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Assistant Professor of Plant Pathology

Assistant Professor of Plant Pathology

Job No: 523459
Work Type: Tenure-Track Faculty
Location: Palm Beach
Categories: Biology/Life Science
Department: 60740000 - AG-EREC-BELLE GLADE

Job Description

Classification Title:

Ast Prof

Job Description:

The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is creating an environment that affirms community across all dimensions. We particularly welcome applicants who can contribute to such an environment through their scholarship, teaching, mentoring, and professional service. If an accommodation due to a disability is needed to apply for this position, please call 352-392-2477 or the Florida Relay System at 800-955-8771 (TDD) or visit Accessibility at UF .

This is a 12-month tenure-accruing position that will be 60-70% extension (Florida Cooperative Extension Service) and 30-40% research (Florida Agricultural Experiment Station), available at the Everglades Research and Education Center (EREC) within the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Tenure will accrue in the Department of Plant Pathology.

The position involves management of existing and emerging diseases of high value row crops (sugarcane, rice, and sod) produced on organic soils in the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA) and on sandy soils of the region surrounding the EAA. This position focuses on extension and translational research using an epidemiological approach to best incorporate cultural controls, host plant resistance, and agrochemistry into comprehensive, economic, and sustainable solutions for the growers and other stakeholders. This region is one of the nation's largest suppliers of winter vegetables and includes the country's largest sugarcane and sweet corn production areas, and significant rice production acreage.

The incumbent will develop a grant funded research program in plant disease topics supporting agricultural needs and sustainable crop production systems. Expertise in plant pathogen diagnosis and disease management is expected. Experience with traditional and molecular techniques for identification of plant pathogens, in-field disease monitoring technologies, and novel disease management strategies is preferred. The incumbent is expected to develop a proactive extension program and facilitate implementation of new disease management strategies. Publication of impactful research in appropriate refereed journals is expected. Extension activities will include working with and training county and regional extension faculty, and responding to current and emerging plant disease problems encountered by growers. This position is an opportunity to work with an interdisciplinary research and extension team at the EREC, while serving as a faculty member in the Plant Pathology Department with statewide and campus-based colleagues. This assignment may change in accordance with the needs of the unit.

The faculty member will be a member of the Graduate Field of Plant Pathology and actively participate in graduate education by chairing and serving on graduate committees, supervising thesis, dissertation research. Proactive student mentorship and publication with students is expected. Because of the IFAS land-grant mission, all faculty are expected to be supportive of and engaged in all three mission areas - Research, Teaching and Extension—regardless of the assignment split.

Background Information

The Everglades Research and Education Center (EREC) is an 800-acre facility located in Belle Glade within the Everglades Agricultural Area (EAA), near the southern edge of Lake Okeechobee in western Palm Beach County. The EAA is a dynamic, agriculturally diverse region with major production of sugarcane, rice, commercial sod, and winter vegetables (sweet corn, leafy and leafy green vegetables, celery, and radish). The EREC has 8 faculty members that represent Agronomy, Entomology and Nematology, Horticultural Sciences, Plant Pathology, and Soil and Water Science Departments. Regional Extension Agents specializing in sugarcane, rice, sod and fresh market vegetables are located at the EREC and other offices in the EAA. Approximately 80 additional personnel and students support faculty research and extension programs. The EREC facilities include offices, laboratories, greenhouses, 700-acre research farm, and residential dormitories and housing for graduate students and visiting scientists.

Belle Glade is located west of the metropolitan West Palm Beach area, a region with a population of 1.5 million. The area is supported by an excellent subtropical climate, exceptional Atlantic coast beaches, and the cultural advantages of a medium-sized city, including year-round outdoor recreational activities, cultural events, and professional sporting venues.

Expected Salary:

Commensurate with Education and Experience

Minimum Requirements:
  • A doctorate (foreign equivalent acceptable) in plant pathology or a closely related discipline at the time of hire is required.
  • Candidates should have demonstrated skills in verbal and written communication, interpersonal relationships, and procurement of extramural funding.
  • Candidates must be supportive of the mission of the Land-Grant system.
  • Candidates must also have a commitment to UF core values of excellence, discovery & innovation, inclusion, freedom & civility, community, and stewardship.

Preferred Qualifications:
  • Postdoctoral experience and a strong background and knowledge on methods for identification of fungal, bacterial and viral pathogens.
  • Evidence of ability to conduct independent and collaborative research in plant disease diagnostics, etiology, management, and biotechnology with practical applications in cropping systems.
  • Experience in extension program development and working with growers, extension agents and other stakeholders.

Special Instructions to Applicants:

For full consideration, candidates should apply and submit additional materials by 1 November 2023. The position will remain open until a viable applicant pool is determined.


Nominations are welcome. Nominations need to include the complete name and address of the nominee. This information should be sent to:

Please refer to Requisition # 523459

Dr. Nicholas S. Dufault

Chair, Search and Screen Committee

University of Florida

Plant Pathology

Rm 1441 Fifield Hall

Gainesville., FL

Phone: (352) 273-4635

Electronic Mail:

Application Information

Individuals wishing to apply should go online to Careers at UF and submit:
    • Cover letter that states applicant's interest in the position and qualifications relative to the credentials listed above
    • Research statement including previous and planned research (up to 2 pages)
    • Extension statement (up to 2 pages)
    • Curriculum vitae
    • Contact information (including email addresses) for 3 individuals willing to write letters of recommendation
    • Unofficial transcripts

Selected candidate will be required to provide an official transcript to the hiring department upon hire. A transcript will not be considered “official” if a designation of “Issued to Student” is visible. Degrees earned from an education institution outside of the United States are required to be evaluated by a professional credentialing service provider approved by National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES).

Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the US. The University of Florida is a public institution and subject to all requirements under Florida Sunshine and Public Record laws.

The University of Florida is an Equal Opportunity Institution. The University and greater Gainesville community enjoy a diversity of cultural events, restaurants, year-round outdoor recreational activities, and social opportunities.

Health Assessment Required:

Applications Close: Open until filled

To apply, visit

The University is committed to non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations, genetic information and veteran status in all aspects of employment including recruitment, hiring, promotions, transfers, discipline, terminations, wage and salary administration, benefits, and training.

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