The purpose of the land-grant university Cooperative Extension Service (CES) is to help rural, urban, and suburban citizens nationwide by providing research-based information that improves their lives. Agriculture impacts everyone– and the Cooperative Extension Service intends to educate and empower each county through agricultural information.
The New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service continues to live by this mantra and strive for excellence in its communities. With growing minority and urban communities, NMSU CES continues to adapt their messages and strategies in order to reach and serve this audience.
“Living in a border community and being bilingual has allowed me to bring Extension resources to audiences who may not have had access to this information in the past,” said program director of Dona Ana County CES, Karim Martinez, who works to deliver programs in culturally appropriate ways. “As Spanish-speaking populations increase nationally, some CES agents may find it challenging to reach this audience, especially if they have limited experience with Latino cultures or are not bilingual.”
In addition to tailoring their messages for other languages, CES agent Laura Bittner finds it important they adapt to other cultural differences, too.
“People living in the same neighborhood, of same ethnicity, religion, age, or economic group have different ways of doing things,’ Bittner said. “When providing educational programs, we must be aware that these differences exist so we remain inclusive and communicate clearly and effectively.”
New Mexico has such rich cultural diversity, and it is so important that the Cooperative Extension Service can provide resources that resonate with the entire community. To read more about NMSU’s CES and their diverse programming, read more here.More From: New Mexico State University
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