Extension Educator, Agriculture and Agribusiness (Horticulture)
University of Illinois

Saint Charles, Illinois


Extension Educator, Agriculture and Agribusiness (Horticulture)

University of Illinois Extension

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer that recruits and hires qualified candidates without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, disability or veteran status. For more information, visit http://go.illinois.edu/EEO .

WE TRANSFORM LIVES.
Everything we do is designed to improve the quality of life of the people in the state of Illinois, across the nation, and around the world. We discover, develop, translate, and disseminate knowledge to address societal concerns and train the next generation of experts and leaders in a way that empowers them to expand the boundaries of science to higher levels of understanding and influence.

Be a part of our story. Through learning partnerships that extend knowledge and change lives, University of Illinois Extension provides educational programs aimed at making life better, healthier, safer, and more profitable for individuals and their communities. Illinois Extension has operated continuously for more than 100 years connecting the citizens of Illinois to their land-grant university by providing educational programming around the state. University of Illinois Extension is based in the College of ACES and works with all colleges and units of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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. Extension 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: Community, Environment, Economy, Food, and Health. 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 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 Agribusiness (Horticulture) is expected to concentrate programmatically in Horticulture. This programmatic concentration includes the development and delivery of high impact and relevant educational programs and materials, and is preferred in one or more of following areas: 1) production and protection of plants in urban and suburban ornamental landscapes, 2) fruit and vegetable production and protection, including organic and IPM plant protection systems, 3) native landscaping, pollinator habitats, landscape design, or ornamental horticulture and 4) understanding of urban and rural issues and populations. Strong leadership and delivery of programs will be provided to volunteers within the Master Gardener Program and Master Naturalist Program.

One full time position is available.
Location: Unit 5 - DuPage, Kane, and Kendall Counties
(Position will be housed in Kane County - St. Charles, IL)
Additional positions may become available in other locations

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 Extension Educators 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 a systematic and analytical manner. 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, other Educators 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.
Scholarship
  • 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.
Other Information
  • 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.
Additional Physical Demands
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.

Administrative Relationship
The Extension Educator is administratively responsible to the County Director.

Programmatic Relationship
The Extension Educator is programmatically responsible to the Program Leader(s) for the delivery of programs that mesh with identified national and state priorities.

Minimum Qualifications

Education:
  • Master's degree related to subject matter emphasis from an accredited institution of higher education. Candidates with a Master's degree in progress may be considered for interviews, but degree must be completed by hire date. Examples of relevant majors could include, but are not limited to, horticulture, ornamental horticulture, urban agriculture, entomology, plant pathology, or weed science.
Experience:
  • Knowledge and experience in program planning, promotion, and resource development.
Preferred Qualifications

Experience:
  • Previous work experiences in horticulture.
  • Informal and formal teaching experiences.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
  • Evidence of success in working with diverse cultural groups. Strong written and oral communication skills. Understanding of urban issues and populations. Ability to organize, manage, and conduct educational activities for adult audiences. Demonstrated ability to build and maintain diverse networks.
Appointment Information
Immigration sponsorship is not available for this position. This is a 100% 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.

Application Procedures & Deadline Information
Applications must be received by October 5, 2022. Apply for this position using the Apply Now button at the top or bottom of this posting. Applications not submitted through this website will not be considered. Resume dates submitted 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.

For further information about this specific position, please contact Search Chair, Willene Buffett at wbuffett@illinois.edu. For questions regarding the application process, please contact 217-333-2137.

The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer. Convictions are not a bar to employment.

The University of Illinois System requires candidates selected for hire to disclose any documented finding of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment and to authorize inquiries to current and former employers regarding findings of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment. For more information, visit Policy on Consideration of Sexual Misconduct in Prior Employment .

Applicants with disabilities are encouraged to apply and may request a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (2008) to complete the application and/or interview process. Requests may be submitted through the reasonable accommodations portal , or by contacting the Accessibility & Accommodations Division of the Office for Access and Equity at 217-333-0885, or by emailing accessibility@illinois.edu .

As a qualifying federal contractor, the University of Illinois System uses E-Verify to verify employment eligibility.

University of Illinois faculty, staff and students are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. If you are not able to receive the vaccine for medical or religious reasons, you may seek approval for an exception in accordance with applicable University processes.

Requisition ID: 1009542
Job Category: Off-Campus



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