May 8 declared Virginia Cooperative Extension Day

VCE celebrationMore than 500 people gathered on Virginia Tech’s Ag Quad on May 8 to celebrate Virginia Cooperative Extension Day and the 100-year anniversary of the Smith-Lever Act. Congress passed the Smith-Lever Act on May 8, 1914, creating the Cooperative Extension Service, a state-by-state national network of educators who extend university-based knowledge to the people. In recognition of Extension’s centennial, Gov. Terry McAuliffe proclaimed May 8 Virginia Cooperative Extension Day in Virginia.

Faculty and staff members from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the College of Natural Resources and Environment, and the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine shared information and exhibits that represented more than
40 different Extension programs and departments. Attendees enjoyed cake and ice cream while visiting with representatives from the college and Extension about their programs.

VCE celebrationPrior to the showcase event, a luncheon was held where Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger and Virginia State University President Keith Miller addressed those in attendance. John Dooley, chief executive officer of the Virginia Tech Foundation; Jewel Hairston, dean of the College of Agriculture at Virginia State University and administrator of the 1890 Extension Program; and Edwin Jones, associate dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech and director of Virginia Cooperative Extension, provided insight on Virginia Cooperative Extension — then, now, and in the future.

These events were just two of many special activities taking place over the next several months to celebrate Extension’s centennial. To see the events being held in communities across the commonwealth, visit