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UW-Extension seeks public input on future

October 2, 2014

The University of Wisconsin-Extension encourages state residents to imagine the needs of Wisconsin families, businesses and communities 10 to 20 years in the future and how this organization could help serve those needs.

This invitation, first via a survey at, is part of a 13-state effort in cooperation with the Kettering Foundation.

Wisconsin’s Extension service differs from the other states, where services are generally limited to Cooperative Extension services. In Wisconsin, Cooperative Extension is one of four divisions, which also include: public broadcasting, continuing education and services for small businesses and entrepreneurs.

“We’re in communities throughout the state, so we’re regularly talking with Wisconsin residents, businesses and local leaders about their needs,” said Aaron Brower, interim chancellor of UW Colleges and UW-Extension. “We also try to anticipate future needs so that we’ll be prepared to respond. The best way to do that is by listening to our constituents around the state, including through this survey and the subsequent forums.”

The survey continues through Oct. 31, 2014. UW-Extension will use survey input in the development of a series of public forums. Forums will be scheduled from January through March 2015 at locations around the state. Facilitators will present alternative visions for the future work of UW-Extension and invite participants to deliberate the pros and cons of each. Results will be shared with the UW System president’s office, UW Colleges and UW-Extension chancellor, various advisory groups and the general public. Results from discussions in all 13 of the participating states will be incorporated into a book about the future of Extension services in the United States.

For details and a schedule of public forums, as available, visit: