Catch Up With Chuck Episode 20 Creating The Future For Rural with Microsoft GM Shelley McKinley

 

Mar. 30, 2018

In this episode, Chuck is joined by Shelley McKinley, General Manager of Technology and Corporate Responsibility at Microsoft. The Rural Futures Institute hosted McKinley Wednesday, Mar. 28, through Friday, Mar. 30, to share ideas on rural connectivity, accessibility and sustainability.

Microsoft has placed special importance on rural area connectivity as well as artificial intelligence for inclusion. It is currently partnering with telecommunications companies through its Rural Airband Initiative to bring broadband connectivity to 2 million people in rural America by 2022, hoping to serve as a catalyst to help eliminate the rural broadband gap for the 23.4 million Americans living in rural communities who lack access to the economic, educational and health opportunities the internet provides.

The Rural Futures Institute’s big hairy audacious goal is a thriving high-touch, high-tech future for rural Nebraska and the Great Plains by 2040. As Microsoft works to build a better future, McKinley shared how her company is connecting people within and beyond rural areas, so everyone has access to the opportunities that technology provides. She believes it is important to move forward with technology without leaving people behind.

“The future is a multi-stakeholder discussion. There’s no one company or one person or one institution or one community that can do it alone.”

-Shelley McKinley

 

Microsoft’s mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. McKinley believes it is important to visit communities and go into the field to better understand the people they serve.

Perhaps one of the best parts of McKinley’s visit to Nebraska was the opportunity to meet and engage with University of Nebraska students. “You have an amazing group of creative, innovative, motivated, passionate students here, and I frankly have no concerns about their ability to be successful,” she said. She believes it is important to invest in youth and help the leaders of the future.

The Rural Futures Institute believes in people’s capacity to shape their own futures, as well as the dependence on collaboration and respect for the development of our complex future. McKinley agrees that the future requires an exchange of ideas and shared learning. She is excited about this new relationship between Microsoft and the Rural Futures Institute and looks forward to a continued collaboration between the two.

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Catch Up With Chuck is Facebook Live series with Rural Futures Institute Founding Executive Director Chuck Schroeder. Airing most Thursdays at 11:15 a.m. (CST) on RFI’s Facebook Page, Chuck uses this time to discuss critical rural topics and the latest about RFI while answering viewers’ questions. Stay in touch with Catch Up With Chuck and the Rural Futures Institute through Facebook and Twitter. We will be back soon with another episode looking at rural people and places, success stories, innovators, thinkers and doers who are making rural communities a legitimate best choice for worthwhile living.

 

Graphic Design, Project Management Summer Internships at RFI!

 

The Rural Futures Institute at the University of Nebraska is seeking TWO stellar University of Nebraska students to be part of our bold voice for rural.

Apply April 8, 2018!

 

Join us in an engaged working environment that will expand your leadership and professional skills as well as your comfort zone and network. All details and application instructions available via the links below!

 

Catch Up With Chuck Episode 19 Developing Student Potential with RFI Fellow Reshell Ray

 

Mar. 22, 2018

Joining Chuck in this week’s episode of Catch Up With Chuck is RFI Community Innovation Fellow Reshell Ray, who serves as the Associate Director of Student Involvement on East Campus at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

In this role, Ray bridges the gap between the academic and co-curricular experiences for students. She has a heart for people, especially those who are considered to be at risk, and she works to help individuals develop their full potential building on their strength and talents.

Prior to this role, Ray served as a consulting associate with the Heartland Center for Leadership Development where she worked with grassroots community organizations in the areas of strategic planning, capacity building, leadership and racial reconciliation. Most recently, she collaborated with the Center for Civic Engagement, Engler Entrepreneurial program and Nebraska Human Resources Institute to develop what is now RFI Student Serviceship.

“Collaboration is so vital because none of us can resolve things in a bubble. So, being able to create that connection between urban and rural is really important and very critical as we continue to move forward.”

