NDSU Extension


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Biennial Budget

NDSU Extension Service 2009-2011 budget: $10.0M county, $22.0M state, $7.1M federal, $8.8M grants and contracts

Grow 21 – Enhancing North Dakota’s Economy through Agriculture, was the budget theme used by NDSU Agriculture.


  • An NDSU Extension Service administrative intern opportunity was implemented to give full-time agents and specialists who are interested in future administrative leadership roles with an opportunity participate in Extension Leadership Team discussion and decision-making. Administration benefited from two employees participating each year. The program was ended in 2018 as a recommendation for administration efficiency from the State Board of Agricultural Research and Education's comprehensive review of Extension.

Program Highlights

Knowledge was extended to North Dakotans through 590,103 face-to-face contacts by NDSU Extension Service employees.

Residents turned to their local Extension office as spring 2009 floodwaters rose, and agents were prepared due to proactive preparation. As flood projections came in, Extension specialists updated information on the flood website to help people prepare their farms, ranches and homes for a flood and cope with the aftermath. Extension agents often fielded calls from early morning well into the evening, seven days a week. Many also served as their county’s evaluation coordinator; worked with volunteers; and assisted livestock producers who were running short of hay or had trouble getting feed to stranded cattle because snowstorms blocked access or flooding washed out roads and bridges. Radio became an effective way to reach people with many agents becoming regulars on their local radio stations. Specialists took to the air, too, to talk about how to properly build a sand dike or how to cope with the stress of flood fighting. As the floodwaters receded, agents, at the request of the state veterinarian, collected information from producers about the accessibility to livestock and the loss of animals. Agents helped the Agriculture Department coordinate efforts to rescue stranded livestock, worked with producers on disposing dead animals and gathered estimates of acres on which producers wouldn’t be able to plant or planting would be delayed. (2009 Annual Highlights - Sean Brotherson, Ken Hellevang, Doug Bichler and Duane Hauck)

North Dakota was awarded its first Operation Military Kids Camp Initiative grant in 2009 to provide camps that offer youth of different age groups a variety of experiences, including outdoor skills such as archery, air rifle training and camp cooking, and technology such as digital photography, videography and robotics. The camps also included the Military Youth Institute held during the Extension Youth Conference in June. Nearly 300 North Dakota youth participated in OMK activities in 2009. (2009 Annual Highlights - Diane Hahn)

The North Dakota Energy Efficiency Partnership is a collaboration of individuals and public and private entities working together to promote the efficient use of energy. The partners’ aim is to avoid duplicating efforts by identifying areas for improving energy efficiency and determining who is best qualified to provide assistance. The partnership consists of about 65 individuals and organizations, including NDSU faculty and representatives from the U.S. and North Dakota Department of Agriculture, North Dakota Department of Commerce, electric and gas utilities, rural electric cooperatives, North Dakota Farmers Union, Dakota Resource Council, North Dakota Builders Association and other North Dakota colleges and universities. (2009 Annual Highlights - Carl Pedersen)

More than 350 North Dakota families participated in a program in 2009 to select superior varieties of vegetables to grow. It is the largest such project in the country. Gardeners in the program select varieties from more than 40 different vegetables then evaluate them for plant vigor, health, earliness, yield and quality. North Dakota gardeners grow more than $30 million in produce each year. (2009 Annual Highlights - Tom Kalb)

NDSU Extension Service specialists received a grant from the USDA to study food-handling practices among refugees and new Americans and create educational materials in several languages. NDSU research faculty and collaborators from the University of Minnesota, a tribal college and public health agencies are working with the Extension specialists as the research team. As a result of their research, the team developed a series of hands-on lessons focusing on three main areas: chilling leftovers correctly, thawing frozen meat, and safe temperatures for serving and eating food containing meat. The team also developed videos and a website with food safety information in 24 languages. (2009 Annual Highlights - Julie Garden-Robinson)

A number of different methods have been developed through the years to measure soil nutrient availability. Using a Plant Root Simulator probe, Extension specialists and researchers can see the soil from a plant’s perspective. The device simplifies the collection and analysis of soil samples to track nutrient mineralization. (2009 Annual Highlights - Ron Wiederholt)

Excess water from the 1990s through 2009 has impacted crop production significantly, especially in eastern North Dakota. Along with acres not seeded because of excess moisture, some acres were planted late, which caused yield losses. Several NDSU Extension specialists and staff have established a tile drainage research site to look for a solution. Tiled and non-tiled crops are compared. Plant pathologists are evaluating the effect of better drainage on plant diseases. Soil scientists are monitoring the changes in the soil, and agronomists are studying the growth, development and yield of different crops. (2009 Annual Highlights - Hans Kandel, Tom Scherer, Joel Ransom, Sam Markell and Marcia McMullen)

North Dakota manufacturers have improved access to NDSU’s faculty, research and technology through the addition of a manufacturing specialist position with the Extension Center for Community Vitality. The goal is to identify and address manufacturers’ needs, which will lead to an increase in economic development across the state. The position, which is also part of the NDSU College of Engineering and Architecture, is based at the Dickinson Research Extension Center. Initial projects include gathering information on energy-efficient manufacturing operations to help small and medium-sized North Dakota companies lower their operating costs and reduce their environmental footprint; identifying common concerns among North Dakota manufacturers; working with entrepreneurs with a manufacturable product to develop or expand a business; and working to get NDSU’s Bison BEST (Boosting Engineering, Science and Technology) robotics program started in junior and senior high schools. (2009 Annual Highlights - David Lehman)

