Careers at UMass Amherst

Laboratory Technician I

Apply now Job no: 521583
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Dean - College of Nursing
Union: USA/MTA
Categories: Laboratory & Research, College of Nursing

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

The Laboratory Technician, under the supervision of the Principal Investigator, is responsible for maintaining and managing, in good order, the technology, supplies, equipment, and activities (laboratory experiments, data analyses, and interacting with research participants) of a Research Lab on the Amherst Campus. This is a full-time, temporary position with option to renew based on performance and funding.


Essential Functions

  • Process incoming milk/biological samples.
  • Conduct experiments and analyses with human milk (DNA, cytokines, cellular analysis, etc.).
  • Assist with manuscript development and writing (including literature searches).
  • Maintain Environmental Health & Safety compliance and a clean and organized laboratory.
  • Maintain laboratory ongoing needs (e.g. maintain biological sample storage backup with weekly Liquid Nitrogen tank changes, cell culture support).
  • Maintains inventory control of research supplies and places orders as needed. Maintains and provides security for supplies, materials, and equipment in the laboratories. Stores, discards, and rotates supplies and materials according to standard procedures and OSHA guidelines. Maintains Teams folder of all Materials Safety Data Sheets for the Lab.
  • Ensures that the labs are maintained with cleanliness, updated equipment and supplies, and all lab equipment is in good working order – includes keeping track of maintenance records.
  • Prepares all paperwork, forms, and correspondence necessary to recruit, train, and supervise students assigned to the labs each semester (includes training/supervising once students are in the lab).
  • Assists faculty with setup and other laboratory needs.


Other Functions

  • Prepares routine correspondence, forms.
  • Order supplies.
  • Create and maintain a sample archive database.
  • Participant recruitment and management.
  • Organizing and scheduling biological sample collection dates/times.
  • Sample collection and transportation (MA and central/northern CT areas).
  • Running analyses, data management.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.


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

  • Bachelor of Science degree with at least one (1) year of full-time (or equivalent part-time) research lab experience.
  • Sterile cell culture techniques.
  • Basic cell and molecular laboratory skill.
  • Must have completed CITI training certification (Biomedical).
  • Familiarity with REDCap.
  • Capacity, skill, and willingness to engage and support lab participants.
  • Ability to work independently and with considerable initiative. Excellent time management and organizational skills.
  • Possesses a high level of knowledge and understanding of the English language, including (but not limited to) spelling, word meaning and usage, punctuation, and proper grammar; able to read, write and comprehend English.
  • Ability to understand and adhere to rules regulations, policies, and practices.
  • Ability to multitask and prioritize daily tasks and complex projects with strict time deadlines in a setting which can include many constant and intermittent interruptions.
  • Able to seek out and utilize available resources.
  • Excellent customer service skills (both internal and external), including oral and written communication.
  • Ability to maintain harmonious working relationships and to work with others in a diverse ethnic and professional community.
  • Standard office computer skills, word processing, spreadsheets, databases, OneDrive.
  • Knowledge of general office practices, including e-mail, internet, and familiarity with standard office machines (e.g., Fax, Copier, Scanner), with the ability to quickly learn new software/technology.
  • Knowledge of basic laboratory equipment and recordkeeping procedures.
  • Ability to work effectively and collaboratively with nursing faculty, staff, and students.
  • Maintain the confidentiality of information.
  • Communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
  • Take initiative and work independently.
  • Meet schedules and deadlines.
  • Give clear and concise instructions.
  • Keep accurate and precise records.
  • Learn the characteristics of new equipment and update skills to adapt to changing technology.


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

  • Assist with animal experiments (mouse).


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

  • Able to lift and move boxes, office supplies, lab equipment, etc. weighing up to 50 pounds.


Additional Details

  • In the Briere Human Milk Research Laboratory, our goal is to improve the lives of premature and ill newborns by learning more about human milk, recognizing that it is a complex biological fluid filled with ever-changing components.
  • The Briere Human Milk Research lab investigates bioactive components of human milk to expand the knowledge of human milk, infant health, and development. Our research is focused on the protection and promotion of breastfeeding by learning more about what is in human milk, and how these components change based on biologic and environmental factors. We are focused primarily on preterm infants and ensuring that these infants receive human milk at its “best”.


Work Schedule

  • 37.5 hours per week – may include occasional evening or weekend hours depending on ongoing experiments, but most often will be Monday-Friday.
  • Two (2) year appointment. 


Salary Information

Grade 14


Special Instructions to Applicants

Please complete online application, submit a resume and provide contact information for three (3) references along with a cover letter explaining how your qualifications align with this role.


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, caste, creed, sex, age, marital status, national origin, disability, political belief or affiliation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related condition(s), veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, genetic information, natural and protective hairstyle and any other class of individuals protected from discrimination 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 UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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Applications close: Eastern Daylight Time

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