Position Summary

Descriptive Title

1 Horticulture Extension Agent and 1 Agriculture Extension Agent, both for Douglas County, KS

Salary and Other Benefits

• 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, health and life insurance and vacation and sick leave. There is a 30-day waiting period for health insurance. See a complete list of benefits. • Reimbursement for travel related to achieving program objectives. • New agents are provided approximately 15 days of new agent professional development on the K-State campus or online during their first six to nine months. These 15 days are spread out in four different weeks. In addition, new agents spend at least three weeks with a mentor agent during the first year.

Remote Position

no

Position Description

About The Horticulture Extension Agent Role:
Douglas County is located along Interstate 70, between Topeka and Kansas City. The diversified urban, suburban, and rural population is over 118,000. There are three universities in the county: University of Kansas, Baker University, and Haskell Indian Nations University. There are four incorporated cities in Douglas County, with Lawrence, the largest, having a population of 98,000. Other cities include Baldwin City, Eudora, and Lecompton. Douglas County is a multiagent county with five agents and seven support staff.

There is an increasing interest in both home horticulture and natural resource management at all scales. There are 180 trained Extension Master Gardener volunteers in Douglas County.

Extension agents are community based faculty of Kansas State University who make a difference by connecting community needs with university resources. Agents are administratively responsible to the local extension director and the local extension board.

This position will provide primary leadership for the development and implementation of research-based educational programming related to horticulture and natural resources.  Programming will include but is not limited to: horticulture crop production, marketing and economics, conservation of natural resources, horticulture waste management, and landscape maintenance and improvement.

Horticulture Agent 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.

  • Provide primary leadership for the development and implementation of research-based educational programming related to horticulture and natural resources.  Programming will include but is not limited to: horticulture crop production, marketing and economics, conservation of natural resources, horticulture waste management, and landscape maintenance and improvement.
  • Manage Douglas County’s large and active chapter of Extension Master Gardener volunteers.
  • Programming will include these steps:
    • Identify local needs and emerging issues related to K-State Research and Extension’s five Grand Challenges: (water, community vitality, health, developing tomorrow’s leaders and global food systems) by engaging with program development committees and other community organizations and professionals.
    • Design appropriate educational strategies to engage clientele. These strategies might include delivering educational programming in a community-based setting, coordinating events and activities that provide experiential learning opportunities, using innovative technologies, providing individual educational consultations and facilitating groups seeking similar educational outcomes. Some overnight travel and evening and weekend work will be required.
    • Develop and implement strategies to expand the reach of educational programming to under-served audiences and to make certain K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider of educational programming.
    • Collect and communicate evidence of educational program impact.
    • Develop specialized knowledge and skills by engaging as a member of a Program Focus Team.
  • Secure external funding such as grants, gifts and cost recovery to supplement local tax revenue to support and expand educational programming.
  • Serve as a member of the Douglas County team cooperating in the planning and delivery of county-wide programming and related events.

 

About The Agriculture Extension Agent Role:
Douglas County is located along Interstate 70, between Topeka and Kansas City. The diversified urban, suburban, and rural population is over 118,000. There are three universities in the county: University of Kansas, Baker University, and Haskell Indian Nations University. There are four incorporated cities in Douglas County, with Lawrence, the largest, having a population of 98,000. Other cities include Baldwin City, Eudora, and Lecompton. Douglas County is a multiagent county with five agents and seven support staff.

There are 998 farms in Douglas County ranging from conventional production to specialty crop and direct-to-consumer operations. Douglas County has an established Food System Plan and is in the development phase for a Climate Action Plan and an Open-Space Plan.

Extension agents are community based faculty of Kansas State University who make a difference by connecting community needs with university resources. Agents are administratively responsible to the local extension director and the local extension board.

This position will provide primary leadership for the development and implementation of research-based educational programming related to agriculture and local food systems. Programming will include but is not limited to: agronomic and livestock production, specialty crop production, agricultural economics, management and public policy, local food systems, and environmental stewardship.

Agriculture Extension Agent 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.

