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The CURA publications library is currently being digitized by the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy. When the project is complete, the entire CURA publications library will be online and fully searchable. Unfortunately, during this process we are not able to honor individual requests for publications . Additionally, we no longer have physical copies of publications to send out.

New publications are digitized daily and the publications catalog on the CURA website is not automatically updated with links to scanned copies, so please search the CURA collection at the Digital Conservancy for the publications you are looking for:


Search for reports, monographs, CURA Reporter articles, and other publications stemming from CURA-supported projects.

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Title Published Authorsort icon Summary Program Keywords
Customer Satisfaction Survey Results and Analysis. 2007 Rousseau, Matthew.

In July 2006, the West Central Minnesota Communities Action, Inc. (WCMCA) along with the Center for Small Towns began the fourth customer satisfaction and needs assessment for the WCMCA. There were a total of seventeen different survey types that were to be sent out. They were to be sent out to clients, service providers, vendors, and funding sources of the WCMCA. There were a total of 14 different survey types that were sent to the clients.

Community Assistantship Program assessment, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), consumers, evaluations, survey research
Ramping up the Minnesota hazelnut industry through market development 2015 Sames, Amanda

The MN Hazelnut Foundation (MNHF) was formed in 2008 with a mission of growing hazelnuts, hazelnut farmers, and hazelnut farming through outreach, education, and collaboration between members and their communities. Using the UofM SE Regional Partnership’s successful Byerly’s Apple Pie project as a model, this project will convene a focus group specific to hazelnuts to work through potential food product and marketing strategy in order to maintain and stimulate hazelnut production.

Community Assistantship Program
Identifying County Land Conservation Priorities/Recreation Opportunities. 2008 Sander, Heather.

In 2003, Becker County developed its Comprehensive Plan to help the County determine land use priorities and develop strategies for achieving them. Predominately, these priorities seek the protection of the County's natural resources, i.e., water quality, forestlands, shoreline areas, flora and fauna, prairie etc., i.e., sustainable development.The project used GIS to identify public tax forfeited land and public sector land most suitable for conservation and recreational development. The report contains maps created by the CAP student.

Community Assistantship Program Becker County, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), conservation, geographic information systems (GIS), land use, open space
Family Assets for Independence in Minnesota. 2010 Sawyer, Rachel.

Family Assets for Independence in Minnesota (FAIM) is part of a nation-wide initiative to promote IDA, Individual Development Account, programs. FAIM is run by several Community Action Agencies (CAAs) and is available throughout the state. CAAs strive to eliminate poverty through asset building and financial education programs like FAIM by recognizing that most people need more than just cash to become successful homeowners, college students or entrepreneurs.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP)
Volunteer Income Tax Assistant Sites. 2010 Sawyer, Rachel.

Free tax site services are available throughout Minnesota, provided by a number of community based agencies. According to the Children's Defense Fund (2004), over 350 free tax sites were in operation in 2004 in Minnesota; that number has since increased. These sites provide an alternative to commercial preparation and are targeted towards low-to- moderate-income people. They are typically staffed by volunteers and enable consumers to keep their entire refund without paying for the tax preparation or a refund loan.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP)
Advancing Minnesota's Community Solar Access in Municipally and Cooperatively Owned Electric Territories 2016 Schaefer, Connor

Most residents in Central MN do not have access to clean solar energy because of a lack of any one of the following 1) Financial ability to make a large purchase with benefits spread out over many years 2) Technical understanding and ability to manage a privately owned solar asset, or 3) Ownership of a suitable property for a solar installation. The Community Solar Garden (CSG) model overcomes all of these barriers, providing a solar energy ownership opportunity for all subscription eligible residents despite housing and income situations.

Community Assistantship Program
Choices for the Future of the Hiawatha Valley. 2006 Scherer, Troy and Hiawatha Valley Partnership.

The Hiawatha Valley, the corridor from Red Wing to Wabasha, is nationally recognized for its breathtaking scenery, quaint historic river towns, and rich and diverse wildlife. The Valley is experiencing population and 2nd home increases that are likely to accelerate. This growth could damage the very resources that make the Valley so desirable. This set of three publications is intended to educate the community about critical cultural and environmental resources, local government ordinances that currently control development, and choices that can be made about the future of the Valley.

Community Assistantship Program atlas, biodiversity, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), environmental protection, geographic information systems (GIS), groundwater, land planning, land use, ordinances, redevelopment, river corridors
Event Marketing and Expansion Assessment. 2002 Schmitz, Laura. Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), festivals, surveys, tourism, Wabasha
Duluth Open Space Initiative Organizational Goals and Action Steps. 2006 Schommer, Jeff.

