Department Head & Professor
The Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture (PSLA) at the University of Connecticut (UConn) in Storrs invites applications for the position of Department Head, and appointment as Professor or Associate Professor commensurate with the appointee’s record. We are seeking a dynamic and visionary individual to provide academic and administrative leadership for a productive department, with responsibilities to supervise and coordinate faculty and staff to continue building excellence in research, teaching, and extension.
The position is a 9-month appointment with a 10th month added during service in this administrative position. Applicants must meet University requirements for appointment at the rank of full Professor or Associate Professor, with tenure. Maintaining a personal portfolio of research, teaching and/or extension is expected.
The Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture (PSLA) is one of nine academic units within the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources (CAHNR). Our 21 faculty (15 tenure-track faculty and 6 non-tenure track professionals with FTE distribution of 7.4 teaching, 7.1 research, 5.8 extension, and 0.7 administrative) and 12 member support staff comprise a collegial team devoted to excellence in research, teaching, and extension. PSLA is a program that proudly serves the needs of Connecticut through graduate and undergraduate education, outstanding public-outreach programs associated with formal extension and engaged scholarship, and nationally competitive research programs. PSLA is typically the top academic department in the College in external grant funding per faculty line over the last five years, grant expenditures are about $2 million per year. The plant science program is nationally known for a longstanding breeding program on ornamental plants with dozens of patents adopted by the industry, impactful outreach on integrated pest management in the green industry, progressive teaching and research on hemp in controlled environment agriculture, applied research to solve problems in the green industry, and fundamental research in plant biology. The landscape architecture program is recognized for its public engagement with local communities to advance sustainable development and smart growth of towns and cities working on 50 projects in 30 cities over eight years, and training some of the best landscape architects in the region.
We offer programs leading to B.S. in Sustainable Plant and Soil Systems, an Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board (LAAB) accredited B.S. in Landscape Architecture, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Plant Science. Graduate students may specialize in horticulture, agronomy, soil science, and landscape architecture. The Plant Science program at Ratcliffe Hicks School of Agriculture offers an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree with concentration in ornamental horticulture, turfgrass management, or sustainable crop production.
The research and teaching infrastructure of the department includes wet laboratories, greenhouses, plant growth chambers and tissue culture facilities, design studios, 153-acre research and teaching farm, and the Waxman Conifer Collection. The department is home to the Home & Garden Center, the Plant Diagnostics Clinic, Turfgrass Disease Diagnostic Center, the Soil Nutrient Analysis Laboratory, and the Plant Transformation Facility which facilitate and support extension and outreach to educators, homeowners, and commercial agriculture. PSLA is headquartered on UConn’s main Storrs Campus, well placed between New York, Boston, Providence and Hartford. For further information, please visit our website (www.psla.uconn.edu).
As the oldest and one of the most academically diverse of UConn’s colleges, the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources (CAHNR) is recognized for its strong research, teaching, and extension outreach programs, which engage communities and enhance the public good in Connecticut residents. The College’s diverse range of disciplines fosters innovative collaborations that ensure a vibrant agricultural industry and sustainable food supply; enhance health and well-being locally, nationally, and globally; facilitate the design of sustainable landscapes across urban-rural interfaces; and advance resilience and adaptation in a changing climate.
We work toward a global sustainable future by leading scientific discovery, education, and community engagement in food systems and plant and animal agriculture and health; human health, nutrition, and physical activity; and environmental sciences.
CAHNR has developed and implemented a Strategic Vision to guide the development and focus of our teaching, research, and extension programs in the years 2020-2025. Faculty hired for this position will be expected to make significant contributions in their area of expertise, contributing to the advancement of one or more of the CAHNR’s four strategic initiatives.
* Ensuring a vibrant agricultural industry and sustainable food supply
* Enhancing health and well-being locally, nationally, and globally
* Designing sustainable landscapes across urban-rural interfaces
* Advancing resilience and adaptation in a changing climate
The CAHNR Strategic Vision provides additional information on the strategic initiatives and their related areas of emphasis.
Founded in 1881, the University of Connecticut (UConn) is a Land Grant and Sea Grant institution and member of the Space Grant Consortium. It is Connecticut’s flagship institution of higher education and includes a main campus in Storrs, CT, four regional campuses throughout the state, and 13 Schools and Colleges, including a Law School in Hartford and Medical and Dental Schools at the UConn Health campus in Farmington. The University has approximately 10,000 faculty and staff and 32,000 students, including nearly 24,000 undergraduates and over 8,000 graduate and professional students. UConn is a Carnegie Foundation R1 (highest research activity) institution, among the top 25 public universities in the nation. Through research, teaching, service, and outreach, UConn embraces diversity and cultivates leadership, integrity, and engaged citizenship in its students, faculty, staff, and alumni. UConn promotes the health and well-being of citizens by enhancing the social, economic, cultural, and natural environments of the state and beyond. The University serves as a beacon of academic and research excellence as well as a center for innovation and social service to communities. UConn is a leader in many scholarly, research, and innovation areas. Today, the path forward includes exciting opportunities and notable challenges. Record numbers of undergraduate applications and support for student success have enabled the University to become extraordinarily selective.
The University serves as a beacon of academic and research excellence as well as a center for innovation and social service to communities. The University prioritizes scholarship in areas that include health and environmental sustainability, and offers significant opportunity for cross-disciplinary, collaborative scholarship in a number of areas including healthy and active communities, shoreline and community resilience, storm water management and green infrastructure, sustainable cities, landscape ecology, multi-modal transportation, and digital visualization and spatial analytics. UConn has been recognized as one of the most sustainable and environmentally friendly campuses by a national publication of Sierra magazine. Through research, teaching, service, and outreach, UConn embraces diversity and inclusion, and cultivates leadership, integrity, and engaged citizenship in its students, faculty, staff, and alumni
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
As the departmental administrative officer, the Head reports directly to the Dean. Duties include:
* Coordinate and steer undergraduate and graduate teaching, research, and Cooperative Extension and outreach programming.
* Conduct administrative responsibilities for academic affairs, departmental personnel, budget matters, and physical facilities.
* Represent and promote the department within the College, the University, and the State, as well as at the national and international levels.
* Establish and coordinate relationships with relevant research centers, agencies, industries, NGO’s, professional societies, alumni, and the citizens of Connecticut.
* Develop effective recruitment programs to increase undergraduate and graduate student enrollment in the department.
* Attract, support, and retain a diverse and outstanding faculty, drawing from national and international communities.
* Create and carry out programs and activities in the department that address and move us toward solutions for social injustices among Black, Indigenous, People of Color, and other minority group on the campus and throughout our communities in the state.
* Maintain an active program in at least two of the three Land-grant University missions (research, teaching, and extension).
* Provide administrative oversight for office staff, research and teaching facility managers, and outreach services personnel, as well as any other related to the Department Head administrative duties.
* Maintain compliance for accreditation of the professional Bachelor in Science in Landscape Architecture (BSLA) degree granted by the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board (LAAB).
* A Ph.D. degree in Plant Science, Landscape Architecture, or a closely related discipline.
* A record of outstanding and nationally recognized scholarship and professional activities related to teaching, research, and extension or outreach that will qualify the individual to be tenured at the rank of Professor or Associate Professor in the Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture.
* Proven ability or potential for strong leadership of an academic department with emphasis on strong interpersonal skills appropriate to sustaining a collegial environment, building a shared vision and mission for the growth of the department, delivering quality academic programs within an inclusive work environment, and managing physical infrastructure.
* Demonstrated or potential leadership in developing academic programs, coordinating capital improvements, stimulating external funding from both public and private sources.
* Significant record of success in obtaining extramural funding from nationally competitive research programs, foundations, private or other donors.
* Excellent communication skills.
* Strong grasp of and commitment to the Land-Grant mission.
* Commitment to student education and training to match contemporary and future opportunities.
* A strong appreciation and grasp of basic and applied research.
* Prior administrative experience suited to lead an academic department engaged in teaching, research, and service activities at a major research university.
* Demonstrated ability to encourage consensus while coming to and executing decisions in a collegial atmosphere.
* Experience recruiting highly qualified graduate and undergraduate students, including those who are traditionally underrepresented in plant science and landscape architecture.
* Experience mentoring young scientists.
Salary is competitive, commensurate with applicant’s record. The University provides an extensive benefits package, which includes retirement and health insurance coverage. A July 1, 2021 start date is anticipated.
Please apply online to Academic Jobs Online https://academicjobsonline.org/ajo/jobs/17713 and submit the following application materials:
1. A statement of vision and leadership philosophy for the Department,
2. A curriculum vitae that includes a list of publications, grants received, and record of teaching experience, outreach and service contributions,
3. Commitment to diversity statement that addresses how the candidate has advanced diversity, equity and inclusion, including past experience, current interests/activities and future goals to promote an environment that fosters diversity and inclusion,
4. Names and contact information of five professional references. References will only be contacted if candidates are invited for a video-conference or phone interview.
Review of applications will start January 31, 2021 and will continue until the position is filled. Send inquiries about this position to the search committee chair, Dr. Rosa Raudales (firstname.lastname@example.org).
At the University of Connecticut, our commitment to excellence is complemented by our commitment to building a culturally diverse community.
Employment of the successful candidate will be contingent upon the successful completion of a pre-employment criminal background check.
This position will be filled subject to budgetary approval.
All UConn employees are subject to adherence to the State Code of Ethics which may be found at http://www.ct.gov/ethics/site/default.asp.
The University of Connecticut is committed to building and supporting a multicultural and diverse community of students, faculty and staff. The diversity of students, faculty and staff continues to increase, as does the number of honors students, valedictorians and salutatorians who consistently make UCONN their top choice. More than 100 research centers and institutes serve the University’s teaching, research, diversity, and outreach missions, leading to UCONN’s ranking as one of the nation’s top research universities. UCONN’s faculty and staff are the critical link to fostering and expanding our vibrant, multicultural and diverse University community. As an Affirmative Action/Equal Employment Opportunity employer, UCONN encourages applications from women, veterans, people with disabilities and members of traditionally underrepresented populations.