Persons applying for Extension Agent positions must meet the degree requirements listed in the job opportunity announcement. Normally for positions working in Agriculture & Natural Resources or Human/Environmental Sciences must hold a Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture or Family and Consumer Sciences.
Applicants with Education or closely-related degrees will be considered for positions with 100% 4-H youth responsibility.
Applicants must have either a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.7 on a 4.0 point scale, a minimum of 3.0 during their senior year of undergraduate study, or must have earned a Masters degree.
Formal training beyond the baccalaureate degree or work experience is preferred when applicable to the position being sought.
Recent employment in a profession directly related to Extension education , or recent college coursework directly related to Agriculture, Family and Consumer Sciences or a closely related program is preferred.
Applicants are expected to pursue programs of professional improvement including subject-matter in-service training and graduate level programs.
Applicants must be a U.S. citizen, or be lawfully eligible for employment in the United States.
Applicants must exhibit professional characteristics, such as cooperation, reliability, technical and academic competency, leadership skills, and effective communications skills.
Applicants must be willing and will be required to work with all clientele, regardless of race, color, national origin, age, sex, disability, religion or veteran status.
Applicants must be acceptable to the respective county’s Agricultural Extension Advisory Committee.
Acceptance of a position with The University of Tennessee Extension is considered acceptance of the provisions listed above.
Agricultural Extension Agent, Recommended Courses
In some cases, county Extension positions require certain areas of subject matter specialty. However, in all county positions, clientele expect agents to be a source of information on anything related to Agriculture. Therefore, applicants must have a Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture or Natural Resources or have equivalent experience. A balanced curriculum that includes a minimum level of training in each of the Ag disciplines is encouraged.
Family and Consumer Sciences Agent, Recommended Courses
UT Extension offers Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) county agent positions in four specific areas. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree in a human ecology, home economics, human environmental science, or family consumer sciences department or college. Applicants are required to demonstrate coursework that will show competencies in several areas. Courses are listed from the University of Tennessee Knoxville that will assist in development of these competencies. Courses listed show the department, department number, the number and name of the course, followed by the credit hours for the course.
Courses suggested under each competency are at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, College of Human Ecology (UTK). Students enrolled at other colleges and universities should consult a UTK Catalog to compare equivalent course content. Consideration should be given to prerequisite courses. These courses should assist a future Extension county agent in attaining the competency needed. University advisors should assist students in selecting appropriate courses so students can gain these competencies. Courses shown in bold are considered a high priority for attainment of the competency.
Expected Agent Competencies FCS Positions:
Plan, implement, and evaluate county based educational programs that are in alignment with state Named programs. Conduct ongoing needs assessments of local targeted learners in priority program areas. Create learning environments utilizing learner input and in collaboration with local leaders and educators. Report named program progress of individual and team efforts in terms of program accomplishments. Include the impact of programming as a benefit to the learner and the value of the program to the public in terms of cost benefit.
FCS Family Area
Agents in this position primarily work with and educate individuals and families who have completed school, as well as with young children from birth to age nine. FCS agents assigned to families are expected to create and be involved in community efforts where family issues are the mission. This implies a close working relationship and partnership with agents assigned to 4-H youth, agriculture, and community development.
Agents need to be able to plan a multi-dimensional program that involves series teaching to a targeted audience as well as social marketing that involves appropriate use of the media or other technology.
FCS Youth Area
Agents in this position primarily work with and educate youth. The major assignment is the 4-H Youth development program (ages 9 to 18). This position is not limited to youth electing membership in 4-H. This position requires agents to educate and work with all youth, especially the hard to reach youth. FCS agents assigned to youth are expected to create and be involved in community efforts where youth issues are the mission. This implies a close working relationship and partnership with agents assigned to families, agriculture, and community
FCS Expanded Food and Nutrition Area (EFNEP)
An agent assigned to Expanded Food and Nutrition works with and educates limited resources individuals, families, and youth in nutrition education.
The primary focus of the Expanded Food and Nutrition Program is to work with and to educate limited resource families with children including the children in those families about nutrition, food preparation, food budgeting, and other diet related matters.
FCS Tennessee Nutrition and Consumer Education Program (TNCEP)
Agents assigned to the Tennessee Nutrition and Consumer Education Program work with and educate food stamp eligible individuals, families, and youth in nutrition education.
The primary focus of the Tennessee Nutrition and Consumer Education Program is to work with and educate food stamp eligible families and individuals of all ages across the life cycle in the areas of nutrition, food preparation, food budgeting and management, and other diet related issues. Youth being educated in this program are in schools where 51% of the children in that school qualify for free and reduced lunch. Adults are parents of school aged youth, primary caregivers of children, or may be individuals or family members without children. This program works through an empowered community nutrition coalition. This position requires community development, family development, and nutrition teaching skills for both youth and adult learners.
Recommended Courses for Agents Assigned to TNCEP Area