Monday Update: A new ISU Extension and Outreach

June 15, 2020

Message from Debra Sellers, on behalf of the Office of the Vice President

MOUs have been signed, regional directors have been hired, and regional office locations have been determined – necessary steps to implement our Structured for Success plan. As we prepare to move forward, I’d like to share the following message from Assistant Vice President for County Services Andrea Nelson.

During the June 8 Second Monday Live, I reviewed our Structured for Success journey. Today I again thank all of you for your efforts to get us to this point. I am proud of where we have been, and I am excited about where we are going as we implement this plan for our future. ISU Extension and Outreach is not only beginning a transition, but also transforming our organization.

Vice President Lawrence and the Structured for Success Committee honored our organization’s vision and mission when they developed a framework to build upon. They put together a strategy for transformation that now requires commitment, participation, and engagement from all of us. At 8:05 a.m. July 1 via Adobe Connect, Vice President Lawrence will be with us to launch a new ISU Extension and Outreach. He and I will discuss expectations as we move forward and progress points for the next 30, 60, and 90 days. Please plan to attend this one-hour session at

To prepare for the launch, start by making your own commitment. Invest your energy in developing a supportive and positive culture in your office. Engage in active dialogue on how you are implementing transition plans in your office or program area. Request support when needed, ask for clarity when you are unsure, and lead by example.

Let’s work together toward a culture change of better communication, more trust, shared leadership, and increasing program capacity locally. We can do it because we are dedicated to serving Iowans and we will hold each other accountable. We have all dug-in and rolled up our sleeves. No one can throw us off our mission; not even a pandemic can distract us from our goals. Because together, we will build a strong Iowa. On July 1, let’s launch a new ISU Extension and Outreach together!

How we name our history

Throughout her presidency, Wendy Wintersteen has stated that she wants Iowa State to be known as the best land-grant university in creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for students, faculty, and staff, so every person can reach their full potential. Last week she asked all of us to join her in rededicating ourselves to creating an ISU community of care, empathy, and positive change. An important step in that direction is to review honorific naming on campus.

President Wintersteen has named a committee to develop a policy and process to more systematically address questions about historical naming and honors. The policy developed will allow us to examine historical naming and honoring decisions (including a 1926 plaque honoring W. T. Hornaday) in a consistent and well-thought-out process with well-defined standards that can be applied when issues arise.

More notes

Debra M. Sellers
Associate Dean, College of Human Sciences
Director, Human Sciences Extension and Outreach