Research and Extension Associate Organic Agriculture

  • Internal Candidates are Encouraged to Apply

    TITLE: Research and Extension Associate in Organic Agriculture

    DEPARTMENT: College of Agriculture, Community, and the Sciences



    PRINCIPAL PURPOSE OF JOB: The Research and Extension Associate will serve as a support person for the Organic and Industrial Hemp Programs and will develop, conduct, and deliver research and Extension programming for the Organic and Industrial Hemp Programs.

    SCOPE OF RESPONSIBILITY: The Research and Extension Associate in Organic Agriculture in The College of Agriculture, Communities, and the Environment at Kentucky State University (KSU) will serve as a support person for the Organic and Industrial Hemp Programs. This position conducts investigative research, laboratory research, and field experiments to 1. Evaluate yield and performance of organic grain crops produced in an integrated crop-livestock rotation in Kentucky; 2. Measure soil health indicators, water quality, and crop productivity parameters to assess system sustainability; 3. Evaluate the production, marketing potential, and sustainability of industrial hemp grown for fiber, grain or flower in organic systems in Kentucky; 4. Assist in research assessing timing and methods of the production of organic crops in high tunnels. 5. Carry out laboratory processing and analyses of soil and water samples along with data processing. This position is involved in the designing and implementing of laboratory, field, and greenhouse experiments, collecting, entering, and statistical analysis of data, assisting in developing manuscripts for publication, and train, supervise, and mentor researchers, graduate, undergraduate, and high school students conducting research in the program.

    ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS: (ex: duties that are essential to performing the job with or without an accommodation)

    1. Conduct experiments that examine organic production of grains, horticultural crops and industrial hemp in the field as well as high tunnel production.

    2. Compare costs and benefits of organic grain and industrial hemp production in organic systems in Kentucky.

    3. Compare summer, winter, and perennial cover cropping rotations in organic horticulture and field crop production.

    4. Evaluate the production and marketing of industrial hemp for grain, fiber and flower in organic systems in Kentucky.

    5. Manage an intensive grazing system with small ruminants incorporated into an integrated crop-livestock rotation.

    6. Design and implement laboratory, field, and greenhouse experiments.

    7. Operate and maintain farm production equipment

    8. Collect, enter, and analyze statistical data.

    9. Assist in developing manuscripts for publication.

    10. Train, supervise, and mentor research assistants, graduate, undergraduate, and high school students conducting research in the program.

    11. Additionally the position would include: operating and maintaining farm equipment in a certified organic production system, greenhouse maintenance, conducting informational talks and tours at field days, national meetings and other events, and answering questions about this research conducted

    12. Conduct laboratory work including soil and water sample processing and analysis.

    13. Other related duties as required.


    The position will conduct other duties as required.

    QUALIFICATIONS: Required: M.S. in Horticulture, Agriculture, Environmental Science, or related area. One to three years of relevant experience preferred


    • Extensive knowledge in a specified area of expertise.

    • Ability to use a personal computer and a variety of related software applications.

    • Good knowledge and appreciation of program clientele.

    • Knowledge of research and educational capabilities of USDA and the Land Grant system knowledge base in the area of expertise.

    • Ability to communicate effectively, orally and in writing.

    • Research skills.

    • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships


    • Work involves operating and carrying field-based research instrumentation

    • Ability to carry at least 50 lbs

    • This job involves travel. The position will have statewide responsibilities.

    KENTUCKY STATE UNIVERSITY is an Equal Opportunity Employer

    The functions, qualifications, knowledge/skills, and physical requirements listed in this job description represent the essential duties of the job, which the incumbent must be able to perform either with or without reasonable accommodation. The Job Functions listed do not necessarily include all activities that the individual may perform.

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