Extension Educator (Leadership & Community Vitality)
The College of Agricultural Sciences is seeking an entrepreneurial-minded individual, with the drive to make a positive difference, an innovative spirit, technical proficiency and a passion for leadership and community vitality education and research, to join our nationally recognized Penn State Extension - Energy, Business & Community Vitality Unit. On behalf of the Unit, the individual will connect local issues and opportunities associated with community engagement, community and organizational research, co-op development, social entrepreneurship, volunteer development, non-profit organizational development, facilitation, leadership development, community problem solving and planning, and government engagement to sound education and research. Educational programs and applied research activities should result in measurable improvements for farm, food, and natural resource-based businesses and non-profits. Improvements will be measured in terms of positive practice changes made by stakeholders in efficiency, growth, competitiveness, innovation and job creation. Success will allow Pennsylvania businesses and non-profits to improve their allocation of resources, evaluate planning and development activities, assess project impacts, increase overall capacity, and enhance positive workforce investment. The successful candidate will serve as the program area lead for current and future state projects and programs including: grant writing, strategic planning, leadership, organizational development, 6-Steps to Highly Effective Organizations, getting involved in local government, land use planning and more. The individual will also supervise the urban community vitality initiative and personnel. The individual will drive the working group program portfolio development, marketing, implementation, finances and evaluation strategy. Based on participation, market trends, needs assessment, return on investment, stakeholder and educator input and program evaluation, the successful candidate will annually review and recommend updates to the working group program and project portfolio. To grow and support the working group, the program area leader 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 work group and Unit's programs. In both the role of program area leader and educator the individual will enhance stakeholder relationships through personal connectedness, program relevancy and demonstrated program impact. 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. In support of educational programs, team members will work to conduct applied research relevant to target audience needs. This job will be filled as a level 4, or level 5, depending upon the successful candidate's competencies, education, and experience. Typically requires a Master's degree or higher plus five years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience for a level 4. Additional experience and/or education and competencies are required for higher level jobs. Preference will be given to candidates with degree(s) trained in sociology, rural sociology, geography, demography, leadership, community development, strategic management, business administration, public administration, economic and community development or related disciplines, and those that have related work experience. Team members are expected to work closely with university faculty to develop educational programs and products and conduct applied research relevant to stakeholder needs. 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 or non-profit management, or involvement in food, agriculture and/or natural resources. As the program area leader supervisory experience is a plus. The successful candidate must be proficient in use of modern computer software packages, such as Microsoft Office, and possibly IMPLAN, ARC GIS and/or statistics software. Superior Microsoft Excel skills or advanced database skills and fluency in Spanish are a plus and highly encouraged. The successful individual must enjoy and be able to work effectively independently, or as a member of one or more program teams. Successful program area leaders and 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 which 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. Significant travel (including some overnight trips) may be required, as program, project and applied research activities occur at a variety of 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 as part of the job duties, successful completion of a motor vehicle records check is required, as well as, standard background checks. Additionally, the diverse program locations and materials needed for program delivery and 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 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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Penn State is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, and is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status.
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