Overview

Tenure-Stream Open Rank Professor of Forests and Green Space for Improving Public Health
CANR Department of Forestry (60% FTE) and CHM Division of Public Health (40% FTE)
Michigan State University

Position description: The Department of Forestry and Division of Public Health at Michigan State
University invite applications for a 9-month tenure-system position (open rank) in Forest and Green
Space for Improving Public Health (40% research, 25% teaching, 25% Extension/Outreach, 10%
service). The position offers joint affiliation in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources
(CANR) and the College of Human Medicine (CHM), as part of the University-wide One Health and
1855 Professorships initiatives. Green spaces, both urban and wild, are highly regarded by nearby
residential communities and for nature-based tourism. Well-designed green spaces can promote social
gathering and improve social cohesion, which is a growing necessity in communities in Michigan and
beyond. Green spaces may be central to physical and mental health and have drawn increasing focus
because of climate change and related air quality, hydrological, and urban heat island challenges. This
ongoing public health need may become even stronger given trends toward increasing online, remote
interaction. The pandemic also highlighted that access to green space remains inequitable, with
disproportionately lower tree cover and green space in communities of color and lower minority
visitation rates to national parks and forests. We seek an outstanding scholar conducting cutting edge
research that contributes to understanding how trees, forests, and urban green spaces affect public
health and what strategies lead to optimal and equitable environmental access and health benefits.

Scholarship responsibilities: The successful candidate is expected to develop an internationally
recognized research program by securing competitive external funding, publishing in leading peerreviewed
journals, and advancing our understanding of the green space-health relationship. This
understanding could be attained through a wide range of expertise, including wellbeing, physical and
mental health of urban populations, informatics, evaluation, community engagement, urban forestry,
environmental justice and equity, wood design and wood product effects on health, health geography,
urban planning, and other forest/health linkages (e.g., health effects of forest wildfires). We will
consider all methodological backgrounds from qualitative to quantitative and rigorous mixed methods
approaches. We will consider candidates working globally, but there is an expectation that the successful
candidate will perform some research and outreach in Michigan.

Teaching responsibilities: The successful candidate is expected to contribute to the development
of cross-disciplinary academic programs connecting nature and human health, which can fulfill the
initial teaching assignment. Thereafter, the expectation is to teach 1.5 courses per year, which could
include a course that addresses environmental justice and equitable distribution of green space in urban
settings or teaching components within the Master of Public Health, or the Doctorate of Human or
Veterinary Medicine curricula.

Extension/outreach responsibilities include stakeholder-engaged research and outreach with
local community health organizations and other urban forestry stakeholders. Within the Extension
appointment, the emphasis should be on Knowledge to Action, translating research into actionable
policies that drive community change, and providing community groups with scientific expertise. The
successful candidate will work with community leaders and external stakeholders to advance equitable
and positive health outcomes through nature-based solutions.

Responsibilities also include recruiting and training graduate students, undergraduate mentoring, and
Department, College, University, and professional service.

A PhD in natural resources or a health field is required. Candidates with joint PhD-health degrees (e.g.,
MPH, MD, DO, DVM, PsyD, etc.) are encouraged to apply. Experience with community-engaged
research is required and with environmental justice is preferred.

This position is part of a distinguished cluster hire at the University level: The 1855 Professorships.
Incoming candidates will have an immediate network of other scholars whose work advances
institutional priorities of diversity, equity, and inclusion research, teaching, and practices. This
professorship will also be part of the One Health cohort of professorships across the Colleges of Human
Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Nursing, Social Science, and Agriculture and Natural Resources, and
other major academic units.

