City Photo
Human Resources

2005 - 2006


California Communities Coordinating Conference: CC99-102

Chair: Dave Campbell (530) 754-4328

The California Communities Workgroup focuses on policy and development issues that confront the state's communities. Our primary activity is to convene an annual colloquium highlighting a significant problem or issue that merits sustained interdisciplinary research and/or extension efforts. The colloquium incubates new research and extension collaborations, and meaningful relations with external clients and experts. It also enhances the integration of DANR personnel and programs as they interface with community problems. The workgroup will communicate research and extension activities to internal and external audiences, using the publication and dissemination vehicles already in place through the California Communities Program (CCP), including the California Community Topics series of topical briefs, the Working Papers series of longer academic articles, and a workgroup listserve.

Nutrition Coordinating Conference: CC99-110

Chair: Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr (530) 752-3817

The overall purpose of this workgroup is to serve as the "umbrella" group to bring together professionals from the nutrition and health community to provide continual input on current critical nutrition and health issues facing California's population. It will provide a forum for active, effective communication and action among its members. As a result, qualified nutrition professionals will provide the public with access to accurate and consistent nutrition information and services. In order for an effective food and nutrition program, based on sound science-based nutrition information to be delivered to California consumers, it is critical that members of the professional community remain up-to-date on current nutrition and health issues. In turn, it is imperative that those performing the basic and applied research are aware of the nutrition and health-related problems facing the diverse subgroups of California's population. Nutrition research updates will be organized and provided to health professionals within and outside of the DANR organization. The Department of Nutrition at UC Davis recently acquired the technology to provide video conferencing; this is an area that will be utilized as needed to meet the goals of the workgroup. Where appropriate, research questions will be posed, hypotheses developed, collaborative arrangements made, and additional extramural sources of funds identified.

Human Resources Coordinating Conference: CC05-415

Chair: James Grieshop (530) 752-3008
Co-chair: Karen Varcoe (951) 827-3419

The Human Resources Coordinating Conference Workgroup is currently in its first year of operation. Over the long term this Workgroup seeks to fulfill its roles through work that contributes to the creation of an ever increasingly more skilled ANR staff and responsive programs. The Workgroup for 2006 will focus its efforts on work, programs and training targeted at cultural competence. This work is undertaken recognizing the ever-increasing cultural complexity of the state of California and the audiences with whom Human Resource and other academic personnel work. This complexity provides opportunities and challenges for developing new practices that should lead to the further engagement of UCCE in communities throughout the state. For 2005-06, a major effort will be the hosting of a conference meant to highlight promising new practices, the identification of new challenges, and the opportunities for learning new skills to become more effective educators and researchers. We believe that this Conference should serve several ends including expanding our understanding of the issues associated with cultural complexity, enhancing our skills and abilities to work better and smarter, highlighting excellent work that our colleagues are already doing, and gaining acknowledgement for the important culturally related work of Cooperative Extension and Experiment Station personnel in the larger University.

After-School Workgroup: Education, Enrichment, Research: WG99-017

Co-chair: Lynn Schmitt-McQuitty (831) 763-8040
Co-chair: Fe Moncloa (408) 282-3117

The purpose of this workgroup is to create, develop, and apply research-based information to improve the quality and quantity of out-of-school care for California's children primarily through workgroup annual meetings and symposiums and program evaluation. The meetings/symposiums will be a method to share knowledge to workgroup members as well as other ANR staff, other academics, community collaborators, and practitioners. Program evaluation will address the need for assessing the quality and value of youth development and educational programs for school-aged children outside of the regular school day will be addressed. Program evaluation will focus on the concerns of parents, after school program directors, community-based organizations, and funding sources of these various programs. The goal is to improve the quality of out-of-school care programs by improving the quality of program evaluations and increasing the use of high-quality program evaluation designs.

Money 2000+ for Teens: WG99-021

Chair: Mark Gonzalez (530) 538-7201

The premise behind Money 2000+ for Teens is to help teens understand the importance of long-term savings, identify long-term savings goals, and to develop saving plans which meets their lifestyles. Money 2000+ for Teens will offer teens education and techniques for saving in three different formats: magazine/newsletter mailed to their home, classroom curriculum with newsletter and leader's guide, and web site. The workgroup will develop and administer an evaluation instrument to determine behavior and attitudinal changes relating to teens' financial practices resulting from their participating in this program. Our expected outcomes are increases in teens' goal setting and saving behavior, and an increase in teens satisfaction with their financial situation. Statistically significant outcomes would be success indicators.

Food Safety: WG99-026

Co-chair: Christine Bruhn (530) 752-2774
Co-chair: John Bruhn (530) 752-2192

This workgroup focuses on consumer information and education in food safety areas including home food preparation. Additionally safe food handling education is provided for commercial food handlers and DANR staff and volunteers involved with University of California programs. Conferences provide a venue for the exchange of information on food safety issues in California as well as development of strategies to maintain or enhance food safety. Publications related to food safety and safe handling are available through DANR. Courses in food preservation for the public are provided by Master Food Preservers; courses for those starting a specialty food business are available through University Extension. Applied research projects relate to consumer safe food handling, and communication strategies to enhance public understanding of food safety aspects of agricultural and food processing technologies.

DANR Publications

  • Growing Seed Sprouts at Home (8151)
  • Selling Meat and Meat Products (8146)
  • Cantaloupe, Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy
  • Garlic, Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy
  • Peppers, Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy
  • Tomatoes, Safe methods to store, preserve and enjoy
  • Safe Methods of Canning Vegetables
  • Safe Handling of Fruit and Vegetables

Safe Handling Parent Newsletters

  • Make it Safe, Serve it Safe, Curriculum

Garden-Based Learning: WG99-034

Co-chair: Rose Hayden-Smith (805) 645-1466
Co-chair: Sheri Klittich (805) 525-9293 x205

Despite the growing interest and practice in garden-based learning, there is little dialogue (communication) among the various stakeholders (teachers, school administrators, research faculty, non-formal education practitioners, Master Gardeners, horticulturists, etc.) There is little research and evaluation as to the actual outcomes and impacts of garden based learning. This workgroup provides a needed avenue for communication, collaboration, sharing, and assessment of current gaps and future needs between professionals and nonprofessionals across the milieu of public and private entities conducting efforts in garden-based learning. Approximately 50 internal DANR individuals, from volunteers to professionals crossing disciplines in youth development, horticulture, and nutrition have expressed interest in workgroup participation. External collaborators are diverse and include the State Department of Education. Initial workgroup funding allows support for the workgroup to meet and subclusters under the areas of research, training, and communication to form and develop specific project proposals for submittal in the spring call. A core group has met and plans are being confirmed for the large group and interested individuals to meet on March 9th in Sacramento. Interested individuals not already listed on the workgroup roster should contact any of the three co-chairs.

Applied Developmental Science: Taking an Asset Approach in Calif.: WG99-044

Chair: Richard Enfield (805) 781-5943

The purpose of the workgroup’s research project is to study and describe community initiatives in California which are making an effort to develop a positive approach towards youth development within their communities. The concept of a “positive approach” is based on research that advocates the idea that all youth need certain assets or resources to thrive. This is in contrast to a “risk-approach” which focuses on reducing negative or problem behaviors. One goal of this research project is to document the processes of building the community initiatives around this approach as well as the techniques they used to develop their networks. A second goal is to examine the influences of these approaches on the perceptions of youth within these communities.

The workgroup is employing a multi-method qualitative approach, including the use of adult interviews, teen photo documentary journals, teen focus groups, and network document review, to explore the techniques and strategies utilized in both building and sustaining the collaboratives. NVivo qualitative software is being used by the research team to assist with data analysis

Science, Technology and Environmental Literacy (STEL) Workgroup: WG99-051

Co-chair: John Borba (661) 868-6216
Co-chair: Michael Marzolla (805) 692-1730

STEL’s mission is to improve the science, technology and environmental literacy of California communities through multi-disciplinary research and extension projects.

The STEL workgroup plans and coordinates research and extension program activities in the University of California's Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR), taking full advantage of the 4-H youth development program features and culture that encourage youth and families to apply what they learn to make a difference in their community. STEL reaches out to other ANR workgroups and liaisons with external groups that have an interest in incorporating science, technology, and environmental literacy in their programs and activities.

Families & Young Children: WG99-053

Co-chair: Cathi Lamp (559) 685-3309 ext. 218
Co-chair: Lenna Ontai-Grzebik (530) 752-6410

The workgroup for families with young children supports the healthy development of children ages zero to five and their families. The group identifies optimal caregiving practices, and uses this information to develop, distribute, and evaluate curricula. Materials are designed for parents, caregivers, and parent educators.

Products & Curricula

  • Parent Express (Infant Series): This 15 issue newsletter provides new parents with timely information on preparing for their new baby's arrival, growth, and development.
  • Baby and Me: Growing Together: This fun workbook allows parents to record, enjoy, and remember their baby’s first year.
  • Let’s Read Together / Leamos Juntos: This series of workshops is designed to help parents interact with their children to encourage early language and literacy skills
  • Off to a Good Start: A Kindergarten Readiness Program: A kindergarten readiness program designed for parents of children ages zero to five.
  • Culture and Parenting Handbook: This booklet is designed for parent educators and other practitioners. It provides guidance about the cultural sensitivity of programs and services offered to families.

Current Projects

  • Parent Express (Toddler Series): This 16-issue newsletter is a continuation of the infant Parent Express. Twelve of the issues cover topics in toddler development. Four issues focus on age-based developmental changes.
  • Creating Healthy Families: This series of nine brochures is designed to help parents successfully implement nutritional changes in their families. Brochures include background information on child development and parenting skills, as well as quick tips and activities.

Maternal and Infant Nutrition: WG99-061

Chair: Jane Heinig (530) 752-8681

The purpose of this workgroup is to develop applied research and extension activities that promote optimal nutrition during pregnancy, the postpartum period, and infancy. Among topics of interest to this group are the following: adolescent nutrition during pregnancy and lactation; models for breast-feeding promotion and support; and mineral status of infants fed breast milk vs. cow's milk-based or soy-based formula. Through a strong collaboration between AES faculty, CE specialists, CE advisors, and the WIC program, this workgroup is well-poised to influence policies related in maternal and infant nutrition in California and at the national level, develop new models to promote breastfeeding in California and update health professionals about important nutrition issues in the target population.

Workforce Preparedness: WG99-062

Co-chair: Mark Gonzalez (530) 538-7201
Co-chair: Carole Paterson (707) 421-6791

The aim of the Workforce Preparedness Workgroup is to create an opportunity for UC Extension to participate in national and state efforts to help youth prepare to succeed in the world of work. To accomplish this mission the workgroup proposes to:

  • Evaluate current 4-H based efforts in workforce preparedness and survey the needs of youth, parents and CE professionals with regards to workforce preparation programming and support.
  • Identify and document successful programs, effective curricula and potential campus & community collaborators.
  • Develop resources and guidelines for integrating career exploration and workforce preparation into 4-H projects, after school programs and other non-formal education settings and make them available on the 4-H Web site.
  • Provide training in career exploration and workforce preparation program implementation and evaluation

Agricultural Ergonomics: WG99-069

Chair: James Meyers (510) 643-5310

This work group focuses on improving labor input efficiency through the application of ergonomics principals to redesign or modify tools and tasks employed. The UC Agricultural Ergonomics Research Center located at UCD is the base for multiple current extramurally funded projects, including winegrape harvest, evaluation of the Cal OSHA Ergonomics Standard in agricultural workplaces, powered pruning in nurseries, and others. Ergonomics is necessarily multidisciplinary requiring expertise from human physiology, occupational health, and engineering. Application of ergonomics to agricultural work also requires expert input from those familiar with the crops or commodities under study.

The workgroup provides a common forum for academics and lay experts to convene to be updated on the state of knowledge and practice with respect to agricultural ergonomics and to plan and conduct collaborative projects of mutual interest and industry priority. The workgroup will also conduct currently funded research and extension projects and serve as a focal point for new proposals.

Goals of the workgroup will include: improving the working conditions of agricultural jobs; improving agricultural labor productivity; and increasing specific crop and commodity competitiveness.

Building Food Security: WG99-072

Chair: Christy Getz (510) 642-8681
Co-chair: Diane Metz (707) 421-6792

The purpose of this workgroup is to build collaboration between AES scientists, CE specialists and advisors and non-DANR entities so that needs and opportunities to improve food security may be identified. This workgroup is interested in examining a broad range of factors related to food security including: availability of food in the community, food assistance programs, welfare reform, transportation, living wages, access to health care, housing, substance abuse, and sociological aspects (education, training, culture, language, ethnicity), as well as economics.

