USDA ARS is seeking a technician

The United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service is looking for a permanent USDA technician and has a position available with the Arthropod-Borne Animal Diseases Research Unit in Manhattan, KS.

ABADRU conducts research on the surveillance and management of domestic livestock pathogens that are transmitted by insects (biting flies and mosquitoes). Insect-borne diseases cause significant economic loss and pose a constant threat to the U.S. livestock industry. New methods and products will be developed and compared to established techniques and materials.

The incumbent of this position will actively participate in one or more phases of the research process by performing a variety of complex technical duties in a laboratory and field environment working with live insects.

Major Duties may include, but are not limited to:

  • Collects insect samples in a field environment.
  • Sorts and identifies insect collections to the species classification.
  • Maintains and rears large populations or colonies of insects and arthropods for disease vector research and scientific studies.
  • Tests new and established products (insecticides) and techniques (treatment methods) for efficacy.
  • Identifies physical features from live insect samples and prepares the insects for study in a laboratory environment.
  • Keeps exact, detailed records of experimental data. Tabulates, statistically analyzes and summarizes data using personal computers and software packages.
  • Interprets and documents findings by preparing information to be included in manuscripts or preparing reports summarizing progress or results of research.

Salary $45,810 to $65,778 per year, and posting closes 16 October 2018. For more information, visit: https://www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/512497000

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North Central Integrated Pest Management Center Announces Request for Applications for Working Groups and Critical Issues Grants

East Lansing, Michigan — The North Central Integrated Pest Management Center (NCIPMC) is pleased to announce the availability of funds and requests for proposals (RFA) for working groups and critical issues, that support NCIPMC and regional integrated pest management (IPM) priorities. The deadline for application is 5:00 p.m.—EST, November 16, 2018.

The Working Groups and Critical Issues grants help facilitate the NCIPMC’s mission to improve health, environment, and economic benefits by providing leadership and cooperating with our partners to facilitate the development and adoption of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) solutions, based in the North Central region.

IPM is the integration of problem-solving strategies that address a multitude of pest problems. Insects, plant diseases, weeds, birds and mammals can all interfere with the production of our food, spread diseases or invade our homes and schools. When this occurs, IPM strategies take an effective and environmentally sensitive approach to managing those pests to a tolerable level to our environment and resources.

A total of up to $100,000 will be available for the Critical Issues grants with a project funding maximum of $50,000 for 12 months. The program is designed to provide one-time seed funding to help initiate work requiring immediate attention until other longer-term resources can be secured to address the issue in the north central region. Examples of types of critical issue proposals that would be appropriate and considered for this program may include: addressing invasive species, pollinator protection and conservation, pest prevention (insect and disease) and strategic planning to address new or emerging pest management issues.

A total of up to $200,000 will be available for Working Group projects, with a project funding maximum of $20,000 for 12 months. The working groups program is designed to support collaboration among diverse groups to collaboratively address a regional IPM priority. Multi-state/tribal nation working groups should address information, resource and research needs in region-wide or broad areas to enhance communication and collaborations for the IPM topic area being addressed by the group. A working group could also coordinate efforts to develop proposals for additional funding to address critical issues within the north central region. A working group project includes collaborative activities that lead to specific outputs, such as a publication, an app, a regional pest alert, a survey, a Pest Management Strategic Plan, etc., which in turn are intended to contribute to desired outcomes.

For more information on the application process and guidelines, and to download the application, visit the NCIPMC website at www.ncipmc.org or the NCIPMC Grants Program page at https://www.ncipmc.org/grants/ncipmc_grants.php.

The North Central IPM Center is one of four centers in the nation, serving 12 states, as part of the USDA’s connection to production agriculture, research and extension services as well as community outreach programs, throughout the United States. Regional IPM Centers are funded by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). The IPM centers’ projects strive to improve economic benefits of adopting IPM practices and to reduce potential risks to human health and the environment. The states in the region include: Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Ohio, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Missouri, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan.

