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The University of Arizona Cooperative Extension: Who are we? Where are we? Why are we?

We’re so happy to have this opportunity to answer those questions for you in our first monthly column.

Who we are: Cooperative Extension is one of the pillars of the University of Arizona’s Division of Agriculture, Life & Veterinary Sciences & Cooperative Extension. We are about “Improving Lives, Communities and the Economy” by serving as a statewide network of researchers, faculty and staff that provides lifelong educational programs for all Arizonans. We bring research-based science and education to help people solve problems and put that knowledge to practical use. Arizona Cooperative Extension provides a link between the university and the citizens of our state.

It was first established over 100 years ago by the Smith Lever Act of 1914. The Act provided that all states partner with at least one land grant university. Those universities would then partner with federal, state, and county governments to provide services to their communities. In Arizona, that is the U of A!

Where we are: With one or more offices in all 15 counties of Arizona and on 5 tribal reservations, we bring applicable knowledge to people every day to enhance their work and enrich their lives. We are your window to the University. Each county has its own website that features the established programs in their communities. The White Mountains has three local offices; Holbrook, Lakeside and St. Johns.

Why we are: Our vision is to be a vital national leader in creating and applying knowledge to help people build thriving, sustainable lives, communities and economies.

How we do it: We have several mechanisms in place to deliver on our mission. Those are broken into 4 pillars which include:

• Agriculture and Natural Resources — We have been assisting farmers, ranchers, agency personnel and others involved in natural resource management for over 100 years.

• Family, Consumer, & Health Sciences — Strong families, strong minds, and strong bodies. That’s what our FCHS personnel and programs deliver for Arizonans through several outreach programs.

• 4-H Youth Development — Arizona 4-H is the “first class at the University of Arizona.” We have an established pipeline of future leaders and students, and we engage them in various programs.

• Tribal Extension — With more than 30% of land base in Arizona being Tribal, our initiatives engage Native American communities through education and outreach on development, sustainability, and resiliency.

We are unique in that our programs are made possible by a cooperative effort between the federal government, the University of Arizona’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and each of the counties we serve. We are so proud to be a part of the White Mountain community and to be sharing our programs with you. You can find more resources about us and all our local programs by exploring at and You can also follow our daily activities at our facebook page Watch for us next month as we discuss a featured program in greater detail.

This column is a monthly featute of the University of Arizona Extension’s local staff.

This column is a monthly featute of the University of Arizona Extension's local staff.

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