Every MG groups hosts some sort of educational event(s) during the year. Encourage MGVs to plan ahead in order to collect meaningful information about the impact of their event. It’s not hard to create a good summary of the event that shows how it made a difference to the audience and community. The minimum information needed includes:
- Title of the Event
- Brief description (number of speakers and their topics, who is the audience)
- Number of people that attended
- Notable quotes from participants (“I learned…” is better than just “Awesome” or “loved the food”)
Evaluation of the event is essential to showing impact, but it doesn’t have to be involved or difficult. Many groups include a single-page sheet asking for participants to rank speakers or other aspects of their event. One MGA increases the response rate by offering a cookie when the form is turned in. A paper survey is the most common way of evaluating an event, but it could be as simple as asking a small group to raise their hands in a session or technologically adept groups could develop online surveys.
The questions that are asked should attempt to show the value of the event and its educational impact. For example, participants might be asked to complete the statement “Today I learned _____” or asked to rate their experience at the event using a 1-4 scale, with something like 1 = I didn’t learn anything new, 2 = I learned one new thing, 3 = I learned a few things, 4 = I learned a lot.
If you are directly involved in the MGA’s educational events, try to help them come up with a summary of the event that shows its impact! You can also use this for UWEX end of year reporting! (more on this next month).