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Fort Valley State University is seeking applications and nominations for dean’s position

Fort Valley State University, a state and land-grant institution of the University System of Georgia, invites applications and nominations for the position of Dean of the College of Agriculture, Family Sciences & Technology. The University seeks an academic leader with proven experience in strategic planning and implementation and a commitment to student success, faculty development, and program innovation.

The Opportunity
Fort Valley State University (FVSU), located in Central Georgia, is the only 1890 land-grant university in Georgia. The historically black university (HBCU) is a comprehensive institution and a leader in agriculture research. Beyond the classroom, the College provides valuable extension services and programs to citizens and businesses throughout the state.

The Dean of the College of Agriculture, Family Sciences & Technology (Dean) is part of the academic team dedicated to supporting FVSU’s mission of meeting the higher education needs of the state, region, and nation through innovative teaching, and applied research. Reporting to the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs (Provost), the Dean works closely with the Deans’ Council and the President’s Cabinet to assist in the management of the College of Agriculture, Family Sciences & Technology.

The Dean guides the direction of the College through strategic planning and leadership.

Primary responsibilities:

  • Serves as a liaison between the College and the Office of Academic Affairs.
  • Works closely with the other college deans and the Provost to formulate and implement the academic objectives of the College within the context of the mission and objectives of the University.
  • Leads the administration, development, and direction of the academic programs, strategic planning, fundraising, facility development, as well as the Research Program budget inclusive of the Research Station and Farms, and the Cooperative Extension Program.
  • Evaluates the work of faculty members within the College.
  • Provides written recommendations concerning the retention, promotion, and tenure of faculty members to the Provost.
  • Prepares an annual report on the progress toward the objectives of the College and the University, including recommendations related to funding and future needs.
  • Serves as a local and state leader in public policy issues related to water, nutrition, and food, and agricultural and natural resources.

Qualifications
Candidate must have an earned doctorate from a regionally accredited university with a degree in a discipline represented within the College of Agriculture, Family Sciences & Technology. Distinguished scholarly credentials and stature appropriate for the rank of Professor in a department in the College are required.

Other requirements include:

  • Knowledge and experience of the roles and responsibilities of a dean at a land-grant institution
  • Participatory management and leadership style that encourages and values input from others
  • Knowledgeable, or the ability to become knowledgeable, of the requirements of academic programs beyond those in the College
  • Proven academic leadership, administrative ability, and experience
  • Experience in budget, planning, personnel, and student matters
  • Ability to lead teams to achieve established goals
  • Commitment to high standards in education, research, and outreach
  • Ability to develop and maintain productive relationships with on- and off-campus constituencies
  • Experience in program reviews, assessment, and specialized accreditation
  • An established record demonstrating the recruitment and retention of high-quality faculty and staff
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills with a high level of competency related to various technologies (i.e., Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, BANNER, etc.) utilized in an academic setting

College of Agriculture, Family Sciences & Technology
The College of Agriculture, Family Sciences & Technology (CAFST) serves 618 undergraduate and graduate students across four departments: Agricultural Sciences; Engineering Technology; Family and Consumer Sciences; and Veterinary Science and Public Health. The College also provides career enhancement through graduate programs in Animal Science, Biotechnology, and Public Health.

The College has 33 faculty members and 216 staff, which includes academic staff – 21; research staff – 29; extension staff – 54; and Head Start/Early Head Start – 112.

Fort Valley State University is the only public institution in Georgia that offers a Master of Science degree in Biotechnology, the development of products from living organisms, their components, or systems. While biotechnology often is applied to develop agricultural advancements, food, and medicine, FVSU master’s degree candidates can specialize in plant biotechnology, animal biotechnology, and applied biotechnology.

