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Extension is expanding its online education and resources to adapt to COVID-19 restrictions.

Vital Connections

Learn more about topics important to Minnesota communities through articles, videos and podcasts. Find stories and information to help you get engaged in your community. Help others better know, decide and act.

Community features

An educator walking with two emerging leaders in a community

Greater Minnesota’s communities respond to calls for racial understanding

How does a community become more welcoming for everyone? Learn some reasons to create change and read stories from communities that are taking action to be more inclusive.

Space between stimulus and response

Space between stimulus and response

[video] Have you ever said something that you later regret? Get ideas on recognizing and controlling how you respond emotionally.

A Minnesota State Fair grounds sign reads 'Hang in there Minnesota'

Festivals and events during a pandemic

[podcast] Festivals and events around the state and country have seen many changes in 2020. Listen as we discuss how organizers and community members can weather the storm.

All articles, podcasts and videos

Find content on topics that include:

  • Community development (e.g. attracting new residents, evaluating programs and local foods)
  • Community economics (e.g. local economies, retail, retaining businesses and workforce)
  • Leadership and civic engagement (e.g. assessing and developing leaders, facilitation, building trust and engaging communities)
  • Tourism development (e.g. learning about visitors and planning festivals and events)

[video] Do you say "it is what it is," especially when in a challenging situation? Learn how saying "it is as I am" instead can help you live and lead with intention.

[video] When do you stop "doing" to "being"? Learn about finding informal moments to meditate can help you reset.

A visit to Willmar, Minnesota's Vision 20/40 website makes creating community change look easy.

[video] Are you easily distracted or struggle to make decisions when many things are on your mind? Watch a short video and learn three strategies to help you focus.

[podcast] Festivals and events around the state and country have seen many changes in 2020. Listen as we discuss how organizers and community members can weather the storm.

[video] How can you increase your compassion for others? Watch and learn three tips to build empathy and connection, even with someone you don't know.

[podcast] Minnesota's workforce is changing. Our workers are aging and new employees are often newcomers to our country. Listen as we discuss the impact of immigrants in our labor market.

[video] How can you handle feeling socially isolated? Watch our video and learn about oxytocin and ways to lessen that feeling and connect with others.

In communities across Greater Minnesota, graduates of Extension's leadership education programs are stepping up to make a difference in the places where they live and work.

[video] How do you thank others? Learn about a technique to hone your gratitude skills to increase your well-being.

Retail is a mainstay for Minnesota’s economy. It adds to our economic output and jobs. Looking deeper shows shops and retail contribution is more than economic.

[podcast] Listen to our inaugural podcast episode focusing on the leadership journey and resiliency of tribal leaders. In this episode we talk with Bradley Harrington, Jr.

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