Community Development

MU Extension helps people create communities of the future. Community development education helps citizens tap into local strengths and university resources.

Missouri communities are made up of more than the people who live and work there. Every community is a tight-knit fabric of relationships, woven by the leadership of its citizens and partnerships of local businesses and agencies to build better lives for all residents. The Community Development Program works collaboratively with communities to foster economic development, leadership development, community decision making, community emergency preparedness and inclusive communities.

ExCEED — Extension Community Economic and Entrepreneurial Development
Recognizing that new approaches to rural economic development are essential to ensure a strong economic future, the university partners with rural communities to identify and implement new strategies for community economic development.

CEMP — Community Emergency Management Program
Provides education and technical assistance to individual and families, local governments, businesses, schools and organizations in preparing and responding to natural and man-made disasters.

EXCEL — EXperience in Community Enterprise and Leadership
In the EXCEL program, leadership learning experiences are tailored to individual community needs and resources. The program's adaptable, flexible curriculum is designed by local residents with assistance from MU Extension specialists.

Step Up to Leadership
This course builds the capacity of community-minded people who want to make a difference, are interested in group processes and the complexities of collaboration, and are ready to take on the challenge of leadership.

Community Decision Support
Using a variety of tools, Community Decision Support enhances local capacity to make sound policy choices. Tools include economic models, demographic analysis, Geographical Information System (GIS) mapping and fiscal impact tools.

Data tools to support community decisions:

  • CARES — Center for Applied Research and Environmental Systems
  • Community Commons
  • CPAC — Community Policy Analysis Center
  • OSEDA — Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis
  • PPRC — Public Policy Research Center

Community Planning
Groups, organizations and communities develop a vision, identify priorities, develop an action agenda, and successfully develop and implement programs and projects.