Thank you to the 105 people who responded to the follow-up surveys after Grow Strong! updates in Macon and Gainesville! Your responses were very helpful in assessing the two events. I always appreciate your honest feedback, though some of it takes me a few days to think about and respond to fairly.
Overall, we consider the two Grow Strong! events to be a success. The majority of you responded that you would attend again. Many of you indicated how much you enjoyed the various topics and presentations. MGEVs appreciated the opportunity to mingle and visit with other MGEVs from other counties.
Grow Strong! also gave us opportunity to put names with faces. For example, Greg Price, Director of County Operations and part of the administrative team for UGA Extension, made a special effort to greet attendees during both sessions. He explained a little more about Extension, its focus and status, than you may be familiar with at just the local level. He was so impressed to see your turnout at this update event.
I think, hands-down, most attendees enjoyed Brad Davis’ presentation on the Value of Landscaping (Gainesville location). He did offer compelling argument for personal, neighborhood, and community landscapes. Apparently, his work resonated with attendees.
The purpose behind Grow Strong! was to offer research updates related to state initiatives for the Georgia MGEV Program. MGEVs, by mission, are charged with assisting Extension in public educational outreach derived from unbiased, research-based information. Our MGEV program is organized around 5 state initiatives. (If you are not yet familiar with the initiatives for the Georgia MGEV program, please take time to read our homepage. The initiatives are explained here.) These initiatives provide an organizational structure and focus for the projects and programs that MGEVs offer. Speakers addressed research in each of the initiative areas except for Health Benefits (there was simply not enough time in a day-long event that allowed for distance travel to accommodate all 5 initiatives). MGEVs need to know the latest updates on research in order to effectively serve and educate the public. Grow Strong! was not intended to be a gardening conference.
MGEVs seemed to appreciate the opportunity to hear from specialists about current topics, the opportunity to recharge before the spring rush has us running! We will work to establish regular continuing education events for MGEVs, such as Grow Strong! research updates, online events, and other workshops. Your good ideas abound! Thanks, again, for sharing in these great events and for taking the opportunity to express concerns and offer ideas. We do, indeed, want to GROW a STRONG MGEV program!