Cornell University, Department of Food Science

Position ID:Cornell-Food-SLEA [#18362, WDR-00025313]
Position Title: Spanish Language Extension Associate
Position Type:Non tenure-track faculty
Position Location:Ithaca, New York 14853, United States [map] sort by distance
Subject Areas: Food Safety / Food Safety, Produce Safety
Appl Deadline:2021/08/06 11:59PMhelp popup finished (2021/03/25, finished 2022/01/24, listed until 2021/08/06)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed and new applications are no longer accepted. ***

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Spanish Language Extension Associate
Produce Safety Alliance
Department of Food Science
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty, and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented and/or marginalized identities to apply.

 The College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) is a pioneer of purpose-driven science and home to Cornell University’s second largest population of students, faculty and staff. We work across disciplines to tackle the challenges of our time through world-renowned research, education and outreach. The questions we probe and the answers we seek focus on three overlapping concerns: natural and human systems; food, energy and environmental resources; and social, physical and economic well-being.  CALS is fundamentally invested in improving the lives of people, their environments and their communities both in New York state and around the world.

 Position Function

The Produce Safety Alliance (PSA), based in the Department of Food Science at Cornell University, is a collaborative project with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to provide educational outreach assistance to fresh produce growers and packers, including grower cooperatives, to increase their understanding of the critical role they play in public health by implementing food safety practices on the farm and in packinghouses.  Since 2010, the PSA has been developing and delivering a standardized curriculum to be utilized in national and international training programs to educate fruit and vegetable growers, educators, industry members, and regulatory officials on current Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) and guidance related to produce safety, as well as the regulatory requirements that were issued by the FDA in November 2015 as part of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA).  The FSMA Produce Safety Rule will also impact international producers of fruits and vegetables through the Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP). Producers exporting to the United States will be subject to the same standards within the FSMA PSR as domestic producers. This education and outreach will be achieved through the delivery of the standardized, multi-lingual training and education programs.

As a key member of the PSA team, the Spanish Language Extension Associate (SLEA) will be required to have dual English and Spanish proficiency, including the ability to read, write, speak, and edit in both English and Spanish languages. The SL EA will be responsible for overseeing the translation, editing, and proofreading of PSA projects to ensure quality, message accuracy and consistency, appropriate tone and voice, and cultural relevance. By participating in a panel of reviewers, the SLEA will lead the evaluation process for English and Spanish-speaking applicants who apply to become PSA Lead Trainers.

Due to extensive national and international collaboration established by the PSA, it is anticipated the EA will interact with a diverse population of individuals and stakeholder groups across the country and outside of the United States, with specific emphasis on engagement with the Produce International Partnership (PIP).  The PIP is a partnership between the University of Maryland Joint Institute for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (JIFSAN) and the PSA. The PIP will develop and coordinate the dissemination of training/outreach to the international farming community, but PSA interfaces closely to ensure educational materials and training deliveries are appropriate for the intended audience.

The SLEA will facilitate and provide leadership for conference calls relating to international outreach efforts and may be directly involved in training other individuals to use the curriculum, in-person and through online platforms in English and Spanish. In addition, the SLEA will provide continual feedback to PSA leadership through preparation of international impact reports, training evaluations, and outreach activities.  Must be willing to travel regionally, nationally, and internationally a significant amount of time (~30%), including non-traditional and weekend work hours.  This position will have the option to establish a work flexplace agreement depending on home location. Position will be supervised by the PSA Director, Dr. Elizabeth A. Bihn.

One-year term with two years of initial funding renewable depending on available work, performance and available funding.

Anticipated Division of Time

Program Planning and Implementation (30%)

·        Work as part of the PSA team with emphasis on honest, transparent, and open communication

·        Coordinate and participate in departmental, regional, nationwide, and international training programs to deliver the Produce Safety Alliance’s developed curriculum to increase grower knowledge and ability to comply with regulations and market demands for food safety practices.

·        Coordinate and implement translation and editing efforts for PSA materials in English and Spanish including written publications, fact sheets, instructions, applications, and web-based content.

·        Work with the PIP to ensure training materials for Spanish Grower Training and Train-the-Trainer Courses are accurate, relevant, and culturally appropriate.

·        Translate and deliver Spanish PSA Online Grower Training Curriculum on the eCornell platform.


