“Integration of the extension function” means institutionalization of the principle that extending a university’s knowledge base to benefit the state and society at large should be an integral function of its Departments, Colleges, and Schools, comparable in importance to resident instruction and research. This does not mean either that each faculty or academic staff member will be involved in outreach programming or that such programming will necessarily be the sole responsibility of certain faculty or academic staff. It does mean that outreach planning and programming will be a conscious part of all their thinking and will be appropriately recognized in faculty and academic staff policies and procedures and in the decision-making process related to appointments, promotions, retentions/non-retentions, salary adjustments, workload assignments, and academic planning.
The intent of the Regent policy on integration* is to improve and expand extension programming. This requires (1) that a coordinated and cooperatively developed statewide longrange plan for the UW System extension effort be developed; (2) that extension programming carried out by any of the UW System institutions be compatible and consistent with that longrange plan; and, (3) that the seven criteria identified in the Regent Report on Extension (p.4, #9) be used to determine institutional involvement.
The following guidelines are based upon the Regent policy of encouraging the integration of the extension function with UW System institutions under the leadership of UW-Extension. Because these guidelines have been developed in response to Regent policy, they necessarily use the term integration in a somewhat narrower, yet compatible sense. They are intended to guide the process of gradual transfer of UW-Extension faculty and academic staff into units within a campus structure, along with the transfer of the responsibility for extension functions performed by them. Although the guidelines focus on this narrow mechanical process, it should be viewed as only a preliminary although critical step toward fulfillment of a broader concept.
Every step in integration involves the careers of dedicated professionals and important longrange program responsibilities of UW institutions. Budget arrangements must assure sufficient continuity to protect the individual and to permit institutions to meet fully their tenure commitments and program planning objectives.
While these guidelines emphasize the responsibility of Chancellors** for all phases of integration, it is assumed that within the context of the acceptable administrative procedures of the respective institutions, program discussions and decisions will be undertaken at dean and department levels.
I. Planning and Coordination Responsibilities
UW-Extension has been assigned the leadership responsibility for statewide program coordination and planning of the extension function. The Chancellors of the other UW institutions will work with the Chancellor of UW-Extension in developing and maintaining a coordinated, statewide extension plan.
- At each UW institution the Chancellor will be involved in all aspects of integration and will Jointly, with the Chancellor of UW-Extension approve annual program plans defined in the interinstitutional agreements and will monitor the extension efforts during the year. Prior to the end of each year, the UW-Extension Chancellor and each participating Chancellor will review the achievements of the agreed upon programs. Such reviews provide the context, in part, of the next interinstitutional agreement and provide an indication of the effectiveness of integration.
- Programming and staffing for extension in any specific field will be developed only with a UW institution that has an assigned mission in that field. An institution’s mission for noncredit programs of continuing education in classroom or through educational media or for participation in the organized state network of technical assistance in technology transfer, is defined by its mission statement and its approved degree programs and program entitlements as authorized by the Board of Regents.
- The Chancellor of Extension shall annually review the program of extension and outreach activities in the UW System, including those not covered in formal interinstitutional agreements, to insure that a coordinated and responsive statewide extension program is available to the people and institutions of Wisconsin.
- The System Advisory Committee on Outreach (SACO) will be assigned the responsibility for maintaining communications and discussions to minimize unnecessary duplication in program offerings.
- Plans for institutional credit-bearing programs within their primary service areas as set forth in UW System Administrative Policy 130 (SYS 130), Programming for the Non-Traditional Market in the UW System need not be reviewed by UW-Extension and are not subject to statewide coordination.
- Each UW System institution shall review its personnel policies and procedures to give greater assurance that the contributions of the faculty and academic staff involved in the extension function are appropriately recognized.
- The process of integrating UW-Extension faculty and academic staff into UW institutions will conform to the academic policies and follow the established personnel procedures at each institution, be approved by the President, and reported to the Regents. Integration should occur at the School, College, or Departmental level. Any assignment of Extension faculty and academic staff in units of a campus other than its previously existing Schools, Colleges and Departments shall be viewed as transitional in nature.
- When integration involves faculty with probationary or tenure appointments, UW-Extension and the integrating UW institution must negotiate long-term personnel commitments. (see IV.A.)
- UW-Extension faculty shall be granted their current rank and tenure status within the institution in which they are-integrated. UW-Extension academic staff shall be granted their current academic staff statue and salary level within the institution in which they are integrated.
- Faculty and academic staff integrated with a UW institution (1) will have those rights and responsibilities possessed by all other faculty and academic staff as defined by the policies and procedures and other governance documents of the institution; and, (2) will be subject to said policies, procedures and governance documents.
Should a vacancy occur in an integrated position, either by death, resignation, retirement or reassignment, a decision on continuation of the particular extension function being performed will be made following discussions between the two Chancellors involved. Participants in such discussions must recognize that in an integrated department, changes in any extension position may have an impact on how teaching and research commitments are met. At the same time, no functions or positions can be allocated to an institution in perpetuity; analysis of each position vacancy will be one of few ways to achieve budget and personnel flexibility to meet changing needs.If the extension function is to be continued, the position can be refilled by outside recruitment or by reassignment of presently available faculty. Whichever alternative is chosen, the recruitment responsibility and ultimate personnel decision rests with the UW institution into which the function has been integrated, after necessary consultation with the UW-Extension Chancellor.
- In order to encourage greater integration of faculty and academic staff in General Extension with the institutions, when a position becomes vacant the functions performed through it should be met insofar as possible through the appointment or assignment of campus-based faculty or academic staff. Only if the function is one that cannot or should not be performed within an existing campus academic unit should a General Extension position be perpetuated.
III. Extension Programs
- In performing the general extension function, each institution will have the responsibility for program identification, content, implementation, academic quality and accountability within the context of Section I. All cooperative extension programs are federal/state/county-related and planning is one statewide planning process. They are submitted to the USDA and require Dean/Director of Cooperative Extension and USDA approval.
- Statewide planning and coordination of program areas will be the responsibility of UW-Extension in cooperation with the other UW Chancellors (See introduction to Section I, p.2).
- Each Chancellor will assume responsibility for extension program implementation and for the budget associated with those programs at his/her University. Unless major changes in program plans are contemplated, the campus Chancellor shall be authorized to approve any adjustments within the functions to which resources are assigned in order to facilitate effective programming during the year. Major changes in program plans will require review and approval by both Chancellors. Major changes in cooperative extension program plans will require review and approval by the administrator of the Cooperative Extension Service and the administration of Extension Services, USDA.
- A program and budget process will be implemented whereby funds will be allocated from UW-Extension to institutions based on annual interinstitutional agreements reached between the Chancellor of UW-Extension and the Chancellor of each institution involved. Interinstitutional agreements may include three types of commitments: (1) annual commitments to faculty and staff for short-term projects and activities and their program support to implement agreed-upon programs, (2) continuing fiscal support for tenured and probationary faculty (and their program support) with specific long-term assignments to extension activities, and (3) longer term commitments which might support continuing education activities not permanently identified with specific individuals. Allocations based on these long- and short-term commitments will be administered through the UW institutions’ faculty and administrative structures.
- All allocated resources from UW-Extension must be expended by the institution in support of the extension function. Program revenue generated in excess of the projections contained in the interinstitutional agreement should, whenever possible, be expended for extension activities at that university. Likewise, all deficits which occur will be that university’s responsibility. Excesses and deficits are expected to balance out over a three-year period. Chancellors must have some flexibility in this regard, similar to their current responsibilities for the instructional budget, recognizing that their stewardship in extension will be accounted for as part of the annual reviews.
- Following the approval of an interinstitutional agreement by the Chancellors and the allocation of resources from UW-Extension, an accounting mechanism will be set up whereby the institution exercises its responsibility to balance all accounts (expenditures and receipts) by the UW-Extension divisional (i.e., General Extension and Cooperative Extension) structure and furnish fiscal information for the annual review of the interinstitutional agreement (see I.C., V.B. and C.). However, funds need to be separately identifiable for accountability purposes.
- When unanticipated state or federal budget reductions are imposed, the Chancellor of UW-Extension will communicate the magnitude of the reduction in percent and dollars to the other Chancellors concerned. Each university will then have the responsibility for internally managing the reduction of funds allocated to it and of providing the Chancellor of UW-Extension with a report on how the reductions have been handled.
- Any steps in integration should include provision for the necessary administrative and support services, whether through shifts of resources and functions or through continued provision of these services through UW-Extension.
V. Accountability Review
- The final level of responsibility and accountability for UW System resources dedicated to the extension function is in the office of the Chancellor of UWExtension under delegation from the UW System and the Board of Regents.
- Each Chancellor will include a review of his/her extension programming and resource needs as part of the annual budget/academic program meeting with the President of the University of Wisconsin System. The UW System Office of Academic Affairs will monitor the coordinated plan for extension programming, annual budgets, and biennial budget submissions, and any unresolved jurisdictional disputes will also be dealt with at the System level.
The Regent Study Committee is not unmindful of the heavy responsibility being given the Chancellors of the UW institutions to work cooperatively in developing a systemwide extension plan and the specific responsibilities given the Chancellor of UW-Extension. It is expected that the concept of a systemwide, coordinated approach to providing extension programming in response to clientele needs will be supported by the Chancellors and faculties of each institution. It is essential that a positive cooperative environment be established and maintained and that the resources of the state, which are entrusted to the UW System, be utilized in ways which avoid unnecessary duplication and excessive administrative costs, and are directed to responding to the high priority needs of the System and the state.
In concluding this report the Special Regent Study Committee on Extension would like to extend its thanks and appreciation to the many individuals and groups who made written and oral contributions to our study effort. The Committee especially would like to compliment the administration, faculty and staff of UW-Extension for their patience and understanding during the past three years of rather intensive review and analysis of their institution and its functions. They provided any and all information requested in comprehensible form. It enabled the Committee to develop a greater understanding and appreciation of the quality of the personnel and the programming which they have historically provided and continue to provide to the citizens of this state and nation.
*Report of the Special Regent Study Committee on Extension (1982)(Appendix A).
**Chancellor = Executive Dean in UW Centers Unit
University UW = Centers = Institution
Last Revised: March, 1983