Aging Californians in Rural and Urban Settings: WG99-083

Co-chair: Mary Blackburn (510) 639-1274
Co-chair: Janet Monsen (530) 752-5061

There has been a notable demographic change in the United States in the past century from rural to urban living. While almost a third of the population lived in rural areas in the 1900s, now only two percent of us live in rural areas. Interestingly, this dramatic shift in demographics has not been as evident among the elderly: nearly 25 percent of those over the age of 65 still live in small towns and farm areas (U. S. Bureau of the Census, 1996). There are three primary reasons for this: "aging in place", out-migration of younger people, and in-migration of retired elders. Elderly in rural areas face different issues than those living in urban ones. Although a very heterogeneous group, elderly people who live in rural areas are more likely to be older, to have less education, and to be poorer than those who live in cities (Clifford & Lilley, 1993). While farm owners tend to be healthier than urban elders, non-farm rural elders report more health problems than those living in cities. Rural elderly from minority groups have poorer health and more difficulty accessing health care than other elders. Although the rural elderly call upon family and friends for certain types of help, they have less access to more formal resources such as home delivered meals, homemakers, mental health services, or health care clinics. In particular, lack of transportation, difficulty in recruitment of health care providers, and cost of providing services make it difficult to provide formal services to rural areas. Yet, elderly people help maintain the viability of the rural community. They spend money in the community, often serve as strong voices in leadership, and help to create jobs for younger groups. This poster will review many of the issues for this special population and suggest ways in which Cooperative Extension advisers can help maintain health and social functioning for the elderly people who live in the rural areas of our country.

Body Weight and Health: WG99-084

Co-chair: Pat Crawford (510) 642-3589
Co-chair: Marilyn Townsend (530) 754-9222

The Body Weight and Health Workgroup is made up of a coalition of DANR and NON-DANR food, nutrition and allied health professionals who will provide leadership and guidance in the area of body weight and health. Recent reports emanating from national health surveys (NHANES III) indicate that 97 million Americans or 55% of the population is overweight or obese. Further, according to the NHANES surveys the prevalence of obesity has nearly doubled in the last 35 years, reaching rates that are the highest in history. The group proposes to conduct research needed in order to develop future funding; to disseminate information, and to further scientific knowledge in the area of effective intervention strategies

Anemia Prevention for High Risk Groups in California: WG99-089

Chair: Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr (530) 752-3817

In order to meet the Human Resources Priority Goal 1 "Optimize the health and dietary well-being of California consumers", the nutrition, health and lifestyle practices of families at risk for nutrition-related health problems must be identified. Iron deficiency anemia remains a very relevant example of a prevalent nutrition-related health problem in California. Data from a number of surveys indicate that the prevalence of anemia among low income pre-school age children, women of childbearing age, and pregnant women remains relatively high in several areas of California. This remains true in spite of the widespread efforts to reduce iron deficiency in young children, through such programs as the supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) of the USDA, which enables low-income families to obtain iron-fortified formula and cereal for infants and young children. The overall purpose of this workgroup is to bring together professionals from the nutrition and health community to identify risk factors associated with iron deficiency anemia and to develop, implement and evaluate an intervention program aimed at reducing iron deficiency anemia.

The practices of California consumers who are at risk for nutrition-related health problems will be addressed through the assessment of iron status in a representative sample of children from low-income families, aged 12-36 months attending selected WIC clinics and the examination of risk factors potentially associated with iron status in this population. The outcome of this research will be to develop a more focused education intervention program that is based on the problems and lifestyles of the clientele. While this project clearly focuses on gathering data with the objective of improving the iron status of young children, its extends beyond iron status per se. Young children, especially, low income Black and Mexican American children are at greatest risk of developing iron deficiency anemia. This condition can have far-reaching physiological effects, which can impact a child's physical and mental development. As a result, improving the iron status of young children provides an opportunity to positively impact a child's future development into a productive adult.

The workgroup will meet to discuss research protocols, progress, results, analyses, interpretation of data, and incorporation of findings into a comprehensive education intervention program. It is anticipated that the work will result in effective intervention programs that can be used throughout the state and extend to other states and regions to reduce anemia among several subgroups of the population.

Health Promotion & Disease Prevention: WG99-117

Co-chair: Lucia Kaiser (530) 754-9063
Co-chair: Anna Martin (209) 468-9497

The purpose of this workgroup is to develop extension and research programs aimed at promoting health and reducing risk of chronic disease in California. Activities will include conferences/workshops/in-service trainings for health professionals; development of health promotion programs and materials for the general public; and applied research on barriers to communicating health promotion messages to high-risk groups, including African American and Latino communities. This workgroup is interested in beliefs, attitudes, knowledge, food patterns, and other lifestyle/health practices related to chronic diseases (i.e., cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis).

