Extension Specialist - Director of the Plant Diagnostic Clinic

Columbia, MO
May 25, 2017
Executive Administration Jobs
C-Level & Executive Directors
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Job ID 23205
Full/Part Time Full-Time
Location Columbia

Job Description

Duties and Responsibilities:
• Manage the day-to-day operations of the MU Plant Diagnostic Clinic. Receive plant disease, weed and insect samples for identification and consult with appropriate specialists as needed. Handle phone inquiries and walk-in requests for diagnostic assistance.
• Collaborate with State Extension Specialists to diagnose plant health problems and prepare written responses describing the diagnosis and the appropriate management recommendations.
• Participate in outreach activities associated with the diagnosis of plant health problems. Contribute articles or suggestions of timely topics to through news outlets. Provide plant disease training assistance to the Master Gardener program and other programs as requested by extension colleagues.
• Direct the routine operations of the Missouri Pesticide Applicator Program. Participate and coordinate the winter training program for commercial applicators.
• Work with fiscal staff regarding fees and billing for plant diagnostic services. Manage the clinic budget. Manage student assistants and other temporary help.
• Manage the PDIS database to disseminate diagnostic information broadly to the National Plant Diagnostic Network, and interface regularly with counterparts in the North Central Plant Diagnostic Network. Inform appropriate campus-based extension faculty of unusually high incidences or uncommon occurrences of plant health problems or exotic pests. Compile yearly reports that summarize clinic submissions and diagnoses.
• Update and maintain the Plant Diagnostic Clinic website.
• Represent the MU Plant Diagnostic Clinic at the annual meetings of the North Central Plant Diagnostic Network and the American Phytopathological Society.


The successful applicant will have a degree in a plant-related field such as Plant Pathology, Entomology, Agronomy, Horticulture or Weed Science. A M.S. degree in one of these fields is preferred. Previous work experience in a plant diagnostic clinic or in field diagnosis of crop or landscape problems is also desired. Knowledge of plant management practices and diagnostic problem solving is essential. The successful candidate should possess excellent verbal and written communication skills. This individual will be expected to use technology in innovative ways to manage the diagnostic database and to provide plant health information.


Salary will be commensurate with education and experience.

Benefit Eligibility

This position is eligible for University benefits. The University offers a comprehensive benefits package, including medical, dental and vision plans, retirement, and educational fee discounts. For additional information on University benefits, please visit the Faculty & Staff Benefits website at http://www.umsystem.edu/totalrewards/benefits

Diversity Commitment

The University of Missouri is fully committed to achieving the goal of a diverse and inclusive academic community of faculty, staff and students. We seek individuals who are committed to this goal and our core campus values of respect, responsibility, discovery and excellence.

Equal Employment Opportunity

The University of Missouri is an equal access, equal opportunity, affirmative action employer that is fully committed to achieving a diverse faculty and staff. Equal Opportunity is and shall be provided for all employees and applicants for employment on the basis of their demonstrated ability and competence without unlawful discrimination on the basis of their race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, genetic information, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information, call the Vice Chancellor of Human Resource Services/Affirmative Action officer at 573-882-4256.

To request ADA accommodations, please call the Disability Inclusion and ADA Compliance Manager at 573-884-7278.


To read more about Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) please use the following links:

Application Materials

Apply using the online application. Be prepared to upload:
  • letter of application, including a brief statement of interests and/or ability in plant diagnostics
  • transcripts of academic work
  • current CV

In addition three letters of reference should be sent to turfpath@missouri.edu.

Questions regarding this position should be directed to Lee Miller at 573-882-5623 or turfpath@missouri.edu. Review of applications will begin on June 15, 2017 and applications will be accepted until a qualified candidate is identified.

Questions regarding the application process should be directed to Human Resource Services at (573) 882-7976 or muhrs@missouri.edu .