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Atchison County

Career Celebration for Diane Nielson January 26

     The Atchison county extension will host a career celebration for          Diane Nielson on Wednesday afternoon, January 26, as a come and go from 3 to 6 at the YMCA community room in Atchison. The public is invited to attend and especially those that have had working relationships with Nielson. 
      The Atchison County Extension Board will be hosting a "come n go" reception to celebrate her career of 32 years bringing many "healthy living" programs to our community. We will miss her professional skills and passion to teach all ages as she exits because of reduced local funding.
      Atchison county has been fortunate to have dedicated extension agent Diane Nielson leading educational programming in family and consumer science and positive 4-H youth development for thirty-two years. K-State Research and Extension Atchison County programs will look much different next year. Local funding to the extension program was reduced by $52,000. Sadly, long-term extension agent Diane Nielson will be exiting the program after a 32 year career in Atchison County.   

      Her careful identification of local issues and passion for educating county residents has reached a wide variety of audiences during her career as Atchison County Extension Agent. Her personal interest in such topics of nutrition, food safety, health and well-being, early childhood development, aging and leadership development has caused her to bring research and evidence-based solutions to Atchison county. Nielson has brought innovative teaching methods to individuals and families to offer self-improving ideas to improve their quality of lives. Coaching 4-Hers to develop leadership, citizenship and life skills that help prepare local youth for school, careers and life. 4-H camp and teaching youth to develop leadership, community service and life skills have been career highlights.                                                           Nielson has been an advocate for children, families and vulnerable citizens and has led educational programs that have been about creating healthy communities and has reached thousands of Atchison Countians yearly. While actively involved in the Atchison community with local extension program efforts; Neilson’s program successes have been adopted on regional, state, and national levels. Likewise her career accomplishments include president of both Kansas Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences and the Kansas Extension Agents Association.                                                                  There were many Family and Consumer Science activities and programs Diane was instrumental to share locally.                                                              If you are unable to attend and would like to share a greeting, a card with a memory to be shared on the 26th can be mailed to the Atchison Co Extension Office, PO Box 109, Effingham, KS 66023. Additionally, if you would like to make a donation; that will be collected and given for personal travel or for Dolly Parton literacy. Mail donations separately to the Atchison County Extension Office to arrive by the 25th. If you have questions, do call the Extension Office  913-833-5450.                                                              We do hope you can attend on the 26th and greet Diane. 

Career Celebration


How do I freeze it? Find the answer here 

Community Challenge

Atchison County Extension Council partnered with the state-wide Kansas Beats The Virus campaign. Learn more about Kansas Beats The Virus activities across our state; visit the Kansas Leadership Center website.

banner and yard  signs

Our local neighbor to neighbor campaign shared yard signs and banners across Atchison County as a reminder to support each other.  With the current increase of COVID spread in Atchison County, we encourage you to talk to  your health care provider regarding the pros and cons of the avaialble COVID vaccines. 

Kansas farm boy, Dr. Barney Graham, currently serves as deputy director of the National Institutes of Health Vaccine Research Center. He spoke to his fellow Kansans on March 18, 2021, about the science behind the COVID-19 vaccine technolog.  Graham helped develop the mRNA vaccine technology. He  stressed the importance of vaccinating the majority of our population so we can end this pandemic together.

Dr. Graham, who grew up in Olathe and Paola, Kansas, is a world-renowned immunologist and virologist whose team developed a technological approach that is the foundation of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. His innovation allowed research into the rapid creation of microscopically precise vaccines that can be specially tuned to combat emerging viruses that can cause a pandemic.

Graham credits his Kansas farm roots to help him learn to solve problems.

Dr. Barney Graham video

Farm Stress

Living Well Together Virtual Learning

Our spring gathering to learn seriess will resume this fall. Plan to join us on  Wednesdays. Our  bi-monthly fall schedule will be posted in September.  Discover more about our  Living Well Together virtual education series and tune into prevous sessions. The link provides recordings plus  educational resources from previous sessions.

Relationships Matter


Developmental relationships are the roots of young people’s success. They are essential for all young people, in every community. When young people experience these relationships in their families, schools, programs, and communities, they are more likely to be resilient in the face of challenges and grow up to thrive.



Stressful times strain relationships. How are you doing? A few thoughts from our friends at the Search Institute.

This past year, it is has been more difficult to stay meaningfully connected with the young people in our lives. Yet our relationships are vital to their wellbeing and thriving. Relationships are the source of nourishment and resilience for all young people in many different circumstances and from many different backgrounds.

We can have great relationships. Some areas are stronger (and come easier) than others. And relationships can become strained when they are disrupted or in times of stress or crisis . . . Like in a global health pandemic.

Whether you’re someone who works with young people and now connects only through technology, a parent, or an essential worker trying to care for children and keep your job, you’ve likely experienced significant disruptions and strains in your relationships with young people during this challenging year.

So perhaps it’s time for a relationships check-up. Complete this quick Relationships Check to learn where your relationships with important young people are particularly strong and where they can grow. You’ll receive actionable approaches and activities to strengthen relationships with young people.  Consider joining the thousands who have taken the quiz. 


A note about this tool: The Relationships Check is a tool for self-reflection and conversation among peers and within families. It was not designed for—and has not been tested for—formal assessment, testing, or diagnostic purposes.