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Research Assistant I, Biological Sciences

Company: Vanderbilt University
Location: Nashville
Posted on: June 12, 2021

Job Description:

The full-time Research Assistant I position is part of the Bordenstein Lab in the Department of Biological Sciences and Microbiome Initiative at Vanderbilt University and is a key technician responsible for hands-on research, laboratory upkeep, and insect maintenance. This position will be a crucial part of a symbiosis and genetics research program aimed at understanding, disseminating, and applying the principles that shape relationships between insects, symbiotic bacteria, and bacteriophages. The Research Assistant will manage day-to-day operations of the lab, support ongoing research projects, and oversee undergraduate students. This position will report administratively and functionally to senior lab personnel and the PI.

The Department of Biological Sciences has an excellent staff to facilitate issue resolution involving personnel, financial management, supply and equipment orders proposal submission, and infrastructure. The faculty in the department carry out diverse research projects and often collaborate with other members within the department and in nearby departments. This department covers a broad spectrum of biology, from molecules and cells to tissues and organisms to populations and ecosystems. Award-winning faculty and graduate students teach and carry out research in Biochemistry, Structural Biology and Biophysics, Cell Biology, Genetics, Molecular Biology, Computational Biology, Evolutionary Biology, Ecology, Developmental Biology, and Neurobiology.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Design, conduct, interpret and communicate independent research in the areas of:
  • Molecular biology
  • Microscopy
  • Insect-microbe biology

  • Weekly maintenance of lab stocks, including insects and cell culture.
  • Manage day-to-day lab operations, including:
  • Ordering lab supplies
  • Biohazardous waste and chemical management
  • Equipment maintenance
  • Supervision of undergraduate student workers
  • Reagent preparation
  • Lab safety and cleanliness

  • Organize and maintain lab databases to facilitate easy access to supply inventory, insect stocks, common protocols, group schedules, and annual safety and training records.
  • Research and implement new techniques to the lab.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Bachelor's degree in Biology, Chemistry, or related field is necessary.
  • At least 1 year research experience in insect husbandry, microbiology, molecular biology, proteomics, and/or bioinformatics is preferred.
  • Prior experience in personnel management and administration is preferred.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills are necessary.
  • Self-motivated and fast learner with an ability to work independently, multi-task, and successfully meet deadlines is necessary.
  • Outstanding work ethic; dedication to high-quality research and the success of fellow lab members is necessary.
  • Basic computer skills in Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint. Experience with more advanced programs (Geneious, GraphPad Prism, EndNote, QIIME, Photoshop, Illustrator, R, command-line programming) is preferred.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

At Vanderbilt University, we are intentional about and assume accountability for fostering advancement and respect for equity, diversity, and inclusion for all students, faculty, and staff. Our commitment to diversity makes us who we are. We have created a community that celebrates differences and lets individuality thrive. As part of this commitment, we actively value diversity in our workplace and learning environments as we seek to take advantage of the rich backgrounds and abilities of everyone. The diverse voices of Vanderbilt represent an invaluable resource for the University in its efforts to fulfill its mission and strive to be an example of excellence in higher education.

Vanderbilt University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and protected veterans are encouraged to apply.

Please note, all candidates selected for an offer of employment are subject to pre-employment background checks, which may include but are not limited to, based on the role for which they have been selected: criminal history, education verification, social media review, motor vehicle records, credit history, and professional license verification.

Keywords: Vanderbilt University, Nashville , Research Assistant I, Biological Sciences, Other , Nashville, Tennessee

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