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University of Minnesota
Extension's Research and Outreach (REACH) Lab
St. Paul
Posted: 04/04/2023
Evaluation Specialist- CYFAR, Extension REACH Lab

Working Title: Evaluation Specialist

Classification: 9742R6 – Researcher 6

Appointment: Option of 80%-100% time (32-40hrs/week), UMN Benefits apply

Estimated Salary Range: $75,000 – $83,000

Reports To: REACH Lab Projects Director

Location: St Paul campus, with potential for some hybrid work options

Application Deadline: April 20, 2023



This position is housed within the Center for Research and Outreach (REACH) Lab and is lead by Dr. Lynne Borden, Associate Dean for Research and Engagement for UMN Extension. The REACH Lab focuses on conducting applied research and outreach to inform the design and implementation of community and systems strategies to enhance the lives of children, youth, and families. Many of the REACH Lab projects address issues around youth development, early childhood education, families, and community outreach. The REACH Lab is a federally funded lab through multiple grants from sources including USDA-NIFA and the DoD. In addition to providing research and outreach, the REACH Lab provides professional development and technical assistance through online resources.


The primary purpose of this position is to develop an independent research and evaluation design aligned with the mission, vision, and values of the USDA Children, Youth, and Families At-Risk (CYFAR) Professional Development and Technical Assistance (PDTA) Center while concurrently executing the CYFAR PDTA Center’s existing research design. The candidate will partner with the CYFAR PDTA Center’s Principal Investigators as a member of the CYFAR PDTA Center and REACH Lab teams to support implementation of research projects that improve the quality and quantity of comprehensive community-based programs for at-risk children, youth, and families supported by the Cooperative Extension System.


45% Research and Evaluation:

  • Under limited supervision, conduct research and evaluation activities related to Center and Lab projects including but not limited to research in support of and evaluation of state programs using specialized common measure evaluation instruments and logic models.
  • Collect and analyze data using qualitative and quantitative research methods.
  • Assure the evaluation components of grant projects are being met as required by grant RFA and funding requirements.
  • Lead and contribute to grant and contract proposals.
  • Lead and co-author manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Oversee outcomes data through the collection of CYFAR program information.
  • Provide evaluation guidelines and support to USDA-NIFA’s CYFAR programs throughout the US States and Territories.
  • Lead post-evaluation of hosted conferences and events.
  • Develop additional capacity-building information, trainings, and resources to be delivered to the CYFAR community as identified by project staff members.

25% Project Management:

  • Lead research teams to complete assigned projects within allotted timelines and budgets.
  • Create reports, summaries, and presentations as required by various grant projects, including annual and evaluation reports.
  • Assist the REACH Lab Projects Director and PI’s in coordinating the work of CYFAR coaches in coaching individual community programs in the areas of professional development, program evaluation, and program technical assistance.
  • Assist the PI, and other research staff, in coordinating the work of the CYFAR PDTA project and assuring project deadlines, goals, and requirements are being met.

25% Technical Assistance:

  • Provide technical assistance to USDA’s CYFAR grantees on the implementation of CYFAR requirements, program evaluation, online evaluation tools, and site reporting.
  • Work as part of the technical delivery team to deliver new and innovative technical assistance strategies that assist CYFAR. grantees in building their own capacity to collect data, report data, and meet the CYFAR program requirements.

5% Other duties as assigned:

  • Contribute to the creation of a collaborative environment
  • Complete other related tasks as assigned

The position will involve some travel (conferences) which may include overnights and weekends.