This report is a draft of an Open Space Strategy, a goals and action steps document developed for the Duluth Open Space Initiative. Duluth's character is defined by its open spaces, and development pressure and poor planning are putting these open spaces at risk. This document identifies the organizational, political, and financial goals for a citizen-driven conservation agenda; considers possible actions that can be taken to accomplish those goals; and discusses the rationale for each of the goals and action steps.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), community planning, conservation, Duluth, foreclosures, green space, inventory, land use, open space, parks, public, redevelopment, taxes
Profile of 2008 International Festival of Owls Attendees. 2008 Schuweiler, Andrea .

In 2008, the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs (CURA) provided funding to profile visitors to the International Festival of Owls in Houston, MN. Several visitor characteristics were of interest beyond demographics, including information sources for the festival, spending habits, festival experience and economic impact to the community. To that end, a visitor questionnaire was developed and administered to the International Festival of Owls visitors. An on-site questionnaire was administered to attendees. A systematic sample was implemented with sampling throughout and across the event.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), tourism
Marketing Minnesota's Fields and Forests: Research on the Potential for Developing a Farm Stay Database and Joint Marketing Program in Minnesota. 2010 Schuweiler, Andrea.

As the second largest industry in Minnesota, agriculture is extremely important to every Minnesotan, particularly those in rural areas. However, small family farmers are looking for ways to diversify their income and ensure profit long into the future. Agritourism has been suggested as one way to diversify their income. In general, agritourism is the practice of attracting tourists to an area used primarily for agricultural purposes.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP)
West Central Minnesota Telecommunications Report. 2002 Sells, Jeremy. Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), Internet, rural areas, telecommunications, West Central Minnesota
River Watch Database Project Update. 2007 Sheppard, Andrew.

The River Watch program has been built on a foundation of solid science, effective training, and program support to volunteers and citizens which has resulted in sound, reliable data available to resource managers for decision-making. Thirty high schools currently participate in the River Watch Program. One of the most pressing goals of the program is to build on the data gathering to encourage more effective communication, understanding, and actions taken to create a more sustainable environmental and economic future for the Red River of the North Basin.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), databases, rivers
Community Assistantship Program: Connecting the University with Greater Minnesota. 2003 Siems, Monica.

During its first five years of operation, the Community Assistantship Program (CAP) at CURA has sponsored 120 applied research projects throughout the state that have linked faculty and students from the University of Minnesota with community organizations that require applied research assistance. This 5-year milestone provides an opportunity for the program's coordinator to reflect on CAP's history, mission, successes, and future challenges.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), evaluation, faculty, rural areas
Food and Farming: Potential for Partnership. 2002 Slaughter, Kara. Community Assistantship Program Central Region, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), Extension Service, faculty, farms, internships, Minnesota, Northeast Region, Northwest Region, partnerships, projections, Southeast Region, University of Minnesota, West Central Region
Market & Feasibility Study for the proposed North American Owl Center in Houston, Minnesota. 2010 Smith , David J. and Dr. William Gartner. Community Assistantship Program
Strategic Management Plan for Creating a Forestry Co-op. 2004 Smith, Dennis A. Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), cooperatives, East Central Minnesota, financial management, forest products, forestry, forests, land management, land stewardship, marketing
Nursing Cost Estimates: Educating One Nurse. 2002 Smith, Jedd. Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), education, nursing
Elder Network Mental Health and Aging Study. 2001 Smith, Jedd. Community Assistantship Program aging, barriers, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), elderly, mental health, seniors, service delivery, social services, Southeast Minnesota, surveys
A Community Oriented Vision and Plan for the Rural America Arts Plaza Plainview, Minnesota. 2010 Sokolski, Tracey.

The goal of the Community-Oriented Vision and Plan for the Rural America Arts Plaza--a project based in Plainview, Minnesota that is funded by the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs (CURA)-- was to create a community-oriented place outside the Jon Hassler Theater that in time would become a destination for the arts in the community, the town, and the region. The intent of the project was to integrate the plaza into the town core, the town's culture in order to enhance Plainview's art community and the economy of Plainview.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP)
Van's Island: Wastewater Treatment and Next Steps. 2003 Steiner, Benjamin. Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), septic systems, wastewater
HomeGrown: Sustainable Agriculture and Local Foods in Central Minnesota. 2007 Stephenson, Emily.

