UW Extension Educator Wins National Awards for Educational Publications

This September, a member of University of Wyoming Extension was honored at the National Extension Association for Family and Consumer Sciences (NEAFCS) 89th annual session in Providence, Rhode Island.

Vicki Hayman, UW Extension community vitality and health educator, and Tanya Engel, former UW Extension graphic designer, won second place in the Educational Publication Communications category for their High-Altitude Baking cookbook. Hayman also won third place in the same category for her educational publication Food Preservation with Reduced or No Salt or Sugar.

A white woman with short brown hair and glasses.
Vicki Hayman, Weston County Community Vitality and Health Educator.

The annual NEAFCS conference provides opportunities for professional growth for extension educators. Its mission is to improve the daily lives of individuals, families, and communities through research-based programs.

Both award-winning publications were rigorously researched. Hayman compiled recipes for the preservation project from reputable sources, finding safe and tasty recipes for people with a variety of food restrictions and preferences. The resource also includes basic introductory information about food preservation.

Hayman began developing the preservation publication to meet the needs of people in Wyoming. She received calls from many people looking for preservation recipes that used less salt and sugar, and decided to compile them into one booklet so that people would have a handy resource at their fingertips.

Similarly, the high-altitude cookbook got its start from a conversation between Engel and Hayman. Engel mentioned some of the difficulties she had with adjusting recipes for altitude when moving to Laramie in 2011. With their mutual love of cooking, they decided to test some recipes and put together a resource for the Wyoming community.

“It’s amazing how, you can get on the internet and the recipes are not quality, they’re not up to a certain standard. We don’t want people to spend money on food items that aren’t up to their expectations,” says Hayman.

To meet that standard for the cookbook, Hayman and Engel found over forty recipe testers at different altitudes throughout the state. “We couldn’t have done it without our volunteer taste-testers,” says Hayman. The volunteers helped Hayman and Engel refine the recipes and figure out which to include.

Engel adds, “It was all so much fun—testing recipes, photographing, tasting everyone’s bakes, designing the book, etc. It’s so exciting to have come in second in the nation! I feel honored.”

Free, downloadable versions of both publications are available at https://bit.ly/low-sugar-preservation and https://bit.ly/high-altitude-baking. Hard copies of the High-Altitude Cookbook can be purchased at https://bit.ly/uwe-books.

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