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SFS creates transformative study abroad experiences through field-based learning and research. Our educational programs explore the human and ecological dimensions of the complex environmental problems faced by our local partners, contributing to sustainable solutions in the places where we live and work. The SFS community is part of a growing network of individuals and institutions committed to environmental stewardship.
Center Objective: The SFS Center for Marine Resource Studies (CMRS), a field station located on South Caicos Island in TCI, is committed to providing educational and research opportunities to visiting students while collaborating with local stakeholders on setting the research agenda and sharing research outcomes. We operate year-round, delivering two semester and two summer programs. The Center strives to make a meaningful contribution to the sustainable management of South Caicos marine resources and ecosystems, to the better management of the terrestrial environment, and towards the preparedness of the local community for the advent of mainstream tourism. The Center research activities are carried out in three areas: the ecology and assessment of marine environments and species, conservation and management of marine resources, and socio-economic conditions of development.
Tropical Marine Ecology:
The Tropical Marine Ecology course examines the interactions of living and non‑living components of tropical marine environments and how these shape/form different ecosystems. This course focuses mainly on the marine environment from the intertidal areas of South Caicos to its shelf edge. Coral reefs, mangroves, and sea grass beds are important eco-system foci. Ecological principles will be used to explain the interdependencies of species, populations, communities and ecosystems. Emphasis will be placed on the nutrient flow and energy cycles within and between ecosystems with references to the potential consequences of human alterations and natural perturbations of the environment. Today’s problems related to marine resource exploitation will be addressed by looking at the limiting factors of biological productivity. The impacts of onshore tourism development on the coastal and reef environments, and on exploited marine resources, will also form part of the teaching and research agendas.
Summer Session 1: Fundamentals of Marine Conservation
Students explore the spectacular reefs and turquoise waters of South Caicos, snorkeling or diving with rays, turtles, brilliantly colored fish, and other marine life. In this fundamentals course, they’ll learn about the environmental issues and policies affecting these ecosystems and the island community, and gain the skills needed to conduct marine research.
Summer Session 2: Marine Megafauna
Students spend their summer studying sharks, turtles, and rays in the waters surrounding the island of South Caicos. In this specialized course, they’ll learn about the ecology and conservation of these and other marine megafauna through in-water field lectures, snorkel or dive sessions, and video tracking exercises.
[Note: summer courses may change from year to year. The above courses will be taught in summer].
The successful candidate will provide high quality, modern and experiential teaching in critical environmental issues in an interdisciplinary curriculum and participate fully in the implementation of the Center’s strategic research plan that addresses these issues. The publication of research results is necessary. The successful candidate will work closely with the lecturers in Environmental Policy and Marine Resource Management to deliver an interdisciplinary program through education and research in a field setting.
Applicants are encouraged to review the course syllabi and programs descriptions on the SFS website: www.fieldstudies.org/tci
Duties and Responsibilities
Each lecturer is expected to provide high quality, inquiry-based teaching and will lead students in Directed Research projects defined in the Center’s research plan.
- As part of an interdisciplinary teaching team, teach one-third of the academic program (minimum 60 lecture hours per semester, 20 per summer program)
- Plan, revise, and effectively deliver a challenging, problem-based interdisciplinary curriculum
- Organize lectures and prepare course materials in a timely and professional manner
- Adhere to the daily academic schedule
- Prepare, administer, and grade assignments, quizzes, mid-term and final examinations
- Supervise and mentor up to 12 students in Directed Research projects
- Actively support and counsel students on academic issues
- Maintain records of lectures, exams, quizzes, readings, field experiences and homework assignments
- Conduct designated research according to the Center’s Strategic Research Plan
- Identify appropriate components of the Center’s research plan suitable for student Directed Research projects
- Prepare research results for clients and partners and for publication and conference presentations
- Assist in the creation and implementation of Center research policies, priorities, budgets as required
- Follow data management, record keeping, and reporting systems
- Present research findings at local and international conferences (budget dependent)
- Participate in planning activities prior to the program start and in review/analysis following students’ departure
- Participate in training activities for new Center staff prior to and during the program, particularly interns
- Participate in and lead parts of the orientation and re-entry components of the program presented to students at the beginning and end of each program period
- In cooperation with other Center staff, provide day-to-day coordination of interns as delegated by the center director
- Participate in resolving group management issues and student discipline problems
- Participate in preparation of the final reports, academic handbook revisions and other required reports
- As requested by the Center Director, assist with other logistical, group management and administrative tasks
Safety & Risk Management
- Take responsibility, as an individual and as a member of the Center faculty/staff team, for the safety of all program participants
- Participate in the review and revision of Center risk assessment and management plans
- Recommend and review policies and procedures needed to manage risks
- Know the emergency procedures plan for the Center, including evacuation plan
- Participate in the safety portions of the on-site orientation and conduct safety briefings for students and/or staff
- Complete incident reports when appropriate and contribute to safety audits
- Comply with, actively model, and enforce all SFS and Center policies and procedures
- Ensure that first-aid certifications are kept up to date via periodic courses offered by SFS between program sessions
Daily Center Life
- Live on-site (or near-by) for the duration of each program period and take most meals with the students
- On a rotating basis, take responsibility for Center-specific “staff of the day” duties
- Take part in, and occasionally lead community outreach, Center upkeep projects, social and field activities
- Drive standard transmission vehicles and boats as needed
- Adhere to, actively model and enforce all SFS and Center policies and procedures
- Ph.D. and university-level teaching and field experience in Tropical Marine / Coastal Ecology, or related field
- Demonstrated ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary teaching and research team
- Track record of research publications
- Certified SCUBA diver, Rescue or Divemaster preferred
- Small boat handling experience
- Demonstrated commitment to environmental issues
- Demonstrated experience working in collaboration with small island governments
- Residential student group management and risk management experience highly desirable
- Willingness to work flexible hours and live on site at the field station with a small team of permanent staff, groups of US undergraduate students and visiting researchers or programs
- Participate in the residential campus activities and community outreach
- Represent SFS at local and international conferences
- At all times, work to ensure good relations between the SFS and the local community
Salary is dependent on experience and qualifications. A comprehensive benefits package and onsite room and board is included.
Center for Marine Resource Studies – South Caicos, The Turks and Caicos Islands
The Center Director and the Office of Academic Affairs
January 6, 2020
Submit a cover letter outlining relevant experiences and addressing the qualifications and expectations stated above and curriculum vitae online. Recommendation letters will be required upon request.
Inquiries about the position may be directed to SFS Dean at [email protected] .
Equal Opportunity Employer.