Extension at OPE

Student studying at desk with notes, books and laptop computer

Extension at OPE

Our Vision: To be the preeminent model for land grant university extension and outreach in the 21st century.

Our Mission: To facilitate the engineering of comprehensive solutions to improve animal, human, and ecosystem health, and the production of a safe food supply by collecting, organizing, synthesizing, and delivering information and resources to the profession, the people of Illinois, the United States, and across the globe.

We are establishing an integrated team of scientists, clinicians, engineers and industry experts to identify critical challenges, their root causes, engineer technology-based solutions, and build educations systems to improve food insecurity, lower costs, improve animal welfare, reduce environmental impacts for animal based food production.

Improve the university model: Currently, universities create solutions (tech) that are looking for a problem (market). We reverse that approach by working directly in the industries to identify their critical problems, understand the underlying root cause and then engineer solutions directly for those challenges.

Flip the approach to science: The current approach to science is deconstructive, understanding the smallest level of effect and hoping that the sum of the parts acts and behaves the same as the whole. We work at the level of the system, understanding the whole by quantifying effects, understanding their root cause, and validating the predicted results when the cause is applied to related effects.

Provide end-to-end solutions: Universities by nature are science-heavy and focused on traditional students. We apply our land grant roots to understand stakeholder challenges, document causality, engineer process changes, and educate stakeholders in an integrated approach with a diverse coordinated team.

Opportunities for Involvement

Discovery Partnerships

Access to dedicated university resources to address barriers to step rate changes and routine challenges within your firm.

  • Broad range of experts
  • Operateional system to coordinate resources for your firm
  • Access to cutting edge technology to identify critical problems, determine root cause and engieneer solutions
  • Proven educational platforms to facilitate implemention within your firm
  • Access to your future workforce

Education Partnerships

Access to proven educational programs for you and your employees to build new skills or earn a new credential.

  • Diverse range of programs and courses taught by experts in business, science, medicine, and husbandry
  • Online, in-person, and hybird delivery formants to meet your schedule
  • Courses developed by professional educators to create student engagement and active learning

Donor Partnerships

Be a part of the Wright Chair team by:

  • Contribute to the Wright Chair fund
  • Supporting new facilities for research and education
  • Sponsoring outreach and community engagement


Kaylee Hillinger

Kaylee Hillinger

Associate Director of Industry Relations

Have questions or want to chat?

We’d love to hear from you.

Contact Us