-Reshell Ray

 

The Rural Futures Institute believes that diverse and inclusive leadership is needed to propel rural communities forward. Ray agrees that diversity and respect is necessary in leadership and participation to develop a community.

Ray agrees with the Rural Futures Institute’s belief that our complex future requires mutual respect and collaboration between rural and urban regions and communities. Ray believes that the success of Nebraska is dependent on collaboration between urban and rural. She believes it is important to recognize the connections and interdependence between urban and rural communities to resolve issues and move forward collectively.

“I can honestly say there is no place like Nebraska,” said Ray. She values the relationships she has built with students on a one-on-one basis while developing their individual potential at the University of Nebraska.

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Catch Up With Chuck is Facebook Live series with Rural Futures Institute Founding Executive Director Chuck Schroeder. Airing most Thursdays at 11:15 a.m. (CST) on RFI’s Facebook Page, Chuck uses this time to discuss critical rural topics and the latest about RFI while answering viewers’ questions. Stay in touch with Catch Up With Chuck and the Rural Futures Institute through Facebook and Twitter. We will be back soon with another episode looking at rural people and places, success stories, innovators, thinkers and doers who are making rural communities a legitimate best choice for worthwhile living.

 

University of Nebraska Leaders Discuss Rural Strategies, Opportunities

Video features: Charles Bicak, University of Nebraska at Kearney, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs; B.J. Reed, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; Dele Davies, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; Michael Boehm, University of Nebraska–Lincoln, Vice Chancellor for Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Through the Rural Futures Institute and other initiatives, the University of Nebraska works to create a thriving rural future for the state. This means providing access to education that encourages leadership and entrepreneurial development and focusing on recruitment and retention efforts by creating economic development opportunities, health care access, technology connectivity and more.

University of Nebraska academic leaders from each of the four campuses spoke with RFI Fellows last fall. This video shares some clips of what they had to say.

Check out a listing of several resources and programs for rural communities from the University of Nebraska at http://ruralfutures.nebraska.edu/why/.

Microsoft GM to Discuss Tech for Rural Connectivity, Accessibility, Sustainability 3/28 at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Online

Let's Connect To Change The World

“Technology can be a powerful tool in helping create change and improve people’s lives,” Shelley McKinley, Microsoft

Shelley McKinley, Microsoft GM

Shelley McKinley, Microsoft

Shelley McKinley, General Manager of Technology and Corporate Responsibility at Microsoft, will discuss this fundamental belief and its application for the future on Mar. 28, 3 – 4 p.m. (CST), at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management. Her presentation entitled, “Let’s Connect The World To Change The World,” is hosted by the Rural Futures Institute (RFI) at the University of Nebraska. It is free, and students, faculty, staff and the public are encouraged to attend in the Kauffman Academic Center, Great Hall.

Connectivity and overall access to technology are critical areas of need for rural economic development, health care access, education and more. As Microsoft works to build a better future, McKinley will share how her company is connecting people within and beyond rural areas, so everyone has access to the opportunities that technology provides. She will deep dive into the use of technology, such as artificial intelligence, to create environmental sustainability, connect 1 billion people around the world with disabilities and prepare the workforce of the future.

“The Rural Futures Institute continues to connect rural communities and our University community to bring our conversations to the leading-edge of possibility,” said Connie Reimers-Hild, RFI Associate Executive Director and Chief Futurist. “Exponential changes in technology require evolution in leadership, strategy and mindset. The way we view the world shapes what we see and what we think is possible. Increasing our awareness about the use of current and future technologies with companies like Microsoft will help us create new possibilities for rural communities.”

McKinley assumed her role as GM for Technology and Corporate Responsibility in September 2017. Throughout her 10-year career at Microsoft, she has served as Associate General Counsel, based in Amsterdam, where she led all corporate, external and legal affairs work for the company’s European subsidiaries. She has also been responsible for the legal work for Microsoft’s hardware products, manufacturing and supply chain, as well as the Xbox games publishing business and Microsoft Learning.

