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Staff Scientist

J. Craig Venter Institute
Rockville, Maryland
Salary commensurate with experience.
Closing date
May 16, 2021

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  JCVI is a premier, not-for-profit genomics research institute with more than 200 scientists and staff in Rockville, Maryland and La Jolla, California. JCVI continues to lead the world in genomic science with new programs to improve understanding in the areas of genomic medicine, infectious disease, microbial and environmental genomics, synthetic biology, and informatics. JCVI consists of a team of dedicated scientists and support staff that all work together to reach the goals of the Institute. YOU can be JCVI’s next great hire!

Position Summary

We seek a Staff Scientist to work on a project funded by the Prebys Conrad Foundation to identify and characterize blood and salivary immune markers in COVID-19 disease. The scientist will investigate current samples and prospective samples for protein content and multi-omics datasets, specifically searching immune markers. The successful candidate will report to Dr. Marcelo Freire, Associate Professor at La Jolla, California. Candidates should also have demonstrated interest and experience in immunology, proteomics, and bioinformatics research. 

Staff scientists are responsible for making major scientific contributions to a Professor’s research projects. As a member of a scientific team led by one or more Professors, Staff Scientists are also expected to help develop new scientific projects by assisting with the preparation of proposals that seek resources to support new or ongoing projects.  Staff scientists are eligible but not required to be Professors at the JCVI.

Essential Functions

  • Provides research and technical support to one or more Professors by helping to lead research program(s) and by effectively communicating new technical/scientific approaches and resources.
  • May manage large-scale genome sequencing and functional analysis programs at the request of JCVI Professor(s).  These programs may include substantial participation by both JCVI and external researchers.
  • Makes contributions to scientific literature, conferences or otherwise plays a key role in the advancement of the research project(s) and/or Institute goals.
  • May be responsible for directing a core technical facility in which case they would be expected to make substantial contributions towards improvement of technology platforms and the development of new technology platforms.
  • Plans, designs and executes scientific experiments in a self-directed manner; analyzes and interprets experimental results. Consistently produces quality/quantity reproducible scientific data and analyses. Interacts with project team and peers outside the team.  
  • Attends scientific meetings and trainings to keep abreast of latest scientific findings and developments. 
  • Publishes results of scientific work in peer-reviewed journals or equivalent on a consistent basis.
  • Attends and participates in national and international scientific meetings.
  • Participates in JCVI laboratory meetings and scientific working groups.
  • Responsible for the integration of environmental, health and safety protocols into work activities.  This includes reporting potential hazards and when necessary helping to implement solutions to ensure safety and respect for the environment.
  • Supervises staff to provide guidance and counseling for effective employee relations to include performance appraisals, regular performance feedback and direction. 
  • Performs other related duties as assigned.
  • Strictly adheres to all documented JCVI policies and procedures to include carrying out all functions required of Institute employees (i.e. completion of timesheets in an accurate and timely manner).


  • Bachelor’s degree in relevant scientific discipline such as Immunology, Proteomics, Molecular Biology, Plant Biology, Biochemistry, Pharmacology, Neuroscience, Genetics, or Computational Biology plus 6 years of post-graduate research experience performing duties similar to the above; Ph.D. And/or post-doctoral training in immunology or relevant and 2 years of research experience required. 
  • Expertise in biofluids, proteomics, flow cytometry will be preferred.
  • Possesses highly specific or sophisticated skills and exhibits expert knowledge essential to the work of the laboratory, project or department.
  • Ability to effectively supervise scientific, research and/or technical staff.
  • Demonstrated initiative by introducing or informing themselves or others of new approaches, technologies and/or scientific resources at JCVI and outside of JCVI.
  • Demonstrated contribution to a project(s) and/or paper(s).
  • Development of area of expertise or possesses expert knowledge of scientific principle/thought.
  • Demonstrated development of independence and initiative in research. 
  • Ability to conduct investigations in relevant scientific areas, formulate experimental hypotheses, and analyze and interpret scientific data.
  • Strong computer aptitude, including experience with word processing and/or spreadsheet software and/or data analysis and database software.
  • Responsible for integrating environmental, health and safety protocols into work activities, reporting potential hazards, and helping to implement solutions to ensure safety and respect for the environment.
  • Familiarity with standard laboratory safety procedures. 
  • Excellent organization and time management skills.
  • Flexibility to handle a variety of tasks and shift priorities simultaneously.
  • Strong interpersonal skills; ability to effectively interact with all levels of staff and external contacts; ability to work as an effective team member.
  • Cooperative and service-oriented attitude; must be able to work under pressure and maintain a professional demeanor.
  • Ability to use sound judgment to effectively solve problems within the scope of the position.
  • High level of initiative and ability to work with minimum supervision.
  • High level of discretion for confidential work and information; ability to appropriately handle critical information and sensitive situations.
  • Superior verbal and written communications skills.

Work Environment

 The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those a teammate encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Moderate noise (i.e. business office with computers, phone, and printers, light traffic)
  • Ability to work in a confined area.
  • Ability to sit at a computer terminal for an extended period of time.
  • Ability to stand and/or sit for an extended period of time while working in the lab.

Physical Demands

 The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to, stand, sit; talk, hear, and use hands and fingers to operate a computer and telephone keyboard reach, stoop kneel to install computer equipment
  • Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision requirements due to computer and lab work
  • Light to moderate lifting is required

J. Craig Venter Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, or any other legally protected characteristic or status.

To apply, please visit our website:

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