MSU Extension Extension Educator –  Viticulture – Leelanau County, Northwest Michigan

 Position Overview

 As part of MSU Extension (MSUE) and the Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute, this position provides local as well as statewide leadership and educational programming expertise in viticulture production.   The position will be located in Leelanau County, and will work across Northern Michigan providing education and support for grape and small fruit growers.  This region of Michigan has a vibrant grape and wine industry.  The successful applicant will collaborate across work teams and Institutes including working with faculty, specialists and educators to achieve efficient, profitable and sustainable viticulture and overall advancement for the Michigan viticulture industry.

The successful applicant will design, implement and evaluate educational programming based on basic and applied research and the needs of Michigan growers and viticulture industry groups; ensure dissemination of research-based information through various methods, including multi-media, personal education and written articles; provide growers, processors and agri-business professionals with the knowledge to profitably produce their crop while minimizing environmental impact; serve as an informational resource for Extension Personnel and clientele.

* Assist MSU Extension’s Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute (AABI) in determining research and programmatic needs of the Northern Michigan growers, as well as statewide needs through interaction with state commodity groups and associations and communicate those needs to county commissioners, campus-based academic units, and research partners;

* Communicate and interact with commodity groups to evaluate the needs of Michigan’s viticulture industry and determine research and educational programming goals;

* Serve as an information resource for viticulture personnel throughout Michigan, and work with statewide AABI workgroups to effectively plan and implement relevant programming;

* In collaboration with the MSUE Grape & Wine, and Small Fruit Work Group, provide pest management and horticultural leadership for Northern Michigan in collaboration with the Michigan fruit industry.

* Conduct Integrated Crop Management training sessions to encourage adoption of new technologies and techniques in fruit horticulture and pest management.

* Consult with industry leaders, consultants, educators, and other appropriate advisory persons to develop an extension and applied research plan of work, which will include the planning, implementation and evaluation to measure change in knowledge for production management, as well as economic, environmental and/or social impacts;

* As part of the planning, implementation and evaluation process for Extension programming, assess improved clientele knowledge on production management, as well as economic, environmental and/or social impacts;

* In concert with the MSUE work team(s), interact with federal, state and county agencies that support agriculture industries to determine research, demonstration, and programmatic needs of the region as well as the state and communicate those needs to county commissioners, campus-based departments, and research partners;

* Actively participate in professional development opportunities;

* Gather and report programming outputs and impacts to demonstrate program effectiveness and to guide future program priorities for MSUE and the Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute;

* Work to ensure that community needs assessments, program development and recruitment efforts include the engagement of Michigan’s diverse residents across race, gender, socioeconomic class, disabilities and other differences;

* Create and promote positive public relations for MSU Extension and the Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute;



* Minimum of a Master’s degree from an accredited institution in a field of study related to horticulture, entomology, plant pathology or crop science, must be earned by date of hire;

* Knowledge of and experience with horticulture practices related to viticulture production;

* Ability to create and carry-out a project plan from development of initial concept to project completion and follow-up/impact assessment;

* Strong interpersonal, oral and written communication skills;

* Experience and proven ability working productively with a team;

* Proficiency in use of technology (e.g. web research, Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook for mail/calendaring, distance delivery/communication technology, etc.) for day-to-day work and educational program delivery, record keeping, reporting, team-based communications and overall management;

* Demonstrated success in, or commitment to, program development and delivery to diverse audiences/communities including but not limited to race, gender, socioeconomic class, disabilities and other differences;

* Proven ability in establishing and working with a diverse network of constituents and community members across race, gender, socioeconomic class, disabilities and other differences to assist with program development and outreach;

* Understanding of, and ability to implement, Civil Rights principles and compliance standards.

* Ability to regularly travel within the assigned area and surrounding communities, as well as travel outside the assigned area in order to perform duties of this position.

* Ability to lift and carry educational materials, equipment, etc. up to 25 lbs.


Desired Qualifications  


* Three-years’ experience in Extension program delivery or demonstrated ability and skill in educational program planning, implementation and evaluation (relevant experience acquired within the last 5-years preferred);

* Experience with marketing/promotion of educational programs;

Application Process

This is a full-time, fixed-term position, renewable on an annual basis.

Applicants should include the names and contact information, including email addresses, of four professional references with the cover letter.

Parties interested in this position should go to and search for posting # 4506. Application deadline, Jan. 22, 2017



MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer. Michigan State University Extension programs and materials are open to all without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, religion, age, height, weight, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital status, family status or veteran status.

This entry was posted in Job Opportunities. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.