In the fall of 2022, IECA asked each county extension council to take a few minutes out of their meeting to answer questions related to which IECA membership benefits they value and what ideas they might have for additional benefits that the association could provide. Additionally, IECA asked them to reflect upon their significant impacts from the last year, the challenges they face, and why they were motivated to serve on the extension council.
"Overall, we found that councils appreciate the benefits that we offer," said Jennifer Vit, IECA Executive Director. "They had some ideas for group purchasing and a few additional ideas for potential new benefits that we might be able to offer. The board of directors will be looking at both of these questions to see where we can continue our service to council members."
"We were really excited to hear council members share their successes from the last year. You can sense their pride in their accomplishments. Similarly, reading their list of challenges can also elicit strong emotions. Some of their challenges are beyond the scope of what we are able to impact, but others inspire us to work with Extension and Outreach administration to find solutions," said Vit.
When asked about their motivation for serving on the council, overwhelmingly councils responded that they want to give back to their communities and improve the lives of those who live in them. They believe in the mission of extension and outreach and want to share this resource with others. This sentiment spilled over into what they enjoy most about being a council member. For many, they like the camaraderie of working with others across the county and they like making a difference for both the youth and adults extension and outreach serves.
You can read the full summary report (17 pages) or the detailed text responses (45 pages) from the IECA membership benefits survey. If you have suggestions for action or questions about the survey, contact Jennifer Vit, IECA Executive Director.