To maintain attraction to and retainment of new and diverse talent in applied STEM careers, youth engagement in natural resources is critical. However, due to limited funding, widespread disconnect to natural systems, and a lack of effective science communication on behalf of the STEM community, youth engagement in natural resources is dwindling. Cooperative Extension is well positioned to address this challenge. This webinar will explore three very different ways that Extension personnel have engaged youth in natural resources and speakers will illustrate how to initiate and maintain new youth programming across states.
March 4, 2021
**11am - 1pm AZ Time
Topics and Speakers
Title: GALS (Girls on outdoor Adventure for Leadership and Science)
Abstract: GALS (Girls on outdoor Adventure for Leadership and Science) is a free science program for high school girls in AZ. The goal of GALS is to enhance attraction to and retainment of historically excluded groups in the STEM pipeline by increasing participants’ science-awareness, self-awareness, teamwork, and leadership skills. Ultimately, GALS aims to enhance entry and retention of GALS participants in college and prepare them for science related careers, particularly careers in Natural Resources. GALS integrates outdoor education with place-based learning and near peer-mentorship to increase participant confidence in STEM related activities. The program involves a week long camping trip in the Chiricahua Wilderness, independent research studies, science communication activities and a year long mentorship program. The program is 100% funded by donations and grants and has been wildly successful.
Certified Wildlife Biologist®, Extension Wildlife Specialist, FNR Extension Coordinator, Purdue University, Department of Forestry and Natural Resources. email@example.com
Title: Expanding Extension Opportunities for Undergraduate and Graduate Students
Abstract: Many university curricula focus on the teaching and research mission areas with few offering opportunities in engagement. To help meet this challenge, the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources at Purdue University has developed a Natural Resources Extension Internship Program and Graduate Extension Program that provide impactful opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, while increasing the capacity of our Extension program. I will highlight the structure, operation and evaluation of each program.
PA 4-H Shooting Sports Coordinator, Penn State Extension – Franklin County. firstname.lastname@example.org
Title: Engaging 4-H Shooting Sports youth during a pandemic
Abstract: Due to the COVID-19, 4-H Shooting Sports across the country had halted all face-to-face operation. County practices, state and national competitions were all been canceled. 4-H Educators, like most teachers, scrambled to find or develop virtual educational experiences for their members. 4-H shooting sports was no different. In accordance with National 4-H shooting sports best management practices, shooting sports cannot occur without the direct physical supervision of a certified instructor. Overnight, 4-H shooting sports in Pennsylvania, ceased to exist. That is until the state committee, co-chaired by Taylor, developed a virtual experience like no other. Just before archery season, the state committee developed and delivered the virtual camera hunt experience. Outdoor educators from across the nation took to zoom, eager to tell their story. Over 4 weeks, 47 members, 4 volunteers, and 2 Extension staff came together to learn hunting and photography skills. The goal, to take wildlife photos using the hunting skills they have learned. Members learned about the elements of photography, basic camouflage, scouting skills, how to plan for a hunt, turkey-calling skills, and what animals in Pennsylvania are considered game. There were 4 divisions per age class: small game, big game, furbearer, and migratory bird/waterfowl. Animal calls from various organizations were donated as prizes. The success of the camera hunt spread and is now on the radar to be offered as a national 4-H shooting sports virtual program in 2021.