Skip to main content

Jr. Specialist - Plant Nutrition

Recruitment Period

Open date: January 4th, 2019
Last review date: January 18th, 2019
Applications received after this date will be reviewed by the search committee if the position has not yet been filled.
Final date: February 28th, 2019
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.


The Department of Plant Sciences is recruiting for a Junior Specialist with a background in plant sciences to join our team starting immediately. The individual will be based on the UC Davis campus and will perform agronomic research on farmer fields and research stations located across the state of California. They will provide assistance on industry collaborative research and extension projects in tree cropping systems and provide general assistance to the lab group. Position will require work with various types of tree crops in field settings, and will also involve conducting laboratory research and general laboratory duties related to soil and plant nutrient analysis. Current research projects involve the study of factors affecting nutrient uptake and utilization by plants, identification of ways in which plant productivity can be enhanced by more efficient nutrient management, and to determine the factors that influence the efficacy of foliar-applied plant stimulants with the ultimate aim of increasing crop productivity and nutrient content of edible plant parts. The Junior Specialists will report to the Principal Investigator and work closely with postdoctoral scientists, graduate students, undergraduate students and other academics in the lab. Responsibilities will include planting, maintaining and harvesting agronomic crop trials using research-scale farm machinery, monitoring and measuring the plant-soil environment using a mix of traditional and novel agronomic methodologies, performing laboratory analysis on plant and soil material, and assisting in the summary and presentation of data to academic and extension audiences. The successful candidates will be actively involved in publishable research activities including participation in discussions on research and the interpretation of research results as well as participating in outreach activities and appropriate acknowledgement in publications. The candidate must have experience in plant nutrition, experimental design/management, and advanced analytical and statistical skills.

• B.S. degree in Plant Sciences, Agronomy, Biology or closely related field.
• Demonstrated interest and experience in plant nutrition, ability to organize and process data (advanced Excel and programming experience).
• Molecular Biology (Genomic DNA extraction, PCR, manual and automated DNA sequencing) and R Programing skills highly desired.
• Must have a valid California driver license and be able to take field trips that will require overnight stays.

Research (90%):
• Implement multi-location agronomic experiments and collect physical and digital observations of the plant-soil environment throughout the growing season.
• Develop templates and protocols for data entry, and organize and maintain file structures for the various sources of data collected by the lab group.
• Follow and, when appropriate, develop and/or revise protocols for tests and procedures related to the use of field measurement devices and tools.
• Operate and maintain an inventory of equipment and disposables used in field research. Maintain the laboratory environment in a safe and organized manner, including keeping inventories of key equipment, chemicals, and disposables.

Professional Competence (5%):
• Attend seminars on topics related to fields of interest.
• Participate in scientific discussions with peers to enhance knowledge and confidence.
• Participate in training programs to enhance skills.

University and Public Service (5%):
A. May maintain liaison and respond to the needs of various industry organizations, state and federal agencies, and other external groups on issues related to area of expertise.
B. Lead tours and give presentations to delegations of visiting scientists and industry representatives.
C. Participate in activities of committees within the department, college, campus and other University entities, as appropriate.

Note: The junior specialist rank is an entry level position, accordingly it is inappropriate to hire applicants with advanced degrees in this field, or those with bachelor’s degrees and three years’ relevant work experience. (See APM-UCD 330)

Term of Appointment: Full time for 1 year, with the possibility of extension.
Salary: $ 39,500/yr.

Job location

Davis, CA


Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Cover Letter

Reference requirements
  • 3 required (contact information only)

How to apply

  1. Create an ApplicantID
  2. Provide required information and documents
  3. If any, provide required reference information
Get started: press Apply Now