September 21, 2020

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach’s Community Food Systems program staff worked hard this summer to transition the Local Food Leader and Community Food Systems trainings and certifications to a virtual format.

Early September marked the launch of virtual Local Food Leader and Community Food Systems Certifications. Both certifications were sold out with cohorts of 16 for Local Food Leader and 21 for Community Food Systems. Each course incorporates a dual-format curriculum with virtual workshops through Zoom and an online course within Moodle.

September 21, 2020

Your house is now everything – your home, your office, your kids’ school. Turns out, if you spend months on end in your house, the importance of quality, affordable, and safe housing that meets your lifestyle needs is top of mind.

Add in all the news about housing: looming foreclosures and evictions, houses lost to derechos, historically low mortgage interest rates, and suddenly housing is something that matters more than ever. However, with everything going on, who has time to focus on community housing needs? Well, if you are socially distancing and Zooming all day anyway, it’s a perfect time to evaluate and plan for a different future.

At least that’s how it turned out for Ida Grove. Way back in the olden days before COVID-19, Ida Grove agreed to pilot the Rural Housing Readiness Assessment program being offered by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Community Economic Development (CED) in cooperation with the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s Community Development Block Grant technical assistance fund.

Featured Projects

DSPG Young Scholars Use Data to Solve Local Community Problems

Iowa State University Data Science for the Public Good (DSPG) Young Scholars Program ( is in full swing as nine student interns and three graduate fellows learn to apply data science skills to solve local community problems through the identification and discovery of datasets that can be used to better analyze, visualize, and understand the problem and their potential solutions.

The DSPG began May 26 and will run through August 7. The program is led by a coalition of five land-grant universities in three states: Iowa State University, Oregon State University, Virginia Tech, University of Virginia, and Virginia State University.

Read more here.