Development of Cooperative Extension programs depends upon the skills and abilities of competent Extension professionals. The most effective manner of building program development competencies in these Extension professionals is through professional development. A wide variety of competencies are necessary for Extension professionals to develop programs, including strong interpersonal skills. Differences exist between the professional development efforts of Extension institutions and are highlighted herein. Major challenges to delivery of professional development include time and budget, but these can be overcome through planning and innovation and use of online or hybrid methods. Professional development for program development is essential to furthering Extension’s mission, especially during times of rapid change.



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