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This position is based at UNH Extension’s Hillsborough County office in Goffstown, N.H. Under the general guidance of Extension’s Food and Agriculture program team leader, the field specialist will provide formal and informal education for farms, businesses, and individuals by organizing and implementing educational events including workshops, field tours, and grower meetings; disseminating current research-based information through development of fact sheets, articles, and other print and web-based resources; and providing one-on-one instruction and technical assistance to improve quality, sustainability, and profitability of products and services. Expertise in vegetable production is a priority for this position. Additional expertise in soil nutrition, integrated pest management, or agricultural engineering is desirable.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Programming and support
· Provide formal and informal education to the agricultural community by organizing and implementing educational events including workshops, seminars, field tours, and grower meetings.
· Provide one-on-one instruction and technical assistance to farms and agricultural businesses of all sizes throughout the county to improve quality, sustainability, and profitability of products and services.
· Disseminate current research-based information to clients through development of fact sheets, articles, newsletters, and other print and web-based resources.
· Work independently and with a team of Extension state and field specialists to support, plan, develop, implement, and evaluate innovative, relevant, and impactful educational programs that enhance the profitability and sustainability of agricultural businesses in Hillsborough County and statewide.
· Ensure programmatic involvement of under-served and under-represented audiences and that all educational programming is designed and conducted in full accordance with civil rights, Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO), Affirmative Action (AA) and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) policies and procedures.
Outreach and engagement
· Connect agricultural businesses with Extension staff and programs as appropriate when client needs fall outside the field specialist’s area of expertise.
· Connect home gardeners and other community members with the services of Cooperative Extension, including the Master Gardener program and the Infoline.
· Involve the Hillsborough County Cooperative Extension Advisory Council and local agricultural agencies and organizations in educational needs assessment.
· Develop partnerships and serve on committees and boards with local and state agricultural agencies and organizations such as Hillsborough County Conservation District, Farm Bureau, New England Vegetable and Berry Growers Association, and NH Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food. Strive for productive relationships with elected and appointed officials.
Professional development and additional duties
· Support the Extension Hillsborough County Office Administrator (COA) in the performance of their duties, carry out appropriate delegated responsibilities, and serve as the COA when the need is identified and as advised by the program team leader and Extension administration.
· Develop and implement a professional development plan to maintain and enhance competence in appropriate agriculture subject areas and professional skills such as leadership, group process and facilitation, use of technology and instructional design.
· Accomplish other duties as assigned by the program team leader.
· A master’s degree and two years’ experience in agricultural education is strongly preferred. At least one degree must be in agriculture or a closely related field, earned from an accredited institution. Applicants with a bachelor’s degree in an appropriate field with three years relevant experience may be considered contingent upon their agreement to obtain a master’s degree within seven years of employment.
· High degree of subject matter competence in vegetable and fruit production, including problem diagnosis and best practices. Additional expertise in soil nutrition, insect and disease management, or agricultural engineering is desirable.
· Experience working with commercial agricultural producers and organizations.
· Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
· Ability to work effectively and cooperatively with coworkers and clients with a variety of values and interests and of all ages, ethnic backgrounds, income and education levels.
· Willingness and ability to accomplish year-round field work and be available to work some nights and weekend days.
· Maintain a valid driver’s license and access to a personal vehicle for frequent local travel. Mileage will be reimbursed at the federal rate.
ADDITIONAL PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS
· Demonstrated competency in presenting educational programs.
· Experience or familiarity with Extension programs.