Extension Agent I or II – Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems

 
  • University of Florida
  • United States
  • Nov 23, 2021

Job Description:

Classification Title:

Ext Agent I - II

Job Description:

The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is committed to creating an environment that affirms diversity across a variety of dimensions, including ability, class, ethnicity/race, gender identity and expression. We particularly welcome applicants who can contribute to such an environment through their scholarship, teaching, mentoring, and professional service. We strongly encourage historically underrepresented groups to apply.

If an accommodation due to a disability is needed to apply for this position, please call 352-392-2477 or the Florida Relay System at 800-955-8771 (TDD) or visit Accessibility at UF .

The Univ. of Florida (UF) is a Land Grant institution with core values of unique purpose, excellence, integrity, collaboration and partnership, lifelong learning, diversity, responsiveness, innovation, communication, and global reach. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) employs more than 2,000 faculty and staff statewide. IFAS Extension employs 375 Extension Agents and has an office in each of Florida’s 67 counties.

UF/IFAS is committed to creating an environment that affirms diversity across a variety of dimensions, including ability, class, ethnicity/race, gender identity and expression. We particularly welcome applicants who can contribute to such an environment through their scholarship, teaching, mentoring, and professional service.

Our mission in the Florida Cooperative Extension Service is to partner with communities to provide quality, relevant education, and research-based expertise to foster healthy people, a healthy environment, and a healthy economy. We are the resource that helps educate Floridians to address issues related to agriculture, horticulture, natural resources, youth development, families, and communities.

We hire the best. Diverse views and experience make us strong. We look for people with both academic and people skills who work well in teams, honor their commitments, innovate in a rapidly changing world, and believe in inclusion and diversity. Working for Florida Cooperative Extension will allow you to make a positive impact in your community as you help shape future generations, growing your career while earning a competitive salary and great benefits.

As an Extension Agent, you will work jointly for UF/IFAS Extension and Flagler County, a growing county in northeast Florida. We are looking for an individual with skills in livestock, forages and pasture management, as well as vegetable crop production and food systems. “Food systems” in the context of this position includes sustainable production, harvesting, processing, packaging, marketing, and consumption of local foods. Food systems encompasses community food initiatives, community-supported agriculture, farm to consumer efforts, consumer education of agricultural operations, farmers markets, and agri-tourism. Your primary office will be located at the Flagler County Extension Office in Bunnell.

You will be responsible for a program that provides public education to local agricultural producers and associated business to promote sustainable agricultural practices. Collaboration with extension agents in the Tri-County Agricultural Area (TCAA) and the UF Hastings Agricultural Extension Center is expected.

What you will do:

  • Work with agricultural producers as a subject-matter expert and provide technical expertise – through teaching and one-on-one consultations – in relation to agricultural best management practices, livestock and forage production, integrated pest management including insect, disease, and weed management, precision agriculture, and diagnostic services.
  • Develop and implement a plan of work based on locally identified needs that will lead to improved agricultural practices.
  • Work with community leaders to facilitate and coordinate partnerships with local and state agencies, elected officials, stakeholders, communities, landowners, citizens, and industry in developing urban/rural and community economic opportunities to create local and regional food systems.
  • Assist in community food initiatives, community supported agriculture, farm to consumer efforts, farmers markets, agri-tourism opportunities, and marketing efforts.
  • Collaborate with all Extension program areas (Horticulture, 4-H Youth Development, Sea Grant, and Family and Consumer Sciences) and volunteers on educational efforts that will facilitate positive management practices with significant and locally relevant impact.
  • Improve pesticide applicator knowledge of pesticide use and environmental impact and provide license training, testing, and continuing education units for pesticide license renewal.
  • Closely monitor agricultural market conditions at both the national and regional level to identify a product mix that fills market gaps and provides the greatest return possible for producers.
  • Develop an advisory committee to assist with program design, identification of client needs and priority issues, analysis of county situations, and development of program budgets.
  • Use traditional and innovative (e.g., web-based) educational methods to teach target audiences new practices, procedures, techniques, and skills that will result in positive behavioral or practice change with time.
  • Provide excellent customer service for the agricultural community through various communication modes including telephone, email, online, social media, and face-to-face contact.
  • Collaborate and provide support to local agricultural groups.
  • Seek grants, contracts, or other funding and partnership opportunities to support extension programs.
  • Develop and deliver age-appropriate subject matter education in support of 4-H Youth Development.
  • Follow all county, UF, and IFAS Extension policies regarding Affirmative Action, program development, and parity.
  • Carry out other duties as outlined by the County Extension Directors and the District Extension Director.

