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What is Urban Extension

Urban Extension is a national term that is taking on more and more traction as populations shift from rural areas to more highly concentrated urban areas. While Extension has always offered financial, natural resources, gardening, agriculture, and health & nutrition classes, these courses are now being adapted to the specific needs of urban communities. Rural individuals may need information on large plot gardening and traditional composting, urban residents with less land available might be more interested in container gardening and vermiculture (small-scale composting with worms). Urban Extension is the term used to describe the programs and resources developed specifically for urban and suburban audiences.

Alabama Extension at AAMU provides Urban Extension products and services to meet the needs of Alabama’s urban and suburban residents. Operating out of nine urban centers across Alabama, we work within a network of experts, educators and volunteers to make an impact throughout all 67 Alabama counties.

Who is Urban Extension for?

Urban Extension is for everyone! Regardless of race, religion, age, or country of origin, we want you to feel welcomed and encouraged to participate in our programs and activities. Our programs focus on the needs of underserved audiences and those with limited resources. We provide opportunities through education, outreach, and mentoring to make the communities of Alabama stronger, healthier, wiser, and more prepared.

  • A group of people gathers around a table at a farmers market participating in an Extension propagation lesson.
  • A local school class is in the school gym playing on the Extension dance pads for exercise.
  • A 4-H group is outdoors sample water from a local stream to test.
  • Extension agents, the sheriff's department, and supporters gather for the prescription drug dropbox ribbon cutting.
  • A local elementary school class plants vegetables in their school's raised bed garden.
  • High school students work with an Extension agent, going over a science chart.
  • A group of older adults plant houseplants in pots to take home.
  • Alabama high school students visit the AAMU campus and learn about local wildlife.

Our products and services aim to:

  • Build strong families & communities.
  • Promote healthy eating, exercise, and food safety.
  • Reduce bullying and enhance leadership skills.
  • Promote home & community gardens and enhance green living spaces.
  • Support entrepreneurship and strengthen job search & career-building skills.
  • Foster environmental stewardship and natural resource preservation.
  • Increase volunteerism.
  • Link older adults to resources.
  • Promote financial stability.

How much do Urban Extension programs cost?

Most programs and products that we offer are free, including hands-on workshops, publications, local events, and in-school & after-school classes. We provide these services to communities thanks to dedicated staff & volunteers, community partners, and funding from sponsors & grants. To request an Urban Extension workshop for your classroom, place of worship, or organization, contact your county Extension office.

Contact Us

Alabama Cooperative Extension System
Phone: 256-372-5710
Dawson Building, 1st and 2nd Floor
Alabama A&M Univeristy
     P.O. Box 967
NormalAL  35762
Majed El-Dweik, PhD.
Vice President of Research & Economic Development
Interim Extension Director
majed.dweik@aamu.edu
256-372-4939