This is the sixth portfolio piece from our archive! If you've missed any, you can always find them here. I hope they've helped you start thinking about the tech-supported opportunities you can dig into too. Next time, I'm looking forward to sharing a project I've been working on, so stay tuned. In the meantime, here's another project the team worked on a while back.

Leadership and Civic Engagement Bite Size Tips via YouTube

The Leadership and Civic Engagement team wanted a way to boost their online presence, build their resources for multimedia integration into curriculum, and experiment with video technologies. So their project team worked with the Extension Technology team to develop a simple, inexpensive workflow for creating “bite-sized” (one tip each) videos for YouTube. The first five videos were created using equipment that can be checked out through the Extension Technology loan program, and a new iPad app for using a green screen. The team will evaluate the project and, if it is found to be accomplishing their objectives, the team is well-equipped to keep up this process themselves. 

Have a few minutes? Check them out!


Screenshot of Leadership and Civic Engagement YouTube Video


This project was selected through the Extension e-Learning Proposal Process. We work with Extension Educators, Program Staff, and Faculty who offer training or education, like the Turf and Ground Field Day, Equine Demonstrations, the Local Foods College, the Serve it Up Safely Course, and the Master Gardener Core Course. They are ready to expand their reach, make education more accessible, and/or collaborate with colleagues and community members at a distance. If this is you and you’re ready for help, contact us for a consultation or propose a project!

z.umn.edu website

Link shorteners such as bit.ly, tinyurl and goo.gl are popular services that take long URLs and create them into shorter links, making them easier to share. The University has a URL shortening service at z.umn.edu. This service has been around for a long time but not everyone knows about it.

When and why use a shortened link?

For print: You should shorten a URL if you are sharing a URL in print. For example, which URL would you rather put in your print publication?


It's easy to remember: If you have University-related content that you will share with a lot of people and it will be around for awhile, it’s an easy way to remember the URL.

In Social Media: You should shorten a URL if you are sharing University-related content on social media sites. Short URL's are easier to read on mobile devices.

Analytics: Track how many people clicked on your link, when and where they are from.



Why use z.umn.edu over other tools?

  1. People will associate the short link with the University and know that it is okay to click on the link. They are less likely to trust another short URL (e.g. bit.ly).
  2. It requires authentication and every time you log back into z.umn.edu, you can view or edit your links and see statistics on them.

Give it a try!

  1. Copy the URL you want to shorten
  2. Log into z.umn.edu
  3. Paste your URL into the Enter the URL box
  4. Optional: enter a custom short URL
  5. Click Shorten the URL
As always, we welcome your questions and comments! Thank you.