Karen Vines has been named assistant professor of agricultural, leadership, and community education in the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

She is one of a number of new faculty members recently hired in the college this academic year. New positions were identified to bring talent to the college's focus areas, including food, health, the environment, and community viability. The new faculty members are distributed across teaching, research, and Extension.

Vines' primary interest is in providing Extension agents with professional development experiences that allow them to excel and provide greater sustainability and resilience to their communities. Her dissertation explored the use of engaged delivery methods in Cooperative Extension. Some specific projects in which she has been involved include needs assessments of early career Extension agents and online training on the use of social media for the national Extension Master Gardener program.

Vines is lead investigator on a NIFA-funded project focused on prevention of prescription opioid abuse in rural Virginia. Vines teaches Introduction to Cooperative Extension and Educational Methods in Non-Formal Teaching and Learning courses.

Vines received her bachelor's degree in animal sciences from the University of Kentucky, her master's degree in crop and soil environmental sciences from Virginia Tech, and her doctorate in agriculture and extension education from Penn State University.

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