Microsoft has recently placed special importance on rural broadband throughout the U.S. It is currently partnering with telecommunications companies through its Rural Airband Initiative to bring broadband connectivity to 2 million people in rural America by 2022, hoping to serve as a catalyst to help eliminate the rural broadband gap for the 23.4 million Americans living in rural communities who lack access to the economic, educational and health opportunities the internet provides.

VistaBeam CEO Matt Larsen from Scottsbluff, Neb., will welcome attendees to the presentation. Larsen, a University of Nebraska–Lincoln graduate, launched Vistabeam in 2004 to provide broadband access into unserved and underserved areas in Western Nebraska. Vistabeam serves some of the most rural and sparsely populated parts of Nebraska, Colorado and Wyoming with wireless and fiber broadband connectivity.

“Companies like mine have been working for years with minimal outside support to deliver broadband to rural communities,” Larsen said. “We are very excited to have Microsoft getting involved in this space and their Airband initiative, digital skills training and technology licensing of TV white space technology will move the needle toward far better broadband services in rural areas.”

Event details and live stream at http://ruralfutures.nebraska.edu/events.

Facebook event at https://www.facebook.com/events/746729432167515/.

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About the Microsoft Technology and Corporate Responsibility Group
The Microsoft technology and corporate responsibility group delivers on Microsoft’s mission of empowering every person and organization on the planet to achieve more by driving the digital transformation and readiness of high impact organizations including universities, cities and political campaigns, and through leadership and innovation of technology in the high impact areas of human rights, accessibility, environmental sustainability and broadband access.
microsoft.com/en-us/about/corporate-responsibility

About the Rural Futures Institute
The Rural Futures Institute (RFI) at the University of Nebraska leverages the talents and research-based expertise from across the NU system on behalf of rural communities in Nebraska, the U.S. and around the world. Through a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship, RFI encourages bold and futuristic approaches to address rural issues and opportunities. It works collaboratively with education, business, community, non-profit, government and foundation partners to empower rural communities and their leaders.
ruralfutures.nebraska.edu

About Vistabeam
Vistabeam has deployed fiber and wireless broadband systems covering approximately 40,000 square miles across Wyoming, Colorado, South Dakota and Nebraska. Vistabeam was named WISPA Operator of the Year for 2010. Vistabeam CEO, Matt Larsen, is one of the founders of the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association. He also serves on the Broadband Infrastructure Technology Advisory Group and has been a speaker at WISPCON, ISPCON, EC-Expo, FCC Wireless Broadband Access Task Force, The Broadband Expo, WISPAPALOOZA, WISPAMERICA and the Tom Osborne Leadership Conference.
vistabeam.com

Media Contact
Katelyn Ideus
Director of Communications
Rural Futures Institute
C: (402) 695-5886
E: kideus@nebraska.edu

Media are welcome to attend the 3/28 presentation, and media availability will immediately follow. There is also media availability 3/29, 9 – 10 a.m. (CST). Contact Katelyn Ideus to schedule.

Students of RFI | Amber Ross

Article by: Amber Ross, sophomore agribusiness major at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln

 

Ross speaking during the student panel portion of the 2015 Rural Futures Institute International Conference

My Experiences

During one event, I was able to spend some time with the future of West Point. (Pictured L-R: Ross, Silva, Severin)

In 2015, as senior at Callaway High School, in Callaway, Neb., I did not really know what I wanted to do with myself after graduation or where I was going to head after college. I had been working with a leadership team on the development of Custer County and was asked to share my experience at the Rural Futures Institute’s Annual Conference. Hearing all the stories of development, growth, retention, and the social impact from the other people on the panel changed my outlook on the rural communities around Nebraska.