  • Provide primary leadership for the development and implementation of research-based educational programming related to agriculture and local food systems. Programming will include but is not limited to: agronomic and livestock production, specialty crop production, agricultural economics, management and public policy, local food systems, and environmental stewardship.
  • Programming will include these steps:
    • Identify local needs and emerging issues related to K-State Research and Extension’s five Grand Challenges: (water, community vitality, health, developing tomorrow’s leaders and global food systems) by engaging with program development committees and other community organizations and professionals.
    • Design appropriate educational strategies to engage clientele. These strategies might include delivering educational programming in a community-based setting, coordinating events and activities that provide experiential learning opportunities, using innovative technologies, providing individual educational consultations and facilitating groups seeking similar educational outcomes. Some overnight travel and evening and weekend work will be required.
    • Develop and implement strategies to expand the reach of educational programming to under-served audiences and to make certain K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider of educational programming.
    • Collect and communicate evidence of educational program impact.
    • Develop specialized knowledge and skills by engaging as a member of a Program Focus Team.
  • Secure external funding such as grants, gifts and cost recovery to supplement local tax revenue to support and expand educational programming.
  • Serve as a member of the Douglas County team cooperating in the planning and delivery of county-wide programming and related events.

Required Qualifications

• Bachelor’s degree. • Academic coursework and/or professional development and professional employment related to the position responsibilities. • Evidence of strong academic and/or professional performance as documented by college transcripts, acceptance into a graduate program or documented success in increasingly responsible professional positions. • Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with individuals, groups and through mass media. • Leadership skills as evidenced by working with individuals, groups and co-workers.

Preferred Qualifications

• Master’s Degree. • Experience working with adults and youth from various ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds. • Commitment to personal professional development. • Ability to utilize electronic communication and computer applications to fulfill programming responsibilities. • Self-motivation and ability to work with a minimum of supervision, balancing multiple projects. • Ability to design, promote, implement and evaluate educational programs. • Skills in group facilitation. • Knowledge of adult and youth teaching/learning processes. • Experience in seeking and administering external grant funding. • Ability to communicate effectively with both English and Spanish learners.

Other Requirements

• Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States at the time of employment. • Access to a personal vehicle and the ability to obtain/maintain a valid driver’s license. • All K-State employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (unless granted an exemption by the university) by their first day of employment, pursuant to the federal executive order for federal contractors. To learn more about this requirement and potential exemptions, please visit K-State’s COVID-19 website [www.ksu.edu/covid-19/vaccine]

Travel Requirements

Some overnight travel will be required.

Driver’s license or alternate transportation required?

yes

Contact Name

Mary Hellmer

Contact Email

mary58@ksu.edu

Contact Phone

(785) 532-5790

Application Instructions

For more information visit: ksre.k-state.edu/jobs

Equal Employer Statement(s)

It is the policy of Kansas State University not to discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of his or her race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin , or because he or she is an individual with a disability or disabled or protected veterans. It is also the policy of Kansas State University to take affirmative action to employ and to advance in employment, all persons regardless of their status as individuals with disabilities or protected veterans, and to base all employment decisions only on valid job requirements. This policy shall apply to all employment actions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, upgrading, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, recall, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation, and selection for training, including apprenticeship, at all levels of employment. Furthermore, the company will provide qualified applicants and employees who request an accommodation due to a disability with reasonable accommodations, as required by law.

About K-State Research and Extension

K-State Research and Extension is a statewide network of educators sharing unbiased, research-based information and expertise on issues important to Kansas. It has established local, state, regional, national, and international partnerships. It is dedicated to a safe, sustainable, competitive food and fiber system and to strong, healthy communities, families, and youth through integrated research, analysis and education. With 131 years of research and 104 years of extension, K-State Research and Extension has been improving the quality of life and standard of living for Kansans for a century. K-State Research and Extension is a partnership between Kansas State University and the federal, state, and county governments. Research completed is used by extension agents and others to help solve community issues. This integrated system connects the university to every county through locally based educators who serve as sources of objective information. K-State Research and Extension is a short name for Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service.