The College of Agricultural Sciences is seeking an entrepreneurial-minded Extension Educator, Poultry Ag Economist, with the drive to make a positive difference, an innovative spirit, technically proficient in economics or business management, and a passion for poultry science, education, and research, to join the nationally recognized Poultry Team as a member of the Penn State Extension Energy, Business & Community Vitality & Animal Systems Units.
Overview: On behalf of the Units/Team, the individual will connect poultry industry issues and opportunities associated with financial planning, business management, budgeting, partial budgeting, financial analysis, and decision-making to sound education and research. Educational programs and applied research activities should result in measurable improvements for poultry farms and businesses in terms of sustainable growth and profitability of Pennsylvania's diverse poultry sectors (broilers, turkeys, layers, breeders, ducks, and game birds). Improvements will be measured in terms of positive practice changes made by stakeholders in efficiency, growth, competitiveness, innovation, and job creation.
Program & Program Leadership Responsibilities: Major responsibilities will include planning, implementing, conducting, and evaluating for impact, a broad array of educational programs for commercial poultry enterprises of any size, especially initiatives that can increase poultry profitability, enhance farm sustainability and relationships at the urban-rural interface, and advance farm-level measures to enhance food safety and meat and egg quality. In support of program planning and development, the individual will work both individually and collaboratively to conduct needs assessment, establish learning objectives, develop educational materials, host educational events, utilize evaluation to measure program success, and develop appropriate impact documentation to illustrate the value and relevancy of quality programming. Team members are expected to work closely with university faculty to develop educational programs and products and conduct applied research relevant to stakeholder needs.
The successful candidate will focus on poultry and serve as a key member of the finance team with current and future state projects and programs potentially including Farm $en$e, Your Future in Focus, farm finance, enterprise budgeting, ratio analysis, and more. To grow and support the poultry and finance teams, the successful candidate will be expected to both develop and oversee a robust and diverse external funding portfolio (e.g., grants, contracts, program revenue, development, etc.) in support of the teams and Unit programs.
Specialized Skills & Educational Requirements: The position will be filled as an Extension Educator 3 or 4, depending upon the successful candidate's competencies, education, and experience. At the educator three-level, the position requires a minimum of a Master's degree, plus two years of related experience and at the educator four-level, the position requires a minimum of a Master's degree, plus five years of related experience. Preference will be given to candidates with degree(s) in agricultural economics, business management, economics, business administration, business, agricultural business management, finance, poultry science, animal science, or related disciplines, and those that have related work experience with multiple aspects of poultry production or processing.
While we are seeking disciplinary expertise in poultry business management and economics, it is expected that competitive candidates will have a general understanding of avian biology, husbandry, nutrition, poultry ventilation, and building systems, nutrient management principles, and advanced poultry production practices. Experience in general flock management, precision technologies, disease diagnosis, and biosecurity are favorable attributes.
Beyond degree and experience requirements, candidates must possess effective communication skills (verbal and written), interpersonal skills, and the ability to build effective working relationships. The candidate must be very organized and able to manage multiple projects simultaneously. Desirable experiences include teaching, facilitation, curriculum development, evaluation, grant management, project management, research, business management, or involvement in poultry production and processing. The successful candidate must be proficient in the use of modern computer software packages, such as Microsoft Office, standard financial software packages, and/or statistics software. Superior Microsoft Excel skills and fluency in Spanish are a plus and highly encouraged.
Relational & Pedagogical Responsibilities: The successful individual will work both independently, or as a member of one or more program teams. Successful educators must engage effectively with diverse and underserved audiences across the Commonwealth. To develop and conduct educational programs and applied research, the candidate should be comfortable with innovative and/or entrepreneurial team collaborations that reach across multiple stakeholders, disciplines, departments, colleges, institutions, non-governmental organizations, independent businesses, and possibly state and local governments. To accomplish team and individual goals, the candidate must utilize educational tools such as online courses, videos, mobile apps, and electronic publications, in addition to traditional publications and in-person presentations.
Travel and Clearances: While the successful candidate will be based in Extension Area 8 (Cumberland, Franklin, Adams, Dauphin, Perry, and York Counties), they will be part of a state team and thus expected to participate and deliver programs statewide. The home base will be in Cumberland County (Office location: 310 Allen Rd #601, Carlisle, PA 17013). Travel (including some overnight trips) may be required, as program, project, and applied research activities may occur at various locations across the Commonwealth. As such, the job responsibilities require the candidate to possess a valid driver's license and have use of a private vehicle. As the position requires operating a motor vehicle, completion of a motor vehicle records check is required. Penn State University also requires the completion of a standard background check. The University may also require a check of publicly available clearances for those individuals who may be working with children. The diverse program locations and materials needed for program delivery and potential research require the candidate to be able to carry equipment and educational materials and supplies, with or without accommodation.
Penn State Extension is an organization on the move and a leader in research and engaged learning innovation. We welcome all applicants interested in working together to create new and innovative programs capable of making a lasting and positive difference for the residents of Pennsylvania and beyond.
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