Location: The position will be based at Michigan State University in East Lansing, MI, USA. The
primary departmental home for the position is the Department of Forestry. Formally established in 1902,
Michigan State’s Department of Forestry was among the first undergraduate forestry programs in the
U.S. The Department is a vibrant, growing, internationally recognized unit committed to
interdisciplinary education, research, and extension to understand and resolve environmental and natural
resource issues. The Department of Forestry has a growing portfolio of diversity, equity, and inclusion
initiatives including several scholarship and fellowship programs aimed at recruiting and retaining a
more diverse student body. The MSU Division of Public Health focuses on population health from its
home base – the College of Human Medicine’s Flint campus. Being embedded in the Flint community
allows our faculty and researchers to understand the assets and needs of the community while studying
Flint’s most pressing public health issues. Spartans work side-by-side with community partners and
healthcare providers in a community-identified and community-participatory public health focus model
to:

  • Encourage healthy behaviors, mitigate chronic diseases, identify environmental health risks, and
    examine social factors that influence community health
  • Prepare graduate students to become competent public health professionals to meet the needs of
    communities across the globe.
  • Engage agencies, professional organizations, and community-based partners on collaborative
    projects to improve health care delivery that will lead to reductions in health disparities in the
    community, the state of Michigan, and beyond.

MSU enjoys a park-like campus with outlying research facilities and natural areas. The campus is
located in the city of East Lansing, adjacent to the capital city of Lansing. The Lansing metropolitan
area has a diverse population of approximately 450,000. Local communities have excellent school
systems and place a high value on education. The University is proactive about its obligations under the
ADA and provides individual accessibility plans to students and employees with disabilities. Michigan
State University is also proactive in exploring opportunities for employment for dual career families,
both inside and outside the University, and respects all family forms. Information about MSU’s dual
career support can be found at http://worklife.msu.edu/dual-career. Information about WorkLife at
MSU can be found at http://worklife.msu.edu/ The College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at
Michigan State University is committed to achieving excellence by creating and sustaining an accessible
and inclusive culture that values cultural and academic diversity. We are an equal opportunity /
affirmative action employer. The CANR is particularly interested in candidates of all backgrounds who
are committed to the principle that academic excellence is achieved through open access and proactive
inclusion.

To Apply: For consideration, submit your application online at http://careers.msu.edu to job number
765016. Upload the following required documents: 1) a letter of interest detailing qualifications for the
position, 2) curriculum vitae, 3) statement of research experience and future direction (2 page max), 4)
statement of teaching experience and philosophy (2 page max), 5) a summary of your experience with
diversity in teaching and / or research and an explanation of how you will contribute to our goals of
inclusive excellence (2 page max), and 6) three professional references with contact information
(institution, email address, phone number). Incomplete applications and those submitted through e-mail
will not be considered.

Application deadline: Review of applications will begin April 11, 2022, and continue until a suitable
candidate is selected. Inquiries to Dr. Emily S. Huff, Chairperson, Search Committee, by email
ehuff@msu.edu (preferred) or by phone at (413) 320-2396.

Notice: MSU requires all students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with limited
exceptions. Learn more at https://msu.edu/together-we-will.

MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving excellence through
a diverse workforce and an inclusive culture that encourages all people to reach their full potential.
We actively encourage applications from, and nominations of, women, persons of color, veterans,
persons with disabilities and other individuals who can contribute to the intellectual diversity and
cultural richness at Michigan State University. MSU is committed to providing a work environment
that supports employees’ work and personal life and offers employment assistance to the spouse or
partner of candidates for faculty and academic staff positions.

About Michigan State University

MSU enjoys a park-like campus with outlying research facilities and natural areas. The campus is
located in the city of East Lansing, adjacent to the capital city of Lansing. The Lansing metropolitan
area has a diverse population of approximately 450,000. Local communities have excellent school
systems and place a high value on education. The University is proactive about its obligations under the
ADA and provides individual accessibility plans to students and employees with disabilities. Michigan
State University is also proactive in exploring opportunities for employment for dual career families,
both inside and outside the University, and respects all family forms. Information about MSU’s dual
career support can be found at http://worklife.msu.edu/dual-career. Information about WorkLife at
MSU can be found at http://worklife.msu.edu/