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Current Openings

University Instrument Center Research Associate

Apply now Work type: Permanent Full Time
Location: Bellingham, WA
Categories: College of Science & Engineering

Position Title University Instrument Center Research Associate
About the University Western Washington University, 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 90,000 overlooking Bellingham Bay, the San Juan Islands and the North Cascades Mountain range. The city lies 90 miles north of Seattle and 60 miles south of Vancouver, British Columbia. Western is the highest-ranking public, master's-granting university in the Pacific Northwest, according to the 2019 U.S. News & World Report rankings.
About the Department

Scientific Technical Services supports research, scholarship and teaching by providing access to advanced multi-user scientific instrumentation, machine and electronics shops, and equipment design, fabrication and repair services. Through its core facilities, our department helps Western researchers accelerate the discovery of new knowledge, partners with instructors to teach graduate and undergraduate laboratory classes, and provides regional industry access to specialized equipment.

Scientific Technical Services (STS) supports Western's mission, which states that together with our students, staff, and faculty, we are committed to making a positive impact in the state and the world with a shared focus on academic excellence and inclusive achievement. We encourage applications from women, people of color, people with disabilities, veterans, and other candidates from underrepresented backgrounds and with diverse experiences interested in this opportunity.
About the Position

This is a full time 12-month staff position at the University Instrument Center (UIC), which is part of Scientific Technical Services (STS). The Research Associate I will provide training for the use of scientific instrumentation, supervise users of UIC equipment, perform analyses of research and class samples for faculty, students and staff, assist with classroom and laboratory demonstrations, maintain UIC equipment, and provide technical and scientific expertise in the coordination of projects related to research and instructional courses. The Research Associate I will report to the STS Director.

Typical duties include: 

  • Oversee, train, and assist users in the operation of LC-QTOF-MS, MALDI-TOF-MS, and related instrumentation, including sample preparation, analysis, data processing and interpretation, and preparation of technical reports.
  • Independently or collaboratively assist users in the analysis and interpretation of their experimental data.
  • Independently or collaboratively develop new methods of analysis to meet research and teaching needs. 
  • Using expert knowledge, provide advice and recommendations to users about best practices and trouble-shooting. 
  • Assist with creating, updating, and demonstrating standard operating procedures. 
  • Maintain and operate assigned UIC instrumentation. 
  • Assist in the operation of other STS instrumentation as necessary.
  • Maintain a safe laboratory environment. 
  • Independently or collaboratively supervise student workers and/or graduate teaching assistants in the operation of assigned instruments. 
  • Ensure UIC equipment is clean, well-organized, and in excellent operating condition. 
  • Assist UIC staff with the purchase of chemicals and consumables. Handle and dispose of chemical waste.
  • Stay current on the latest technical developments in areas related to assigned UIC instrumentation and services. 
  • Prepare reagents for instrument calibration and check standards. 
  • Assist with the selection and purchase of equipment.
Required Qualifications
  • Bachelor's Degree in a science or technical discipline AND two years of work experience as a research/laboratory technician OR equivalent education/experience.
  • Experience with chromatography and mass spectrometry instrumentation.
  • Demonstrated commitment to cultivating a work environment that is equitable and inclusive of faculty, staff, and students from diverse cultural backgrounds and social identities.
  • Commitment to provide the highest quality service and work collaboratively with students, faculty, staff, and external partners.
  • Ability to work independently under general supervision.
  • Strong record of effective teamwork and collaboration.
  • Strong problem solving and organizational skills.
  • Proficiency with word processing, spreadsheet, and instrument software.
  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills.
Preferred Qualifications
  • An advanced degree in a science or technical discipline.
  • Experience with specialized scientific instrumentation and analysis (e.g., high-resolution mass spectrometry, proteomics, metabolomics, gas chromatography, liquid chromatography, and advanced software data analysis tools).
  • Experience creating laboratory protocols, support documentation and training materials.
  • Experience mentoring or supervising undergraduate and/or graduate students.
  • Other supervisory experience.
Salary New hires typically start at $42,710- $49,839, commensurate with experience.  Includes an excellent benefits package.
Special Conditions 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.
Application Instructions

A cover letter and resume are required and should address your experience related to the position responsibilities and the required and preferred qualifications, including your demonstrated commitment to cultivating a work environment that is equitable and inclusive of faculty, staff, and students from diverse cultural backgrounds and social identities .

Please include the names and contact information of three professional references.

Closing Date Notes Application review begins January 10, 2022; position is open until filled.

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);

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).

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.

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: 499205
Advertised: Pacific Standard Time
Applications close:

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