Survey finds SDSU Extension trusted source
SDSU Extension may be 100 years old this month, but it's using the milestone to set its future leadership direction in the state based on a recent survey that shows SDSU Extension remains South Dakotans' trusted, go-to source for unbiased, research-based information.
"While we're 100 years old, in the age of information overload, SDSU Extension remains the safe and trusted place where South Dakotans know our only agenda is their success," said Barry Dunn, dean of the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences and director of SDSU Extension.
The SDSU Extension Benchmark Survey, conducted by a third-party source, includes information gleaned from extensive interviews with 400 South Dakota crop and livestock producers as well as users of one or more of SDSU Extension's five additional key program areas, which include: community development, food and families, urban/rural initiatives, Native American programs and 4-H Youth development.
Combined, the common theme from all respondents is that SDSU Extension is a leader and trusted source of unbiased, relevant information. Nearly 95 percent of respondents surveyed throughout 2013 already utilize SDSU Extension services and reported positive experiences.
Service to South Dakota is the foundation upon which extension was established 100 years ago. A product of the Smith Lever Act of 1914, SDSU Extension was established to serve as the outreach arm of South Dakota State University, South Dakota's land grant institution.
Supporting agriculture is one of the original reasons Extension was established. Because the industry has the greatest economic impact on the state, a portion of the survey effort was focused on crop and livestock producers.
The survey confirmed that crop and livestock producers trust Extension. SDSU Extension ranks second highest behind veterinarians for being the most trustworthy source of information about ag science or best practices in agriculture.
According to survey respondents, the most needed types of information to be a competitive producer in the future include information about chemical/pesticide usage, seed hybrids/genetics, marketing and exports and best practices for managing input costs and increasing profits. Overall, there is a growing demand for science-based knowledge that can help increase productivity, profitability and global competitiveness. And South Dakota producers trust SDSU Extension for that unbiased, research-driven knowledge.
Reorganized to Better Serve
Three years ago, SDSU Extension made a bold, unprecedented move to make the first major operational change in its history by reorganizing to meet the needs of today's technology-savvy marketplace.
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