EXTENSION EDUCATOR, AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES
(LOCAL FOOD SYSTEMS AND SMALL FARMS) – 124878
College of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES)
University of Illinois Extension
The Extension Educator serves as a regular, full time, 12 month academic professional with primary responsibility for the development, delivery, and evaluation of educational programs supporting the mission of the University of Illinois Extension. Agriculture and Natural Resources Educators support one of the four core Extension program areas and within that program area may focus on one or more of the following interdisciplinary initiatives: Energy and the Environment; Food Safety and Security; Economic Development and Workforce Preparedness; Family Health, Financial Security and Wellness; Youth Development. Programmatic objectives of Extension Educators will be consistent with national and statewide initiatives considered of significant importance to residents of the state of Illinois.
Extension Educators will be expected to deliver research-based educational programs and to work within team settings that may consist of other Extension Educators, community college professionals, and faculty within and outside of the College of ACES. The establishment of professional networks as well as the development of relationships with key stakeholder groups is vital to the success of Extension Educators. Extension Educators will be expected to deliver educational programs not only within their assigned multi-county unit, but as requested, to clientele within other units.
The Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources (Local Food Systems and Small Farms) is expected to concentrate programmatically in Local Food Systems within diverse production settings. Close collaboration with other Local Food Systems/Small Farms, Horticulture, and Family and Consumer Economics Extension Educators is required. The Extension Educator also will be expected to build networks among diverse groups within the Unit who have strong interests in the increased production and dissemination of local food products that can be used to improve the diets of underserved audiences. The Extension Educator is expected to provide research-based information and educational programs for growers, community members, schools, decision-makers, and other stakeholders and clientele involved in the production of local food. Development and delivery of high impact and relevant educational programs and resources in several of the following areas will be important: 1) production of fruits and vegetables, 2) marketing of food initiatives, 3) food safety and Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), 4) school and community gardens, 5) integrated pest management, and 6) building networks and increasing collaborations with agriculture stakeholders and clientele.
One full-time position is available.
Location: Unit 12 – Livingston, McLean, and Woodford Counties
(Position will be located in McLean County –Bloomington, IL)
Additional positions may become available in other locations.
The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit http://go.illinois.edu/EEO.
This is a security-sensitive position. Comprehensive background checks, including but not limited to a criminal conviction information check, a CANTS check, and a review of the Registered Sex Offender list, will be conducted.
Specific responsibilities of the Extension Educator are as follows:
Program Development, Delivery and Evaluation
- Provide program leadership, interpret and integrate information, teach in the field of designated expertise, maintain the competencies to develop and deliver educational programming, and assist clients with the appropriate resource bases.
- Assess the needs of local clientele in the area of Local Food Systems and Small Farms in a systematic and analytical manner, while working cooperatively with other educational programs / teams within the Unit. This will include networking and collaborating with community organizations and other relevant groups.
- Within the designated area(s) of specialization, develop innovative curricula and programs to address local needs as well as to mesh with the broader state and national interdisciplinary initiatives.
- Deliver high impact programs to diverse audiences utilizing a selection of innovative delivery mechanisms to optimize reach and effectiveness, by teaming with additional Extension employees and volunteers who assist with program management functions and teaching roles when appropriate.
- Guide program expansion and program quality processes by teaching and providing training and support to employees or volunteers who teach and work within the program area.
- Support voluntary educational delivery systems with relevant subject matter expertise.
- Evaluate the impact of program initiatives in a planned and statistically relevant fashion. Evaluation plans should focus not only on short-term impacts but also on long-term changes in clientele practices.
- Develop effective and contemporary approaches to communicate with clientele. This may include constantly evolving electronic technologies (e.g. twitter, Facebook, blogs, e-learning, etc.).
- Comply with all reporting deadlines and requirements (e.g. plans of work, activity and impact reporting, etc.)
