Position Announcement: Assistant Professor – Breeding Nursery / Landscape Crops

— Written By

Assistant Professor – Breeding Nursery and Landscape Crops
Department of Horticultural Science
North Carolina State University
Raleigh, NC

Appointment: 75% Research, 25% Teaching, tenure track
Location: The North Carolina State University Department of Horticultural Science Raleigh, North Carolina
Position Available: February 1, 2020
Position Description: Provide innovative leadership and expertise in plant breeding and genetics of nursery/landscape plants. This program will bridge basic plant science, conventional cultivar development and modern plant breeding techniques for crop improvement. The individual will establish a competitive, externally- funded research program focused on the improvement of nursery/landscape crops in close collaboration with the JC Raulston Arboretum. Breeding objectives may include the development of new cultivars with enhanced tolerance to environmental stresses, improved pest resistance, non-invasiveness, and/or superior commercial traits. Other foundational/collaborative research may relate to screening germplasm (for resistance to diseases, insects, and environmental stresses); genomics and phylogenomics (for breeding and biotechnological applications); cytogenetics; gene editing and plant transformation; and applied propagation and production (for commercialization). Broad collaboration is expected. This individual will teach courses (e.g., breeding asexually propagated plants, advanced plant propagation and tissue culture, herbaceous perennial plants, etc.), depending on the individual’s area of interest and departmental needs. Publishing in peer-reviewed journals, introducing new patented cultivars, and advising and mentoring of undergraduate and graduate students and staff are expected. Additionally, this individual will participate in university committees and programs. Outreach, interaction, and collaboration with private industry, commodity groups, Extension audiences, and the JC Raulston education programs will also be expected.

Qualifications:
● Ph.D. degree in plant breeding and genetics or a related field of study and documented experience in cultivar development
● Experience in and knowledge of the production, cultivation, and systematics of nursery/landscape plants
● A successful record of collaboration and publishing
● Excellent leadership abilities
● Excellent interpersonal, written, and verbal communication skills
● Experience teaching (e.g., demonstrated by course evaluations, student comments and a demonstration of curricular content developed)

Other Desirable Skills, Training, and Experience:
Plant taxonomy, systematics, phylogenomics, cytogenetics, molecular physiology of flowering, management of genetic resources, genomics, plant transformation, gene editing, plant patents and managing intellectual property, industry experience (production, commercialization, product development), entomology, plant pathology, stress physiology, experimental design, statistics, and grant writing.

Background: North Carolina State University is the largest university in NC with over 25,000 undergraduate students and 10,000 graduate students. NC State University has historical strengths in agriculture, engineering, and the life sciences and has recently launched the Plant Science Initiative (PSI). The PSI seeks to bring the brightest minds in academia, government and industry together to drive innovation that increases yields, creates new varieties, extends growing seasons, enhances agricultural and environmental sustainability and produces new and improved technology. NC State University is uniquely situated with over 100 ag biotech ventures of all sizes and USA headquarters for many of the world’s largest plant science companies nearby. Agriculture is the largest industry in NC and contributes over $84B annually. NC State University is an international leader in the field of plant breeding with interdisciplinary efforts coordinated through the Plant Breeding Consortium which houses more than 35 core faculty actively developing new cultivars, germplasms and parental lines and an additional 65 faculty members who provide strong support in addition to basic field breeding.

The JC Raulston Arboretum is a nationally acclaimed garden with one of the largest and most diverse collections of landscape plants adapted for landscape use in the Southeast. A new partnership between the JC Raulston Arboretum, Juniper Level Botanical Garden, and NC State University’s Department of Horticultural Science, provides extensive genetic resources spanning over 30,000 taxa and support facilities. This position reports to the Department Head of Horticultural Science.

Application Deadline: December 5, 2019, or until an acceptable candidate is identified.

Application: Applicants should apply online (Position number 00000164). Please include a cover letter, curriculum vitae, transcripts, publication list, and the names, e-mail addresses, and telephone numbers of at least three professional references. For questions, contact: Dr. Tom Ranney, Co-Chair, Search Committee, 828.684.8590 ext. 136 or tom_ranney@nscu.edu.

AA/EOE: NC State University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. Women and members of other underrepresented groups are encouraged to apply. In addition, NC State University welcomes all persons without regard to sexual orientation or genetic information. Persons with disabilities requiring accommodations in the application and interview process, please call (919) 515-3148. Final candidates are subject to criminal and sex offender background checks. Some vacancies also require credit or motor vehicle checks. If highest degree is from an institution outside of the U.S., final candidates are required to have their degree verified at World Education Services. Degree must be obtained prior to start date. NC State University participates in E-Verify. Federal law requires all employers to verify the identity and employment eligibility of all persons hired to work in the United States.