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About UC Agriculture and Natural Resources

History of UCCE

In 1891, the University of California Board of Regents instituted short courses and used demonstration trainings to extend the University’s teaching over the entire state. In 1897 the Department of Extension in Agriculture was created that later became the Division of Agricultural Extension in 1913.

On May 8, 1914 Congress passed the Smith-Lever Act, providing federal funds to the USDA’s Extension Service for cooperative work with Land-Grant universities and colleges.

In 1915, the California state legislature authorized the UC Regents to conduct the Agricultural Extension program. This empowered county boards of supervisors to appropriate and use county funds to support Extension work in agriculture, in cooperation with the USDA.

This three-way cooperative arrangement was created to bring agricultural education and research to the public.