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UMass Extension

4-H Military Project

One of the frequently overlooked consequences of American military involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq is that many thousands of children of National Guard and Reserve households are experiencing the deployment of a family member. Those children can experience problems coping with new family circumstances, new responsibilities and new stresses that are now part of their daily lives. A specific, critical need for Massachusetts is that many of our Reserve and National Guard personnel do not live on or near military bases.

4-H Program Delivery and Volunteer Management

More than 22% of the population of Massachusetts is under age 18. These young people are the future workforce and leaders of our state and our nation. The healthy development of these youth cannot be left to chance. Since 1919, the Massachusetts 4-H Program has provided support, resources and educational opportunities to Massachusetts youth. The mission of Massachusetts 4-H is to prepare youth to become independent and contributing members of society by providing them with the tools they need to be successful.

4-H Sustainable Communities Project

The 4-H Sustainable Communities Project will engage young people in the city of Springfield in the out of school time hours to provide educational enrichment and promote life skills development. An area of national and local need that has been identified by the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges, National 4-H Council and UMass Extension 4-H is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math education (STEM). Education in the STEM disciplines is critical for preparing a globally and regionally competitive workforce.

Building Energy

The Building Energy Extension Program conveys current energy efficiency, renewable energy, and building science information to stakeholders including those in the building trades, design professionals, state government agencies, and building owners and occupants through workshops, web publication, and consulting. Applied research in building energy systems and is conducted to respond to perceived stakeholder need.

Citizen Planner Training Collaborative

The vast majority of the 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts have volunteer planning boards and zoning boards of appeal. These boards have significant decision-making power over zoning, development, natural resource protection, and other important land use issues that relate to the well being of the environment. With the complexity of changing state regulations and without dedicated professional staff, many board members struggle to stay informed of new developments, and the tools and techniques that can promote better decisions or avoid unnecessary or costly appeals.

Community Integrated Pest Management

This project addresses the needs for IPM programming to serve the Massachusetts urban population. Through partnerships and collaborations, educational and service programs will be provided that encompass the structural pest control industry, bed bugs, Lyme disease, and IPM in K-12 schools, institutions of higher learning and the health care industry.

Envirothon Collaboration

The aim of this collaboration between the UMass College of Natural Sciences and the Massachusetts Envirothon is to encourage high school age young people to develop the science literacy, citizen skills, and knowledge of routes to further education and careers that will allow them to participate responsibly and effectively in natural resource conservation and land use decisions in Massachusetts communities.

Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program

Rates of obesity and poor nutrition continue to increase for both adults and children in the United States. This is especially prevalent among low-income populations, as parents frequently turn to calorie-dense but low-nutrient foods when family food resources are limited. Eating habits that are formed during childhood are critically important as they lay the groundwork for future patterns that can affect lifelong health. Families need guidance to get the most nutrition from their limited resources in order for their children to grow and thrive.

Forest Conservation

The proposal team of the Universities of Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont and Cornell aim to help stabilize the forested land base by working to ensure that a significant proportion of FFO lands are passed from one generation of landowners to the next with minimal amount of forest conversion and parcelization. The research component of this project will use landowner interviews and a mail survey to better understand how FFOs make decisions about the future of their land.

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