The Sustainable Farming Association produced a film showing how food, nutrition, agriculture, energy, and economy are linked to the health and vitality of the local economy, environment, and the people who inhabit it. The program features local producers, activists, and entrepreneurs who are pioneering and implementing sustainable technologies and systems to enable themselves and others to live more empowered, rewarding, and sustainable lives.

Community Assistantship Program agricultural, community, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), documentary, economic development, economic self-sufficiency, environmental impacts, farming, farms, film, sustainability
Pioneer Public TV Summer Internship Report 2014 Stermer, Brendan

The power of any history is its ability to unite a country, social class, organization, etc., behind a shared narrative. The story of Pioneer Public TV, as I have written it, is a testament to the power of small rural communities coming together for a common dream. As Pioneer looks ahead to an uncertain future for public broadcasting, and develops plans for big investments in the station’s Appleton facilities, a compelling narrative detailing the station’s origins and growth will be a useful tool for uniting the staff and viewer base behind shared values and stories.

Community Assistantship Program
CarFit Minnesota: Community Engagement in Action. 2008 Stern, Erica.

Seniors tend to be safe drivers. But as we age, changes in our vision, flexibility, strength, range of motion, size, and height can make us less comfortable and more vulnerable to injury from even minor collisions. Simple adjustments or devices can improve driver safety and comfort dramatically. These include small changes in mirrors to minimize blind spots, and in seat height and distance from steering wheels to improve sight lines and reduce risks from airbag deployment.

Community Assistantship Program automobiles, drivers, driving, elderly, evaluation, New Ulm, seniors, training
Intercultural Adaptation of Refugees and Rural Communities: From Burma to Minnesota 2017 Stone, Barbara

Between 1998 and 2015, 7,389 refugees from Burma of various ethnicities arrived in Minnesota from overseas (Minnesota Department of Human Services Resettlement Programs Office, 2010, 2016). This research is a continuation of two studies (Stone, 2010, 2011) that examined 1) the well-being and satisfaction of Karen refugees placed in employment in Worthington, Minnesota, by Lifetrack, a nonprofit social services organization, and 2) factors in the community that influenced their degree of satisfaction.

Community Assistantship Program
Revitalization Project 2015 Stoscheck, Claire

Honor the Earth is a Native environmental organization based on the White Earth Reservation in northern Minnesota; their current geographic focus in on Pine Point, a small tribal community on the reservation. Their mission is to create awareness and support for Native environmental issues and to develop needed financial and political resources for the survival of sustainable Native communities. They develop this by using music, the arts, the media, and indigenous wisdom to show people our joint dependency on the Earth.

Community Assistantship Program
Increasing Healthy Food Access 2016 Stoscheck, Claire

The purpose of United Acres is to increase the availability, access and affordability of fresh fruit and vegetables to the people of Renville County and the surrounding area. According to the County Healthy Rankings 2015, Renville County ranks 85 out of 87 in Overall Health Outcomes. This includes being tied for the 5th worst in “limited access to healthy foods.” United Acres is a community garden of 3 acres in the City of Olivia that will grow fresh produce for sale to local institutions and businesses and sell CSA shares to Renville county residents.

Community Assistantship Program
New York Mills Sculpture Garden. 2006 Sullivan, Erin.

New York Mills Regional Cultural Center wanted to make their sculpture park more attractive to tourists and expand their events and community programming. This report summarizes the history of the park, inventories artists work, suggests marketing tools for future use in advertising the park, considers possible future outcomes, and includes a survey for park patrons.

Community Assistantship Program artists, arts education, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), gardens, inventory, landscaping, marketing, survey research, teenagers, youth
Gale Woods Farm Curriculum Directory. 2005 Tchida, Courtney.

Gale Woods Farm is part of the Three Rivers Park District. Situated on 410 Acres in Minnetrista, Minnesota the park features a working educational farm, access to Whaletail Lake, a picnic pavilion and numerous cross country trails. Gale Woods is focused on connecting people to the source of their food on a small diverse farm that uses sustainable, contemporary farming methods. Programs can be adapted for a variety of different ages and can be scheduled for a half day, full-day or multi-day experience.

Community Assistantship Program Community Assistantship Program (CAP), teachers guide, teenagers, youth
Saving Traditional American Seeds: Preserving Culture Through Gardening. 2001 Thomas, Cynthia. Community Assistantship Program American Indians, Community Assistantship Program (CAP), Native Americans, organic gardens, plants