Prospective Junior Specialist

Junior Specialist opportunity

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Position description

The Segarra lab is seeking two highly motivated and enthusiastic individuals to be involved in interdisciplinary studies focusing on questions in the field of Eco-toxicology, relating to aquatic organisms’ tolerance and adaptations to changing environments, swimming behavior, and immunology.

The position requires candidates to conduct experiments with fishes at two life stages (larvae and juveniles), including exposures, swimming behavior assays and/or physiological performances. This includes laboratory-based experimental research and analysis. The applicant will preferably have experience of working with fish. Candidates will help our research team to understand the sublethal impact of stressors on fish species of special concern with direct application to the conservation of these species. Candidates may also be involved in molecular biology focusing on understanding the mechanism of action of chemicals and their response to environmental stressors.

General responsibilities include the care of sensitive fish species, coordinating and assisting with experimental exposures using chemicals (such as insecticides, fire retardants, tire rubber-derived chemical) and behavioral assays in a wet laboratory. Other responsibilities include assistance with lab management and coordination of supplies needed for the successful day-to-day running of the lab (e.g., ordering supplies and maintaining the labs).  They will be working in Quonset Hut-type laboratories where temperatures can vary as well as working in temperature-controlled offices and laboratories. Because research involves animals, candidates should be available to work weekends and evenings as required. Must be willing conduct field work to collect environmental samples during various weather conditions. Candidates will be required to write technical reports, attend laboratory meetings, review journal articles, engage in discussions on research and the interpretation of results. They will have the opportunity of presenting research findings at technical meetings and professional societies. Travel will be required as part of the work (e.g., fish transport, sample collections), thus a California state driver license will be needed. Candidates will also be expected to assist with fish euthanization and dissection.

Research (90%)

The candidate will help to design and perform studies under the direction of the PI, post-doc and/or project scientist’s supervision. They will help collect and summarize data, may assist in data analyses, and will provide data to be used for technical reports and publications. The candidate will be involved in animal use protocol reporting and compliance and writing laboratory protocols.

Professional Competence (5%)

The candidate may be able to participate in regional meetings, expected to interact with and engage stakeholders and other agencies involved in wildlife management.

University and Public Service (5%)

Service will constitute mentorship of undergraduate students and other technical staff in the Segarra laboratory and collaborator’s facilities as appropriate.

Basic qualification

  • A Bachelor’s degree in fisheries sciences, toxicology, biology, conservation, marine science, neurobiology, physiology, behavior or related to the research conducted in the hiring unit by the time of the appointment. [Note: The junior specialist rank is an entry-level position; accordingly, it is inappropriate to hire applicants with advanced degrees in this field, or those with bachelor’s degrees plus three years’ relevant work experience.] (See APM-UCD 330)
  • Experience with fish care.
  • Understanding of animal behavior
  • Experience with biological data entry and willingness to assist with analysis.
  • Ability to lift 50 lbs (coolers filled with water and fish).
  • Minimum of 1 year of experience in field or laboratory research.
  • Strong communication skills
  • Experience in Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint or other appropriate computer programs to organize, summarize and analyze data.
  • Proficiency in both written and verbal English.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Ability to think critically and troubleshoot problems.
  • Ability to read and explain material safety data sheets (MSDS) and knowledge of laboratory safety and proper use and handling of potentially hazardous chemicals.
  • Strong attention to detail, and meticulous work style.
  • Provide own, reliable, transportation to and from work site; Valid CA license and acceptable driving record.

Preferred qualifications:

  • Experience handling native CA fishes.
  • Experience working independently and as a team, and in seeking more tasks as workload lessens.
  • Experience with standard fisheries data collection (e.g., fish identification, length/weight measurement) and experience handling and transporting fish.
  • Experience conducting animal behavior studies
  • Experience with morphometric analysis of early life stages of fish.
  • Experience and specialized knowledge of Ethovision software, as well as on DanioVision, DanioScope system or Y-maze.
  • Experience with toxicological research
  • Experience with field work
  • Knowledge with R or other statistical software.
  • Experience with RNA/DNA extractions, cDNA synthesis and quantitative PCR.
  • Previous experience managing, mentoring or overseeing staff or undergraduate students.

APPLICATION DETAILS: Appointments will vary in length up to a 12-month, with the possibility of extension contingent upon funding and performance.

Application Requirements

  • Curriculum Vitae – Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter
  • 2-3 required (contact information only)