Biology Laboratory Manager - Essential

Job description

Category:: Other
Locations:: Oakland, CA
Posted:: Jul 22, 2020
Closes:: Open Until Filled
Type:: Full-time Non-Exempt

About Mills College:

Located in Oakland, California, in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, Mills College is a liberal arts college for women and gender non-binary students, with graduate programs for all genders. Consistently ranked one of the top master's universities and one of the best value colleges in the West by U.S. News & World Report, Mills also has been named one of the Best Colleges in the nation by The Princeton Review. The Mills experience is distinguished by small, interactive classes, one-on-one attention from exceptional faculty, a culture of creative experimentation, and cutting-edge interdisciplinary learning opportunities which empower students to make a statement in their careers and communities. As one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country, we have a strong record of academic success with first-generation students, students of color, Latinx students, LGBTQ students, and other underrepresented students. Mills College has recently become a Hispanic Serving Institution. Applicants with expertise and experience in supporting and promoting success for Latina/o students are encouraged to apply.

Mills College encourages diversity in hiring and particularly welcomes applications and nominations from women, gender non-binary individuals, and minorities. Mills College seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitment to equity, inclusion, and social justice and our desire to maintain the excellence of our faculty. In so doing, we offer our students not only the opportunity to learn about varied disciplines but to engage with diverse perspectives and ways of knowing and learning. For more information, please visit

Job Description:

Organizational Relationships
Reports To: Department Head, Biology
Dotted-Line Reports To: Special Assistant to the Provost
Supervises: Student Lab Assistants

Summary of Position
Under the direction of the Biology Department Head, the Lab Manager oversees the preparation of technical materials for biology laboratory classes including pre-nursing classes, Barrett and Hellman summer programs, and yearly collaborations with local Oakland schools; the incumbent selects, purchases and receives supplies; coordinates maintenance of laboratory instrumentation and computers; monitors material and equipment maintenance budgets; maintains stockroom and laboratories; and oversees research student activities and assures all researchers are properly trained in lab safety, standard operating procedures, and specific equipment requirements.

Essential Job Functions

Laboratory Procedures for Curricular and Research Support:

  • Oversee the preparation of technical materials for biology laboratory classes; prepare reagents utilizing proper laboratory technique; calculate amounts of chemicals needed; set up labs, computers and instruments as appropriate.
  • Coordinate use of lab rooms, research spaces and equipment.
  • Determine materials and supplies needed; conduct inventories and determine need for supplies; contact vendors to obtain prices and availability; complete purchase orders and order supplies, chemicals and equipment as needed, receive supplies and process invoices.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Laboratory Safety and Health:

  • Store toxic materials according to established guidelines; maintain safety equipment.
  • Review lab protocols with faculty and students to determine generation of hazardous wastes; segregate and prepare hazardous waste including toxic or bacteriological materials for disposal according to established guidelines.
  • Train staff and students in lab safety, SOP, lab techniques and general lab protocols
  • Maintain safe work conditions and comply with established safety policies, practices, procedures and requirements.
  • Keep chemical inventory and MSDSs up to date and coordinate inventory hazard information and disposal of wastes with the facilities department.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Administrative Procedures:

  • Review and monitor assigned budgets; assure proper accounts are charged; prepare computerized budget reconciliation and reports as assigned.
  • Negotiate and oversee service contracts
  • Assist in grant writing, track grant fund usage and prepare final reports.
  • Establish and maintain effective and productive working relationships within a diverse and multicultural environment.
  • Establish and maintain an effective customer service orientation towards all persons contacted during the course of job performance.
  • Other duties as assigned.


Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Knowledge of:

  • Applicable scientific areas in biology and other related subject areas.
  • Laboratory terminology and laboratory techniques including PCR, ELISA, DNA & plasmid extraction, Western blotting, electrophoresis of agarose & acrylamide gels.
  • Sterile techniques, bacterial, yeast, and fungal culture techniques.
  • Making biological solutions, media and agar plates.
  • Laboratory equipment and instrumentation use and repair.
  • Regulations related to hazardous waste and safe usage and disposal of toxic substances.
  • Basic computer skills and operation of specified software applicable to the function to enter data, maintain records and generate reports.
  • Budget monitoring and control.
  • Oral and written communication skills.
  • Proper methods of storing equipment, materials and supplies.
  • Interpersonal skills using tact, patience and courtesy.
  • Safety policies, practices, procedures and requirements of the department and College.


  • Perform chemical calculations required for reagent preparation; prepare reagents.
  • Plan and coordinate instrument and supply usage.
  • Understand and explain laboratory techniques, procedures and use of instruments to students.
  • Make repairs to laboratory equipment.
  • Train students and employees in safe laboratory practices.


  • Ability to plan, prioritize, organize and anticipate the needs of assigned laboratory projects.
  • Observe and enforce health and safety regulations including regulations related to hazardous waste disposal.
  • Communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
  • Establish and maintain effective and productive working relationships within a diverse and multicultural environment.
  • Establish and maintain an effective customer service orientation towards all persons contacted during the course of job performance.
  • Excellent organizational skills, ability to multitask, manage time, set priorities to meet deadlines, and attend to details.
  • Well-developed interpersonal skills and professional demeanor and maturity, with the ability to work effectively across all levels of the organization, even under stressful conditions.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills at the standard expected in an academic environment.

Requirements: Physical, Mental and Environmental Demands


  • Laboratory environment.
  • Regular exposure to volatile and nonvolatile chemicals, biologics and hazardous/toxic materials.

Physical Abilities:

  • Seeing to prepare chemicals and to operate instrumentation.
  • Hearing and speaking re: Hazardous/toxic materials/toxic waste/ Bacterial contamination to exchange information.
  • Dexterity of hands and fingers to operate a computer keyboard, various laboratory equipment and to handle chemicals safely.
  • Lifting heavy objects up to 50lbs.
  • Sitting or standing for extended periods of time.
  • Bending at the waist, kneeling or crouching.
  • Reaching overhead, above the shoulders and horizontally.


  • Hazardous/toxic materials/toxic waste.
  • Bacterial contamination.

This position description is not intended to contain a comprehensive list of activities, duties, or responsibilities. Additional duties may be assigned based on business operational needs.

Education and Training

  • Bachelor's Degree in an applicable Lab Science field with coursework in the appropriate discipline and a minimum of three years' practical laboratory experience.

Additional Information:

This is a full-time, non-exempt position. Hourly wage is $27.69 per hour, and includes an excellent benefits package including medical/dental/vision/life/LTD insurance, 403(b) retirement plan with college-matching after 6 month qualifying period, 10 days of vacation for year one, 15 days of vacation for years 2-10, and 22 days of vacation years 10+ plus, 12 sick days and 17 paid holidays (subject to annual review). Staff members also receive free admission to campus events, use of the pool, fitness center, and tennis courts. Tuition remission is also available after an introductory period. Voluntary benefits include: pet insurance, long-term care insurance, legal-assistance insurance, cellular provider discounts and computer hardware discounts.

Mills College does not permit discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, race, religious creed, color, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical condition, marital status, age, sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity. For more information on Mills' non-discrimination policy, please go to

All positions are subject to a background check. Prior to the first date of employment, an applicant's background check must be cleared.

Application Instructions:

Click the "Apply Now" button below and follow instructions to submit the following documents:

  • Employee Application
  • Resume
  • Cover Letter Specifying Job Title and
  • Contact Information for 3 References

Please note that you can only upload 6 "Other" documents. You can consolidate multiple pages/documents into one file upload. The file size limit for each upload is 10Mb.

Review of applicants will begin immediately; applications will be accepted until the position is filled.




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Job No:
Posted: 7/24/2020
Application Due: 10/24/2020
Work Type: