2016 Seed Grants

2016 Seed Grants

Management of Algal Growth in Ohio's Medium-Sized Lakes

algal growthWe created a new partnership between OSU Extension personnel and the Ohio Water Resources Center to leverage our resources and initiate research, education and outreach to address sustainable algal management of Ohio’s medium-sized lakes. The project survey and communication with medium-sized lake managers confirmed that they often act on limited information and in isolation from other lake managers. Most of the participants were interested in gaining knowledge about the water quality of their lakes and in-depth sampling and education was conducted on four sites. By the end of the project, an educational workshop was organized for our survey participants and the attendees received a Secchi depth disk to measure trophic status of their lakes. The obtained information from this project about the type of management used, the water quality of medium-sized lakes and the willingness to learn gives us better idea about the issues of medium-sized lake management and we can create educational materials specific to these sites and the needs of the lake managers. This funding initiated a Lake Management Stewardship program in Medina County with potential to grow and develop in other counties. See wrc.osu.edu/outreach/management-algal-growth-ohios-medium-size-lakes

PI(s): Zuzana Bohrerova, Research Specialist and Associate Director, Civil, Environmental and Geodetic Engineering, Ohio Water Resources Center, College of Engineering; Eugene Braig, Program Director, Aquatic Ecosystems, School of Environment and Natural Resources, FAES and OSU Extension; Joseph Bonnell, Program Director, Watershed Management, School of Environment and Natural Resources, FAES and OSU Extension; Ashley Kulhanek, Extension Educator, Medina County
Partner(s): Susan James, Leader of CLAM Program, Ohio Lake Management Society (OLMS)


Securing the Future Workforce – Certifying Direct Care Workers in Long-Term Care

Direct Care Workers GrantFalling within the University’s Discovery Theme of Health and Wellness, a “perfect storm” is brewing in the long-term care industry. This “storm” is comprised of a shortage of nurses and direct care workers, an elderly population reaching significant numbers by 2030 and a diminishing number of potential family caregivers. These different segments have started to intersect and impact delivery of healthcare services and the recruitment and retention of direct care workers to long-term care. This will continue to have far-reaching implications and pose significant strain and challenges for the current healthcare model.

According to LeadingAge, the leading not-for-profit trade association in aging services, “Direct care workers, who provide hands-on care to millions of Americans each day, are the key to ensuring that our nation can deliver quality long-term services and supports to a growing older population. Yet, this workforce is ‘in crisis’ due to a number of factors, including high turnover, poor working conditions, inadequate training and low pay.”

Attracting and retaining direct elder care workers and increasing their knowledge base and soft skills was the focus of this grant. New curriculum (soft skills) was developed and used along with existing curriculum (Topics in Gerontology). The content was delivered to a pilot group of fourteen (14) direct elder care workers via online learning and 4 four-hour in-seat workshops. The impact to the participants overall showed an increase in knowledge, skills and abilities based on the pre- and post-workshop assessments.

Discussions are underway with both the participating employers as well as with the President and CEO of LeadingAge Ohio to hold an ECC event in the Akron/Canton area in Spring, 2018. Another suggestion is to possibly offer this curriculum through the County Extension offices (proving a train-the-trainer to the educators). Finally, under consideration is to also continue to offer this annually on the OSU Marion campus. Holding this type of event in a campus-like setting made an impact on the participants.

PI(s): Anne Johnson, Program Manager, Alber Enterprise Center, OSU Marion and OSUE – CD; Myra Wilson, Program Director, Alber Enterprise Center, OSU Marion and OSUE - CD
Partner(s): James Bates, Field Specialist, Family Wellness with Ohio State University Extension, OSUE - Family and Consumer Sciences, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences and College of Education and Human Ecology; Cynthia Dougherty, Director, Office of Geriatrics and Gerontology, The Ohio State University College of Medicine; Kathryn Brod, CEO and President, LeadingAge Ohio; Reverend Kenneth Daniel, CEO and President, United Church Homes; Brianna Mettler, Executive Director, Community Health Services, National Church Residences; Michele Engelbach, CEO and President, Ohio Eastern Star Home; Dana Ullom-Vucelich, Chief Human Resources and Ethics Officer, Ohio Presbyterian Retirement Services, Traci Lepicki, Associate Director, Center on Education and Training for Employment, OSU College of Education and Human Ecology, Brian Butler, Director, Program Development and Evaluation, Ohio State University Extension, College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences 

Place-Based Leadership Academy Initiative

The Near East Side Neighborhood Leadership Academy (NESNLA) is an expansion of the Columbus Neighborhood Leadership Academy initially launched by the United Way of Central Ohio in 2012. NESNLA is available to residents in the 43205, 43206, and 43207 zip codes who are interested in playing a leadership role in the effort to address challenges in the Near East Side. This inaugural session of the academy attracted over 40 applicants and accepted twenty students. The academy averaged between 17-19 members throughout the session.

The 2017 session of NESNLA began in late May and ended with a graduation ceremony in November. Participants attended eight sessions every two weeks on Saturday mornings. Most of the sessions were held at the Champion Intergeneration Center in the King-Lincoln neighborhood of Columbus, Ohio. Each session covered an important topic related to community leadership including structural racism, building social capital, and navigating local governance, and each session was led by a guest lecturer or panel members ranging from city officials and community leaders to researchers and community organizers. The learning sessions were followed by a series of project planning sessions aimed at helping members create sustainable group projects that will have immediate impact on community challenges. 

Finally, the Kirwan Institute and OSU Extension Franklin County will continue to work together to build a model of shared action to change outcomes in Central Ohio communities.  The lessons that we learned in the process of bringing this project to fruition should provide a foundation for greater cooperation to address structural and individual challenges with applied research and strategically deployed resources.

PI(s): Maurice Stevens, Senior Faculty Research Advisor, Office of Diversity and Inclusion/Kirwan Institute; Laquore Meadows, County Extension Director, OSU Extension, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences; Dwight "Kip" Holley, Researcher-Civic Engagement and Social Justice, Office of Diversity and Inclusion/Kirwan Institute; Jillian Olinger, Public Policy and Planning Analyst, Office of Diversity and Inclusion/Kirwan Institute

Partner(s): Ryan Edwards, Senior Impact Director, United Way of Central Ohio; Erika Clark Jones, Director of Community Strategies, Celebrate One, Columbus Public Health; Autumn Glover, Program Director, Partners Achieving Community Transformation (PACT); Gina Ginn, Executive Director, Columbus Early Learning Centers

Reducing Barriers to Entry for the Direct Sales of Local Foods in Ohio: A Review of Current Laws/Rules and Suggesting Changes for Ohio Businesses

reducing barriers grantAccording to the US Census of Agriculture, Ohio ranks in the top ten states for direct farm sales. Other signs of growth include an increasing number of farm markets, farmers markets, wineries, produce auctions, and chef-grower networks. The growth of grower conferences such as the Mid-Ohio Growers, the Southwest Ohio Vegetable Conference and the Ohio Ecological Food and Farming Association (OEFFA) shows growers are interested in growing and providing local foods throughout Ohio.

When making direct sales, growers are voicing concerns regarding the barriers to entry they face. In most cases, this relates to the sales of eggs, meats and cottage foods at farm markets, farmers markets and other retail locations. Current laws, rules and interpretations vary significantly. Growers in one county face steeper costs for licensing and equipment than others. Some aspects of these laws are not up to date with food safety research.

To combat this issue and to make a level playing field, OSU Extension partnered with the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity and The John Glenn College of Public Affairs. Together, they developed a research summary of laws in similar states and supporting data for best practices to be used in listening sessions throughout Ohio to get input from growers. The resulting information was compiled for a white paper of the status of and suggested changes to Ohio’s regulations affecting the sales of local foods. The result will be a starting point for public policy changes in Ohio.

PI(s): Eric Barrett, Assistant Professor, OSU Extension Mahoning County, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Emily Adams, OSU Extension Educator, OSU Extension Coshocton County, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Peggy Hall, Assistant Professor, OSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences
Partner(s): Jill Clark, Assistant Professor, The John Glenn College of Public Affairs; Glennon Sweeney, Research Associate, Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity; Carol Keck, Program Coordinator, OSU Extension Delaware County, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Robert Leeds, Educator, OSU Extension Delaware County, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Mike Hogan, Associate Professor, OSU Extension Franklin County, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Christie Welch, Program Specialist, OSU Extension/Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences/OSU Centers at Piketon; Brian Raison, Assistant Professor, OSU Extension, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Patrice Powers-Barker, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences, Co-Leader, Local Foods Signature Program, OSU Extension, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; Heather Neikirk, Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources and Co-Leader, Local Foods Signature Program, OSU Extension, College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences