Research Associate in Agriculture
Description of Work Unit
The Agricultural Research Station is part of a network of 7 research centers (9 sites) throughout the state. The center includes the Fruita site, located 15 miles northwest of Grand Junction which hosts variety performance trials of new/improved varieties of alfalfa, beans and small grains as well as the Colorado Foundation Seed program. The Orchard Mesa site is located 7 miles Southeast of Grand Junction. The research conducted at this site includes tree fruits, wine grape production, dry bean variety increases, and ornamental horticulture. This site also houses Ram\’s Point Winery. The winery is designed as the primary vehicle for training students and interns in best winemaking and winery business practices, as well as providing a location for enology research and outreach. It is also visible public recognition for the CSU partnership with Colorado Association for Viticulture and Enology (CAVE), representing the Colorado wine industry.
The Orchard Mesa site is located 7 miles Southeast of Grand Junction. Site elevation is approximately 4750 feet with an average growing season of 182 frost-free days. The research conducted at this site includes tree fruits, wine grape production, and ornamental horticulture. This site has separate climate controlled greenhouse, as well as office and laboratory facilities.
The Fruita site is located 15 miles northwest of Grand Junction. With an average growing season of 175 days at an elevation of 4500 ft, the reasonably deep loam soils at this location have been the home of the bulk of agronomic research conducted at the Western Colorado Research Center. Variety performance trials of new/improved varieties of alfalfa, beans and small grains have been an integral part of the research program at the Fruita site. The Western Colorado Foundation Seed Program is housed at Fruita. Laboratory facilities also exist for tissue culturing.
Primary responsibilities are to assist Colorado State University research scientists and Extension personnel in the planning and execution of on-site and off-station applied research trials at WCRC-Fruita. In agronomic crops and cropping systems (variety trials, water resources, irrigation systems, pest and salinity management, cropping management, new and alternative crops, etc.). Specific expectations are to: assist with the collection of research data according to protocols provided by professional staff; assist with outreach activities such as field days and workshops; assist in the general operations of the canter including, but not limited to, general farm and research plot operations and maintaining facilities and repairing equipment. Some heavy lifting (50 lbs) Is required.
Required Job Qualifications
- Minimum B.S. degree in agronomy, engineering, soil science, crop science, landscape management, horticulture, or closely related field.
- Prior experience (3 years or more) with farming operations, including but not limited to irrigation systems, tillage practices, crop rotation, weed and pest management, crop fertilization, farm equipment operation and maintenance.
- Knowledge of basic scientific research principles and ability to follow experimental protocol.
- Ability to work independently and prioritize a number of different activities simultaneously
- Ability to work as a team member to facilitate the work of others within and beyond the Agricultural Experiment Station system.
- Proven effective written and verbal communication skills.
- Facility with basic computing software (MS Office, MS Word)
- Valid Driver’s License.
- Current Colorado Qualified Supervisor Pesticide Applicator license or willingness to acquire within 60 days of employment.
- Ability to meet physical demands, such as heavy lifting (50 lbs or greater), manual dexterity, stooping, kneeling, crouching, reaching and handling.
- Ability to work a Flexible Work Arrangement (FWA) schedule as necessary during spring planting/tillage, irrigation season and fall harvest.
Preferred Job Qualifications
- Experience in overseeing specialized research projects in cropping and/or irrigation at a facility engaged in research, evaluation and/or education.
- Advanced knowledge and experience with MS Office software (Outlook, Excel, Access), farm management software, geographic information systems or other programming platform.
- Experience with outdoor computing, monitoring and telemetry equipment.
- Experience supervising personnel and laborers.
- Demonstrated organizational abilities and attention to detail such as the ability to maintain high quality and accurate records and other data management.
- Experience in welding and general mechanic work.
- Valid Class B Commercial Driver’s License.
- Ability to speak Spanish.
Personal or professional commitment to diversity as demonstrated by persistent effort, active planning, allocation of resources and/or accountability for diversity outcomes.
Job Duty Category Research Duty/Responsibility
Research duties and responsibilities include: 1) execution of research protocols designed by principal investigators for research projects in agronomy, irrigation and related disciplines; 2) preparation and management of research plots and fields; 3) assist with the collection of research data; 4) reviewing research land use requests from faculty interested in working at the WCRC, and; 5) monitoring and troubleshooting the progress of research projects.
Percentage Of Time 40 Job Duty Category Operations Duty/Responsibility
Operational duties and responsibilities include: 1) making improvements in farm efficiency and operations; 2) performing periodic, hands-on field and irrigation operations; 3) ssetup, calibration, adjustment, operation and repair of farm equipment and machinery; 4) applying and storing herbicides; 5) trucking and hauling commodities with large scale vehicles; 6) directing general farm maintenance such as mowing operations, gravel roads, fence repairs, irrigation and drainage ditches, building organization and cleaning, and routine research center security, and; 7) maintaining high standards of cleanliness in all facilities (pesticide storage, equipment barns).
Percentage Of Time 40 Job Duty Category Administration Duty/Responsibility
Administrative duties and responsibilities include; 1) keeping farm records using farm management software (e.g. Farm Logic); 2) health and safety compliance, adhering to federal and state regulations; 3) maintaining and recommending capital improvement list of needs; 4) assisting and helping volunteers, interns, vendors, and visitors on an as-needed basis, and; 5) identifying, contacting and managing farm commodity buyers and custom harvest operators.
Percentage Of Time 10 Job Duty Category Outreach Duty/Responsibility
Outreach duties and responsibilities include: 1) providing information sought by clientele; 2) assisting with outreach activities such as field days and workshops; 3) providing tours upon request.
Percentage Of Time 10
Special Instructions to Applicants
To apply, please submit the following materials:
- Cover letter that addresses the required and preferred qualifications
- Curriculum Vitae or Resume
- Copies of unofficial transcripts
Applicants are asked to provide contact information for three professional references to the system who may be contacted for a recommendation if requested by the Search Committee. References will not be contacted without prior notification to the applicant.
To ensure full consideration, apply online by January 8th, 2018. Applications will be accepted until position is filled. We also accept nominations and confidential inquiries. Please contact:
Dr. Perry Cabot, Search Committee Chair
1910 L Road
Western Colorado Research Center
Fruita, CO 81521
Tel. (970) 858-3629
Conditions of Employment
Pre-employment Criminal Background Check (required for new hires), Valid Driver’s License
Search Contact Dr. Perry Cabot: email@example.com
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Colorado State University (CSU) strives to provide a safe study, work, and living environment for its faculty, staff, volunteers and students. To support this environment and comply with applicable laws and regulations, CSU conducts background checks. The type of background check conducted varies by position and can include, but is not limited to, criminal (felony and misdemeanor) history, sex offender registry, motor vehicle history, financial history, and/or education verification. Background checks will be conducted when required by law or contract and when, in the discretion of the university, it is reasonable and prudent to do so.