Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Biogeochemist - Illinois Sustainable Technology Center/Prair

Job description

~~Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Biogeochemist

Illinois Sustainable Technology Center/Illinois State Water Survey
Prairie Research Institute, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) and the Illinois State Water Survey (ISWS) are part of the Prairie Research Institute (PRI) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign which is centrally located between Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis. PRI houses five large scientific surveys covering a wide range of expertise including biology, water resources, climate, geology, sustainable technology, and archaeology. PRI's mission is to provide objective, integrated scientific research and service, in cooperation with other academic and research units of the University of Illinois and elsewhere, that allow citizens and decision-makers to make choices that ensure sustainable economic development, enduring environmental quality, and cultural resource preservation for the people, businesses, and governments of Illinois. To learn more about ISTC and ISWS please visit ISTC LINK and ISWS LINK.

ISTC and ISWS are seeking a Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Biogeochemist, to conduct research on the biogeochemistry of inorganics and contaminants - particularly metals, other inorganics, and agricultural and industrial chemicals - in groundwater, surface water, mining effluents, and wastewaters in Illinois and other regions as applicable.

Major Duties and Responsibilities:

Conduct research in both laboratory and field settings in areas of expertise on:

  • Biogeochemistry of inorganics and contaminants - particularly metals, other inorganics, and agricultural and industrial chemicals - in groundwater, surface water, mining effluents, and wastewaters in Illinois and other regions as applicable.
  • Microbial activity in several potential areas, such as in:
  • bioremediation/biodegradation of contaminants
  • water and wastewater treatment applications
  • control of natural geochemical processes, e.g., redox and elemental cycling
  • public health issues associated with water and/or food quality
  • microbial processes for alternative energy production
  • Effectively manage research as principal investigator, including project funds and resources.
  • Supervise, mentor, and lead undergraduate students, graduate students, and hourly workers to achieve success and foster a culture of innovation and high-level performance at both individual and organizational levels. This includes task assignment, scheduling, on-going performance management with coaching and feedback and travel approval.
  • Acquire external funding from government agencies, foundations, private entities, etc. to support research, with some assistance from colleagues,
  • Establish an independent research program.
  • Provide authoritative and current information on the results of research projects for the public, other scientists, industry, and/or governmental agencies, and effectively communicate research results through writing reports, publication in scientific journals, and public speaking.
  • Actively participate in professional societies, journal editorial boards, and/or associations.
  • Establish relationships and collaborate with staff within PRI/UIUC as well as other universities, agencies, and organizations as appropriate.
  • Contribute in the areas of education, outreach, and/or other service to ISTC and ISWS, PRI, the University of Illinois, and the state of Illinois
  • Travel throughout the state to field sites and meetings, workshops, presentations, etc.
  • Keep abreast of developments in this discipline
  • Perform other duties as needed in order to further the mission and goals of PRI

Education Required: Minimum: Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering; Chemistry; Geochemistry, or Environmental Microbiology, or related fields. Alternate degree fields will be considered/accepted depending on the nature and depth of the experience as it relates to this position

Experience Required: A minimum of 2 years of research work experience related to biogeochemistry/microbial ecology. Expertise and experience in field and laboratory data collection, experimental design, and data interpretation including microbial analysis and microscopy. Management/supervisory experience.

Experience Preferred: Three or more years' research work experience related to biogeochemistry/microbial ecology. Research work that focused on multiple areas such as water quality, hazardous waste reduction, wastewater - industrial and municipal, geochemistry, contaminants, groundwater, or microbial ecology.

Training, Licenses or Certifications Required: Valid driver's license for travel to and from field research sites, meetings, conferences, etc..

Knowledge Required: Proven track record of working with collaborators and obtaining project funding (with some assistance of colleagues). Excellent communication skills; demonstrated ability to work independently and as part of a team; excellent interpersonal skills. Effective communication, personal relations, collaboration, organizational, teamwork, and leadership skills. Demonstrated ability to perform effectively in a diverse and fast-pasted work environment consisting of multiple and changing priorities with stringent deadlines, under minimal supervision. Attention to detail, sound judgement, and strong conflict resolution skills. Proficiency in commonly-employed software and databases. Ability to work in inclement weather and less-than ideal or remote locations.

This is a visiting, full-time, academic professional appointment subject to the continued availability of funding and programmatic need. Position may become a regular, non-visiting position at a later date depending on funding and programmatic need. The starting date is negotiable after the closing date. Salary is commensurate upon qualifications and experience.

Please complete your candidate profile at and upload a cover letter, CV/resume, and the names and contact information (including e-mail addresses) for three professional references by March 2, 2018. Interviews may be conducted before the closing date; however, no hiring decision will be made until after the closing date. All requested information must be submitted for your application to be considered.

For further information regarding application procedures, you may contact Hannah Dorsey at (217) 333-4978 or [email protected]. The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer.

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit To learn more about the University's commitment to diversity, please visit

College Name or Administrative Unit: Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research
Category: Academic Professional
Title: Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Biogeochemist - Illinois Sustainable Technology Center/Prairie Research Institute (A1800073)
Open Date: 02/02/2018
Close Date: 03/02/2018
Organization Name: IL Sustainable Technology Ctr





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Job No:
Posted: 2/28/2018
Application Due: 4/24/2018
Work Type: