Jobs at Western

Assistant Professor: Cell Biologist

Apply now Work type: TT Faculty
Location: Bellingham, WA
Categories: College of Science & Engineering

Position Title Assistant Professor: Cell Biologist
About the University Western Washington University (WWU), with over 16,000 students in seven colleges and the graduate school, is nationally recognized for its educational programs, students and faculty. The campus is located in Bellingham, Washington, a coastal community of 89,000 nestled between the Salish Sea’s San Juan Islands and the Cascade Mountains. The city lies 90 miles north of Seattle and 60 miles south of Vancouver, British Columbia.
About the Department

The Biology Department and College of Science and Engineering support WWU’s mission, which states that together with our students, staff, and faculty, we are committed to making a positive impact in the state and beyond with a shared focus on academic excellence and inclusive achievement. In support of these goals, we especially encourage applications from women, people of color, people with disabilities, veterans, and other candidates from historically excluded backgrounds and underrepresented experiences.

The Biology Department is a relatively large department in the College of Science and Engineering.  The department has approximately 30 faculty whose expertise spans a broad range of biological disciplines, and nine excellent staff that support courses, registration and advising, and departmental operations.  The department teaches courses for the general university requirements, prerequisites for majors, and Biology, Biochemistry, Behavioral Neuroscience, Environmental Science, Kinesiology, and Marine and Coastal Science majors. The department graduates about 120 majors per year.  The Master’s program in the department graduates approximately 10 students per year. 

The department, college, and university are devoted to creating an inclusive and equitable environment and are engaged in the process of addressing institutional racism and other oppressive biases that limit students, staff, and faculty and perpetuate social injustice. Work that supports creating a more equitable experience for students, faculty, and staff is especially valued and encouraged. Below are a few examples of current resources and ongoing efforts.

  • Department:
    • Race & Sex/Gender in the Curriculum Working Group
    • Interdisciplinary Community Office Hours
  • College:
    • STEM Inclusion & Outreach Specialist
    • Community and Student Ambassador Program
  • University:
    • Advancing Excellence and Equity in Science Program (established by an HHMI Inclusive Excellence Grant)
    • Western New Faculty Mentoring Program
    • LGBTQ+ Western Program

The department and college are invested in improving student learning through professional development and educational research.  Our department works closely with the Science, Math, and Technology Education (SMATE) unit in the college.  Through several large grants over the last 10 years, the college has supported professional development to help faculty improve student learning through student-centered teaching practices, and most faculty use student-centered pedagogy in their courses. 

Although a primarily undergraduate institution, the department supports robust research programs. The department especially values research that includes and trains undergraduate and graduate students. The College of Science and Engineering (CSE) maintains a core facility that includes an LC-QTOF for proteomics analysis, a MALDI-TOF for imaging mass spectrometry, and a Raman microscope for label free imaging. CSE also maintains an optical microscopy core facility that includes an NSF-funded fully automated and environmentally controlled Leica Stellaris 8 laser scanning confocal microscope with fluorescence lifetime imaging and a pulsed white light laser for simultaneous imaging of 8 fluorophores anywhere the UV-IR range, a DeltaVision deconvolution widefield imaging system, and a Leica DMi6000 automated widefield imaging system.  The university maintains a Nanocellect WOLF Cell Sorter core facility. Core facilities and shared equipment in the Biology and Chemistry Departments provide access to additional standard and specialized equipment often used in molecular cell biology research. Further information about research infrastructure is available upon request.

About the Position

The Biology Department at WWU invites applications for a tenure-track, assistant professor position in CELL BIOLOGY, beginning FALL 2022. The successful applicant will foster an inclusive and student-centered approach to teaching and research in cell biology. We seek an individual who is enthusiastic about teaching, advising, and establishing a research program that involves undergraduate and Masters-level students.

The successful applicant will teach in the Biology Department. Potential courses to be taught include introductory biology, and upper division courses and laboratories in cell biology and molecular biology.  The successful applicant may also teach graduate-level courses for the program.

