ST. LOUIS — An Iowa State University Extension specialist in family financial management was honored Oct. 23 by eXtension (pronounced E-extension) as part of its first national awards for outstanding partners as well as individual and team achievement.
Pat Swanson, who is also an adjunct instructor in human development and family studies at Iowa State, was honored for her work with eXtension’s Financial Security for All community of practice. The group focuses its research-based information on financial stability, financial literacy for children through young adults and information on achieving financial security for those close to retirement. As the financial crisis hit the United States, the university experts found their personal finance information and educational materials on eXtension in high demand.
Swanson is completing her first year as the leader of the Financial Security for All community of practice. Other members of the personal finance group receiving awards were Erik Anderson (University of Idaho), Janet Bechman (Purdue University), Judy Branch (formerly with University of Vermont), Michael Gutter (University of Florida), Linda Kirk-Fox (Washington State University), Elizabeth Kiss (formerly with Purdue University), Jacque Miller (Colorado State University), Megan O'Neil-Haight (University of Maryland), Barbara O'Neill (Rutgers University), Debra Pankow (North Dakota State University), Nancy Porter (Clemson University), Jane Schuchardt (National Institute of Food and Agriculture) and Sharon Seiling (Ohio State University).
eXtension is a national online resource of Cooperative Extension that provides research-based unbiased information. Experts from more than 70 land-grant universities, as well as government agencies contribute information. University experts work in their areas of expertise, organized as communities of practice.
Professionals working with eXtension’s HorseQuest community of practice also were recognized. HorseQuest has information for the entire equine industry from new horse owners to industry professionals.
“We are thrilled to be able to recognize these outstanding individuals and groups,” said Dan Cotton, eXtension director. “While eXtension represents the ‘best of the best’ in land-grant university content and informal education, the people we honor today represent the ‘best of the best’ working to achieve these high standards.”
eXtension started in 2005 with eight communities of practice. HorseQuest and Financial Security for All were among the eight pioneer communities and were recognized for innovation and leadership in their respective areas of expertise.
eXtension currently has 25 resource areas on the Web at http://www.extension.org. Topic areas include information on agrosecurity and floods; animal manure management; bee health; beef cattle; corn and soybean production; cotton; dairy; diversity across higher education; entrepreneurs and their communities; families, food and fitness; family caregiving; food safety; gardens, lawns and landscapes; geospatial technology; goats; horses; imported fire ants; organic agriculture; parenting; personal finance; pest management in and around structures; science, engineering and technology for youth; small meat processors; wildfire; and wildlife damage management.
The eXtension site is customized with links to local Cooperative Extension sites. Land-grant universities were founded on the ideals that higher education should be accessible to all, that universities should teach liberal and practical subjects and share knowledge with people throughout their states.