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Post-doctoral Research Associate - Department of Chemistry

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville, TN

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Job Details


Post-doctoral Research Associate - Department of Chemistry

The Position: A Postdoctoral Research Associate position is open in the research groups of Prof. Brian Long and Prof. Michael Kilbey in the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s (UTK) Department of Chemistry. The researcher will take a leading role in two NSF funded projects focused on the synthesis, depolymerization, functionalization, and characterization of polyolefins.  All candidates must have successfully defended and submitted their dissertation before their employment date.  For more information about the Long and Kilbey Research Groups, please visit our websites at and The search starts immediately and continues until the position is filled.


Major Duties and Responsibilities:

·         Take a leading role in two NSF funded projects focused on the synthesis, depolymerization, functionalization, and characterization of polyolefins.

·         Collaborate with researchers at UTK, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and other Universities involved in these projects.

·         Serve as a mentor to graduate and undergraduate researchers in the Long and Kilbey Research Groups.

·         Present and report research results, as well as publish scientific results in peer-reviewed journals in a timely manner.

·         Ensure compliance with environmental health and safety and quality program requirements.

·         Maintain strong commitment to ethical work practices.


·         Must have successfully defended and submitted dissertation by the hire date, earning a Ph.D. in chemistry or a closely-related field.

·         Must be knowledgeable and experienced in polymer and organic synthesis, polymer science, and polymer characterization.

·         Candidates with a background in organometallic synthesis and catalyst development are preferred.

·         An excellent track record of productive and creative research, as demonstrated by publications in peer reviewed journals.

·         Must have strong verbal and written communication skills.

·         Must be willing to work both independently and collaboratively.

·         Must be self-motivated, ambitious, inquisitive, and work safely.

·         Exhibit the ability to set priorities, multi-task and adapt to ever changing needs with the proven ability to function well in a fast-paced environment.

Salary:  The salary for this position is commensurate with experience and other qualifications.  This is a regular, full-time, 12-month, non-tenure track staff position.  The appointment begins September 1, 2023 and will continue until August 31, 2024, but can be renewed for a second year upon mutual agreement of the PIs and the postdoctoral research associate. 

Application Process:  Please complete the on-line application ( for full consideration. Applicants should include the following in a single, combined PDF document: A cover letter (describing your qualifications, experience, and motivation for this position), curriculum vitae, PhD program transcript, and a list of at least three references (with affiliation, current e-mail address, and phone number/s) in the application file.  A review of all applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

The University and Region:  The University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) is the flagship educational institution in the State of Tennessee, and the Department of Chemistry is its oldest PhD granting Department.  We offer a long-standing tradition of excellence in chemical research and education, dating from 1947, when the department granted UTK’s first-ever PhD degree, to the present. UTK encompasses people from diverse cultures and is positioned in close proximity to Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Y-12 National Security Complex, providing both a multicultural and interdisciplinary research environment.  The city of Knoxville is a hidden gem with a beautiful and walkable downtown, a vibrant music scene, active neighborhoods, diverse restaurants, and a robust offering of outdoor and cultural activities. UTK is also centrally located within easy driving distance of popular destinations, such as Asheville, Nashville, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Atlanta, and the Great Smoky Mountains.

Primary Location:  Knoxville, TN USA

Organization: Arts and Sciences, Department of Chemistry

Schedule: Regular, Full-time, exempt (monthly)

Job: Research Professional
Primary Location: US-Tennessee-knoxville
Organization: Chemistry
Schedule: Full-time
Job Posting: Mar 25, 2024, 2:53:38 PM


Working at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Founded in 1794, the University of Tennessee is one of the nation’s oldest and most storied public universities. Based in Knoxville, Tennessee’s flagship land-grant institution includes the statewide Institute of Agriculture and the Space Institute in Tullahoma. The university embodies excellence in teaching, discovery, scholarship, research, creative activity, outreach, and engagement. Known as the Volunteers, we lead with a spirit of selflessness, empathy, and courage, and strive to be champions for diversity, equity, and inclusion

UT Knoxville is a Research 1 university with 11 academic colleges and more than 900 programs of study. With an enrollment of more than 30,000 students, our academic programs are repeatedly ranked top in their class. The university co-manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the country’s most prominent national lab, driving innovation in advanced manufacturing and materials, national security, and more. We are closely connected with our communities through outreach and extension efforts across Tennessee and through partnerships with non-profits, corporations, and industries—regionally, nationally, and around the globe.

The city of Knoxville is nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. The modern, thriving community is surrounded by gorgeous lakes and hundreds of miles of walking, hiking, and biking trails. Situated along the banks of the Tennessee River, our beautiful features an eclectic music scene, internationally recognized festivals, unique restaurants, and a robust offering of diverse cultural activities. Knoxville is located within a day’s drive of Atlanta, Nashville, Asheville, Charlotte, Louisville, Cincinnati, Memphis, Chicago, and Washington D.C.

Knoxville and the surrounding counties have a population of more than 850,000 people. The region houses many leading corporations and organizations, including Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Pilot/Flying J, the Tennessee Valley Authority, and Regal Cinemas, along with HGTV, Food Network, and other networks owned by Discovery Inc.

As a member of the UT family, you will be surrounded by top-notch faculty, staff, and students from around the world. You will be part of a diverse campus community that is passionate about changing the world and cheering for the Vols on game day.

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