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Educational Opportunities, September 18, 2020


OneRD Guarantee Loan Initiative: Annual Notice for FY21 Rates and Terms
Ahead of Fiscal Year 2021, USDA is providing guarantee percentages, annual fees, periodic retention fees, and optional construction fees to help lenders apply for the Agency’s four flagship loan guarantee programs under the OneRD Guarantee Loan Initiative.

Agriculture Innovation Agenda
USDA announced this department-wide initiative to align resources, programs, and research to help position American agriculture to better meet future global demands and stimulate innovation in order increase production by 40 percent while cutting the environmental footprint in half by 2050.

Outdoor Recreation Industry Helps Drive the Economy
The Outdoor Recreation Roundtable offers a review of data released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis on the Outdoor Recreation Industry noting significant positive impacts in this sector as a major generator of quality American jobs in industries ranging from manufacturing to retail to tourism.

Small Business Pulse Survey
This new survey from the U.S. Census Bureau is designed to collect real-time data on the rehiring of laid-off or furloughed employees, work from home data, the use of online platforms to offer goods or services, changes in capacity of businesses, tax deferrals and credits, and data on the Federal Reserve’s Main Street Lending Program.

HHS Rural Action Plan
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services developed a plan to strengthen coordination within the Department and to best serve rural communities through a four-point strategy designed to transform rural health and human services: (1) building a sustainable health and human services model for rural communities, (2) leveraging technology and innovation, (3) focusing on preventing disease and mortality, and (4) increasing rural access to care.

Event Opportunities

National Tribal Broadband Summit
September 21 – 25 | Virtual Summit
The Department of the Interior, in collaboration with USDA and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, will showcase creative solutions to support tribal broadband development by connecting community leaders with information and resources to help identify opportunities for public and private sector solutions on tribal lands.

National Small Business Week: Virtual Conference
September 22 – 24 | Virtual Conference
The U.S. Small Business Administration takes its annual event virtual this year. The event will feature educational panels providing retooling and innovative practices for entrepreneurs as our nation’s small businesses look to pivot and recover toward a stronger economy.

Talent Finance Series
September 22 | Forum 1: Kickoff Event
September 24 |
Forum 2: Building Partnerships
September 29 |
Forum 3: Public-Private Innovations
October 1 | 
Forum 4: Enabling Infrastructure
October 13 |
Forum 5: Capstone Event
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and its partners (Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Greater Houston Partnership, WorkingNation, Cognizant U.S. Foundation, Google.org, JPMorgan Chase, MSFT Philanthropies, Schmidt Futures, and many more) offer a free series to explore new public-private approaches to support talent management and workforce development.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Fast-Forward Summit
September 29 – 30 | Virtual Summit
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation offers this free summit to educate the public about private-sector innovations that are redefining the future. The summit offers a forum for deep-dive conversations and will explore the future of sports, aging, housing, and food.

The SNAP E&T National Work Forum
October 13-14 | St. Louis, MO or Virtual
USDA’s first-ever SNAP Employment and Training (SNAP E&T) National Forum brings together SNAP E&T stakeholders from across the country to share and learn best practices to promote and increase employment among SNAP households through state SNAP E&T programs.

Educational Opportunities, September 1, 2020


Recreation Economy at USDA: Economic Development Resources for Rural Communities
This USDA resource guide addresses key factors necessary to build a sustainable recreational economy including natural resource management, conservation activities, infrastructure investment, business development and more.

Living at Home in Rural America: Improving Accessibility for Older Adults and People with a Disability
USDA, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Housing and Urban Development released a joint informational bulletin on improving accessibility for adults and people with a disability in rural America.

Food Expenditure Series
USDA Economic Research Service provides comprehensive data on the U.S. food system with research quantifying the value of food acquired by type of product, outlet, and purchaser.

Technology Based Learning in Workforce Development & Education: A Review of the Research Literature
U.S. Department of Labor published a workforce report that explores technology-based learning in the public workforce system with highlights on employability, basic literacy, technological literacy, job search skills and occupational training and certification availability.

Educational Resource Library
The U.S. Census Bureau published a virtual library housing a variety of training resources including presentations, recorded webinars and tutorials.

Event Opportunities

NTIA’s Minority Broadband Initiative-USDA Rural Utilities Service Technical Assistance Webinar Series
This technical assistance webinar series will provide Historically Black Colleges and Universities with an overview of the grant application process, guidance for narrative preparation, and how to prepare budget/financial statements in an application for USDA’s Distance Learning & Telemedicine, Community Connect, and Reconnect programs. Register for each webinar below. Recordings will be provided in a later issue of Innovation Matters.

How to Supercharge Your Grant Research
September 15 | Webinar
CharityHowTo offers this free webinar to strengthen grant research skills and discuss the best use of tools to create and support a grant seeking plan and winning strategy.

Advancing the Response to COVID-19: Sharing Promising Programs and Practices for Racial and Ethnic Minority Communities
September 17 | Webinar 
HHS Office of Minority Health will host a virtual symposium to highlight state, Tribal, territorial, and community-based efforts to address COVID-19 among racial and ethnic minority populations.

National Tribal Broadband Summit
September 21 – 25, 2020 | Virtual Summit
The Department of the Interior, in collaboration with USDA and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, will showcase creative solutions to support tribal broadband development by connecting community leaders with information and resources to help identify opportunities for public and private sector solutions on tribal lands.

Connecting Entrepreneurial Communities
November 9-13, 2020 | Virtual Conference
Hosted by a team of University Extension Offices, this community development initiative brings together entrepreneurs, business leaders, economic development professionals, decision makers, and community champions to strengthen and broaden regional entrepreneurial networks.

Expanding CDFI Coverage in Underserved Areas
Pre-recorded | Webinars
The U.S. Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institute Fund (CDFI) offers a practical guide to market analysis including reasons and timing for doing one and the steps to take in conducting a successful analysis include defining research goals, scoping the target market, understanding the research design and methodology, setting concrete timelines and budget, and implementation goals.

Innovation Matters Education Opportunities 8/18/2020


Data Gems
The U.S. Census Bureau offers a series of short videos for data users who are looking for an easy and quick way to enhance their knowledge of Census data and concepts.

Regulations for Opportunity Zones and Brownfields Redevelopment
The Internal Revenue Service provides an overview of information to help local governments meet goals for sustainable and equitable development. 

How to Prepare for Natural Disasters: A Pre-Disaster Toolkit for Small to Medium-Sized Communities
U.S. EPA Urban Waters Federal Partnership toolkit designed to help small- to medium-size communities jump-start their natural disaster planning process.

Conservation at Work
USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service video series consists of short videos that highlight common conservation practices. Videos spotlight farmers, ranchers, and forestland owners across the United States who tell their conservation stories, and how practices are helping them protect and improve resources and save time and money.

The Food Assistance Landscape: Fiscal Year 2019 Annual Report
USDA's Economic Research Service publication offers research data on USDA’s 15 domestic food and nutrition programs.

Event Opportunities

OneRD Guarantee Loan Initiative Listening Session
Virtual | Wednesday, Aug 19, 2020 at 1:30 PM EDT
USDA is seeking public comment on a series of regulatory reforms known collectively as the OneRD Guarantee Loan Initiative. Under the initiative, USDA will eliminate duplicative processes and launch a single platform for four key loan programs.

Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Education and Workforce Development
August 19 | Webinar
USDA’s NIFA offers and information session regarding the AFRI EWD Program which addresses the need for training or retraining of agricultural workforce and focuses on developing the next generation of research, education, and extension professionals in the food and agricultural sciences. AFRI EWD RFA.

Providing Perspective during COVID-19 Using Census Data
August 19 | Webinar
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Local Employment Dynamics Partnership in collaboration with the Council for Community and Economic Research and the Labor Market Information Institute unveil data relative to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Spawning Sustainable Tourism Initiatives via Regional Collaboration
August 20 | Webinar
National Extension Tourism Design Team features Michigan State University Extension’s case study of best practices for successful collaboration, lessons learned and benefits to work regionally and produce deliverables.

Agri/Ecotourism: Put Your Surroundings to Work
August 20 | Virtual Conference
International Economic Development Council learning session to highlight how supporting agritourism and ecotourism resources will create business retention & expansion and more.

National Tribal Broadband Summit
September 21 – 25, 2020 | Virtual Summit
The Department of the Interior, in collaboration with USDA and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, will showcase creative solutions to support tribal broadband development by connecting community leaders with information and resources to help identify opportunities for public and private sector solutions on tribal lands.

Innovation Matters Education Opportunities August 4, 20202

  • Publications

Community Prosperity Resource Matrix
The Centers of Community Prosperity offers a resource to provide easy access to information about USDA programs, tools, and data sources that foster hope and opportunity, asset building and wealth creation in rural and underserved communities.

Pathway to Recovery
The U.S. Department of Labor, through WorkforceGPS, offers workforce tools and tips for communities, business, individuals and stakeholders to support job creation, job stabilization, infrastructure and workforce support. Quick Start Action Planner.

The Wind Energy Workforce in the United States: Training, Hiring, and Future Needs
National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s technical report outlining evidence that there are dynamics beyond supply and demand at play, there is a Workforce Gap. Collegiate Wind Competition.

Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI) - Tools and Resources
U.S. Department of Treasury online resource offering tools and links and a list of current certified CDFIs, many of which make loans to small businesses and provide technical assistance.

Event Opportunities

USDA Resources in Agriculture: Supportive Options for Native Farmers & Ranchers in the Time of COVID-19
August 5 | Webinar
Oweesta Corporation is hosting a panel discussion highlighting USDA resources that can be used to support Native farmers and ranchers during this pandemic.

Connect Americans Now: Bridging the Digital Divide for Rural & Underserved Communities
August 5 | Webinar
National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health offers this session for State Offices of Rural Health and their stakeholders interested in forming health partnerships with the community development sector to support positive impacts with rural health initiatives.

Building Community Capacity Around Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers
Session 1 | August 5 at 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. CT / 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. ET
Session 2 | August 6 at 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. CT / 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. ET
USDA’s Office of Partnerships & Public Engagement, in collaboration with the Regional Rural Development Centers and the Rural Development Innovation Center, offers a multi-day virtual workshop on Building Community Capacity around Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers.

Exploring Census Data Webinar Series: New Businesses Statistics
August 11 | Webinar

Census Bureau’s subject matter experts will provide practical ways to use our business data from economic programs to dive into business expansions and contractions.

National Tribal Broadband Summit
September 21 – 25, 2020 | Virtual
The Department of the Interior, in collaboration with USDA and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, will offer a unique opportunity to showcase creative solutions to some of the biggest barriers to tribal broadband development to move to close the digital divide in Indian Country by connecting community leaders with information and resources to identify opportunities for public and private sector solutions on tribal lands.



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