Faculty position Neurobiology/Neuroethology, St Olaf College

Giovanna Guerrero-Medina's picture



Thursday, 21 September 2017


The Biology1 Department and Neuroscience Program2 at St. Olaf College invite applications for a tenure track position at the assistant professor level to start August 15, 2017.  In a multi-year time-span, teaching responsibilities will include Neuroethology, Cellular/Molecular Neuroscience, Animal Behavior and other relevant classes that could include cell biology, organismal biology, ecology, genetics, endocrinology, etc.  The successful candidate will have research expertise in the neural basis of behavior.

Position Description:

Applicants should show potential for excellence in teaching in a liberal arts setting and for developing a productive research program that routinely includes undergraduate collaborators during the summer and academic year and has the potential to attract external funding. As reflected in the college mission statement, St. Olaf College is an inclusive community that actively seeks individuals with diverse backgrounds and beliefs.

We particularly value a candidate who has experience or interest in working with a diverse student population. Candidates must have earned their Ph.D. by August 15, 2017, and we strongly prefer candidates who have postdoctoral or professional experience.  Review of completed applications will begin September 21, 2016, and continue until the position is filled.

The St. Olaf Biology Department and Neuroscience Program are housed in the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, which includes the departments of Chemistry, Psychology, Physics, and MSCS (Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science). Members of this Faculty are known for their creative teamwork and individual excellence as teachers, scholars and campus leaders. More than 40% of St. Olaf students graduate with at least one major in the natural sciences. The Biology major graduates about 110 majors each year, with many continuing their education in graduate or professional programs. The Neuroscience Program is an interdisciplinary program with research-active faculty from the Biology, Psychology, and Physics Departments. More than 20 students graduate each year with a neuroscience concentration. St. Olaf students routinely travel with faculty to present their research at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience. Biology and Neuroscience Faculty participate in a variety of other campus-wide programs, including Environmental Studies, the Science Conversation, the McNair Scholarship Program and other TRiO programs4, the First-Year writing program, and various international and off-campus programs5.

The Neurobiologist/Neuroethologist will have office and research space in Regents Hall of Natural Science6, a $63 million, 200k sq. foot LEED Platinum building designed to promote interdisciplinary teaching and research that opened in the fall of 2008. This collaborative working environment includes teaching and research support spaces such as a microscope facility, dedicated histology space, secure animal facility, aquatic room, tissue culture, small animal surgical suite. Shared instrumentation includes a confocal microscope, an sCMOS camera and upright microscope for high speed fluorescence imaging, a scanning electron microscope, a LiCor imaging system, Beowulf clusters for high-speed parallel computing, a real-time PCR cycler, a MALDI-TOF mass spectrometer, and a full range of centrifuges and ultracentrifuges.  The teaching laboratories are generously equipped.  For example, the cellular/molecular neuroscience course has eight electrophysiology rigs each of which includes a stereoscope, intracellular and extracellular amplifiers from AM-Systems, ADInstruments data acquisition hardware and software, LEDs and drivers for optogenetics, and micromanipulators.  These rigs allow students to perform a variety of electrophysiological experiments.

St. Olaf has a vibrant summer research program that has been funded over the years by a combination of individual, collaborative, and program grants from external sources including NIH and NSF, in addition to institutional support. Student and faculty research continues throughout the academic year. 

To apply, please register at https://stolaf.hiretouch.com/faculty-postings and have the following submitted online:

  • a cover letter that summarizes your interest in this position, how you plan to contribute to the position as described, and why St. Olaf seems a good choice for you
  • a Curriculum Vitae
  • a summary (approximately 2 pages) of your teaching philosophy, including teaching interests, pedagogical approaches and how you will promote inclusivity in the classroom
  • a detailed description of your research interests and plans (approximately 3-5 pages plus references), emphasizing the suitability of your research for undergraduate researchers and potential funding opportunities. You should assume the availability of startup funds in the first two years sufficient to enable the development of a project with the potential to attract external funding
  • names and email addresses of three professional references who can speak to your abilities in classroom teaching and scholarship.

Only the materials listed above will be considered at this time. Other materials (such as undergraduate and graduate transcripts and three letters of reference) may be solicited at a later date. Questions about the position, department or college may be directed to:

Prof. Kevin Crisp, Chair of the Neurobiologist/Neuroethologist search committee

1520 St. Olaf Ave

Northfield, MN 55057-1098

Email: biologyTT2017@stolaf.edu

Application review will begin Sept. 21, 2016 and will continue until the position is filled. Candidates who are invited to campus for an interview will also be asked to submit a written 1-2 page reflection of the college mission statement3.

St. Olaf is located in Northfield, Minnesota7, a historic river town about 45 minutes south of the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul and an hour north of Rochester, home to The Mayo Clinic. Many of the faculty and students take advantage of a variety of cultural opportunities in these urban centers. Faculty typically choose to live either in the metropolitan Twin Cities or in the Northfield area.  Members of the St. Olaf faculty enjoy productive research collaborations with major research centers at the University of Minnesota, The Mayo Clinic, and other national and international institutions.

Founded in 1874, St. Olaf College is a residential, coeducational liberal arts college with approximately 3,000 students and 800 faculty and staff employees. It is located in Northfield, Minnesota, about 45 minutes from Minneapolis and St. Paul with their rich and diverse cultural resources. The college offers an academically rigorous, nationally ranked liberal arts education that fosters the development of the whole person in mind, body, and spirit and emphasizes a global perspective. 

A liberal arts college of the Lutheran Church (ELCA), St. Olaf College is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and actively seeks diversity in students, faculty, and staff. The college is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity of our community through their teaching, research, and/or service.



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