Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources (Horticulture) - University of Illinois E...

Job description


College of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES)

University of Illinois Extension


The Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources (Horticulture) serves as a regular, full time, 12 month academic professional with primary responsibility for the oversight, 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 (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 required in the 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. Strong leadership and delivery of programs will be provided to volunteers within the Master Gardener Program.

One full time position is available.

Location: Unit 11 – Fulton, Mason, Peoria, and Tazewell Counties

(Position will be housed in Mason County)

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. To learn more about the University’s commitment to diversity, please visit http://www.inclusiveillinois.illinois.edu.

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, ANR (Horticulture) are as follows:

Program Development and Delivery

  • 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.
  • Assist partnering organizations in providing educational outreach aimed at conserving natural resources, preserving the current state of the natural environment and, where possible, reversing its degradation.
  • Assess the needs of local clientele in a systematic and analytical manner. This may 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.
  • Support voluntary educational delivery systems with relevant subject matter expertise Develop effective and contemporary approaches to communicate with clientele. This may include constantly evolving electronic technologies (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, blogs, e-learning, etc.).

Organizational Leadership and Development

  • 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.
  • Develop professional collaborations with the County Director and Extension Council Members.
  • Market and represent Extension’s interests to external partners and stakeholders in areas related to expertise.
  • Cooperate with the County Director to achieve budget goals and relevant grant initiatives. Perform other duties that contribute to the mission of University of Illinois Extension programming, as assigned.
  • Compete for internal and external resources to enhance the development of innovative educational programs with potential for high impact.
  • Serve as an effective team member and volunteer for leadership roles as appropriate.
  • As needed, accept statewide responsibilities as requested by the Program Leader.
  • 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.

Organizational Requirements

  • As requested, supervise civil service and hourly personnel.
  • Comply with all reporting deadlines and requirements (e.g. plans of work, activity and impact reporting, etc.)
  • 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.

Other Information

  • Assist with and support the total University of Illinois Extension program.
  • Comply with all University of Illinois Extension Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity policies and guidelines in all aspects of Extension work; assist 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. 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, ANR (Horticulture) is administratively responsible to the County Director.


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


  • Required: Master’s degree related to subject matter emphasis from an accredited institution of higher education. Examples of relevant majors could include, but are not limited to, horticulture, ornamental horticulture, urban agriculture, entomology, plant pathology, or weed science. Candidates with a Master’s degree in progress may be considered for interviews, but degree must be completed by hire date. Knowledge and experience in program planning, promotion, and resource development. 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.
  • Preferred: Previous work experiences with urban agriculture. Informal and formal teaching experiences. 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/111093. Log in to your account and upload a cover letter and resume, as well as 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 April 11, 2019.

For further information about the position, please contact Ryan Hobson at [email protected]. For technical assistance with the online application process, call 217-333-6747 or email [email protected].

College Name or Administrative Unit:ACES - Extension Category:9-Off-Campus Title:Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources (Horticulture) - University of Illinois Extension Open Date:03/07/2019 Close Date:04/11/2019 Organization Name:Unit 11




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Job No:
Posted: 3/8/2019
Application Due: 4/11/2019
Work Type: