Chatham University
  • Gibsonia, PA, USA
  • Full Time

Chatham University

Director of Sustainable Agricultural Practice & Assistant Professor

Chatham University's Falk School of Sustainability & Environment has an opening for a Director of Sustainable Agricultural Practice at its groundbreaking Eden Hall Campus. We are seeking someone who brings experience in both the field and the classroom and can bridge key functions within Eden Hall's living, learning laboratory. Successful candidates will show how their training and experience prepares them to (1) manage operations of agricultural enterprises in areas like four-season vegetable plots, maple production, and apiaries, (2) teach students within our interdisciplinary undergraduate and graduate degree programs, and (3) help manage partnerships with communities around sustainable agriculture.

You will bring your passion for people and the land, your operations and teaching experience, and your excitement for working in a dynamic environment of students, other faculty, and professional staff. This position is a faculty appointment with an opportunity for advancement under Chatham's professor of practice track.

The recruitment of this position will be guided by a search advocate whose role is to support cultivating a diverse candidate pool and an inclusive approach to interviewing and selection that helps Chatham foster a diverse community of faculty, staff, and students.

This position will add to Chatham's mission "to prepare students to build lives of purpose, value and fulfilling work...by preparing graduates to be informed and engaged citizens in their communities; to recognize and respect the diversity of culture, identity, and opinion; and to live sustainably." Building on this mission, Chatham is committed to creating a supportive and inclusive learning, living and working environment for all members of the campus community. Learn more at: www.chatham.edu.

Position Summary

The Falk School of Sustainability and the Environment (Falk School) seeks an innovative practitioner and educator with experience in both field and classroom. The Director will provide oversight and support for agricultural projects both at Eden Hall campus and implemented with community partners, while also teaching in an interdisciplinary and applied environment. The ideal candidate will have practical experience related to sustainable agriculture, sustainable food systems, and experiential education with specialized training and skills in an area such as urban/community agriculture, agricultural education, agroforestry, or soil science. As part of a team of staff, faculty, and students the Director engages in specialized agricultural practices and teaching, while providing oversight and coordination amongst the sectors of the Falk School, Eden Hall Campus, and external partnerships related to sustainable agriculture.

This is a 12-month administrative faculty appointment as a Professor of Practice with responsibility for 6-9 credits of teaching per academic year plus additional support for Falk School faculty in collaborative teaching and research. Renewal and promotion follow Chatham standards for administrative faculty/professors of practice.

Duties and Responsibilities

Management responsibilities include leading the development and supporting the implementation of sustainable agriculture strategies including campus-based agricultural projects that will drive student experience and learning outcomes. The Director will collaborate with the agroecology professor and other members of the Farm team to support student and faculty projects in these areas. The Director will coordinate and provide leadership and organizational support for external partnerships and communication efforts related to the agricultural aspects of Falk School activities, including the Forest, Field & Farm Council, the Dean's initiatives, and the needs of Falk School academic programs and students.

Educational responsibilities include working with graduate student supervisors and other faculty on classroom-based projects and student work in the university's gardens, greenhouses, and other spaces; working with students to grow, store, and preserve food for a variety of purposes; and facilitating funding for sustainable research initiatives. Supervisory duties include coordinating student workers with the farm manager, engaging in academic advising and support for student thesis or capstone projects. Teaching responsibilities could include courses such as agroecology, agroforestry, soil science, comparative agricultural systems, organic crop production, agricultural education, community, and urban agriculture, and related areas.

Community coordination responsibilities include acting as the Falk School liaison with community partners in sustainable agriculture and assisting in projects connecting food and farm at Eden Hall with non-profits, businesses, other universities, and government groups.

Required Qualifications

  • Agricultural Practice: At least three to five years of experience managing, with an emphasis on sustainable practices, the daily operations of specific agroecological enterprises, which could include apiaries, livestock, orchards, four-season vegetable production, agroforestry, including oversight of staff, equipment, supplies, and related budgets.
  • Teaching: Experience within academic programs focused on practice-based learning and community-based projects. Classroom and field experience teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in some areas of specialization in sustainable agriculture, including urban/community agriculture, agricultural education, and agroecology.
  • Academic Training: Graduate-level academic degree in a relevant field including, but not limited to, agricultural education, urban/community agriculture, soil science, or agroforestry.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience with both graduate and undergraduate teaching, as well as student mentorship and supervision;
  • Experience and strengths in diverse community engagements and partnerships, including collaborative project management;
  • Knowledge of social justice issues in agri-food systems from either professional training or practical experience;
  • Successful fundraising and grant management experience;
  • A PhD or other terminal degree.

Chatham University offers competitive salaries, an excellent benefits package, including tuition remission for qualified employees and their dependents.

Interested candidates should visit www.chatham.edu/careers and follow the instructions to complete the application process. To ensure full consideration, please submit a cover letter addressing the qualifications of the position, resume, and contact information for three professional references.

Chatham University is an Equal Opportunity Employer with a strong commitment to diversity, inclusion, and equity. Women, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and members of other underrepresented groups are highly encouraged to apply. Chatham University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, or national origin.

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