Grant Count Extension Receives H.U.G.S. Grant to Assist in Digital Education Opportunities

Members of the Pioneer Electric Helping Us Give to Society (H.U.G.S.) team presented Grant County Extension staff with a $2,000 grant. The grant will help purchase equipment to assist with virtual education presentations. The Extension staff hopes the equipment will allow them to better reach Grant County residents and provide them with various educational opportunities.

“The (H.U.G.S.) team felt this was a great opportunity for the Extension and our community,” said Dee Longoria, H.U.G.S. team member. “We see more and more organizations utilize digital tools and resources to help empower southwest Kansas. We hope that this will assist the Grant County Extension to serve our local youth and others.”

In December, K-State Research and Extension mandated that Extension events be held virtually unless there is justification for holding it in person. Additionally, in-person events should have a virtual option available. To accommodate the new requirements, the Grant County Extension looked into cameras and other equipment to make meetings more accessible. The new camera system will allow virtual viewers to see all the individuals in attendance in a meeting/presentation and focus on the person speaking. Extension staff will also have the ability to record events and share them digitally.

“We have provided 4-H cooking workshops, project meetings, and club meetings virtually,” said Monica Walker, extension agent. “However, we lack the technology to do this effectively. The equipment will help us better facilitate virtual meetings and will allow us to hold hybrid meetings for those that can attend in person and those that can’t. This allows those that are not attending in person to hear and see the speakers better and increase their engagement. The equipment will also allow us to record and present educational presentations.”

Those interested in learning more about the various programs offered by the Grant County Extension may call their office at 356-1721.