The mission of the Michigan Natural Features Inventory (MNFI) is to guide the conservation of Michigan’s biodiversity by providing the highest quality scientific expertise and information. MNFI’s vision is to be the authoritative source of information on biodiversity that is widely used to conserve Michigan’s unique natural heritage for current and future generations.
As part of MSU Extension and the Michigan Natural Features Inventory, the successful candidate will collect, analyze, and communicate information about Michigan's rare and declining plant species and natural communities, help maintain Michigan’s Natural Heritage Database, and work cooperatively with other MNFI personnel, public and private agencies, organizations, and individuals to inform and guide decisions that impact biodiversity conservation. This position will have statewide responsibilities and will be housed at the MNFI office in Lansing, Michigan.
Plan and conduct field surveys, monitoring, and research of rare and declining plant species and natural communities;
Collect, evaluate, analyze, and disseminate vegetation and ecological information, and manage data within multiple databases;
Provide leadership in the maintenance and expansion of Michigan’s Natural Heritage Database with regard to rare plant species occurrences and support other botanical heritage programming;
Develop and maintain good working relationships with natural resource managers, researchers, other partners, and stakeholders through collaborations and consultations;
Create and promote positive public relations for MSU Extension, the Greening Michigan Institute, and the Michigan Natural Features Inventory;
Provide technical assistance and training using appropriate media methods to communicate current and timely information, research results, and relevant updates on Michigan’s rare plant species and natural communities, ecological restoration, and biodiversity stewardship to staff within the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, other state, federal, and local agencies, and conservation organizations;
Recruit, train, and direct seasonal staff;
Disseminate information about rare plant species and ecosystems through project reports, publications, scientific presentations, and other written and oral communications;
Assist and/or lead project development, management, and implementation, including the preparation of proposals to obtain funding for projects that further MNFI’s mission;
Serve on internal and external project teams, committees, and working groups as needed;
Participate in MSU health and safety monitoring programs as necessary;
Actively participate in professional development opportunities;
Understand and implement Civil Rights policies and procedures;
Perform other duties as assigned.
Masters -Plant biology, Ecology, Forestry
Master's degree in plant biology, ecology, forestry, or closely related field must be earned by date of hire;
Demonstrated commitment to the conservation of biological diversity;
Experience designing and conducting field-based ecological studies, especially those involving vegetation sampling and monitoring;
Experience conducting surveys for rare plant species and assessing plant diversity;
Familiarity with plant identification keys, specimen preparation, and herbarium practices;
Ability to independently conduct long days of strenuous fieldwork under adverse conditions for prolonged periods of time throughout the State of Michigan;
Ability to navigate in remote areas, including experience using a compass, maps, and GPS technology;
Strong interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills, good organizational and time-management abilities, and attention to detail;
Proficiency in use of technology (e.g., web research, Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook for mail/calendaring, distance technology, etc.) for day-to-day work, , record keeping, reporting, team-based communications, and overall management;
Demonstrated ability to quickly learn new skills and procedures;
Self-motivated with the demonstrated ability to work independently without daily supervision and/or coaching;
Ability to work independently and in teams of diverse people;
Proven ability in establishing and working with a diverse network of constituents and community members across race, gender, socioeconomic class, disabilities, and other differences;
Understanding of and ability to implement Civil Rights principles and compliance standards;
Ability to lift and carry field supplies, educational materials, equipment, etc. up to 25 lbs.;
Ability to travel in local and surrounding communities and occasional long distance travel, including weekends and extended periods, are required as a regular part of this position;
Transportation is the responsibility of the employee;
Other skills and/or physical abilities required to perform duties of this position.
Ph.D. in relevant field;
Knowledge of the ecosystems and natural communities of Michigan and/or the Upper Great Lakes;
Experience developing and implementing monitoring protocols;
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