Required Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree in evaluation studies, family studies, psychology, family sociology, or related discipline at time of application
  • Two years of post-Master’s degree related research experience
  • Experience publishing research in peer-reviewed journals
  • Experience with statistical software
  • Project management experience
  • Strong written and oral communication skills (English)
  • Strong organizational and analytical skills
  • Ability to work with diverse populations
  • Proven ability to work with multi-disciplinary teams

Additional Requirements:

  • Valid driver’s license and access to own means of transportation with required liability insurance.
  • Must have reliable internet if/when working outside of assigned office location.
  • Must be able to work regularly at a dedicated/assigned Extension office
  • Must be able to sit and work on computer for prolonged periods of time.
  • When not in the assigned office location, employees must be reachable with a mobile number at the employee’s own expense. That number will be published in the Extension staff directory.
  • Ability to maintain a flexible work schedule, including occasional evening or weekend work.
  • Must be able to submit proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or submit a completed religious/medical exemption and agree to comply with the University’s testing requirement.
  • This position is not eligible for employment visa sponsorship.


  • Doctorate degree in evaluation studies, family studies, psychology, family sociology, or related discipline
  • Experience evaluating grant-funded projects
  • Experience contributing to an applied research team
  • Experiencing providing technical assistance
  • Excellent computer skills with Microsoft and Google Suite applications



  1. This is a Professional and Administrative appointment at the level of Researcher 6 (Job code 9742R6). There is an option to work 80%-100% time (32-40hours/week) and can be negotiated at time of hire. This position is a 12-month appointment pending the availability of funds, performance, and project needs. The position will be located on the St. Paul campus, hybrid work options may be available
  2. A full University of Minnesota benefits package is available: https://hr.umn.edu/Jobs/Applicant-Center/About-Working-U/Benefits-Working-U.
  3. Salary commensurate with education and experience. Starting salary range is $75,00 – $83,000 and will be negotiated at time of offer.
  4. Reimbursement for travel and subsistence is available in accordance with University policy.



University of Minnesota Extension is a major outreach arm of the University of Minnesota with a mission to serve the public through applied research and education. Our mission is to make a difference by connecting community needs and University resources to address critical issues in Minnesota. Extension strives to attract and retain high-quality, passionate employees, and weave diversity, equity and inclusion into all aspects of Extension’s programming and employee engagement. Find further information at www.extension.umn.edu.


Please apply at: https://extension.umn.edu/home/careers, Job Opening ID: 354883

Please note: This position is not eligible for employment visa sponsorship.

Applications must be submitted online. To be considered for this position, please click on the Apply button and follow the instructions. You will be given the opportunity to complete an online application for the position. Please include the following attachments with your online application:

  • Cover letter
  • Resume/Vitae
  • Diversity statement: In 500 words or less, highlight your unique strengths, experiences, perspectives, and values as they relate to equity, diversity and inclusion. Your statement could include the following:
  • o Personalized views and experiences
  • o Topics through the lens of your own knowledge or experience
  • o If you don’t have personal experience on a topic, reflect on why
  • o Demonstrated learning and growth

Three professional references and transcripts for all college work (unofficial transcripts are acceptable) will be required during the interview process.

Additional documents may be attached after the application by accessing your “My Job Applications” page and uploading documents in the “My Cover Letters and Attachments” section. See full instructions, https://hr.umn.edu/Jobs/Applicant-Center/Help-Job-Applications/Using-Job-Application-System.

To request an accommodation during the application process, please email employ@umn.edu or call 612-624-UOHR (8647).


For questions about this position, contact:

Mark Otto, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Search Chair, ottox010@umn.edu

For questions about applying online, contact:

Tiffany McMillan, Extension HR, tiffmcm@umn.edu.



Any offer of employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a background check. Our presumption is that prospective employees are eligible to work here. Criminal convictions do not automatically disqualify finalists from employment.

Please note: All employees at the University of Minnesota are required to comply with the University’s Administrative Policy: COVID-19 Vaccination and Safety Protocol by either providing proof of being fully vaccinated on their first day of employment, or complete a request for an exemption for medical exemption or religious reasons. To learn more please visit: https://safe-campus.umn.edu/return-campus/get-the-vax



The University of Minnesota and Extension recognize and value the importance of diversity and inclusion in enriching the employment experience of its employees and in supporting the academic mission. The University is committed to attracting and retaining employees with varying identities and backgrounds.

The University of Minnesota provides equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. To learn more about diversity at the U: http://diversity.umn.edu.