FARM JOB: VANCOUVER, BC – UBC Farm, Practicum Field Coordinator

Posted by Michalina Hunter on December 17, 2021

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The Centre for Sustainable Food Systems at UBC Farm in Vancouver, BC is seeking a Practicum Field Coordinator!

The Practicum Field Coordinator supports on-site research, teaching, and community programs in three complementary ways:

  • mentoring, leading, and coordinating the field work of UBC Farm Practicum in Sustainable Agriculture students.
  • coordinating and performing a variety of moderately complex land stewardship and crop production activities.
  • providing basic agricultural services and consultation to other site participants.

About UBC Farm

The UBC Farm is a 24-hectare integrated production, teaching, and research farm located on the University of British Columbia’s Vancouver campus. The Centre for Sustainable Food Systems (CSFS) is housed at the UBC Farm and integrates interdisciplinary academic, community, and production programs to explore and exemplify healthy and sustainable food systems. More information about the UBC Farm and the CSFS can be found at www.ubcfarm.ubc.ca.

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Work Performed

  • Coordinates and performs day-to-day land stewardship and production activities for a defined range of agricultural crops.
  • Land stewardship and production activities coordinated or performed by the Practicum Field Coordinator may include (but are not limited to) plant propagation, field cultivation, irrigation installation, irrigation management, mowing, pesticide application, nutrient application, hoop house construction, pruning, harvesting, poultry care, field scouting, invasive species control, compost management, data collection, and record keeping.
  • Liaises with other field staff and the Practicum Coordinator to plan, prioritize, and facilitate day-to-day practicum field tasks in the context of crop production and sales systems on a working campus farm.
  • Works with the Practicum Coordinator to guide student plot experience (shared and individual plots). This includes being available to answer questions during plot time, ensuring that plots are being properly managed, ensuring that students are receiving sufficient guidance and support, as well as integrating the educational curriculum into the student plot experience.
  • Collaborates on practicum program development and assists the Practicum Coordinator with administrative tasks related to the management of the program.
  • Provides practical training and limited theoretical instruction to student workers, practicum students, student interns, and volunteers.
  • Assists the Lead Sales Coordinator with weekly crop harvest planning based on product supply and also with monitoring the quality and safety of crops. Occasionally assists with the sale and direct-marketing of crops.
  • Assists with general operational tasks such as selection, procurement, maintenance, and repair of field equipment, tools, and supplies.
  • Conducts all site activities in alignment with standard operating procedures and record keeping systems. Occasionally assists with the development and refinement of these procedures and systems.
  • Assists the Lead Field Coordinator and Farm Operations Manager with annual farm plans detailing cropping decisions and production trends.
  • May occasionally perform essential site staffing duties such as seedling watering and poultry care on weekends.
  • Performs other operational duties as required.

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SUPERVISION RECEIVED

Reports to and works under the general supervision of the Education Manager and the Lead Field Coordinator. Must show a significant degree of autonomy and be able to make day-to-day decisions independently, but will review major decisions with and defer high-impact decisions to the supervisor. Evaluation of the performance of major job responsibilities will include reviews of quality and effectiveness in achieving program objectives and financial viability, as well as adherence to the CSFS at UBC Farm’s mission, vision and guiding principles.

SUPERVISION GIVEN

Provides seasonal supervision (e.g. task supervision, prioritization, and delegation) to 10-20 adult community learners, or a small group of junior staff or student employees. Assists with training new employees and students and is responsible for the accuracy, production, and control of the work. May provide input into seasonal staff selection and performance evaluation. Provides mentoring and direct supervision to practicum students during field activities.