Collaborate on the Lead Trainer Review Process for Spanish-speaking Applicants (30%)

·        Lead a team of Spanish speaking reviewers to conduct PSA Lead Trainer application evaluations. This includes:

o   Evaluation of Lead Trainer applicants, utilizing a standardized rubric,

o   All correspondence with applicants on progress of application review,

o   Drafting feedback, decline, and approval notification forms and letters,

o   Leading interviews to evaluate Lead Trainer competency, when necessary, and

o   Communicating with PSA Coordinator and PSA Lead Trainer Review Committee on reviews, quality control, and other issues that may arise during the process to ensure a consistent, fair, and objective assessment of Spanish speaking Lead Trainer applicants.


Outreach, Extension, and Building Collaborative Networks (20%)

·        Communicate with outside constituency, particularly Spanish-speaking stakeholders, through e-mail, telephone, and less frequently, public presentations at regional grower conferences, Extension meetings, and governmental and non-governmental agencies.

·        Plan and develop educational materials for Spanish speaking audiences in partnership with the PSA team, PIP, and collaborators. This includes supplemental curriculum material, regional/commodity/industry specific supporting educational materials, fact sheets, brochures, information for the website, and social media content for Facebook and Twitter.

·        Provide research-based knowledge through educational activities conducted in Spanish including direct teaching, webinars, and other meetings and workshops for fruit and vegetable growers and other produce industry personnel.


Program Evaluation (15%)

·        Review evaluations of all training programs conducted in Spanish to report on performance and improve program effectiveness.

·        Contribute to revisions in the evaluation of domestic and international education and outreach curriculum.

·        Utilize and optimize shared databases with training evaluations and certificate information of Spanish speaking trainers and produce growers.


Other Duties as Assigned (5%)

 Required Qualifications

Master of Science (MS) degree in Food Science, Horticulture, Environmental Science/Conservation, Agricultural Science or equivalent and a minimum of 5 years of experience in a related field. Documented excellence in Spanish pedagogy, as well as excellent written and oral communication in Spanish. Native or near-native ability in Spanish language. High level of attention to detail and grammar during editing to ensure consistency with regulatory and existing curricula terminology. Advanced knowledge of Good Agricultural Practices, fruit and vegetable production, produce safety microbiology, and the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule. Experience training produce growers. Proven ability to identify and relay technical scientific information to a non-scientific audience in a practical and respectful manner.  Experience must demonstrate sound judgment, creativity, management and problem-solving skills, and the ability to work well within a team of professionals.  Ability to plan ahead and anticipate potential conflicts so that they can be fairly resolved in a transparent and documented way.  Ability to work in a team environment but be independent to accomplish required tasks and objectives while managing multiple projects.  Must be personable, maintain a positive attitude, be flexible, and be able to take criticism related to project work so that many ideas can be shared to achieve the best outcome.  Must exercise sound and ethical judgment when acting on behalf of the University.  Prior presentation preparation, public speaking, and adult education experience a must, in English and Spanish.  Must have and maintain a valid Driver’s License, and travel.  Must be able to lift up to 50 lbs.  Proficient in Microsoft office suite (Excel, Word, PowerPoint) and data entry procedures required.  Possess excellent organizational, writing, and communication skills and take pride in their work.  Work closely with the Coordinator and Extension Specialist and keep Director informed of progress.

Preferred Qualifications

PSA Lead Trainer or PSA Trainer. Ph.D. in Food Science, Horticulture, Environmental Science/Conservation, Agricultural Science or equivalent with experience working in produce safety. Proven ability to facilitate group discussions and lead teams of people through to completion of tasks/assignments in an efficient, safe, and timely manner. Background in professional, bilingual editing and technical writing. Research experience in an area relevant to produce safety such as surface water quality, or compost production. Experience with Adobe suite (Acrobat), webinar programs (Zoom, Adobe Connect, Go-To-Meeting), online teaching platforms (eCornell, Blackboard), and basic social media platform proficiency (Facebook, University blogs, Twitter) preferred. 

Supervision Exercised

No direct supervision involved in this position.

Application Instructions): Interested applicants should submit a CV, letter of interest, research statement, teaching statement, contact information for 3 references and a statement of contribution to diversity, equity, and inclusion via Academic Jobs Online at the following link:  Review of applications will begin on April 12, 2021 and continue until a candidate is selected. If you have questions about this position, please email

Familiarize yourself with Cornell’s COVID-19 workplace guidance as well as the university’s COVID-19 services and information.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the position description.

Further Info:
email address
Department of Food Science
M10 Stocking Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853