- Author: Wendy Powers
I am thrilled to see the ANR portal back up and running. This signifies that we have transitioned to a new server. Thanks so much to Sree and team for their extraordinary effort this week to combat the bot attacks and get everything migrated over so that we can function again. Isn't it amazing how quickly things come to a halt when a server is down? As a society, we have certainly become dependent on virtual environments.
Glenda and I have been at a conference this week. The is the national conference for ag experiment station directors. Glenda is attending in person while I opted for the virtual route. No surprise, there have been a few technology glitches. But given the theme of the conference which focuses on transitioning to the new, post-COVID world, the glitches seem apropos. We heard from 3 university presidents about their approach to managing their institution through the pandemic. I can't say that I gained any keen insights to share, though it was evident that many campuses are back in-person to a greater extent than UC. I am a bit envious. The flip side is that we may have fewer COVID cases per capita.
What surprises me at these meetings each year are the familiar faces in new places. Several participants have moved to new locations. I suspect it is the nature of the positions, but also a good opportunity for an organization to have fresh ideas.
One of the sentiments I have heard repeatedly is the need to consider new partnerships in this post-COVID world. In particular, partnering with medical schools and health departments beyond nutrition programming has been a consistent message. In addition, the idea that we should be open to new types of partnerships with those we have known and perhaps worked with for some time. As uncomfortable as it may be at times, I feel that UC ANR is way ahead of the curve on this one. This doesn't mean that we transition away from existing partners; just be open to additional opportunities. The partnering message is particularly timely; I have a couple of meetings yet this week to talk about new partnerships.
It is time to start preparing for a couple of other conferences that will be here well before I am fully prepared. One is the national extension directors' conference. The other is a presentation I am giving in another state, for that state's annual extension conference. I am still a couple of weeks away from a final decision if that will be delivered from my garage or if I will transition back to traveling for such things.
In the meantime, I am going to enjoy the fall weather now that we have transitioned away from summer temperatures.