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Penn State Extension Dairy Team Garners National Award for Webinars

Posted: June 17, 2015

Technology Tuesday Webinar series recognized for its noteworthy educational value beyond the classroom.

Penn State's Extension Dairy Team has been recognized by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) with its Educational Aids Blue Ribbon Award for the Team's outstanding Technology Tuesday Dairy Webinar Series, offering online monthly technical presentations, free to anyone with a computer and high speed internet connection.

These annual awards are designed to recognize outstanding effort and achievement in developing noteworthy educational material and to promote excellence in informational materials beyond the classroom.

The Dairy Team's Technology Tuesday Dairy Webinar Series, designed for dairy producers, employees and agribusiness professionals, gives participants the opportunity to learn the most up-to-date information in the comfort of their office in an interactive setting. And, because each webinar is recorded, the material continues to be available online for future reference.

The series is created and led by Dairy Team Educators Dan McFarland John Tyson, agricultural engineers, and Mathew M. Haan, dairy. The award will be presented to the group at the ASABE annual meeting in New Orleans in late July.

Dr. Terry Etherton, Head of the Department of Animal Science, said, "Our Technology Tuesday seminars have been highly successful through Dan, John and Mat's leadership. The format is appealing to producers and others because they can include their employees and it is easy to interact with the presenters and be part of the discussions.  This year marks the 5th year that the series has been presented, and it always provides the latest research-based information directly to participants."

Amber Yutzy, chair of the Extension Dairy Team, said, "This electronic format allows us to reach a broad audience, and the range of topics touches almost every management challenge facing producers. In evaluation surveys, producers most frequently call the webinars 'very useful' and 'very informative.'  We are very proud of this national recognition of the efforts of our Extension Dairy Team."

Diane Hartman, assistant manager, Scattered Acres Farm, Berks County, said, "I have found a concept or practice I can implement on the farm from each webinar in this series. With my busy schedule, I appreciate that the webinars are also recorded."

 

In 2014, over 260 producers, college students and professionals registered and tuned into one or more of the 12 live webinars. The recorded webinars attracted over 1,840 views.

The webinars' content integrates research-based practical information from Extension educators and other industry specialists, drawing from various disciplines, such as nutrition, dairy science, farm management and veterinary medication. 

Producers have found the webinars to be tremendously helpful, and convenient, because they can participate from their farm offices, and can review the material later.

The format allows wide audience participation, with registrants hailing from Pennsylvania (25 percent), other states (44 percent) and Canada and other countries (39 percent).

The webinar series has been concluded for the spring of 2015, but to learn more, contact the Penn State Extension Dairy Team Office at 888-373-7232 or

Dan McFarland at dfm6@psu.edu, John Tyson at jtt107@psu.edu or Mat Haan at mmh29@psu.edu.

To watch past seminars, visit extension.psu.edu/technology-tuesday. The next series will begin this Fall, 2016.

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