Tag Archives: College of Nursing

Singing loudly for MSU Extension

In January, I posted about creative interventions and singing/spreading the word about the incredible work that you do and how that can help you to achieve your goals, open new paths of opportunity and enable us to do even more to serve people throughout Michigan. I wanted to share with you several opportunities that President Lou Anna K. Simon and I had to “sing” about the work we’re doing at MSU.

On March 2, President Lou Anna K. Simon testified in front of the Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee about the work that Michigan State University (MSU) is doing in all aspects of its mission. She highlighted the importance of the land-grant mission in talking about MSU’s response to Flint. Through the efforts of MSU Extension, the College of Human Medicine, the College of Nursing and the College of Education, Spartans have been serving Flint for over 100 years.

MSU President Lou Anna Simon testifies to the Senate Higher Education Appropriations.

MSU President Lou Anna Simon testifies to the Senate Higher Education Appropriations. Photo courtesy of Michigan State University.

“If we can’t literally be everywhere, we have the assets to deploy anywhere in Michigan thanks to what we already have embedded and our close relationships with community leaders. And driven by that big land-grant heart, we are trusted knowledge partners dedicated to working with people to build the human and intellectual infrastructure they need to be successful,” President Simon said.

On March 3, I was interviewed by President Simon and MSU athletics director Mark Hollis on our efforts in Flint. If you’d like to listen to the podcast, you can click on this link here. Athletics director Hollis recognized that MSU Extension is often known for our work with agriculture but gave me a chance to talk about the full range of Extension’s outreach and our four institutes. We have 600 people all over the state ‒ talented, passionate, well-educated ‒ and some have been there for over 30 years making a difference.

President Simon asked me to share about how 4-H is more than just a program for youth from rural towns. I talked about how we provide 4-H programs to urban youth and engage them in the sciences, the arts, careers and entrepreneurship, leadership, mentoring and more. Data show that youth that are involved in 4-H are more likely to go to and graduate from college. It’s also extremely important that we have these clubs so that when a crisis occurs, we can address the crisis within our already-formed groups. 25,000 adult volunteers bringing the community together around our young people. Youth need these mentors who are good role models in their lives.

Far too many still don’t know about MSU Extension. I hope we can use our many successes in agriculture to expand our communication about all our programming. President Simon said that she thinks of us as an adaptive technology – that we adapt our services to the needs and research available at the time. She’s right, and it’s important that we keep “singing” about who we are and all that we do around the state.

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Extension, nursing researcher team up to battle obesity

Michigan State University Extension and a researcher in the College of Nursing are teaming up after being awarded $3.3 million to fund a program that helps low-income obese mothers improve their lives with healthier eating and reduced stress.

The new intervention program, Mothers in Motion, funded by the National Institutes of Health, aims to improve health by teaching overweight or obese mothers how to eat well, be active and how to deal with stress. Researcher Dr. Mei-Wei Chang will partner with two community-based programs: the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, and MSU Extension.

“To have a broad impact on obesity in our state, these partners have joined forces to address the underlying issues that cause weight gain in our target audience of young, low-income, overweight and obese mothers,” Chang said.

It is a great collaboration between Extension and the nursing college, and tackles one of the state’s most pressing problems. And the results from the program will be shared statewide and nationwide to help mothers in other cities and other states as they battle obesity.

The study will enroll 465 young, low-income, overweight or obese mothers 18 to 39 years old from four local WIC programs in the city of Detroit; and Calhoun, Genesee and Jackson counties. Educational interactive DVDs will be distributed, and Extension educators will lead phone discussions during which participants encourage each other’s progress.

Once Mothers in Motion has been studied in Michigan, the program will be disseminated nationally through WIC, MSU Extension and other community-based programs that promote healthy eating and physical activity.

The five-year study is supported by a grant from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease, part of the National Institutes of Health. It builds on findings of a previous NIH grant that enrolled 129 participants in a 10-week intervention.


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