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Requisition ID:  10593

Research Associate - Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

Job Summary

At this time, this position is recruiting and accepting applications.


The Department of Agronomy is seeking a Research Associate. The current research team focuses on how cover crops and other management strategies alter nutrient and sediment losses from the landscape. Nitrogen loss from agricultural fields in the central USA leads to widespread environmental problems downstream. Cover crops, planted after harvest, growing during fall, and terminated in the spring, may decrease nutrient and sediment losses from the fields over winter, as well as, improve soil quality. Responsibilities for this position will include but are not limited to:

  • Leading in executing all agronomic field operations and practices, starting with the spring field preparation, followed by planting, weed management, in-field note-taking, and then fall harvest
  • Managing multiple locations in order to maintain the integrity of the data collected under the detailed experimental research design
  • Utilizing farm equipment and machinery to perform field activities; such as herbicide chemical application, application of labeled N15 products, cash crop planting, fertilizer application, cash crop harvest, and cover crop planting
  • Implementing field and lab protocols to ensure proper application of N15 products and handling labeled samples to minimize risks of contamination
  • Collecting, processing and analyzing all soil, water, plan and soil samples
  • Performing simple maintenance and calibration, and incorporating appropriate QA/QC on a set schedule for analytical instruments
  • Interfacing with local farmers and scouting fields to determine proper timing of sample collection (plant and soil) and management practices
  • Lead in initiating farmer engagements at the field and watershed levels to share research findings with collaborating and interested farmers to enhance the local value of research efforts
  • Within the context of the research program, performing independent investigations to increase the functionality of methods and to understand data trends
  • Supporting the training of undergraduate and graduate research assistants in the laboratory and field, to complete research projects and ensure safety is maintained
  • Supervising the maintenance and functionality of field and laboratory equipment and manage training for safe use of the equipment
  • May perform and monitor repairs of laboratory and field equipment conducted by outside parties

This position is a renewable contract and is dependent on grant funds for continuation.  

  • Master's degree in Agriculture, Agronomy, Chemistry, Biology or related field
  • Experience in analytical instrumentation
  • Strong background in analytical chemistry
  • Ability to participate in fieldwork
  • Working knowledge of computers (Excel, Word)
  • Valid driver's license


Additional Information:

  • Purdue will not sponsor an employment related visa for this position
  • A background check will be required for employment in this position
  • FLSA: Exempt (Not Eligible For Overtime)
  • Retirement Eligibility: Defined Contributions Waiting Period
  • Purdue University is an EOE/AA employer. All individuals, including minorities, women, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply