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Research Associate-Fixed Term

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Back to search results Apply now Job no: 641433
Work type: Faculty/Academic Staff
Major Administrative Unit / College: College Of Agriculture And Nat Resources
Department: Plant Soil And Microbial Sciences 40000781
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: East Lansing
Categories: Full Time (90-100%), Fixed Term Academic Staff, Agriculture, Research/Scientific, Non-Union

Working/Functional Title

Research Associate Soil Ecology-Biogeochemistry

Position Summary

The Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences invites applications from outstanding candidates for a fixed term Research Associate position in the area of: Soil Microbial Ecology. This position is funded through the U.S. Department of Energy to PI’s Dr. Lisa Tiemann, ( collaborating with Drs. Sarah Evans, Maren Friesen and James Cole (MMPRNT project website: The project is focused on understanding the linkages between the rhizosphere microbiome and plant transcriptome that control plant C allocation in support of N acquisition. We envision this research associate will focus on linking plant C budget and allocation patterns with soil N-cycling dynamics and rhizosphere metagenomes using previously collected field data and newly generated sequence and high-through-put qPCR data. There is also opportunity for design and implementation of new experiments within the scope of the MMPRNT project.

Responsibilities will include: Molecular work including analysis of amplicon and shot-gun sequence data; DNA and RNA extraction and sample preparation for sequencing and high-throughput quantitative-PCR including validation primer sets output from new primer design software; assisting with field work in Michigan; conducting and/or coordinating biogeochemical analyses; data analysis and manuscript preparation; presentation of results at national and international scientific meetings. In addition, the research associate will assist with lab organization and mentoring graduate and undergraduate students and engage in a stimulating research environment created by multiple researchers working on coordinated aspects of the project.

This is a 12-month fixed term position with potential for renewal subject to performance and continuation of funding.

Required Degree

Doctorate -soil ecology, soil microbiology, soil sc

Minimum Requirements

Applicants must have a Ph.D. in soil ecology, soil microbiology, soil science, biogeochemistry, or a closely related field. The Ph.D. must be completed at the time of employment. 

Desired Qualifications

Preference will be given to those with experience in isotopic and/or molecular methods.

Required Application Materials

Applications must include:

  1. a brief cover letter (no more than 2-pages) that highlights past research accomplishments, how your previous experience will benefit this project and your future research goals;
  2. a curriculum vitae;
  3. names and contact information for three references.

Special Instructions

Applicants must apply through the MSU online system,, posting number 641433.

A start date of May 4, 2020 is preferred, but alternative timelines will be considered and should be noted in the cover letter. All questions about the position should be submitted to Lisa Tiemann via email:

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Review of Applications Begins On



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