The Environmental Science Departmentin the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at the University of Arizona is currently seeking an outgoing and driven individual to join our Cooperative Extension team to conduct applied research and outreach programs in soil health as related to crop production and sustainability. The Assistant Specialist, Soil Health (Environmental Science Extension) will develop an applied research-driven extension program that focuses on arid-region soils.
At the University of Arizona, Cooperative Extension faculty are situated within disciplinary academic units, sharing the same privileges and opportunities as teaching and research faculty. They direct an extramurally-funded research program, serve as major advisor to graduate students, and, importantly, they bring our science to bear on practical problems faced by the citizens, agencies, and industries in the State of Arizona through the development of Extension programs that they deliver through open dialogue to stakeholders in the State.
Potential research areas include quantifying efficacy of soil management tools on soil health; impacts of water treatment and reuse on soil microbiome and chemistry; developing and refining relevant and efficient methods for evaluating soil health for a diverse clientele; relations between soil health and human health/welfare, and measuring and modeling changes in chemical, physical, and microbial soil characteristics with conventional or novel management treatments and time. Relations between soil health metrics, microbiome, plant function, and nutrient cycling should be incorporated into the research-driven extension program. Local industry is particularly interested in the following; (1) Salinity management (especially using biology to adapt and mitigate), (2) Plant-microbe interactions for pest management and increasing yields (rhizosphere focused), and (3) Bio-fertilizers.