- Author: Jeffrey P Mitchell
A group of UC KARE researchers and UCCE Fresno and Madera County Advisors took part in a two-hour workshop on science communication and presentation skills at the UC KARE on Friday, August 25th. The group included Phoebe Gordon and Rebecca Ozeran of Madera County, Shannon Mueller and George Zhang of Fresno County, Lori Berger, Andreas Westphal, Jeff Dahlberg, Themis Michailides, and Jeff Mitchell of UC KARE, Aldo Garcia of Fresno State, and key meeting presenter, Jessica Chiartas, a PhD soil science student at UC Davis. With introductory information on some of the current thinking and ideas of effective, engaged and connected communication that was provided by Mitchell and Chiartas, the group worked through a number of improvisation and role play exercises aimed at improving the way in which we communicate to the various people and groups that we interact with in our extension education work. In addition, the group solidified a commitment to continue to meet perhaps three or four times annually to form a peer support group aimed at continuing to learn and to explore opportunities for improving our communication skills. Though it was but a small part of the workshop program, participants participated in a pre-workshop video interview about their work and research programs. The video clips from these pre-workshop exercise are archived at the You Tube link https://youtu.be/owhycgHhJ0U Our intent is to go back to folks who participated and conduct a follow-up video interview that might allow everyone to see if and how they've included ideas and techniques that were shared in the workshop into their ongoing work and communication. We look forward to adding folks to strengthen the peer support communication group. If you're interested, let Jeff Mitchell know at firstname.lastname@example.org or 559-303-9689. We obviously do not have all the answers, but are keen and curious, I think, in learning more and in improving what we do.