Widely recognized for the quality of its undergraduate education, research, and outreach programs, the College is ranked 6th nationally in graduating African American students in agriculture disciplines. It also has been a leader in placing first-time applicants into medical, dental, veterinary, and pharmacy schools and colleges since 2001.

Utilizing state-of-the-art, well-equipped laboratories in the state, the faculty are securing external grant funds and conducting cutting-edge research. Faculty conduct research in five primary areas: Agricultural Economics, Bioenergy and Climate Change, Food Safety, Small Ruminants, and Specialty Plant Biotechnology. Students work with the scientists in these laboratories, which contributes to their success of being accepted to professional and graduate schools.

Several programs in the College hold nationally accreditation: the Electronic Engineering Technology Program – ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology); Family and Consumer Sciences Program – AAFCS (American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences);  Veterinary Technology Program – AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association); Agricultural Education Program – NCATE (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education);  Master of Public Health – EHAC (National Environmental Health Science & Protection Accreditation Council).

Fort Valley State University has more than 2,700 students representing 127 of Georgia’s 159 counties, 20 states, and 14 countries. Ninety-two percent of the student body is African American. Sixty percent of the students live on campus, and 80 percent attend college full-time.

The diverse faculty, with 116 full-time members, provides a supportive, yet challenging learning environment that encourages innovation and inspires lifelong learning and the realization of aspirations. Students benefit from strong mentoring by accessible professors. The close-knit campus community encourages personal and academic growth and establishing lifelong ties that extend well beyond graduation.

The University offers undergraduate and graduate programs in almost 40 fields of study at its Fort Valley Campus and Warner Robins Center, which is designed for graduate students. Four undergraduate programs – Criminal Justice, Organizational Leadership, Political Science, and Psychology – and one graduate program – Master of Science in Rehabilitation Counseling – are offered online.

Fort Valley, Georgia, is a progressive city, with an estimated population of 9,935. The county seat of Peach County, the city has quiet tree-lined streets and dozens of beautiful historical homes. Approximately 90 minutes south of Atlanta on I-75, Fort Valley is only three hours west of the Atlantic coastline. The Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is an hour and a half away.

Application and Nomination Process – Confidential inquiries are welcomed, and nominations are invited.

To Apply – Applications must include: 1) A letter of interest, 2) A current resume or curriculum vitae, and 3) At least three references with full contact and e-mail information (References will not be contacted without the applicant’s consent.)

Submit application to FVSU-CAFST@myersmcrae.com by October 1, 2018, for best consideration. The search remains open until the position is filled.

Submit nominations to FVSU-CAFST-Nominate@myersmcrae.com with individual’s full contact and e-mail information.

Emily Parker Myers, CEO, and Jennifer Barfield, Senior Vice President of Myers McRae Executive Search and Consulting, are assisting FVSU with this search.

Fort Valley State University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate against applicants, students or employees on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability or marital or veteran status.

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National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) is seeking stakeholder feedback

As the primary extramural funding agency within USDA, The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) is seeking stakeholder feedback to inform the research, extension and education priorities of NIFA. We are attempting to ensure that we reach a broad spectrum of organizations involved in food and agricultural research and development, market development, or other agricultural organizations that think about food and agricultural customer needs.

Input can be provided in-person at one of the four listening sessions being held across the country, or it can be provided through an online survey through the input form link below.  I have attached informational links also to help you decide how best your organization can engage and share perspectives with us.  I hope you are able to take a few minutes to scan through those links and determine how best your organization can share its input with us.  If it is relatively convenient, I would like to encourage industry stakeholders such as your organization to participate in the in-person session.

NIFA Listens Fact Sheet:https://nifa.usda.gov/sites/default/files/resource/NIFA-Listens-Fact-Sheet.pdf

NIFA Listens Announcement through the Federal Register: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2018/08/27/2018-18535/stakeholder-listening-opportunity-for-priorities-in-research-education-and-extension

NIFA listens input form:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/nifalistens2018

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Kansas State University Looking for a PhD student

Kansas State University is looking for a PhD student to work on biting midges. The research will focus on novel methods to manage biting midge populations and we will teach the student a variety of techniques with lab and field components. The research will be basic science, but with a strong applied side.

