Kansas State University seeks Horticulture Extension Agent

Posted on April 3, 2023
Kansas State University seeks Horticulture Extension Agent
Position Title:
Horticulture Extension Agent
Position Summary
Program Focus: Horticulture
Location: Remote from Jackson, Jefferson, or Nemaha County, KS
Application Deadline: April 10
The Meadowlark Extension District is home to over 42,000 residents in 27 communities and is seeking to hire their first horticulture extension agent. The horticulture agent will be asked to live in the district and will be allowed to work remotely with access to each of our three offices as needed to provide effective in-person and digital programing to district residents, related businesses, and youth groups. There are multiple horticulture and landscape-related businesses in the district and a Master Gardner program was started two years ago. The district is comprised of Jackson, Jefferson, and Nemaha counties in northeast Kansas. There are currently six agents, three 4-H program managers, and related support staff housed in three offices across the district.
Duties/ Responsibilities:
Extension agents are professional educators who serve as a link between Kansas State University and communities across Kansas. Agents are administratively responsible to the Director of K-State Research and Extension (represented by a designated administrator) and the local extension board.
1. Lead the development, implementation, and evaluation of research-based educational programming related to horticulture. Programming will include but is not limited to: horticultural crop production, marketing, and economics
horticultural waste management
landscape maintenance and improvement
and conservation of natural resources.
2. Coordinate the Meadowlark District’s growing Extension Master Gardener program, a team of extension-trained volunteers who provide horticultural education and service within their communities.
3. Support collaborative efforts with the Prairie Band Tribal Nation and other tribal communities and coalitions through horticultural programming, partnerships, and outreach.
4. Successful extension programs require agents to:
a) Identify local needs and emerging issues related to K-State Research and Extension’s five Grand Challenges (water and natural resources
community vitality
developing tomorrow’s leaders
and global food systems) by engaging with program development committees and other community organizations and professionals.
b) Design appropriate educational strategies to engage clientele. Strategies might include educational programming in a community-based setting
events and activities that provide experiential learning opportunities
use of innovative technologies
individual educational consultations
and group facilitation.
c) Develop and implement strategies to serve diverse audiences and to ensure K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider of educational programming.
d) Collect and communicate evidence of educational program impact.
e) Cultivate expertise in a subject matter competency area by engaging as a member of a Program Focus Team.
5. Pursue internal and external funding to support educational programming.
6. Serve as a member of the Meadowlark District team cooperating in the planning and delivery of county-wide programming and related events.
What You'll Need to Succeed:
Minimum Qualifications:
- Bachelor’s degree.
- Academic coursework, professional development, or prior employment related to the position responsibilities.
- Evidence of strong academic and/or professional performance as documented by college transcripts or documented success in increasingly responsible professional positions.
- Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with individuals, groups and through mass media.
- Familiarity with various ethnic and socio-economic audiences
an interest in working with people from diverse backgrounds
and a commitment to supporting and enhancing K-State Research and Extension’s initiative for diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Ability to work a flexible schedule which will include some nights, weekends, and overnight travel.
Preferred Qualifications:
- Master’s Degree.
- Commitment to personal and professional development.
- Competence using electronic communication and computer applications to fulfill programming responsibilities.
- Self-motivation and ability to work with minimal supervision while balancing multiple projects.- Experience with volunteer recruitment, support, and management.
- Understanding of educational program design, promotion, implementation, and evaluation.
- Experience with volunteer recruitment, support, and management.
- Skills in group facilitation.
- Knowledge of adult and youth teaching/learning processes.
- Experience seeking and administering external grant funding.
- Ability to communicate effectively with both English-speaking and Limited English Proficiency (LEP) audiences.
- Understanding of or experience with Native American / Indigenous communities and tribal programs.
Other Requirements:
- Access to a personal vehicle and the ability to obtain/maintain a valid driver’s license.
- Must reside in Jackson, Jefferson, or Nemaha County throughout the period of employment.
- Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States at the time of employment.
Salary, Benefits, and Professional Development:
- Salary commensurate with professional experience and available funding as negotiated by the regional extension director, the local extension board and the applicant. The base starting salary is $43,000 for a BS degree with no professional experience and $47,000 for a MS degree with no professional experience.
- Extension agents are Kansas State University educators and have the Board of Regents retirement plan, eligibility for health and life insurance, and earn vacation and sick leave. For a complete list of benefits see: www.k-state.edu/hcs/benefits.
- Reimbursement for travel related to achieving program objectives.
- New agents will be provided with comprehensive Early Career Professional Development training throughout their onboarding period. This series will include virtual and in-person training and networking opportunities.
- Tuition assistance is available to full-time employees and their spouse/dependents
Equal Employment Opportunity:
Kansas State University is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, national origin, disability or status as a protected veteran.
Background Screening Statement:
In connection with your application for employment, Kansas State University will procure a Background Screen on you as part of the process of considering your candidacy as an employee.