Assistant Professor of Physics & Astrophysics

University of North Dakota
Grand Forks, ND

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Faculty Jobs
Health & Medical, Medicine, Science & Technology, Physical Sciences
Position Type
Tenured & Tenure-Track
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
Position Information: DescriptionThe Department of Physics and Astrophysics at the University of North Dakota seeks an assistant professor in physics with research interests in Quantum Photonics/Quantum Information Science or a closely related field. This is a 9-month, tenure track position is contingent on availability of funding. The Physics and Astrophysics Department is housed in the College of Arts & Sciences and currently offers a BS, MS, and PhD degrees in Physics and minors in Physics and Astrophysics.

The successful candidate will have an exceptional record of research accomplishments and published peer-reviewed papers. In addition, this candidate must show outstanding promise for establishing a sustainable research program and attracting external research funds. The applicant must have a PhD degree in physics or a closely related field and be strongly committed to teaching at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Experience with interdisciplinary collaborative research and/or teaching is preferred.

Established in 1883, the University of North Dakota is the oldest research university in North Dakota.  It is the state’s flagship university and is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as having high research activity.  Founded with a strong liberal arts foundation, UND has grown into a prominent scientific research university and was recently ranked among the top 100 public and top 25 most innovative universities in the country by U.S. News and World Report and is widely regarded as among the top universities in the American Northern Plains region.  UND offers degrees in more than 225 fields of study with nearly 14,000 students.  It is the home of the state’s only School of Law.  The School of Medicine has major initiatives in rural and public health, and Aerospace is home to one of the first and largest unmanned aerial vehicle programs in the world.

UND is located in Grand Forks, North Dakota, a vibrant college town of over 57,000 people located on the border of North Dakota and Minnesota.  Short commutes, a great public school system, high quality medical facilities, low crime, ample parks and theaters, and a cost of living below that found in large American cities are some of Grand Forks’ advantages.  Ranked as one of the top five Best Small College Towns, and America’s Best Hockey Town, Grand Forks offers stellar quality of life without the metropolitan hassles.

Duties & Responsibilities
    The successful candidate will be expected to establish a nationally recognized research program with significant external funding in the broad area of quantum photonics/quantum information science.Expectation for research also includes alignment with research goals of the UND-US Space Force partnership.The successful applicant will receive a contract with an approximate effort distribution of 25% teaching; 70% research; 5% service for the first 2–3 years.  Teaching responsibilities include graduate and/or undergraduate courses in physics with an anticipated load of two courses per academic year and supervision of graduate and undergraduate research.All faculty are expected to contribute service within the department, college, university, and community. UND and the College of Arts & Sciences value diverse perspectives and seek applicants who are committed to helping students from underrepresented backgrounds succeed. 
Required Competencies
    Excellent written and oral communication skills, including evidence of the ability to teach, inspire, and mentor students.Effective interpersonal skills, including the ability to collaborate effectively with faculty, staff, and students.Ability to work with and engage diverse students and colleagues within and outside the Department of Physics and Astrophysics.Ability to adapt to current methods of teaching, including online delivery.
Minimum Requirements
  • Earned PhD in Physics or a closely related field
  • Successful completion of criminal history records check

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the US and to complete the required employment eligibility verification form upon hire. 

Preferred Qualifications
    Experience in a postdoctoral research position and/or equivalent experienceA proven record of peer-reviewed publicationsRecord of involvement in seeking extramural research fundingTeaching experience at the undergraduate or graduate levelExperience or potential to administer federal grants such as those from the Department of DefensePrevious experience with quantum photonics/quantum information science relevant to space communicationAlignment with national security-related initiative and/or Big Data or Autonomous Systems Grand ChallengesExperience working on multi-disciplinary research teams
Minimum Hiring SalaryCompetitive salary and start-up package.

Work Schedule/Start DatePosition is full-time and benefited.  Dates of initial contract are August 16, 2022 to May 15, 2023. Summer teaching may be available but is neither guaranteed nor required.

To ApplyFor full consideration, applications must be received by November 15, 2021 and include the following materials:

    Cover letterProfessional vita or resuméCopies of all college transcripts, unofficial copies are acceptableA 2–3-page statement of the candidate’s research plans.  The plans may include reference to completed work if appropriate but should be forward looking.A 1-page statement outlining teaching experience, teaching philosophy, and student outreach and mentoring activitiesContact information for three references who can attest to candidate’s qualifications for this position.  

Position is open until filled.

Questions can be directed to the Department Chair, Dr. Kanishka Marasinghe at  [email protected].

Additional Information

To find out why living and working in Greater Grand Forks is way cooler, check out Grand Forks is Cooler.

All information listed in this position announcement will be used by Human Resources, the Hiring Department, and EO/Title IX for screening, interviewing and selection purposes.

Confidentiality of Application Materials

Pursuant to NDCC 44-04-18.27, applications and any records related to the applications that identify an applicant are confidential, except records related to the finalists of the position, which are open to the public after the search committee has identified the top three finalists who will be invited to campus.

EEO Statement

The University of North Dakota is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or other protected characteristic. Women, minorities, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and members of other underrepresented groups are especially encouraged to apply. Applicants are invited to provide information regarding their gender, race and/or ethnicity, veteran’s status and disability status as part of the application process. This information will remain confidential and separate from your application.

Veteran’s Preference

Veterans claiming preference must submit all proof of eligibility by the closing date. Proof of eligibility includes a DD-214 or NGB 22 and if claiming disabled status, a current letter of disability from the VA dated within the last 12 months.

Clery Statement

In compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, the University of North Dakota publishes an Annual Security and Fire Safety Report. The report includes the university’s policies, procedures, and programs concerning safety and security, as well as three years of crime statistics for our campus. As a prospective employee, you are entitled to a copy of this report. The report and statistical data can be found online at You may also request a paper copy of the report from the UND Police Department located at 3851 Campus Road, Grand Forks, ND, 58202.

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