Job Opportunity: Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development Extension Educator

Minnesota Sea Grant is recruiting for a part-time (50%) Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development Extension Educator.

Quick Summary

  1. The Minnesota Sea Grant (MNSG) environmental literacy and workforce development (ELWD) extension educator will be responsible for creating, planning, implementing, and evaluating accessible education and workforce development programming on Minnesota’s water resources and blue economy that is relevant to the University of Minnesota Sea Grant’s (MNSG) mission and strategic plan. 
  2. Preferred candidates will have experience and knowledge of teaching in the K-12, non-formal, and/or environmental literacy realms, including working knowledge and experience with Next Generation Science Standards and Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards. 
  3. The ELWD extension educator will provide educational and professional development opportunities for teachers, non-formal educators, and water resource professionals and may also provide direct teaching experiences for K-12 students. 
  4. The extension educator will work closely with other MNSG staff, University of Minnesota Extension Educators, the Sea Grant Center for Great Lakes Literacy, and Sea Grant Extension Educators across the Great Lakes region and nation who are involved in related issues. 
  5. This part-time (50%) position is supervised by the MNSG Extension Program Leader.

Quick Links & Instructions

Applications must be submitted online. 

  1. Go to UMN's Job Description and select the "Apply for Job" button at the top right of the webpage. 
  2. If that link does not work, go to:, select the category of applicant that you are (e.g., external, employee, student), and search for Job ID 361917
  3. Complete the online application and attach all of the following:
    1. Cover letter
    2. Resume
    3. Finalists will be asked to provide 5 professional references

Quick reference 

  • Who's hiring: University of Minnesota Sea Grant College Program (Minnesota Sea Grant)
  • Job title: Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development Extension Educator
  • Job code: 9623
  • UMN Job ID: 361917
  • Full/part-time: Part-time (20 hours per week)
  • Compensation: $22,077.59 - $44,155.18 depending on qualifications for this part-time position. Notes: (1)The University of Minnesota HR job webpage posting of this position lists the full-time compensation. (2) UMN HR updated the salary range for this position 6/26/24.
  • Benefits: No benefits  
  • Location: Duluth or St. Paul, Minnesota
  • Application open date: June 21, 2024
  • Application review date: July 17, 2024 (position will remain open until filled)
  • Required qualifications: A master’s in education is required. This degree must be from an accredited institution or equivalent, and with an emphasis on environmental education, science education, aquatic science, environmental studies or a related field.

About the Position

This position is a 50% (part-time) academic professional appointment with MNSG or could contribute 50% to an existing appointment in another University of Minnesota department. The title for this position is Assistant Extension Professor (non-tenure track) with the working title of Minnesota Sea Grant Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development Extension Educator (MNSG ELWD EE).

General Responsibilities

The MNSG ELWD EE will focus their education and workforce development programming efforts on water resources, flood and coastal and climate change resilience, water quality, invasive species, sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, maritime transportation and other water resources topics related to MNSG’s strategic plan. The extension educator will work in cooperation with staff from MNSG, University of Minnesota Extension, Sea Grant Center for Great Lakes Literacy, , partner agencies and organizations, and researchers to accomplish the goals relevant to their area of expertise within the Minnesota Sea Grant Strategic Plan. Work must be related to one or more of Sea Grant’s four focus areas: Healthy Coastal Ecosystems, Resilient Communities and Economies, Environmental Literacy and Workforce Development, and Sustainable Fisheries and Aquaculture.

U of M Sea Grant Extension and Research duties (85%)

