Research Specialist in Agriculture - Animal Sciences (143196)

Job description



Research Specialist in Agriculture

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Position: Research Specialist in Agriculture, Full Time Academic Professional Position in the Department of Animal Sciences responsible for the overall care and maintenance of all equids housed at University of Illinois Department of Animal Sciences horse farm, including U of I owned and client owned animals used for teaching, research, outreach, and commercial breeding operation. Related activities include maintenance of animals in state of excellent health and welfare, reproductive management of the breeding herd including foaling, management of student employees, and overseeing safety and maintenance of facilities (buildings, fencing, paddocks and pastures), as well as facilitation and support of robust equine teaching, research and outreach programs that meet the standards of the Department of Animal Sciences.


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.

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


Academic Responsibilities - Teaching, Research and Outreach

Collaboratively support equine courses or research activities within the department including performing direct teaching duties.

Use best practices and work independently to collect, analyze, evaluate, and summarize empirical data to make recommendations for achieving programmatic goals. Implement recommendations as appropriate.

Maintain and support research, teaching and production protocol standards and compliance.Adhere to standards of regulatory requirements.

Establish written research and production targets, develop "Standard Operating Procedures"(SOP), and enforce consistent research methodology associated with the units.

Support outreach activities as needed.

Operations and Maintenance

Implement and maintain best management practices for providing proper care to all resident animals including appropriate vaccination, deworming and nutrition programs. Work with veterinary, farrier and other professionals when needed to optimize health and well-being of animals.

Facilitate and coordinate routine general farm management duties including, but not limited to, open communication with outside clients on boarding, breeding, foaling and semen collection; acquisition and maintenance of all breeding and boarding contracts with clients; record-keeping and client billing; acquisition of feed, hay and other supplies in a fiscally responsible way while adhering to the procurement policies of the university and state; coordinate the removal of livestock waste using environmentally sustainable practices;etc.

Provide day-to-day supervision of personnel including development, implementation, and documentation of training for student employees of the unit on relevant work-related skills and procedures including, but not limited to, animal handling, feeding procedures, equipment operation and Lockout/Tagout procedures.

Maintain fiscal responsibility by developing and adhering to approved budgets. Help develop, improve, and implement cost-recovery procedures for teaching, and research activities.

Coordinate maintenance and repairs of unit facilities (e.g. buildings, fencing, etc.) and equipment (e.g. truck, trailer, skid steer, etc.).

Provide safe and appropriate transportation for horses as needed, including transporting horses of all ages for veterinary care, teaching/outreach purposes and/or to sales.

Other duties as assigned to advance the mission of the department.


Education: Master of Science degree in Animal Sciences or related area required. Master of Science degree in Equine Reproduction preferred.

Experience: Minimum of 2 years experience in horse farm management required. 3+ years of horse farm management preferred. Experience in teaching, conducting research and supervising employees preferred.

Knowledge Skills, and Abilities:

  • Ability to work collaboratively, prioritize work, and meet deadlines are of high importance.
  • Excellent organizational, communication and leadership skills along with professionalism are also key skills.
  • Knowledge of best management practices in equine herd, broodmare and foaling management along with pasture management.
  • Knowledge to recognize normal and abnormal equine behavior.
  • Knowledge to identify and appropriately treat illness, injury, and lameness using best practices.
  • Knowledge & ability to safely handle stallions for teasing and semen collection.
  • Knowledge to halter break foals using best practices.
  • Knowledge of preparation and presentation of sale horses.
  • Evidence of teaching effectiveness or potential teaching effectiveness.
  • Demonstrated skills in personnel and budget management
  • Ability to safely load and transport horses of all ages.
  • Ability/willingness to learn to operate farm equipment (e.g. skid steer) and back trailers.
  • Valid driver’s license.

Environmental Demands

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 frequently weigh up to fifty (50) pounds and occasionally weigh up to seventy-five (75) 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 Department of Animal Sciences by contacting [email protected].

Proposed Start Date: As soon as possible after the closing date.

Salary: Commensurate with qualifications and experience

Appointment Details: FLSA exempt, 100%-time Academic Professional position, 12-month service bases.

For full consideration, applications must be received by April 14, 2021. To apply, all candidates must create your candidate profile at and upload, as a single pdf file, a cover letter and CV/resume (months and years of employment must be included). An online application will require names and contact information including email address for three professional references. Interviews may be conducted before the closing date; however, no hiring decision will be made until after that date. All requested information must be submitted for your application to be considered.

Questions can be directed to Jonathon Mosley, ([email protected]), (217) 300-0732. Additional information about the Department can be found at

The University of Illinois must also comply with applicable federal export control laws and regulations and, as such, reserves the right to employ restricted party screening procedures for applicants.

The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer. 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. As a qualifying federal contractor, the University of Illinois System uses E-Verify to verify employment eligibility.

College Name or Administrative Unit:ACES Category:6-Research Title:Research Specialist in Agriculture - Animal Sciences (143196) Open Date:03/31/2021 Close Date:04/14/2021 Organization Name:Animal Sciences




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Job No:
Posted: 4/2/2021
Application Due: 4/14/2021
Work Type: Full Time