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WORKING CONDITIONS

Work takes place both indoors and outdoors at the UBC Farm. Shared indoor office space is provided at the UBC Farm, though the incumbent will be required communicate with other UBC Farm staff to avoid space conflicts. Outdoor duties are performed in all kinds of weather conditions, involve manual field work and entail the use of a wide variety of equipment and machinery. Large heavy machinery may include tractors, discs, rototillers, ploughs and compost spreaders. Smaller equipment includes brush cutters, backpack sprayers, pressure washers, powered shop tools, hand tools, and small lawnmowers. Potential hazards include falls, cuts, burns, exposure to vibrating and/or noisy equipment, repetitive motion injuries, exposure to pesticides, and exposure to inclement weather. Hours and work location are flexible as long as all scheduled instruction and meeting times are met. When special events or circumstances require, work will be performed after normal business hours. Because of the seasonal nature of the UBC Farm work, a heavier workload is the norm from April through November. A rotating or nonstandard work schedule (e.g. Tuesday through Saturday) may be required.

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MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS AND SKILLS

Education & Experience:

  • Completion of a relevant university degree or technical program and a minimum two years of relevant work experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Training and work experience in diversified, organic vegetable and/or fruit production preferred.
  • Experience with UBC, the UBC Farm, other regional organic farms, and/or other educational farms is an asset.

Skills:

  • Demonstrated leadership experience; able to comfortably provide hands-on group and individual instruction to students and community members of diverse ages and backgrounds.
  • Demonstrated ability to model the knowledge, skills, and work habits required to successfully operate a viable farm enterprise.
  • Demonstrated technical competence with and theoretical understanding of a broad range of crop production and land management techniques.
  • Demonstrated supervisory, communication (verbal/written), facilitation, and interpersonal skills; able to work both independently and within a high-energy team environment; able to resolve interpersonal conflicts professionally; good collaboration and group leadership skills.
  • Ability to safely and efficiently operate a broad range of hand tools, power tools, tractors, field implements, and other agricultural equipment.
  • Intermediate computer skills and an ability to record, manage, and manipulate data using Microsoft Excel.
  • Effective verbal and written communication, leadership, interpersonal, and organizational skills.
  • Ability to work efficiently and safely both independently and within a team environment.
  • Ability to multitask, exercise sound judgment, and solve minor problems independently.
  • Must be physically fit and enjoy hard work outdoors in all weather conditions for long days.
  • Must have the ability to lift 45 lbs repetitively and 70 lbs occasionally.
  • Must hold a valid driver’s license and have experience operating manual transmissions.
  • A valid BC Pesticide Applicator’s Certificate is an asset.
  • Experience with UBC, the UBC Farm, other regional organic farms, and/or other educational farms is an asset.

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POSITION DETAILS

Start and End Dates: February 2022;

Ongoing Hours Worked: Full-time (35 hours/week, Tuesdays to Saturdays).

Wage: $21.24 – $25.22 per hour (commensurate with experience).

More details: https://lfs-ubcfarm-clone-2018.sites.olt.ubc.ca/files/2021/12/CSFS-Practicum-Field-Coordinator-2022.pdf

HOW TO APPLY

    • Email, as a single PDF document, a cover letter and a resume clearly detailing your experience and qualifications for this position to csfs.hr-finance@ubc.ca
    • Ensure your email subject line clearly refers to the position title you are applying for.
    • Ensure your name and the position title are included in the PDF file name.
    • Applications must be received no later than 11:59 PM on Sunday, January 9th, 2022.
    • Only applicants selected for interviews will be contacted. Please no phone calls or emails.

    Equity and diversity are essential to academic excellence. An open and diverse community fosters the inclusion of voices that have been underrepresented or discouraged. We encourage applications from members of groups that have been marginalized on any grounds enumerated under the B.C. Human Rights Code, including sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, racialization, disability, political belief, religion, marital or family status, age, and/or status as a First Nation, Metis, Inuit, or Indigenous person.

    All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply, but Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

    View more UBC Farm positions on the UBC Careers Website

    When applying, please mention you saw this posting at youngagrarians.org

    Learn More About UBC Farm

    Websitewww.ubcfarm.ubc.ca

    UBC Farm Flowershttp://lfs-ubcfarm.sites.olt.ubc.ca/food-production/flowers/

    Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/UBCFarm/

    Instagram: @ubcfarm & @ubcfarm.flowers

    View more farm jobs and apprenticeships here. 

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