community,
  • and non-traditional leaders cannot afford to fail given the nature of the issues being addressed.
And how do non-traditional leaders work? One emergent theme was that it happens outside of the traditional 9 to 5 and workplace settings. Non-traditional leaders draw upon who they know, what they know, where they live and what they make to be successful. Importantly, non-traditional leaders work within the will of their communities.

The unfortunate flip-side for non-traditional leaders is that they and their efforts are frequently overlooked by traditional leaders and institutions in spite of the talents, wisdom, connections, skills, and success non-traditional leaders have. "Leadership" in the traditional definition is no longer acknowledging all the layers of leadership in community.

Across Minnesota, Ben Winchester has shown the increasing need for leaders in our rural and small communities. So who are the non-traditional leaders in Minnesota's communities that are being over-looked? Who are the catalysts that are making things happen after caring for their children all day or getting off of a double shift?

Come back next week for the second part of this series examining the supports non-traditional leaders desire.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Opportunity - Minnesota Humanities Center Grant

Are you involved with students from diverse backgrounds? Or do ongoing work with veterans?

The Minnesota Humanities Center, a state established organization that focuses on bringing the unique resources of the humanities to the challenges and opportunities of our times, has opened up a competitive grant opportunity through the Minnesota State Legacy Amendment Fund.

They are granting between $10,000 and $20,000 for initiatives that create opportunities for absent narratives to be produced and embedded into educational opportunities.

Absent narratives bring into public life the stories and experiences of people and communities that are often left out or marginalized.
If this sounds like something you want to know more about, visit the Humanities Center's grants page.

The deadline for proposals is October 15.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Learn - Asking questions with intention

Finding the right answers can be hard. Asking the right questions makes it easier. Check out this article from Extension's Center for Community Vitality publication Vital Connections to learn more about asking questions with intention and how it impacts groups, communities, and projects.

Photo credit Flickr user Drachmann

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Opportunity - Community Innovation Grants

Do you want to see great things happening in your community? Do you have a creative idea of what that could look like? Then the Bush Foundation has a fantastic opportunity - the Community Innovation Grants.

The focus is on trying innovative and breakthrough solutions to address community-identified issues and opportunities. Whether you are thinking big or small, this could be the grant for you as recipients can apply for amounts ranging from $10,000 to $200,000.

Head over to the Bush Foundation's site for all the details.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Happy Labor Day

Here's to a happy, and safe, Labor Day. A special thanks goes out to all the workers who have made contributions to the strength, well-being and prosperity of Minnesota.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Opportunity - Fall 2015 Grant Forum

From Main Street to parks and trails, from site recovery to small city development, grants are available for communities and organizations to help make positive changes. The Region Nine Development Commission is hosting an Grant Opportunity Forum for presenters to share about programs that will aid community and economic development.

It's happening on Thursday, September 24 from 8:30 am to 12:00 pm at the South Central Service Cooperative in North Mankato. If you live or work in Sibley, Nicollet, Brown, Le Sueur, Watonwan, Blue Earth, Waseca, Martin, or Faribault county, come check it out.

To register for this free event and see the full agenda, visit the Region Nine Development Commission page.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Learn - What makes a community livable

What makes a community livable? Author Jay Walljasper has been visiting towns across Minnesota to find out. The Center for Rural and Policy and Development sat down and interviewed Jay to hear what insights he has to offer. Check out the two part interview:

Part 1

Part 2

Photo credit Flickr user nessamarie

Friday, August 21, 2015

Opportunity - 5K Glow Run to benefit McLeod for Tomorrow

Get some exercise and benefit a good cause! McLeod for Tomorrow, a local group that develops leaders in its county, is having a fund-raising run. Be ready to be bright and active on September 19, 2015 in Hutchinson. Adult and youth registration forms are located on the McLeod for Tomorrow website. See you there!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Event recap - Emotional Intelligence: A pathway to improved self-understanding and leadership

In St. Cloud on August 11, community leaders from across the region joined together to learn about emotional intelligence, its connection to leadership, and ways for them to improve their emotional intelligence.

Research Daniel Goleman has defined emotional intelligence as "the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one's emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically."

Emotional intelligence impacts the way we relate to others, understand the world, and make decisions. Educators Catie Rasmussen and Mike Liepold facilitated 21 community leaders, helping them learn more about themselves. They worked individually and collaboratively to identify the ways that they could use their strengths in their work and volunteer lives.

Everyone also had a chance to identify a path to increase their emotional intelligence, focusing on three core tenets: 1) You have to want to improve 2) Pick one to two areas to focus on and 3) Find a model who displays those behaviors.

