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Centennial Celebration attracts hundreds to Fort Valley State

Published: 09/08/14 9:27AM
By: booner

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Brenda Maddox, Fort Valley State University’s Marion County extension agent, displays the proper use of a car seat to Jacquelyn Rumph of Fort Valley and Ponda Ball of Dry Branch in the Health and Physical Education Complex during the Cooperative Extension Centennial Celebration Sept. 6.

While Fort Valley State University alumni and students were filled with excitement anticipating the kickoff of the first home football game; hundreds of Georgians from across the state were on the other side of campus celebrating another cause.

On Saturday Sept. 6, from 10 a.m. -1 p.m., more than 300 parents, children and seniors flocked to FVSU’s Health and Physical Education Complex to attend FVSU’s Cooperative Extension Centennial Celebration.

The celebration commemorated the signing of the 1914 Smith-Lever Act. This act helped to establish the Cooperative Extension System at land-grant universities. The Cooperative Extension System is a national educational network comprised of universities like Fort Valley State University and the University of Georgia. FVSU’s Cooperative Extension Program (CEP) operates regional offices in more than 25 Georgia counties.  Free research based programming and services are offered to farmers, small business owners, youth and seniors by 14 FVSU county extension agents, two FVSU program assistants and additional FVSU CEP personnel.

Joy Moten -Thomas, FVSU’s assistant administrator for community development and outreach, said the centennial celebration achieved its goal of informing people about the services provided by FVSU’s CEP. “I think our program today exceeded our expectations,” Moten-Thomas said.

The assistant administrator said the projected turnout was expected to be 200-250 people, but more than 300 participants attended the event. Moten-Thomas also said many of the participants expressed an interest in the services provided by FVSU’s CEP. “We have definitely gained a slew of new clients that will be utilizing our services in their respective communities.”

During the celebration, participants visited more than 14 exhibits showcasing FVSU’s Cooperative Extension programming. They were also treated to free cake and ice cream, and a visit from FVSU’s Wildcat mascots and cheerleaders prior to kickoff of the first home football game against Delta State University.

Jacquelyn Rumph, a native of Fort Valley is one of the hundreds of visitors that attended the celebration. Rumph, a retiree of the Macon County School System, taught vocational home economics for 30 years. She said she visited each one of the exhibits, but had a keen interest in the organics and Georgia Residential Energy Efficiency Network (GREEN) Program exhibit. 

The veteran educator said she was impressed with the celebration and will recommend FVSU’s CEP to anyone needing assistance. “If they (people) need any information regarding anything dealing with home life, insurance and estate planning, they should contact the Cooperative Extension Office. They just about have a program for anything you’re interested in,” Rumph said. 

For more information about FVSU’s Cooperative Extension Program visit the Outreach/Extension page or call 478.825.6296.