Organizational Leadership and Development
- Market and represent Extension’s interests to external partners and stakeholders in areas related to expertise.
- Compete for internal and external resources to enhance the development of innovative educational programs with potential for high impact. Includes strategic use of available funds to increase program quality and impact.
- Cooperate fully with the County Director to achieve budget goals, address staffing needs, fulfill relevant grant initiatives, report impacts, and carry out all other items relevant to the operation.
- Develop professional collaborations with the County Director and Extension Council Members.
- Assist with and support the total University of Illinois Extension program.
- Accept statewide responsibilities as recommended by the Program Leader and approved by the County Director.
- Serve as an effective team member and volunteer for leadership roles as appropriate.
- Lead unit team under the direction and in consultation with the County Director.
- Perform other duties that contribute to the mission of University of Illinois Extension programming, as assigned.
- Establish professional relationships and participate in campus-based partnerships that tie academic programs and research to complement Extension programming by partnering with Extension Specialists and/or faculty members on research projects as appropriate within the initiatives.
- Be an active member within a professional society(s) to keep abreast of changes within your discipline.
- Continually seek professional development opportunities to enhance competency in subject matter area.
- Use research and evaluation findings to create innovative programs and make changes to existing programs in order to improve quality.
- Share principles of evidence-based best practice with peers.
- Comply with all University of Illinois Extension Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity policies and guidelines in all aspects of Extension work; assists Unit staff with data collection for Affirmative Action, Gender, and Targeted reports.
- Local, regional and (limited) statewide travel required; personal transportation required.
- To perform the functions of this position, the employee will be required to perform work both within an office and outside in the communities that are served, and must have the capability to travel from one location to the other in a timely fashion. Employee is responsible for securing personal transportation. A valid driver’s license is preferred. Some work will be required during evenings and/or weekends. When working, the employee may be exposed to a variety of environmental factors to include, but not limited to, hot or cold weather, exposure to noise and allergens, and uneven ground. In performing the functions of this position, the employee may be subjected to various mental and physical demands as well to include, but not limited to, independently traveling to and performing work at different locations, lifting and moving items that may occasionally weigh up to forty (40) pounds and frequently weigh up to twenty (20) pounds, and twisting, pushing and pulling movements. More detailed information regarding the functions of this position (including the physical, mental and environmental requirements of the position) may be obtained from Human Resources for the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES) by contacting [email protected]
The Extension Educator is administratively responsible to the County Director.
The Extension Educator is programmatically responsible to the Program Leader(s) for the delivery of programs that mesh with identified national and state priorities.
- A Master’s degree related to subject matter emphasis is required. Examples of relevant majors could include, but are not limited to, agricultural economics, agronomy, entomology, horticulture, plant pathology, soil science, or weed science. Candidates with a Master’s degree in progress may be considered for interviews, but degree must be completed by hire date.
- Informal and/or formal teaching experiences.
- Previous work experiences with agriculture.
- Ability to organize, manage, and conduct educational activities for adult audiences.
- Knowledge and experience in program planning, promotion, and resource development.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
- Strong oral and written communication skills. Evidence of strong interpersonal skills and ability to work within a team environment. Demonstrated ability to build and maintain diverse networks.
The position is a full-time, benefits-eligible, non-tenure, academic professional position appointed on a 12-month service basis. The expected start date is as soon as possible after the closing date. Salary is commensurate with experience and qualifications. Generous vacation and sick leave. State Universities Retirement System. Group health, dental, vision and life insurance.
To apply, go to https://go.illinois.edu/124878. Log in to your account and upload a cover letter and resume as well the names and contact information of three professional references. Resume dates must be in month/year format and employment history, at a minimum, should include all work dating back to the completion of your undergraduate degree. Positions that were less than full-time/100% must be noted as being part-time. Transcripts may be requested at a later date. To receive full consideration, all requested application materials must be submitted via the online system by the close date of January 3, 2020.
The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer.