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Northeast Center publishes the bi-monthly newsletter, NETWORK, that focuses primarily on issues and problems of rural areas in the northeast region of the United States.

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If you would prefer to receive a hard-copy of any or all of the articles from an issue of NETWORK, please contact the Center, 814-863-4656.

Credit: USDA
August 27, 2015

Debra Tropp, USDA Agricultural Marketing Services (AMS), will present a free webinar titled "Why Local Food Matters" on Thursday, September 10 at 11:00 a.m. EDT. The webinar, co-sponsored by the four Regional Rural Development Centers, will provide an overview of what we know about changing consumer demand, some of the drivers behind these changes in demand, and how AMS is trying to help farmers and food marketers take advantage of the recent surge in local food demand through grant assistance, primary data collection, applied research on emerging business models, technical assistance and market facility design.

August 27, 2015

The Northeast Center was well represented at the 2015 Agricultural & Applied Economics Association and Western Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, held on July 26-28 in San Francisco, CA. Center Director Stephan Goetz and postdoctoral scholars Houtian Ge and Yicheol Han each gave presentations at the event, and their research is now available online.

August 26, 2015

"Putting MOVE in the Movement!" is the theme of this year's "It Takes a Region" conference sponsored by the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group. The event, which aims to brings together farm and food practitioners across the 12-state Northeast region to learn, debate, collaborate, and innovate solutions to critical food systems issues, will take place on November 13-14 in Saratoga Springs, NY. Discounted "early bird" registration is open until October 2.

August 20, 2015

The Center for Rural Pennsylvania, a bipartisan, bicameral legislative research agency of the General Assembly, concluded its seventh public hearing on Tuesday, August 18, on heroin and opioid addiction, specifically prevention, recovery, treatment and law enforcement efforts. The 11-member Center for Rural Pennsylvania Board of Directors (which includes Northeast Center Director Stephan Goetz and Penn State Professor of Agricultural, Environmental and Regional Economics Ted Alter) and area legislators, state officials, law enforcement officials and state and local treatment service providers participated in the five-hour-long hearing at the Yorktowne Hotel in York County.

August 5, 2015

The Economic Development Academy (EDA) is an intensive, practice-based course designed to build the skills of community and economic development leaders and practitioners. Registration for this opportunity is still open, and the deadline has been extended through August 17, 2015. The course begins August 24.

Left to right: University of Maine Professor and Director of Economics Mario Teisl, Northeast Center Director Stephan Goetz, and NAREA President and Penn State Associate Professor of Agricultural Economics Edward Jaenicke
July 31, 2015

Stephan Goetz, professor of agricultural and regional economics in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences and director of the Northeast Center, has received the 2015 Outstanding Public Service through Economics Award from the Northeast Agricultural and Resource Economics Association.

A new report issued by the USDA Economic Research Service describes trends and patterns in foundation grants to rural areas.
July 30, 2015

The USDA Economic Research Service has released a new Economic Information Bulletin authored by John Pender titled "Foundation Grants to Rural Areas from 2005 to 2010: Trends and Patterns." The 47-page bulletin and a two-page summary that highlights some of the study's findings are available on the ERS website.

July 28, 2015

A presentation recently added to the Northeast Center website describes a networking approach using Extension Educators, subject matter specialists, USDA and State Departments of Agriculture personnel to successfully assist immigrants and other minority groups in Delaware and the Mid-Atlantic region. This resource was developed by NERCRD TAC Member Andy Wetherill of Delaware State University, who presented it on April 2, 2015 at the Extension Risk Management National Conference in Minneapolis, MN.

July 7, 2015

The Plymouth State University (PSU) College of Business Administration, an ACBSP accredited program, seeks an experienced business professional who will be responsible for leading and operating the Enterprise Center of Plymouth (ECP), a business incubator partnership between PSU and the Grafton County Economic Development Council (GCEDC).

June 23, 2015

While the NERCRD small grants program does not officially start until July 1, the two teams that were selected to receive funding have already begun meeting and planning their activities. These activities will result in resources that may be of interest to a wider audience, like a recent webinar which describes the First Impressions program and implementation.

June 22, 2015

In a paper recently published in the Journal of Human Sciences and Extension, two case studies serve as a forum for exploring how extension stakeholder engagement is changing in response to societal trends. Authored by Charlie French (University of New Hampshire and Northeast Center Technical Advisory Committee Chair) and George Morse (University of Minnesota and NERCRD TAC member), the paper is titled "Extension Stakeholder Engagement: An Exploration of Two Cases Exemplifying 21st Century Adaptions," and is available as a PDF download.

June 21, 2015

In a paper recently published in the Journal of Extension, authors Jane Haskell (University of Maine) and George Morse (University of Minnesota and member of the Northeast Center TAC) describe an Extension program adapted to help libraries articulate their public value, so as to encourage their public-funding support. The authors, who piloted their approach with 15 libraries, also share strategies for customizing the approach so that any public program can articulate short private and public value statements.

Credit: USDA
June 18, 2015

A toolkit developed by a team of regional economists and food systems specialists is now available to help communities evaluate the economic impacts of their local food-system activities.

June 18, 2015

Shirley Sherrod, longtime civil rights activist and advocate for food justice and independent family farmers, is the keynote speaker for the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (NESAWG) annual conference, scheduled for November 13-14 in Saratoga Springs, NY. Ms. Sherrod will address this year's conference theme, "Putting MOVE in the Movement."

June 17, 2015

University of Vermont's Kathleen Liang recently was honored with a Farm Credit MarketMaker Innovation award. The award was presented to Liang at the National Value Added Agriculture Conference, which took place May 18-20 in Austin, TX. Liang received the award for her effort titled "Reinvigorating the MarketMaker Programs through Innovative Theory, Practices, and Collaboration Framework." Congratulations Kathleen!

June 15, 2015

The USDA office of Rural Development will host a webinar on June 30 to highlight the services provided by the USDA Agricultural Manufacturing Service (AMS). Topics to be covered include an overview of grants for farmers markets and other local food efforts and facilities design, and how the food landscape is changing. Attendees also will hear about how the AMS services are being used by others to develop and expand local foods in their areas.

Credit: Purdue University
June 2, 2015

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently announced a new report showing tremendous demand for recent college graduates with a degree in agricultural programs with an estimated 57,900 high-skilled job openings annually in the food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, and environment fields in the United States. According to an employment outlook report released in May by USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and Purdue University, there is an average of 35,400 new U.S. graduates with a bachelor's degree or higher in agriculture related fields, 22,500 short of the jobs available annually.

June 1, 2015

West Virginia's disappearing grocery stores; community-supported fisheries take off in New Jersey; the land-grant role in urban agriculture; why some Vermonters are migrating out-of-state; and more relevant headlines from around the region.

May 4, 2015

Two grant proposals have been selected to receive funding through the Northeast Center's "Regional Collaboration of Successful CRD Extension Programs Planning Grant." Their selection was based on unanimous recommendation by the Northeast Center's Small Grants Review Committee.

April 28, 2015

Dr. Sabine O'Hara, Northeast Center Board Member and Dean of the University of the District of Columbia College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES), describes the role that urban food hubs can play in urban communities in an article recently published in Solutions Journal.