The OSU Sustainable Agriculture Team provides comprehensive leadership for all NCR SARE programs in Ohio, with primary emphasis on professional development programs (PDP) for Extension professionals (educators, specialists, program assistants), NRCS staff, and other agricultural professionals. This is accomplished through a variety of methods, including workshops, field days, tours, providing resource materials, individual consultation, travel scholarships, experiential learning, and other methods. Please note that while the Sustainable Agriculture Team and the SARE State Coordinators conduct additional sustainable agriculture educational programs, only NCR SARE funded programs are included in this plan.
In 2016, Congress retroactively granted Central State University in Wilberforce Ohio (a HCBU), Land Grant University status. Central State University (CSU) has hired Extension Educators and has begun to offer Extension programming, primarily in urban areas in Ohio.
Beginning in 2019, the OSU Sustainable Agriculture Team will incorporate CSU faculty and staff into the Ohio SARE PDP program, and will offer SARE professional development programs to both OSU and CSU Extension faculty and staff. The longer term goal for the 2021 & 2022 statewide SARE PDP plan of work is to identify a CSU faculty or staff member to serve as SARE state co-coordinator for CSU. The two state SARE Co-Coordinators from both OSU and CSU would then work collaboratively to plan, conduct, and evaluate the statewide SARE PDP program in Ohio.
This 2019 and 2020 plan of work will serve as a bridge period to familiarize CSU faculty and staff with SARE PDP programs and products and to develop a collaborative statewide team for SARE PDP programs. All of the initiatives outlined in this plan of work will include Extension faculty and staff from both OSU and CSU.
SARE Professional Development Initiatives
In 2019 and 2020, the following SARE professional development initiatives will be implemented by the Sustainable Agriculture Team:
Continuing Initiatives – State-Specific
C1 – New Extension Professionals Training
Outcome: Newly hired Extension Educators, Specialists, and Program Assistants will become knowledgeable about sustainable agriculture and SARE programs and resources.
Activity: Sustainable agriculture training will be incorporated into new-employee training conducted by OSU and CSU Extension, and one-on-one follow-up support sessions will be conducted for new hires. Each new hire will receive a Sustainable Agriculture Teaching/Learning Kit.
Evaluation: Pre and post tests will be conducted to measure knowledge gained.
Timeline: On-going in 2019 and 2020
C2 – Sustainable Agriculture Travel Scholarships
Outcome: A minimum of twenty-five Extension Educators, Specialists, Program Assistants will increase their knowledge about various sustainable agriculture concepts and applications and develop new local programs on various sustainable agriculture topics.
Activity: Matching scholarships will be provided.
Evaluation: The number of local programs developed/taught for clientele as a result of participation in the travel scholarship program will be measured.
Timeline: On-going in 2019 and 2020
C3 – Ohio Soil Health and Quality Training
Outcome: Twenty agricultural professionals (Extension educators, NRCS professionals, and non-profit leaders) will increase their knowledge and skills related to evaluating various soil health and quality parameters, and crop production practices such as cover crops and not-till production which will positively impact soil health and quality.
Activity: A day-long workshop and follow-up tour will be conducted to help agricultural professionals develop the skills and knowledge to evaluate soil health and quality, as well as crop production practices which will positively impact soil health and quality, including cover crops, no-till crop production, etc.).
Evaluation: Pre and post tests will be administered to workshop participants; the number of agricultural professionals assisting crop producers with soil health and quality will be tracked; the number of new Extension programs offered on soil health and quality topics will be tracked.
Timeline: Winter, 2019 & 2020
New Initiatives – State Specific
N1 – FSMA Compliance On-Farm Training
Outcome: Twenty Extension Educators will increase their knowledge about what fruit and vegetable growers can expect during a FSMA compliance audit by participating in a day-long on-farm FSMA Compliance Clinic.
Activity: A day-long on-farm clinic will be conducted in partnership with the Ohio Department of Agriculture
Evaluation: Pre and post tests will be conducted to measure knowledge gained. The number of new local programs developed will be tracked, along with farm family participation levels in these new programs.
Timeline: Winter, 2019
New Regional Initiative
R1 – Beginning Farmers and Ranchers
Outcome: Five to seven Extension Educators will increase their knowledge and skills related to issues around beginning farmers and ranchers and subsequently provide educational programming to other educators and beginning farmers and ranchers.
Activity: Ohio will participate in the NCR SARE 2019-20 regional initiative on beginning farmers and ranchers by supporting the participation of Extension educators in a regional professional development event organized by NCR SARE on beginning farmers and ranchers to be offered in 2019. Additional support as needed will also be provided to Extension Educators on the topic of beginning farmers and ranchers (i.e., travel scholarships).
Evaluation: The number of clients assisted with beginning farmer and rancher related issues will be tracked; the number of new Extension programs on beginning farmers and ranchers will be tracked; the number of beginning farmers and ranchers will be tracked.
The educational approach used for the 2019-20 SARE state POW in Ohio consists of a comprehensive approach to train ag professionals in various sustainable ag principles and practices through workshops, tours, travel scholarships, new employee training, and familiarization with SARE products and other sustainable ag resources which would help ag professionals develop new programs for their clientele throughout the state.
The approach used in the Face of SARE portion of the POW consists of reaching farm families with SARE resources and information in various geographic parts of the state, regardless of the size, scope, or commodity produced. Additionally, specific emphasis is placed on reaching historically underserved communities, particularly women and racial minorities.
In 2019, a partnership was developed with Central State University, a relatively new land-grant institution, to form a partnership between OSU and CSU to develop a multi-institution approach to implementing the statewide SARE POW.
Education & Outreach Initiatives
Extension educators and other ag professionals will increase their knowledge and skills related to issues related to beginning farmers and provide educational programming on this topic
NCR SARE regional initiative
-Seven Ohio Extension educators and NGO employees participated in the two-day NCR Training Workshop on Beginning Farmers and ranchers in Indianapolis.
-Three OSU Extension Educators taught at the NCR Training Workshop on Beginning Farmers and Ranchers.
-A statewide planning committee was developed and has met once to explore opportunities to develop statewide Beginning Farmer training initiatives.
Extension educators will increase their knowledge on how fruit and vegetable growers can prepare for a FSMA on-farm audit.
A one-day on-farm workshop was held on this topic and 18 Extension educators participated.
-All participants reported increasing their knowledge as a result of participating in the workshop, and 6 educators reported that they conducted an educational program on this topic for their clientele.
New Extension hires will become knowledgeable about sustainable agriculture principles and practices and become familiar with SARE programs and resources.
Training for new employees is done by the state coordinators on an individual basis as they are hired. These sessions range from 2 to 4 hours in length.
All new Extension educators increased their knowledge about sustainable ag principles and practices and became familiar with SARE resources and programs.
Extension employees will increase their knowledge about sustainable ag concepts and applications and develop new local programs for their clientele.
15 Extension educators received sustainable ag study scholarships in 2019.
9 sustainable ag study scholarship recipients reported that they developed new local programs for their clientele as a result of participating in the scholarship program.
Agricultural professionals will increase their knowledge and skills related to evaluating various soil health parameters and crop production practices such as cover crops and no-till which will positively impact soil health and quality.
-Soil health and quality topics were demonstrated and taught at three different farm tours which ag professional and farmers participated in.
-16 ag professional increased their knowledge and skills related to soil health and quality by participating in 3 different on-farm tours where these topics were taught.
Educational & Outreach Activities
Face of SARE
Farmer and Rancher Grant Workshops:
1/10 – Dayton Sustainable Ag Workshop – 150 participants
1/28 – Ohio Aquaculture Workshop – 65 participants
2/15 – Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association Annual Conference – 27 participants
2/23 – Beginning Farmer Training Workshop – 8 participants
9/19 – Farm Science Review – 7 participants
10/10- Master Urban Farmer Workshop – 38 participants
SARE Outreach Booth:
1/28 – Ohio Farm Bureau Young Ag Professionals Conference – 320 attendees
2/14 – 2/15 – Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Conference – 1,100 attendees
2/21 – Ohio Small Farm Conference – 121 attendees
3/2 – Ohio Small Farm Conference – 86 attendees
3/21 – Urban Agriculture Summit – 120 attendees
7/5 – Montgomery County Fair unk attendees
9/5 – Montgomery SWCD FallFest – 1,000 attendees
9/17 – Farm Science Review – 120,000 attendees
11/5 – Dayton Food Summit – 150 attendees