Assistant Professor of Root Biology

Pennsylvania State University


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The department of Plant Science in the College of Agriculture Sciences at The Pennsylvania State University is hiring an Assistant Professor of Root Biology.

RESPONSIBILITIES: Tenure-track faculty position at the rank of Assistant Professor with a 25% teaching and 75% research appointment. The successful applicant will develop an externally funded, highimpact research program on plant root biology and teach undergraduate and/or graduate-level courses in Plant Science. We seek candidates using cutting-edge approaches to understand the functional roles of plant roots in agroecosystems, including but not limited to: using modern approaches such as root phenotyping, image analysis, simulation modeling, and genomics, and experience working in multidisciplinary teams. We are particularly interested in candidates whose research can solve local and global issues of agricultural sustainability and productivity. Research opportunities include but are not limited to the discovery and characterization of root traits, improving crop productivity under environmental stress, crop adaptation to low input systems, increasing ecosystem services, and improving crop production and resilience. The successful candidate will have expertise in plant genetics, -omics approaches, physiology, and agroecology to foster fruitful collaborations both inside and outside of Penn State. The successful candidate will engage closely with the Huck Center for Root and Rhizosphere Biology. This position is part of a cohort of recent faculty hires centered on the interface between crops and soils, encompassing root/rhizosphere/microbe interactions, root genetics, and agroecology. Candidates will be evaluated on their potential for publishing high-impact work, obtaining extramural funding, teaching and mentoring excellence, and collaboration in research and teaching within and outside the Department. 

QUALIFICATIONS: Ph.D. in plant biology or a related field is required and evidence of creativity and productivity beyond the Ph.D. is preferred. Applicants should provide evidence for conducting and publishing research, being competitive for external research funding, expertise in modern research methods, excellence in teaching, and ability to mentor and advise graduate students. Interest in and ability to contribute to interdisciplinary research collaborations in one or more areas central to the College of Agricultural Sciences including sustainability, advanced agricultural systems, integrated health solutions, entrepreneurship, and environmental resilience, is expected. An ability to engage professionally with a diverse population of faculty, staff, and students across the university is required.

SALARY: Commensurate with qualifications and experience. An excellent benefits package includes health, dental, and retirement contributions.

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS: Apply online at . Applications will be reviewed beginning April 1st, 2023 and will continue until filled. Candidates must provide the following: (1) cover letter, (2) curriculum vitae, (3) teaching philosophy statement (2-page max), (4) research experience and vision statement (2-page max), (5) diversity statement that outlines evidence of past and current commitment to diversity, equity, inclusive excellence, and belonging (1-page max), (6) pdfs of three relevant publications, and (7) list of three professional references.  

START DATE: January 2024 or as negotiated.

The Pennsylvania State University is committed to and accountable for advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in all of its forms. We embrace individual uniqueness, foster a culture of inclusion that supports both broad and specific diversity initiatives, leverage the educational and institutional benefits of diversity, and engage all individuals to help them thrive. We value inclusion as a core strength and an essential element of our public service mission. We particularly welcome applicants who can contribute to such an environment through their scholarship of teaching, research, and professional service. We strongly encourage historically underrepresented groups in academia to apply.


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