Careers at UMass Amherst

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Laboratory Technician II - Light Microscopy

Apply now Job no: 507445
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Institute Applied Life Science
Union: USA/MTA
Categories: Laboratory & Research, Research

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

Assist in day to day operations of the Light Microscopy Facility (LMF) ( by helping researchers with basic aspects of light microscopy data acquisition and imaging analysis.


Essential Functions

  • Provide formal and on-demand training and/or assistance in proper use of basic imaging systems and in the use of image-processing and image-analysis software as needed
  • Develop methods and standard operating procedures
  • Perform monthly preventative maintenance and quality control testing of systems
  • Maintain troubleshoot and perform day-to-day work on laboratory equipment in the LMF to keep it in the best possible order
  • Maintain literature awareness on light microscopy technology and best practices
  • Maintain logs of service requests and utilization
  • Maintain and develop customer relations
  • Prepare monthly utilization reports and coordinate with central administration for billing
  • Write reports and/or papers on completed work
  • Communicate with core directors and customers for sample processing when necessary
  • Perform purchasing, inventory maintenance and communication with vendors
  • Participate in group meetings related to operational services
  • Collaborate in the preparation of research proposals
  • Creating and optimizing procedures and SOP manuals and routine maintenance of general laboratory equipment
  • Other duties as assigned


Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor’s degree in Biology or science related field, or a combination of education and work experience to equal four (4) years.
  • Knowledge of basic fluorescence microscopy.
  • Experience in general laboratory practices including making solutions, organizing materials, ordering supplies and waste disposal.
  • Strong computer and record keeping skills for maintaining an up to date facility database and laboratory notebook.
  • Strong written, verbal and interpersonal customer service skills.
  • Ability to work independently under deadlines with minimal guidance, and to work as a team member.
  • Manual dexterity and laboratory skills consistent with the work being performed.
  • Ability to lift 30 pounds.
  • Initiative and drive.
  • Scientific creativity.
  • Knowledge of general laboratory and biohazard safety.
  • Ability to work independently.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including effective oral and written communication skills.
  • Computer skills (E.g., Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access, etc.).
  • Excellent organization, time management, and record-keeping skills.
  • Ability to prioritize, be flexible and work well with various personalities including core directors, researchers and external collaborators.


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

Experience or interest in basic light microscopy, including sample preparation for microscopy.


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Flexibility to work long hours in order to meet deadlines or in case of troubleshooting, or other pressing issues is a working condition of this position.


Additional Details

Initial appointment for one year; reappointment beyond first year is contingent upon availability of funding and job performance. 


Work Schedule

37.5 hrs/week


Salary Information

Grade: 16


Special Instructions to Applicants

Please submit cover letter, resume, and names and contact information for three professional references. Review of applications to begin 3/15/2021 and will continue until position is filled.


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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