Careers at UMass Amherst

Nutrition Education Program Director - UMass Extension (Hybrid Opportunity)

Apply now Job no: 518270
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: UMass Extension
Union: PSU
Categories: Program Administration/Management, Agriculture/Extension

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

The UMass Extension Nutrition Education Program (NEP), provides nutrition education for low-income families and individuals from offices in Boston, Lawrence, Raynham, Auburn, and Springfield, with administrative offices at UMass Amherst and the Mount Ida Campus of UMass Amherst in Newton. NEP has two component programs, both federally-funded: the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education (SNAP-Ed). SNAP-Ed is a special grant-funded project administered in Massachusetts by the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA). UMass Extension is a statewide educational outreach program of UMass Amherst, and is part of the Center for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (CAFE). The Nutrition Education Program Director serves as program leader for the SNAP-Ed and EFNEP programs and coordinates the development, implementation and evaluation of the two programs.


Essential Functions

  • Provides direction, coordination, and leadership for the UMass Extension Nutrition Education Program including: managing and monitoring NEP annual Extension budget allocation, representing NEP and facilitating communication and sharing of information between NEP and other Extension programs and with Extension and Center for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (CAFE) administration and providing NEP information for reports, meetings, and marketing tools as requested.
  • Provides overall leadership in writing, compiling and updating the SNAP-Ed local and statewide plans and the state grant proposal.  Provides leadership for coordination of SNAP-ED grant writing and project development.
  • Provides leadership in the management of the SNAP-ED and EFNEP programs, including development of reporting systems, financial administration, operation of field offices (currently 5 field offices), coordination of communications, and staff meetings.  Work closely with USDA Food and Nutrition Service, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance, Research Affairs (OPAS and OPAM), Controllers Office, Department of Nutrition, and Extension and Center for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment administration to ensure ongoing project development and adherence to guidelines.  Prepares required reports for these agencies and departments.
  • Provides leadership for the development of program objectives, delivery methods, educational materials, evaluation, and reporting procedures for SNAP-ED and EFNEP projects statewide. Collaborates with project staff in developing and conducting evaluations of program effectiveness. Uses evaluation results to make recommendations to affect future SNAP-ED and EFNEP programs.
  • Provides immediate supervision for professional SNAP-ED Project Leaders and EFNEP Supervisors located in field offices and professional SNAP-ED and EFNEP Staff located at UMass Amherst. Provides intermediate supervision for all SNAP-ED and EFNEP staff.
  • Provides leadership for short and long-range planning for SNAP-ED and EFNEP that is consistent with program guidelines and with NEP, Nutrition Department, Extension, and Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment Strategic Plans. Collaborates with state agencies, community organizations, and Extension staff to develop new nutrition education programs. Works closely with NEP staff in developing and assessing programs. 
  • Represents and promotes UMass Extension and the Department of Nutrition, through SNAP-ED and EFNEP, at the state, regional and federal level. Provides leadership in the development of policies related to SNAP-ED and EFNEP.
  • Provides leadership in the development of SNAP-ED and EFNEP promotional materials consistent with the NEP and Extension marketing plans and the guidelines for each program
  • Participates in statewide Nutrition Education Program (NEP) staff meetings and committees as required.  Works with other staff in collaborative programming. Participates in the conduct of applied research and/or creative scholarly activities as appropriate.
  • Develops and conducts, in collaboration with program staff, training sessions for SNAP-ED and EFNEP nutrition educators/trainees, graduate students and staff. Provides research-based information for staff and clientele as needed.
  • Maintains and increases personal and professional competence through participation in in-service training, professional association activities and continuing education. Prepares and implements a professional development plan.
  • Works actively to ensure that all programs are conducted in compliance with NIFA/USDA, state and University affirmative action policies.


Other Functions

  • Works collaboratively and effectively to promote teamwork, diversity, equality and inclusiveness. 
  • Works in partnership with colleagues within the College of Natural Sciences (CNS) community and within the School for Public Health and Health Sciences (SPHHS) community, as well as across the campus, to support the Deans’ strategic priorities.
  • Perform other duties as assigned in support of the mission and goals of CNS, SPHHS, and University of Massachusetts.


Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Master's Degree in nutrition or related area and five (5) years' related professional experience. A doctorate in the same specialization may be substituted for two (2) years of the required experience.
  • Demonstrated fiscal, project and contract management skills.
  • Experience in project development, particularly in grant writing and collaboration with other organizations.
  • Excellent interpersonal and group process skills; and demonstrated ability to participate effectively in professional team efforts and with diverse groups of people.
  • Knowledge and demonstrated ability to implement adult education theories and practices with diverse audiences.
  • Experience with computers.
  • Ability to maintain a diverse schedule of local, regional, and statewide activities which is not restricted by access to public or private transportation.
  • Strong writing skills.
  • Previous supervisory experience.


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Prior experience writing and administering SNAP-Ed grants.
  • Prior experience supervising and reporting on EFNEP programing.
  • Prior experience coordinating with state agencies.
  • Prior organizational or programmatic management experience including formation and supervision of self-directed working teams.
  • Experience in strategic planning, project development, and grant writing.
  • Demonstrated experience working with confidential information and/or sensitive issues.
  • Experience working in higher education environment.
  • Supervisory experience involving multiple, full-time direct reports.
  • Experience planning, leading, and implementing strategic organizational initiatives.
  • Proven ability to attract external funding.
  • Proven ability to create innovative new programming.
  • Demonstrated commitment to fostering teamwork and collaborative work environments.


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

  • While much of the position duties take place in a typical office environment, the position also requires the ability to travel to various areas of the state.


Additional Details

  • This position reports to the Director of the Center for Agriculture, Food and the Environment (CAFE) serving as the leader for the UMass Extension Nutrition Education Program. This position will also indirectly report to the Chair of the Department of Nutrition.


Work Schedule

  • Monday – Friday, 8:30 am – 5:00 pm.
  • This position has the opportunity for a hybrid work schedule, which is defined by the University as an arrangement where an employee’s work is regularly performed at a location other than the campus workspace for a portion of the week. As this position falls within the Professional Staff Union, it is subject to the terms and conditions of the Professional Staff Union collective bargaining agreement.


Salary Information

Level 32

PSU Hiring Ranges


Special Instructions to Applicants

Along with the application, please submit a resume, letter of application, Diversity Statement (see below) and contact information for three (3) professional references. The search will remain open until filled.

As part of a commitment to their own multicultural community, CNS seeks an individual with a demonstrated commitment to diversity and one who will understand and embrace university initiatives and aspirations. In addition to application materials above, candidates will need to submit a Statement of Contribution to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. The Diversity Statement should identify past experiences and future goals. These contributions may result from lived experiences, scholarships, and/or mentoring, teaching, and outreach activities.  (


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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