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Gardener II and Administrative Assistant

Harvard University, Faculty of Arts & Sciences
Washington, District of Columbia, United States
Salary Not Specified
Date posted
May 29, 2024

Job Details

Job Summary

This position fills a critical role within a dedicated team of garden professionals working together to fulfil the mission of stewardship and preservation of Beatrix Farrand’s masterpiece, a century after its creation. This position reports to the director of gardens and grounds and is under the guidance and general direction of the crew leader for a given section of gardens and grounds. This is a blended position, including roughly 50% gardening duties and 50% administrative duties to assist the director in the administrative operation of the gardens. Percentages of gardening and administrative duties vary by season and departmental need.

• Participates actively in the daily care, maintenance, and enhancement of gardens and grounds.

• Works independently and as part of a team, under the supervision of a crew leader.

• This is an essential position, which may require the employee to work during emergencies, and/or outside of normal work hours, including weekends.

• Performs a variety of administrative tasks using Microsoft Office and Adobe suites, as well as databases connected with procurement and record keeping for the department.

Auto req ID


Job Code

403027 Staff Assistant II-Specialist

Department Office Location

USA - DC - Washington

Business Title

Gardener II and Administrative Assistant


Dumbarton Oaks

Salary Grade


Time Status



55 - Hvd Union Cler & Tech Workers

Basic Qualifications

• At least three years of professional gardening experience

• At least three years of garden administration or office administrative experience

Additional Qualifications and Skills

• Proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel, Adobe illustrator

• Strong English communication skills, both verbally and in writing

• Strong organizational skills

• Pesticide Applicators License through DC Department of Environment

• Proficiency in Photoshop, AutoCAD, and/or GIS

• Horticultural training and/or grounds management background, particularly in historic gardens


Garden and Grounds

Pre-Employment Screening

Criminal, Identity

Job Function

General Administration

Position Description


• Performs general plant care, garden maintenance, and essential garden duties, relying on knowledge of horticulture and plant care techniques: planting, pruning, mowing, blowing, edging, weeding, watering, invasive plant removal, lawn maintenance, ornament cleaning, and fountain/pool maintenance.

• Operates and maintains machinery and equipment used in performance of these duties, including mowers, tractors, and gas/electric powered hand-held equipment. Assures proper use of Personal Protective Equipment when operating equipment.

• Prepares designated area of the gardens for daily public visiting hours, including removal of snow and ice, leaves, and other debris from walkways and numerous steps.

• Interacts with garden visitors, serving as a garden ambassador both for outreach and garden stewardship purposes. Assists with other areas of the gardens and special projects as needed.

• Performs related duties as required.

Administrative Assistant

• Performs a variety of tasks connected with administration and of the gardens department including ordering of uniforms and tools, sourcing and procurement of plant material, and checking in orders for quality and completeness.

• Coordinates crew needs with regards to ordering by liaising with crew leaders and generating group orders for director approval.

• Assists garden director in the organization of garden records and departmental files, digitally and on paper.

• Document processes and workflows of the department in collaboration with the Director of Gardens and Grounds.

• Updates operational maps using Adobe Illustrator, compiles group orders in Microsoft Excel, and creates/edits documents in Adobe Acrobat Pro.

• Checks orders received against confirmations and manifests to ensure they are complete and ready for payment.

• Serves as the department’s volunteer coordinator facilitating Fellow, Summer Intern, and Volunteer projects by liaising with crew leaders in advance to identify and organize projects in advance of volunteer arrival.

• Provides on-site assistance and quality assurance for some garden-wide recurrent contracted maintenance activities, such as storm drain jetting.


Faculty of Arts and Sciences

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

Physical Requirements

• Ability to work outside in various weather conditions, often on uneven terrain

• Endurance to walk, stand, kneel, bend, stoop, and climb

• Strength to push, pull, and lift up to 50 pounds

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.


We invite you to visit Harvard's Total Rewards website ( ) to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:
  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.
  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.
  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.
  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.
  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.
  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.
  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.
Work Format


Work Format Details

This position is based primarily on-campus, in Washington DC. This may include in-person during emergency situations (if applicable). Additional details will be discussed during the interview process. Certain visa types may limit work location. Individuals must meet work location sponsorship requirements prior to employment.


 Harvard FAS

The Faculty of Arts and Sciences is the home of Harvard’s undergraduate program (Harvard College, founded in 1636) as well as all of Harvard’s PhD. programs (the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, founded in 1872). The 40 academic departments and more than 30 centers of the FAS support a community unparalleled in its academic excellence across the broadest range of liberal arts and sciences disciplines. Together, the FAS seeks to foster an environment of ambition, curiosity and shared commitment to knowledge and truth that elicits excellence from all members of our community and prepares the next generation of leaders through a transformative educational experience.

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