In 2017, I had the chance to really immerse myself in a new community and understand what all those people had been talking about. As an RFI Student Serviceship intern I was able to live, work and play in West Point, Neb., for the summer. I learned about the community’s hidden gems, passion for development and hope for the future. Working in West Point helped me realize my passion for developing rural communities in Nebraska.

Since completing my serviceship experience, I have started looking for ways to reach out to communities and change the narrative surrounding “rural,” which I have been able to accomplish as a student intern in the RFI office. I have been helping research and plan various events and interviews. Working in the office has helped me expand my network with people from across the nation that are also interested in rural and everything that surrounds it. This will come in handy as I pursue a career in community development post-graduation. As the summer approaches, I look forward to completing a second serviceship experience, this time in Columbus, Neb., where I will work on a number of high-priority projects with the Chamber of Commerce.

“I can tell you that I would not be the person I am, or be on the path I am, without RFI. RFI gives me hope for the future of rural communities across the state, the nation, and the world. RFI means HOPE.”

 

My Definition of RFI

My experience with RFI can be summarized in three words:

  • Connections
  • Service
  • Innovation

The connections that RFI has made for people around the state are invaluable. The network that RFI has established is far reaching, on both the national and international levels. They work with people from Australia, Japan, Washington D.C., and Washington state, just to name a few.

The service that RFI has provided to students, like myself, and to communities is unparalleled. RFI has inspired students to learn more about rural communities and has empowered Nebraska’s communities to grow and advance. There is no way that I could have served communities the way I have without RFI.

Finally, RFI is encouraging people to think about “rural” in a totally new way. RFI is using podcasts, Facebook Live posts and Instagram posts to show people what rural really is and how important rural communities are. They are reaching out to forward-thinking leaders to help start the conversation.

What RFI Means

I can tell you that I would not be the person I am, or be on the path I am, without RFI. RFI gives me hope for the future of rural communities across the state, the nation and the world. RFI means HOPE.

Catch Up With Chuck Episode 17 Creating Rural Opportunities with NU Student Shelby Riggs

 

Mar. 8, 2018

Joining Chuck in this week’s episode of Catch Up With Chuck is University of Nebraska student Shelby Riggs from Mitchell, South Dakota. She is involved with the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship Program and is a RFI Student Serviceship alum.

Riggs decided to go out-of-state to further her education after seeing the personalization of programs at the University of NebraskaLincoln. She was also drawn to Nebraska because of the indoor arena at the Animal Science Complex on campus and the many activities offered. She sees extracurricular activities as areas in which a student can supplement his or her education and put it to use.

Because she is interested in serving rural communities and seeing rural opportunities, Riggs was drawn to the RFI Student Serviceship program. Her serviceship was focused on helping with a community marketing project in York, Nebraska, and preparing for an LB840 election.

The Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship Program has allowed Riggs to create her own “Engler experience” with a family business management class, the innovation studio, Engler rallies and networking opportunities.

 

“If we are able to capture the essence of our rural communities—what makes us special, why do we stay here—and then share it with other people. “

-Shelby Riggs

 

Riggs believes in the importance of rural areas, and she hopes to return to a rural community to build her career after she graduates. She is passionate about using agri-tourism, ecotourism and other rural-based adventures as economic development tools for rural areas. RFI believes in people’s capacity to shape their own futures.

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Catch Up With Chuck is Facebook Live series with Rural Futures Institute Founding Executive Director Chuck Schroeder. Airing most Thursdays at 11:15 a.m. (CST) on RFI’s Facebook Page, Chuck uses this time to discuss critical rural topics and the latest about RFI while answering viewers’ questions. Stay in touch with Catch Up With Chuck and the Rural Futures Institute through Facebook and Twitter. We will be back soon with another episode looking at rural people and places, success stories, innovators, thinkers and doers who are making rural communities a legitimate best choice for worthwhile living.

