VACANCY: Assistant Teaching Professor of Viticulture at Pennsylvania State University

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Type: Full-Time
Posted: 03/27/2023
Category: Agricultural Extension; +1



The Department of Plant Science at The Pennsylvania State University is seeking candidates for a non-tenure-track, 9-month Assistant Teaching Professor of Viticulture with 80% extension and 20% teaching responsibilities. The successful candidate will provide leadership for planning, implementing, and evaluating educational programs in viticulture and serve as a technical resource for Pennsylvania wine-grape growers, including site and cultivar selection, production practices, nutrition and water management, and the identification and management of the major abiotic and biotic threats (e.g., diseases, pests, cold injury, herbicide injury). The candidate will collaborate with other statewide Extension Grape and Enology Team members who consist of faculty from several disciplines on the University Park and Commonwealth Campuses, the Lake Erie Regional Grape Research and Extension Center in Erie County, and extension educators across the state. The candidate will liaise closely with the Pennsylvania wine grape industry to develop Extension programs addressing the industry’s needs. While this is an extension and teaching appointment, the successful candidate will engage in applied research projects to support the needs of the Pennsylvania wine industry.  The candidate will also work closely with other Extension Grape and Enology Team members to deliver a statewide Extension program requiring travel throughout the Commonwealth.

The Department of Plant Science, housed within the College of Agricultural Sciences, is home to about 50 faculty members focused on advanced research, teaching, and extension/outreach with a strong commitment to fostering diversity, equality, and inclusive excellence in all activities. The Department has considerable strength across the continuum of basic to applied research, including root and rhizosphere biology, plant response to stress and climate resilience, plant nutrition, soil fertility, and nutrient management, sustainable crop production systems, and agroecosystem modeling. The Department enjoys strong collaborative connections with a variety of colleges (e.g., Eberly College of Science, College of Engineering, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences) and institutes (e.g., Institute for Sustainable Agricultural, Food, and Environmental Science (SAFES), the Huck Institutes of Life Sciences and Penn State Institutes of Energy and the Environment), and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Long-Term Agricultural Research Network. The Grape and Wine Extension team has a strong relationship with the wine grape industry, including grape growers, wine producers, and wineries.

The Penn State Extension Grape and Enology Team includes faculty and staff with expertise in Agricultural Economics, Agricultural Engineering, Entomology, Food Science, Plant Pathology, and Soil Science, as well as Horticulture. The successful candidate will serve as a liaison between the grape industry and the College, demonstrate potential to become the Extension Grape and Enology Team Co-leader, and work with the Pennsylvania Grape and Wine Industry Winter Conference organizers and other meeting organizers to develop educational programs. Extension responsibilities include interacting with other specialists, county educators, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, and stakeholder groups around the state, region, and nation to identify and prioritize needs; and develop a comprehensive extension education program with a variety of outputs, such as fact sheets, digital products, webinars, and field demonstrations.

Teaching Responsibilities:

The successful candidate will teach a viticulture course every 4th semester for upper-level undergraduate and graduate students, focusing on viticulture theory and application and general vineyard management.  A second course, taught every year, will contribute to the departmental teaching program in an area(s) related to the candidate’s disciplinary strengths, such as an introductory level general education course  focused on regional production of grapes and wines across the diverse landscape of the United States. Additionally, the candidate will also advise and mentor undergraduate students.

Education and Experience:

Candidate must have a Ph.D. in Horticulture, Plant Science, or a closely related field with a strong background in fruit crops production and physiology, preferably with cool climate wine grape production experience, and be able to collaborate in multidisciplinary programs to enhance the sustainability of grape production. Candidates must possess effective communication skills (verbal and written), teaching skills, interpersonal skills, and the ability to build effective working relationships with colleagues and clientele. The candidate must be organized and able to manage multiple projects simultaneously.

Application Requirements:

Candidates should apply online at Review of applications will begin on May 1, 2023, and continue until the position is filled. Candidates should provide a cover letter, curriculum vitae, the names and contact information for three references, three representative publications, a statement of research experiences/future interests, and a statement of teaching pedagogy/interests. Applicants should provide evidence, either woven through their application materials or as a separate diversity statement, of a commitment to fostering diversity, equity, inclusive excellence, and belonging and of engagement that creates an inclusive environment in their classroom, Department, and the University.   

This position requires that you operate a motor vehicle as a part of your job duties. A valid driver’s license and successful completion of a motor vehicle records check will be required in addition to standard background checks.

The Pennsylvania State University is committed to and accountable for advancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and sustainability in all forms. We embrace individual uniqueness, foster a culture of inclusion that supports both broad and specific diversity initiatives, leverage the educational and institutional benefits of diversity in society and nature, and engage all individuals to help them thrive. We value inclusion as a core strength and an essential element of our public service mission.

Apply on institution’s website

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