To learn more about emotional intelligence and its relationship to leadership, check out this Forbes article from January 2015.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Learn - Exploring Non-Traditional Leadership

Over at the Leadership Learning Collaborative blog, they posted a great read by Jah'Shams Abdul-Mu'min about his experience and research into world cultures and their leadership models. Here is a great quote from the article:
Non-Traditional Leaders are infectious change agents whose leadership credibility emerges from the cultural, economic, spiritual, and social conditions that shape their community. They are men, women, young people, and elders whose unique experiences and skills allow them to work across different cultural boundaries. Non-Traditional Leaders inspire positive change with startling speed because they know what is going on; can bring people together; and can provide specific information, and identify assets in the community.
This one is worth taking the five minutes to read and reflect upon.

Photo credit Flickr user Tassieeye

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Opportunity - Native Nation Rebuilders

Are you a citizen of one of the 23 Native nations throughout the three state region of Minnesota, North Dakota, or South Dakota? If so, check out this opportunity from the Bush Foundation
We’re accepting applications for our seventh cohort of Native Nation Rebuilders. It’s open to anyone who is a tribal citizen of the 23 Nations in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota over the age of 25. The application deadline is Thursday, August 27 (closes at Noon Central/ 11:00 a.m. Mountain).

The Native Nation Rebuilders program is a two-year cohort-based program designed to inspire, equip and connect leaders from the 23 Native nations in the Bush Foundation’s region.
 For more information, visit the Bush Foundation's page about the program.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Register for Emotional Intelligence, Change events

Time is dwindling to register for the event Emotional Intelligence: A pathway to self--understanding and improved leadership. If you want to learn what your emotional intelligence score is and how you can develop it, register now while seats are still available. Registration closes Monday, July 27, 2015.

On the flip side, registration is just opening today for the three-part webinar series on Leading ourselves through change. With a webinar covering different angles of how leadership relates to and influences change happening in September, October, and November, you can register for one, two, or all three. Register here.

For full details, dates, locations, and cost for both events, visit the 2015 Leadership Series page.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Learn - 7 Key Lessons for Addressing Racism in Communities

Minnesota Compass has done a great job of letting Minnesotans know that the demographics of communities across Minnesota are rapidly diversifying. An unfortunate result of the shift is racism directed to some of our new Minnesotans. How can communities try to address racism in a meaningful way?

Everyday Democracy, a group that works to promote positive community change, shared their 7 main lessons from over 25 years of experience across the country. Check out their post to get the tips and read further about how they address it at a personal and community level.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Inspiration - Crowdfunding for civic benefits?

Are there projects in your community where there isn't enough public money to complete projects that have strong community support? To overcome this hurdle, some places have started looking at crowdfunding as a way to supplement public money to make things happen. Read more at the IAP2 USA blog to hear how a town is working to bring a dog park into their community using a Kickstarter-esque platform.

Image credit: Tax Credits via Flickr

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Learn - Inspiring collective creativity and innovation

With the Bush Fellowship application open, we wanted to share this TED Talk about innovation. Linda Hill, a professor at Harvard, shares the insights from her research about how groups and communities work together to create genius and collective great ideas. The video is 17 minutes long and well worth your time. Take a small break and prepare to think about how you and those you work with might unlock your creativity through working together.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Opportunity - Two chances to build leadership from the Bush Foundation

The Bush Foundation is offering two great opportunities for leaders throughout Minnesota to build their leadership and help their communities and organizations.

First, the Bush Foundation is making 50 scholarships available to the Independent Sector National Conference. The conference is a unique meeting where many of the best and brightest from nonprofits, foundations and corporations of every size come together to collaborate, network and learn about the emerging national and global trends that affect us all and how we can work together to advance the common good. To read more about the conference, visit

The conference is being held in Miami, FL from October 27-29.

Scholarships will cover registration, hotel costs and travel reimbursement. For information on how to apply, go to The deadline for application is August 1, 2015.

In addition, the Bush Foundation has also opened up the application to be a 2016 Bush Fellow. Described as a "bet on extraordinary potential," the Bush Foundation is seeking applications from individuals who are ready to think bigger and differently about what is possible in their communities.

It is an opportunity to increase your leadership capacity by pursuing learning experiences that will increase your knowledge and develop important leadership skills and attributes, especially in the areas of communications, self-awareness, creativity, cultural competency and cross-sector leadership.