Curriculum Materials produced

  • Take Care of Yourself, a diabetes awareness curriculum unit for the EFNEP and other extension programs. Includes background section, lesson plans, poster, and participant handouts, 2002.
  • Take Care of Your Health, a curriculum on diabetes addressing the needs of African Americans. Includes background section, lesson plans, recipe cards, and participant handouts. In Press.

Peer-reviewed Articles published

  • Kaiser LL, Klenk MA, Martin AC, Olivares A, Joy AB, Melgar-Quiñonez HR. 2003. Diabetes-related health beliefs explored in low-income Latinos. California Agriculture. 57 (1): 8-12.
  • Kaiser LL, Townsend MS, West EA, Steinberg FM, Joy AB, Brown GR, Feldman NI, Klenk MA, Williams EU, Garrett CL, Martin AC, Olivares A. 2002 Focus groups show need for diabetes education among African American adults. California Agriculture 56 (4): 139-143.

Adolescent Workgroup: WG00-232

Co-chair: Shelley Murdock (925) 646-6127
Co-chair: Fe Moncloa (408) 282-3117

The purpose of the Adolescent Workgroup is to strengthen UCCE programs to better support adolescent development. The workgroup has two active sub-groups: Youth in Governance and Latina Teen Pregnancy Prevention Project. The Youth in Governance subgroup is conducting research on the status of youth in governance and youth adult partnerships in the California 4-H Program. The goal is to identify and support promising practices that can be implemented statewide. Subgroup members are also training teens from rural counties to conduct community forums for the purpose of providing them with leadership skills and connections to their communities. The goal of the Latina Teen Pregnancy Prevention Project identify effective strategies for pregnancy prevention among Latina teens and strengthen the links between academic research and work in the field.

Workgroup Products

Latina Teen Pregnancy Prevention:

  • Four articles in peer reviewed journals
  • Practical handbook for practitioners

    Youth in Governance:

  • Workbooks on forum facilitation and evaluation
  • Literature review of civic engagement and youth-adult partnerships
  • Two survey instruments and one interview protocol (approved by IRB)

Animals in Educational Settings: WG02-401

Chair: Martin Smith (530) 752-6894

The overarching purpose of the Animals in Education Settings (AIES) Workgroup is to investigate the full scope of current practices associated with the care and use of live animals in 4-H Programs and K-6 school classrooms in California. This Workgroup represents a collaborative effort between campus, county, and community entities interested in improving the educational significance and care of animals in these settings through an assessment of needs and the development and dissemination of effective, standards-based (state science content standards; national science education standards) curriculum materials and professional development resources for youth-serving personnel. The activities initiated by this workgroup address critical issues and target issues identified by ANR, and complement current research, development, and outreach work by UCCE county-based Youth Development Programs, Veterinary Medicine Extension's Animal Ambassadors Program, the UCD School of Veterinary Medicine's Center for Animals in Society, and the UC Center for Animal Alternatives.

Positive Youth Development Through 4-H Camp Experiences: WG05-416

Co-chair: Marianne Bird (916) 875-6423
Co-chair: Ann Brosnahan (209) 468-2094

Working collaboratively with the California 4-H Camping Task Force, the purpose of this workgroup is to help assure healthy, safe, high quality, well run educational and fun camping experiences for campers and staff through the California 4-H Youth Development Program. Workgroup projects include designing a risk management manual, developing and promoting training for camp staff and administrators, and expanding camp program activities. The workgroup is also conducting a statewide evaluation of 4-H camps to document program impact and increase understanding of the factors contributing to youth development in the camp setting. The workgroup includes 4-H staff (both academic and non-academic), 4-H volunteers, AES scientists, youth, researchers from the 4-H Center for Youth Development, and partners from other organizations involved in camp programs.

Farm to School: WG05-417

Co-chair: Sharon Junge (530) 889-7385
Co-chair: Sheri Zidenberg-Cherr (530) 752-3817

Build interdisciplinary connections and collaboration between youth development, nutrition education, and agriculture programs to define the Division’s niche in advancing the Farm to School movement, develop/implement effective models for farm to school and local food system programming, and overall influence the education and research continuum from food production to consumption.