Assistant Professor of Plant Pathology

Location: Tropical Research and Education Center (TREC), University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS), Homestead, Florida

Deadline: For full consideration, candidates should apply and submit additional materials by April 17, 2017. The position will remain open until a viable applicant pool is determined.

Duties and Responsibilities

This is a 12-month tenure-track position with 60% extension (Florida Cooperative Extension Service) and 40% research responsibilities. The incumbent will accrue tenure in the Department of Plant Pathology (Florida Agricultural Experiment Station), Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS), University of Florida and will be located at the Tropical Research and Education Center (TREC) in Homestead, FL.

The appointee is expected to provide leadership for the Plant Diagnostic Clinic by:

  • Analyzing plant samples submitted to the clinic using microbiological, histochemical, biochemical and/or microscopic techniques, to determine organisms or conditions associated with plant diseases and disorders.
  • Interacting with clientele and research and extension faculty to gather information necessary to accurately diagnose plant diseases and disorders and provide research-based management recommendations.
  • Developing new diagnostic methods for plant diseases and disorders
  • Providing in-service training for extension faculty and clientele.
  • Participating in the Southern Plant Diagnostic Network through its regional center at UF.
  • Supervising a laboratory technician.

The research portion of this position focuses primarily on the diagnosis and management of diseases of ornamental and landscape plants. The successful candidate is expected to seek competitive funding to support research and extension programs.

Because of the IFAS land-grant mission, all faculty are expected to be supportive of and engaged in all three mission areas—Research, Teaching and Extension—regardless of the assignment split specified in the position description.



This position requires a Ph.D. (foreign equivalent acceptable) in Plant Pathology, Plant Medicine, or a closely-related field and a strong interest or experience in clinical diagnosis of plant diseases. Candidates should have good organizational and managerial abilities and demonstrated verbal and written communication skills, interpersonal relations, and procurement of extramural funding. Candidates must support IFAS core values of excellence, diversity, global involvement, and accountability.


Postdoctoral experience is preferred.

Background Information

The Tropical Research and Education Center (TREC; of the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (, University of Florida ( is located in Homestead, Florida about 30 miles south of Miami. TREC was established in 1929 by an act of the state legislature in what is now Miami-Dade County. Currently, TREC consists of offices, laboratories, greenhouses, vegetable fields and fruit orchards on 160 acres. Research, teaching, and extension programs focus on tropical and temperate vegetable crops, tropical and subtropical fruit crops, and ornamental crops of southern Florida. The agricultural industry served by the center has an annual farm gate value in excess of $1 billion. Multiplier effects make agriculture’s impact on the local economy worth over $2 billion annually. The area’s oolitic limestone soil is unique to extreme southern Florida, and due to the region’s humid subtropical climate, TREC is the only state university research center in the continental United States focused on a large number of tropical and subtropical crops. The center also addresses crop-related water and environmental issues that result from its proximity to Everglades National Park, Biscayne National Marine Park, Florida Bay and major well fields that provide drinking water to the several million people in neighboring urban areas.

The University of Florida ( is a Land-Grant, Sea-Grant, and Space-Grant institution, encompassing virtually all academic and professional disciplines, with an enrollment of more than 53,000 students. UF is a member of The Association of American Universities. The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences ( includes the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (, the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station (, the Florida Cooperative Extension Service (, the College of Veterinary Medicine (, the Florida Sea Grant program ( ), and encompasses 16 on-campus academic departments and schools, 12 Research and Educational Centers (REC) located throughout the state, 6 Research sites/demonstration units administered by RECs or academic departments, and Florida Cooperative Extension Service offices in all 67 counties (counties operate and maintain). The School of Natural Resources and Environment is an interdisciplinary unit housed in IFAS and managed by several colleges on campus. IFAS employs over 2500 people, which includes approximately 900 faculty and 1200 support personnel located in Gainesville and throughout the state. IFAS, one of the nation’s largest agricultural and natural resources research and education organizations, is administered by a Senior Vice President and four deans: the Dean of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the Dean for Extension and Director of the Florida Cooperative Extension Service, the Dean for Research and Director of the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station, and the Dean for the College of Veterinary Medicine. UF/IFAS also engages in cooperative work with Florida A&M University in Tallahassee.

Employment Conditions

This position is available May 1, 2017 and will be filled as soon thereafter as an acceptable applicant is available. Compensation is commensurate with the education, experience, and qualifications of the selected applicant.


Nominations are welcome. Nominations need to include the complete name and address of the nominee. This information should be sent to:

Please refer to Requisition # 501403

Dr. Bruce Schaffer
Chair, Search and Screen Committee
University of Florida
Tropical Research and Education Center
18905 SW 280th Street
Homestead, FL 33031
Telephone:  786-217-9265
Facsimile:  305-246-7003
Electronic Mail:

Application Information

Individuals wishing to apply should go online to and submit:

  • Application
  • Cover letter that states applicant’s interest in the position and qualifications relative to the credentials listed above
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Contact information (including email addresses) for 4 individuals willing to write letters of recommendation
  • University transcripts

The final candidate will be required to provide official transcript to the hiring department upon hire. A transcript will not be considered “official” if a designation of “Issued to Student” is visible.  Degrees earned from an education institution outside of the United States are required to be evaluated by a professional credentialing service provider approved by National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES), which can be found at .

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