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Midwest Grows Green Lawn and Land Forum Workshop Scheduled

The Midwest Grows Green Lawn and Land Forum Workshop is scheduled to take place on Monday, Oct. 29, at the Urban Ecology Center at Riverside Park, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This workshop will foster peer-to-peer learning of best natural lawn care and integrated pest management practices, polices and strategies. Highlights of the workshop include:

The agenda for the event can be found here. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased at bit.ly/LLFwksp18. Please contact me with any questions regarding the event and we would greatly appreciate if you share this information with other park and school district staff that may be interested.

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California State University Seeking Assistant Professor in Ecoimmunology

The Department of Biology in the College of Science and Mathematics at California State University, Fresno seeks applicants for a tenure-track, academic year position as an Assistant Professor in Ecoimmunology. The successful candidate will be broadly trained with expertise in ecoimmunology, environmental aspects of comparative immunology, or disease ecology. We encourage applications from researchers using integrative approaches and non-model organisms to examine environmental influences on immune function, disease spread, or physiological mechanisms driving immune variation. Specific teaching assignments will depend on the candidate’s expertise and departmental needs. The successful candidate will be expected to develop a research program that involves both undergraduate and graduate students and will also pursue the external funding necessary to maintain a successful research program. Faculty members are also expected to engage in service activities at the department, college, and university level and provide academic and professional advice to students.

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University of Minnesota Seeking Teaching Assistant Professor in Entomology

The Department of Entomology in the College of Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources (CFANS) at the University of Minnesota is seeking applicants for a 9-month, non-tenure track Teaching Assistant Professor position. The position is a full-time, annually renewable appointment based on performance and availability of funding.

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Register Now for the Integrated Pest Management Pollinator Habitat Promotion Webinar

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Register Now for the Integrated Pest Management Pollinator Habitat Promotion Webinar


EPA is offering a free webinar titled “Integrated Pest Management: Strategies for Pollinator Habitat Promotion and Conservation in Agricultural Areas” on August 28, 2018, from 1 –2:30 pm ET. This webinar is tailored for growers, pesticide applicators, agricultural land managers, and other interested stakeholders who work in crop production.

Our presenter will be Dr. Allan Felsot, professor and extension specialist from Washington State University. The presentation will cover land management topics such as cultural management practices, bio-economics, and integrated insect and weed management.

Register for the webinar here.

Learn more about integrated pest management and pollinator protection.


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Atrazine Human Health Risk Assessment Now Available for Public Comment

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Atrazine Human Health Risk Assessment Now Available for Public Comment


Today, EPA is releasing the atrazine draft human health risk assessment for public comment. The assessment identifies potential risks to children who crawl and play on lawns sprayed with atrazine and to workers who apply atrazine and/or enter treated fields after application.

Atrazine is one of the most widely used agricultural pesticides in the United States. It is used to control broadleaf and grassy weeds on corn, sorghum, and sugarcane, and to a lesser extent on residential lawns and golf courses. In the assessment, EPA reviewed all available scientific data, including published toxicity and epidemiology literature. The assessment uses multiple lines of evidence and methodologies that reflect current science.

In addition to the atrazine draft human health risk assessment, EPA is also releasing the simazine and propazine draft human health risk assessments and a cumulative human health risk assessment on these three triazines. We assessed these three pesticides together for human health risks because they share a common toxicity mechanism.

Comments must be submitted to docket # EPA-HQ-OPP-2013-0266 at www.regulations.gov on or before Sept. 24, 2018.

After public comments on the human health and the 2016 ecological assessments are reviewed, EPA will determine whether updates or revisions to the assessments are necessary. EPA plans to propose risk mitigation measures, if necessary, in 2019.


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