The BC Ministry of Agriculture is hiring a New Entrant Agrologist! This opportunity is based in Abbotsford (Primary) with locations in Duncan and Vernon considered subject to Ministry operational requirements.
The Sector Development Branch identifies and promotes agriculture and food production/processing systems that are sustainable and enhance the economic benefits to the province. It maintains operations in all agriculture regions of the province to deliver Ministry programs and services through a network of extension agrologists, regional agrologists and industry specialists. The Branch works through a variety of strategic partnerships and is the primary point of contact for the Ministry’s agriculture clients. The Partnerships & Outreach Unit in the Sector Development Branch is comprised of agrologists, agri-business management experts and supporting project and evaluation staff that focus on the business and economic development of the agrifood sector. The unit is the ministry lead in the growth and development of youth, new entrants and indigenous agriculture.
The New Entrant Agrologist provides support and technical expertise to new producers to the agrifoods industry throughout British Columbia. The role builds capacity, supports business management and entrepreneurial skill development, increases awareness of programs and services, and encourages the use of sound management practices. Through frontline expertise, strategic relationships and a client service focus, the New Entrant Agrologist supports the effective implementation of the New Entrant Strategy and all aspects of developing and delivering programs, tools, resources and projects for new farmers and ranchers. This position requires knowledge and expertise in livestock or crop production/ management, marketing and business development, and agriculture education programs and resources.
- Establishes and builds positive working relationships with new entrants and new entrant groups
- Provides professional advisory services to support the development and success of new entrants to the agrifood sector;
- Encouraging industry clients to participate in new and emerging agrifood opportunities in order to develop and enhance business competitiveness;
- Promoting the use of sound financial and production principles when addressing agricultural issues and opportunities with the sector;
- Developing and delivering communication and educational products that promote awareness and uptake of the programs;
- Promoting increased and intensified production on unused or underutilized farm land;
- Engaging in AgriServiceBC and other initiatives in order improve understanding and enable sound management practices and policies to be developed and employed by farm managers and industry leaders;
- Preparing presentations and reports on new entrant issues and developing options to assist management with decision making;
- Developing and maintaining program reporting tools and preparing analytics related to the program;
- Evaluating issues and opportunities facing the agrifood sector, reviews proposals and makes recommendations;
- Employing professional expertise and insights to facilitate the economic growth of agriculture and food enterprises;
- Participating as a member of the Sector Development Branch and supporting development and delivery of the programs through contributing professional knowledge and ideas;
- Providing technical support to units within the Sector Development Branch to address opportunities and challenges within the overall program;
- Writes briefing notes, background material, reports and correspondence and makes presentations to on current/emerging issues.
- Participating in emergency planning and response relating to the agrifood sector as required.
Education and Experience: (resumes and questionnaires will be screened on the following essential minimum education and experience)
- Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture or a related natural resource field, and two years related* experience; OR
- Master’s Degree in Agriculture or a related natural resource field, and one year related* experience.
- *Related experience includes front-line work experience directly related to agriculture in farm business management, animal, soils, or crop practices.
- Registered as a Professional Agrologist, or immediately eligible* for registration as a Professional Agrologist, with the British Columbia Institute of Agrologists.
- *Note: immediately eligible is defined as being registered as a professional Agrologist in another Canadian jurisdiction and able to transfer that membership to the BCIA. It is the responsibility of the applicant to have the BCIA review their qualifications to ensure they have the necessary requirements for registration.
- Preference may be given to applicants with any of the following:
- Experience working with new farmer organizations, putting on educational events for new producers and/or working with new producers on business development.
- Experience in contract and project management.
- Experience in farm business management and/or community economic development.
- A valid class 5 driver’s license or equivalent.
- Criminal records check is required.
Knowledge, Skills, Abilities: (applicants that screen in on the education and experience criteria may be further assessed on their knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies)
- Knowledge of the agriculture industry in B.C., current practices and the economic, environmental and social issues;
- Knowledge in farm business management practices;
- Strong computer skills to facilitate data management, analysis, and report writing;
- Ability to solve complex problems, think strategically to solve complex problems;
- Ability to provide technical expertise to other branch staff and government agencies;
- Ability to communicate technical knowledge clearly and convincingly in writing and orally to others;
- High degree of tact in dealing with employees, the general public, professional consultants and government representatives at all levels.
- Service Orientation implies a desire to identify and serve customers/clients, who may include the public, co-workers, other branches/divisions, other ministries/agencies, other government organizations, and non-government organizations. It means focusing one’s efforts on discovering and meeting the needs of the customer/client.
- Teamwork and Co-operation is the ability to work co-operatively within diverse teams, work groups and across the organization to achieve group and organizational goals. It includes the desire and ability to understand and respond effectively to other people from diverse backgrounds with diverse views.
- Building Partnerships with Stakeholders is the ability to build long-term or on-going relationships with stakeholders (e.g. someone who shares an interest in what you are doing). This type of relationship is often quite deliberate and is typically focused on the way the relationship is conducted. Implicit in this competency is demonstrating a respect for and stating positive expectations of the stakeholder.
- Initiative involves identifying a problem, obstacle or opportunity and taking appropriate action to address current or future problems or opportunities. As such, initiative can be seen in the context of proactively doing things and not simply thinking about future actions. Formal strategic planning is not included in this competency.
- Planning, Organizing and Co-ordinating involves proactively planning, establishing priorities and allocating resources. It is expressed by developing and implementing increasingly complex plans. It also involves monitoring and adjusting work to accomplish goals and deliver to the organization’s mandate.
- Cultural Agility is the ability to work respectfully, knowledgeably and effectively with Indigenous people. It is noticing and readily adapting to cultural uniqueness in order to create a sense of safety for all. It is openness to unfamiliar experiences, transforming feelings of nervousness or anxiety into curiosity and appreciation. It is examining one’s own culture and worldview and the culture of the BC Public Service, and to notice their commonalities and distinctions with Indigenous cultures and worldviews. It is recognition of the ways that personal and professional values may conflict or align with those of Indigenous people. It is the capacity to relate to or allow for differing cultural perspectives and being willing to experience a personal shift in perspective.
HOW TO APPLY
Closing date for the competition is Monday, January 25th at 11:00 pm.