Further information:

In the event of an emergency, all Flagler County employees are considered essential personnel and may be required to perform alternate duties. (If applicable.)

Extension is a partnership between state, federal, and county governments to provide scientific knowledge and expertise to the public. As such, all partners are involved in the supervision of the office and contribute to the salary and support resources. The primary goal of Extension is to disseminate the latest knowledge and applicable technologies in agriculture, human and natural resources, and the life sciences in order to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. The UF/IFAS mission is accomplished through Extension faculty members, scientists, educators, administrative staff, and volunteers working cohesively throughout Florida’s 67 counties.

Candidates will be reviewed as applications are received, but please be aware that interviews might not be scheduled until 4 to 6 weeks after the position closing date. Are you a good match? Apply today!

Expected Salary:

Commensurate with Education and Experience

Minimum Requirements:
  • A bachelor’s degree in animal sciences, agriculture, horticulture, or a closely related field. We will accept applicants without a bachelor’s degree if the degree will be earned by May 2022. If hired solely with a bachelor’s degree, we want you to grow in your career. Therefore, you will be expected to progress at least halfway towards obtaining a master's degree within 6 years of employment.
  • Strong oral and written interpersonal and communication skills.
  • A working knowledge of agriculture best management practices including plant and pest identification and diagnostic skills, best management practices, soils, irrigation, fertilizers, livestock and forages, and integrated pest management.
  • Ability to obtain a pesticide license within 6 months of hire.
  • Ability to possess (or be able to obtain) a Florida driver’s license.
  • Flexibility with working hours; willingness to work irregular hours, including evenings, weekends, and overnight travel.
  • A strong commitment to customer service and Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA) guidelines of UF/IFAS Extension.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • A master’s degree.
  • Practical experience in agricultural production.
  • Experience utilizing a variety of educational methods including technology-enhanced and technology-based instruction to reach diverse audiences.
  • Experience obtaining extramural funding.
  • Excellent organizational skills and good record-keeping techniques.
Special Instructions to Applicants:

Apply at https://explore.jobs.ufl.edu/en-us/job/519076 by 11:55 p.m. (Eastern) of the posting end date, and attach:

  • Cover letter that describes how your experience and qualifications have prepared you for this position
  • Résumé or Curriculum vitae
  • Unofficial copies of all transcripts (showing coursework) of your academic degrees

The following documents are also required and may either be submitted through the above link at the time of application, or sent separately to our office (below).

Reference rating forms and unofficial transcripts not submitted at the time of application should be submitted/postmarked by the next business day after the position’s closing date. They may be submitted to:

UF IFAS Human Resources
Faculty Recruitment and Hiring
P O Box 110281
Gainesville, FL 32611-0281

ifasrecruitment@ifas.ufl.edu

Fax: (352) 392-3226

Final candidate will be required to provide official transcript to the hiring department upon hire. A transcript will not be considered “official” if a designation of “Issued to Student” is visible. Degrees earned from an education institution outside of the United States are required to be evaluated by a professional credentialing service provider approved by National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES), which can be found at http://www.naces.org/.

The University of Florida is an equal opportunity institution dedicated to building a broadly diverse and inclusive faculty and staff.

The University of Florida is An Equal Employment Opportunity Institution. If an accommodation due to a disability is needed to apply for this position, please call 352/392-2477 or the Florida Relay System at 800/955-8771 (TDD). Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the US. Searches are conducted in accordance with Florida's Sunshine Law.

Health Assessment Required:No