The goal of the award winning UF/IFAS Extension calendar is to inform legislators, community leaders and the general public of the beneficial work that UF/IFAS Extension does for the state of Florida. It accomplishes that goal in the form of a useful calendar that also serves as an annual report.
UF/IFAS Communications conducted a feedback session with program leaders, and three special objectives were identified for the 2014 calendar:
- To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Cooperative Extension Service
- To show that Extension is focused on the present and future
- To make the calendar more useful to users
The audience for this publication includes Florida legislators, community leaders, elected officials, county Extension agents, researchers, faculty, administration and the general public.
The calendar/annual report is a yearly publication, distributed to all UF/IFAS departments and county Extension offices. An alligator illustration was used on the cover to create a type of University of Florida “branding” for the calendar.
The theme for the 2014 calendar is “Solutions for the Next 100 Years.” Copy for each calendar month focused on a ‘buzzword’ in current use to introduce an issue likely to gain in importance for readers over the next century (e.g., Sustainable Living, Wildland-Urban Interface). Small feature stories defined the issues and described how Extension programs were helping to meet future challenges.
We produce an eye-catching piece by using the beauty of Florida landscapes to enhance the visual appeal of the calendar and, in turn, this entices busy users to pick it up and read it. We improved the utility of the 2014 calendar by adding special event dates and by printing on a matte paper stock to make it easier to pencil in important dates. A timeline of milestones in Florida Extension history was added to help celebrate the Extension Centennial.
Links to Facebook and Twitter were prominently featured on the back cover to encourage involvement in social media. The calendar also acts as a marketing tool for the Extension Solutions for Your Life website, which in turn increases awareness of Extension programs.
Extent to which project met goals and objectives
The calendar is always well received by the recipients. There has been an increase in requests for the calendar over previous years and an increase in hits on the Extension Solutions for Your Life website, which can be partially attributed to the distribution of this publication.