All the information about eligibility, criteria and the registration link are on the Bush Foundation website. Questions can also be addressed to the Bush Foundation at 651-379-2249. The deadline for application is July 30, 2015 at noon.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Event - Emerging Leadership Program Alumni event

The Emerging Leadership Program, a leadership development program for 19 counties in west and northwest Minnesota, has been running for over thirty years in various forms. Thirty-one alumni from the past three classes joined together on June 12 and 13 to reconnect, go deeper in their learning, and apply their leadership to their community.

This group of leaders dug more deeply into understanding how to use their strengths to contribute to their communities and the different kinds of power and influence they have and how to apply it ethically.

Participants brought forward their community projects to practice. Some included identifying opportunities to increase foster homes in Kittson County and strategies to revitalize the Mahnomen County Agricultural Society.

If you want to get a sense of the entire event, Extension's Center for Community Vitality live-tweeted it. Check it out here.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Learn - Second Homeowners in Central and West Central Minnesota

How do second homeowners impact their communities? Who are they? What skills do they bring? What are their plans?

Get the answers in this six-minute video highlighting research from Community Economics educators Merritt Bussiere and Ryan Pesch about this population in eight central Minnesota counties.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Event Recap - Southwest Civic Engagement cohort on Water Quality

On June 8, nineteen people working to improve water quality in southwest Minnesota joined together to support one another as they embed civic engagement into their work and sharpen their skill set. Two people brought forward projects to workshop as a group. One of the projects was for immediate use - a meeting two days away! The meeting was about using a model (pictured above) that simulates how land use decisions impact water flow and drainage. He received advice on ways to make it more understandable and experiential for the public. The group also helped him draft questions for the public to help them process the and learn from the experience to create a better, more impactful meeting.

A second water quality specialist brought forward her plans for a citizen steering committee to work with the Soil and Water Conservation District board to make recommendations around adoption of cover crops. The group helped her to expand her thinking about the scope of what the committee might accomplish and also suggested tactics to start working with the board so that committee recommendations would be more likely to be implemented.

At the next quarterly meeting in September, attendees will get to hear back about how the two projects progressed.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Join us to learn about emotional intelligence and ways to improve it


Back by popular demand.

As technology, generational gaps, and other factors change the ways people interact, leaders can develop emotional intelligence to help adapt. Emotional intelligence is a set of emotional and social skills that influence the way we perceive and express ourselves, develop and maintain social relationships, cope with challenges and use emotions to understand others in an effective and meaningful way. How well we develop and use these abilities greatly affects how well we live our lives, do our work, and interact in community.

Participants will take an online assessment called the Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory (EQ-i 2.0®). The EQ-i 2.0 is the first scientifically validated instrument to assess emotionally intelligent behavior. Extension Educators Catie Rasmussen and Mike Liepold will provide participants with a deeper understanding of core emotional intelligence skills and help participants create a plan to enhance their skills in building effective relationships, interpersonal growth, and self-management.

Participants will receive a link and instructions for taking the Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory after the registration deadline on Monday, July 27, 2015. The assessment must be completed by August 4, 2015.

WHEN: August 11, 2015 from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM

WHERE: River's Edge Conference Center in St. Cloud, MN

COST: $175. University of Minnesota Extension is subsidizing some of the costs per participant, which typically run $250 or more.

Space is limited so sign up now to reserve your spot. Registration closes Monday, July 27, 2015. Register now.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Event recap - U-Lead Advisory Academy Alumni

The U-Lead Advisory Academy, a leadership development program put on by University of Minnesota Extension, has had five classes since it started running in 2007. On May 8, 2015, Extension brought together thirty alumni from across all the classes to extend their networks further, explore leadership questions, and support one another's work.

The day involved activities to build relationships and get to know others in the room, chances to talk about projects and initiatives (and provide insights, resources, and feedback), and dig deep into how the community can support one another as leaders.

The group resolved to continue meeting to deepen and broaden connections to improve the work being done in communities across the state.

If the U-Lead Advisory Academy sounds like something you are interested in being a part of, registration will be opening soon. Visit the program website for more information.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Event recap - bushCONNECT 2015

On May 4, the Bush Foundation hosted bushCONNECT 2015, an event intended to bring together Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota leaders from various sectors, identities and interests to get inspiration, equip new tools and knowledge, and connect with the other people present.

For those who weren't there, the Bush Foundation has begun posting some of the speakers and sessions to their YouTube channel.

In addition, check out the Connector's Guide put together by Pollen for a community-sourced guide that can help leaders in their work.

Photo courtesy of the Bush Foundation and Rebecca Jean Lawrence Photography (Source)
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