Position Responsibilities: 

  • Teach introductory and advanced cellular and molecular biology courses.
  • Contribute to a supportive and collaborative community that values the contributions of students, staff, and faculty.
  • Advise and support undergraduate and graduate (Master’s) students.
  • Participate in service activities for the Biology Department.
  • Fulfill teaching and mentoring responsibilities in ways that provide equitable and inclusive learning environments for a diversity of students.
  • Establish an active research program that can be sustained at a primarily undergraduate institution.
  • Mentor undergraduate and graduate (Master’s) students’ research projects.
  • Seek extramural research funding.
Required Qualifications
  • PhD in biological sciences or a closely related field, completed at the time of application.
  • Postdoctoral experience and strong research record in cellular biology.
  • Demonstrated record of and commitment to cultivating learning environments that are equitable and inclusive of students with diverse social identities and backgrounds.
  • Evidence of the ability to teach introductory biology for majors.
  • Evidence of the ability to develop and teach advanced cellular courses and labs for Biology majors and graduate students. 
  • Evidence of the ability to establish a sustainable research program in cellular biology that involves undergraduate and graduate students.
  • Demonstrated expertise in applying cellular or molecular approaches to understand the development or physiology of multi-cellular organisms..

All employees must comply with our Immunization policies, including COVID vaccination by time of hire and Proof of Rubeola Measles Immunity within 60-days of hire. Please reach out to if you need information regarding medical or religious exemption and applicable accommodations.

Preferred Qualifications
  • Teaching experience using student-centered approaches to foster active learning
  • Evidence of the ability to mentor students in course-based research or skills acquisition.
  • Evidence of experience in community building or support in the sciences.   
  • Evidence of expertise with advanced microscopy techniques and instrumentation.
  • Demonstrated ability to engage in collaborative research.


 Commensurate with experience and qualifications

Bargaining Unit

 United Faculty of Western Washington

Application Instructions

Interested candidates must apply online.

For application information and instructions, go to the WWU Employment website.

Attach (1) a cover letter addressing the required and preferred qualifications, (2) curriculum vitae, (3) a statement of teaching philosophy and interests, including how your experiences (academic or non-academic) have prepared you to fulfill teaching and mentoring responsibilities in ways that provide equitable and inclusive learning environments for all students, (4) a detailed statement of research plans, and (5) a statement of how you plan to cultivate and support an inclusive and equitable environment for students, staff, and faculty at WWU, as informed by your past experiences, expertise, and/or efforts in this vein.

As part of the online application process, you will be asked to provide contact information of three references. Three (3) recommendation letters are required, and these will be automatically requested from the references you provide, via the Western PageUp online application system.

Closing Date Notes Review of applications (including attached materials) begins November 28, 2021 and continues until position is filled. The position starting date will be September 16, 2022.

Western Washington University (WWU) is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to assembling a diverse, broadly trained faculty and staff. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. In compliance with applicable laws and in furtherance of its commitment to fostering an environment that welcomes and embraces diversity, WWU does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex (including pregnancy and parenting status), disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status or genetic information in its programs or activities, including employment, admissions, and educational programs. See WWU’s Policy on Ensuring Equal Opportunity and Prohibiting Discrimination and Retaliation. Inquiries may be directed to the Office of Civil Rights and Title IX Compliance, Title IX and ADA Coordinator, Western Washington University, Old Main 345 (MS 9021), 516 High Street, Bellingham, WA 98225; 360.650.3307 (voice) or 711 (Washington Relay);

Annual Security and Fire Safety Report: This report is provided pursuant to the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act ("The Clery Act"). It includes statistics for the previous three calendar years concerning reported crimes that occurred on Western's campus; in certain off-campus buildings or property owned or controlled by Western; and on public property within, or immediately adjacent to and accessible from, the campus. The report also includes institutional policies concerning campus security, such as policies concerning alcohol and drug use, crime prevention, the reporting of crimes, sexual assault, and other matters. You can obtain a copy of this report in printed or alternate formats by contacting the Office of the Vice President for Enrollment and Student Services at The report can be found at: Annual Security and Fire Safety Report.

WWU is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities upon request. To request this document in an alternate format or to request an accommodation, please contact Human Resources Disability Services, 360.650.3774 or 711 (Washington Relay).

All new employees must comply with the immunization policy and show employment eligibility verification as required by the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Service before beginning work at WWU. A thorough background check will be conducted on all new hires.

Job no: 499111
Advertised: Pacific Daylight Time
Applications close:

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