 

Catch Up With Chuck Episode 18 Rural Economic Development with Neb. DED Director David Rippe

 

Mar. 15, 2018

Joining Chuck in this week’s episode of Catch Up With Chuck is David Rippe, director of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development. He is passionate about Nebraska’s economic vitality in all parts of the state.

Leadership is important to Rippe, and he believes that communities require strong leadership to move forward and shape their future. His vision for the Nebraska Department of Economic Development is to work with the University and its partners, including the Rural Futures Institute, to develop the next generation of leaders that will help rural Nebraska and beyond to thrive.

Thriving and successful communities require investment, initiative and leadership to position themselves as a best choice for worthwhile living. Rippe believes that all components of a community must work together and come together in the spirit of collaboration toward the end goal.

“The communities that will be successful will be the ones that take the investment, the initiative and the leadership to position themselves as communities of choice.”

-David Rippe

 

The Rural Futures Institute believes that one of the characteristics of a successful community is a hopeful vision backed by grit. Rippe also believes that communities in Nebraska and beyond need to have leadership and grit to take control of shaping their own futures.

The mission of the Rural Futures Institute is to “harness the intellectual energy of the University of Nebraska and its partners to positively impact the future of humankind.” Rippe agrees that collaboration among the government, University and private business is crucial to Nebraska’s rural dimension and the state’s success.

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Catch Up With Chuck is Facebook Live series with Rural Futures Institute Founding Executive Director Chuck Schroeder. Airing most Thursdays at 11:15 a.m. (CST) on RFI’s Facebook Page, Chuck uses this time to discuss critical rural topics and the latest about RFI while answering viewers’ questions. Stay in touch with Catch Up With Chuck and the Rural Futures Institute through Facebook and Twitter. We will be back soon with another episode looking at rural people and places, success stories, innovators, thinkers and doers who are making rural communities a legitimate best choice for worthwhile living.

 

Catch Up With Chuck Episode 16 Education Leadership for the Future with UNL CASNR Dean Tiffany Heng-Moss

 

Mar. 1, 2018

Joining Chuck in this week’s episode of Catch Up With Chuck is Tiffany Heng-Moss, Interim Dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

Utilizing a collection of critical thinkers and individuals who think outside the box to make important decisions is important to Heng-Moss. She believes in challenging students to look through transdisciplinary lenses to better respond to grand challenges related to food, energy, water and landscape systems.

“It’s going to be a collection of critical thinkers and those individuals that look outside of the box and think creatively to solve these different types of solutions. And, I can’t think of a better place for us to start that than in our college classrooms.”

-Tiffany Heng-Moss, Ph.D.

 

Heng-Moss believes that students need a global perspective on the world to be successful in both rural and urban communities. Solving grand challenges in Nebraska and beyond is dependent on utilizing a community of global learners and thinkers.

In order to best serve a holistic student, Heng-Moss believes service learning is a critical component in innovative higher education. As seen in RFI Student Serviceship, Heng-Moss believes in intentionally infusing service learning into higher education to develop holistic students while they serve Nebraska’s communities.

RFI’s mission is to harness the intellectual energy of the University of Nebraska and its partners to positively impact the future of humankind. Central to that impact is preparing the next generation of business and civic leaders, entrepreneurs, educators and health care professionals who can be successful in a very different and largely unpredictable future and world. Heng-Moss is one of many administrators at the University of Nebraska working toward this goal for the betterment of Nebraska and beyond.

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Catch Up With Chuck is Facebook Live series with Rural Futures Institute Founding Executive Director Chuck Schroeder. Airing most Thursdays at 11:15 a.m. (CST) on RFI’s Facebook Page, Chuck uses this time to discuss critical rural topics and the latest about RFI while answering viewers’ questions. Stay in touch with Catch Up With Chuck and the Rural Futures Institute through Facebook and Twitter. We will be back soon with another episode looking at rural people and places, success stories, innovators, thinkers and doers who are making rural communities a legitimate best choice for worthwhile living.