During the 2008-09 school year, Parent Resource Centers in Dickinson, Williston, Fargo, Mandan and Minot coordinated and led the Gearing Up for Kindergarten parent education and school readiness program at 18 sites. More than 290 families enrolled. Parents are a child’s first and best teachers, and this program supports parents in their role of preparing their children for success in school. United Way, North Dakota Parent Information Resource Center, Head Start, local school districts and child-care programs are program partners. (2009 Annual Highlights - Sean Brotherson)

Bandleader and musician Lawrence Welk’s Strasburg homestead, NDSU’s Central Grasslands Research Extension Center near Streeter and several North Dakota churches were among stops on the first Dakota Memories Heritage bus tour in September 2009. The three-day tour focused on sites of historical significance for Germans from Russian in south-central North Dakota and the importance of heritage-based tourism. Michael Miller, Germans from Russia Heritage Collection director, hosted the tour, and the NDSU Extension Service and Extension Center for Community Vitality helped sponsor it. Participants learned how to identify and use cultural assets to increase local economic activity. (2009 Annual Highlights - Kathleen Tweeten and Michael Miller)

The NDSU Extension Service partnered with the Kansas Building Science Institute to provide a comprehensive energy auditor training program in Fargo in July. The five-day program was geared toward builders, insulating contractors, remodelers, home inspectors, utility service providers and others with some building experience and an interest in increasing their knowledge of home energy diagnostics. The course was the first step in becoming a certified home energy rater. The North Dakota Department of Commerce Office of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency helped support the training program. (2009 Annual Highlights - Carl Pedersen)

Pickin' Patch: Feeding Big Appetites from Small Spaces was recognized with a Program Excellence Award. Extension team members were Donna Bernhardt, Steve Sagaser, Carrie Knutson, Jean Noland, Linda Kuster, Brad Brummond, Sue Fagerholt, Tara Sondeland, Kristi Berdal, Nels Peterson, Andy Johnson, Marty Fear, Leigh Gunkel and Lesley Lubenow. With a downturn in the economy, more families became interested in growing their own vegetables to save money. Extension agents in Grand Forks, Walsh, Traill and Steele counties partnered with Head Start staff to spur families' interest in gardening to increase vegetable consumption, be more physically active, be aware of gardening possibilities and save money.

Barbecue Boot Camp was recognized with a Program Excellence Award. Extension team members were David Newman, Julie Garden-Robinson, J.W. Schroeder, Charlie Stoltenow, Greg Lardy, Dale Siebert, Brian Zimprich, Tim Becker, Cathy Palczewski, Kurt Froelich, Crystal Martodam, Theresa Jeske, June Kraft, Rita Ussatis, Donna Anderson, Debra Lee, Colleen Svingen, Jennifer Illich, Eunice Sahr and Mary Froelich. NDSU meat science faculty partnered with food science faculty and the NDSU Extension Service to hold 10 BBQ Boot Camps throughout the state in spring and summer 2009. More than 800 participants were introduced to new cooking methods and practices; meat cut selection; food safety, such as proper cooking temperatures and using meat thermometers; use of rubs, marinades and seasonings; and smoking, gas and charcoal cooking. They also heard about current topics in the pork, beef and lamb industries including research and Extension activities at NDSU, and had a chance to sample a large variety of barbecued meat. The North Dakota Pork Producers, Lamb and Wool Producers, Beef Commission, Northern Plains Distributing and Cloverdale Foods helped sponsor the camps. (2009 Annual Highlights - David Newman)

Grants of $100,000+ Received

  • $1.2 million from USDA Food and Nutrition Service for North Dakota Family Nutrition Program. Debra Gebeke, PI.
  • $183,283 from Environmental Protection Agency for Red River Valley Tile Drainage Water Quality Assessment – Phase II. Roxanne Johnson, PI.
  • $149,510 from Environmental Protection Agency for Livestock Waste Educational Information and Assistance Program, Carrington. Ron Wiederholt, PI.
  • $147,589 from CSREES for Youth Development Specialist. Duane Hauck, PI.
  • $132,842 from University of Minnesota for Sugarbeet Specialists. Charles Stoltenow, PI.
  • $119,436 from North Dakota Department of Health for Demonstration and Evaluation of Vegetative Buffer Strips and AerWay SSD Tool to Minimize Runoff Pollution. Shafiqur Rahman, PI.
  • $106,788 from CSREES for North Dakota Extension Integrated Pest Management Project. Marcia McMullen, PI.
  • $106,435 from Dakota West RC&D for Livestock Facilities Assistance Program: Livestock Waste Management Project. Nadine Radtke, PI.
  • $104,500 from Ducks Unlimited, Inc., for Area Agronomist for the Prairie Pothole Region. John Lukach, PI.
  • $100,000 from CSREES for Federally Recognized Tribes Extension Program on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation. Jon J. Fisher, PI.
  • $100,000 from CSREES for Operation Military Kids. Brad Cogdill, PI.
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