  1. In coordination and partnership with the Sea Grant Center for Great Lakes Literacy and MNSG staff, create an accessible Great Lakes, K - 12, research-based education program that addresses local needs and increases literacy about MNSG’s priority research and outreach issues (e.g., water resources, coastal resilience, blue economy, sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, maritime transportation). 
  2. Build and maintain partnerships with state, regional, and national entities (e.g., Sea Grant Center for Great Lakes Literacy, educational institutions, research scientists, professional societies) that grow environmental literacy and increase workforce development opportunities in Minnesota. 
  3. Conduct periodic needs assessments among community groups (e.g., school districts, educators, water resource managers, public, industry, etc.) to determine education and workforce development program priorities and inform MNSG’s strategic plan. Define clear and measurable goals and objectives to address these priorities. 
  4. Implement educational programs using a variety of tools (i.e., publications, website content, events, social media, lesson plans, educator tool kits) and connect all programming to Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards and Next Generation Science Standards. 
  5. Support formal and non-formal educators in implementing MNSG and Sea Grant Center for Great Lakes Literacy curricula. 
  6. Evaluate, track, and report program measures and metrics. 
  7. Conduct formative (pre) and summative (post) evaluations of programs and use results to improve and revise program products, services, and activities and assess overall program outcomes. 
  8. Serve as MNSG’s lead/point of contact for the Sea Grant Center for Great Lakes Literacy. 
  9. Coordinate, lead, and/or participate in statewide, Great Lakes, and national projects and programs, as appropriate and/or requested by MNSG supervisor. 
  10. Participate in MNSG extension program team and/or University of Minnesota initiatives as appropriate. 


General Administrative and Scholarship Duties (10%) 

  1. Share and/or present results of extension and research efforts at regional or national professional events and venues. 
  2. Complete other duties related to participating within the MNSG organization, including but not limited to preparing reports and plans of work, submitting activity metrics, writing and administering grants, serving on committees, etc. 
  3. Participate in professional development opportunities. 
  4. Travel overnight occasionally as required. 


Core Duties (5%) 

  1. Attend staff meetings and other required MNSG meetings and events. 
  2. Maintain shared, flex, and all office spaces in a professional manner, update computer security and virus protection software, ensure computer files and records are backed-up on a timely basis, and ensure MNSG supervisor has access to all Google Workspace content. 
  3. Maintain a current calendar of events, travel, and program activity viewable to staff. 
  4. Report activity on a regular basis using program forms, databases, or other formats as requested. 
  5. Help write, edit, design, review, and/or produce documents critical to MNSG such as the strategic plan, the omnibus (budget) proposal, and the annual progress report.


Code of Conduct

  1. Contribute to a respectful workplace and contribute as a MNSG team member. Ensure diverse and inclusive programming and employment with attention to affirmative action. Follow the University of Minnesota code of conduct regarding authorship, research, financial transactions, expense reimbursement, vacation and sick leave reporting, use of supplies and office equipment, supervisory duties, use of controlled substances, outside consulting, and use of University and MNSG name, logos, and wordmarks.


Required Qualifications

  1. A master’s in education is required. This degree must be from an accredited institution or equivalent, and with an emphasis on environmental education, science education, aquatic science, environmental studies or a related field.


Preferred Qualifications

  1. Demonstrated experience in writing science standards-aligned, inquiry-based lesson plans and a working knowledge of Next Generation Science Standards and Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards. 
  2. Obtained status as a licensed teacher in Minnesota either currently or in the past. 
  3. Knowledge of and experience with workforce development principles and practices. 
  4. At least two years of demonstrated experience in developing, planning, implementing, and evaluating education and/or workforce development programs for diverse audiences using a variety of methods. 
  5. Demonstrated record of working effectively and respectfully in a team setting with staff, constituents, and partners with diverse backgrounds, interests, and abilities in an atmosphere of mutual respect. 
  6. Self-motivated with demonstrated ability to work independently and meet deadlines. 
  7. Experience teaching or coaching educators and creating professional development and/or workforce development programming. 
  8. Demonstrated knowledge of program evaluation techniques. 
  9. Strong knowledge of pedagogical foundations and understanding of current research in experiential and inquiry-based learning, social emotional learning, inclusive education practices and science and phenomena-based curricula.

Who We Are

Minnesota Sea Grant (MNSG) is a systemwide program of the University of Minnesota and one of 34 federal-university Sea Grant partnerships across the country that bring applied water science to communities. MNSG’s extension educators, researchers and communicators work with community members, local decision-makers, policy leaders, and personnel from resource agencies, business and industry to protect, enhance and restore habitats, ecosystems and the services those ecosystems provide. We are what makes the University of Minnesota a Sea Grant institution.


Kelsey Prihoda, Minnesota Sea Grant, Sea Grant Great Lakes Transport Extension Educator, University of Minnesota.

Additional Information

Minnesota Sea Grant is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Sea Grant Program, which supports 34 similar programs in coastal states throughout the United States and Puerto Rico. It receives funding through the NOAA - Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and the University of Minnesota. The program partners with local, regional and national organizations and is an integral member of the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network.