Faculty jobs outside academia

10/10/2017 4:58:25 PM

Last week’s post focused on faculty positions within academia. But if you’re thinking about leaving the ivory tower, you don’t have to go very far. There are a number of nonprofit research centers that also hire for tenure-track and faculty-level positions. Often these research institutions run their own undergraduate, graduate and/or clinical education programs, and, thus, there are opportunities to still teach and interact with students. And in many cases, these institutes have affiliations with local universities, so you can share resources and collaborate as part of a broader academic community.  

Many of the job boards and search tips shared last week are still applicable to find these types of positions. Additionally, I discovered a few additional job boards through the Higher Education Recruitment Consortium and Association of Independent Research Institutes. These organizations include members within government agencies, research hospitals and independent research institutes. (Pro tip: Both the HERC and AIRI maintain member lists, which can help you identify nonacademic institutions to follow on social media, sign up for job alerts, etc.) There are many openings right now, with application deadlines fast approaching, so I wanted to share some of these opportunities with you.

  • The National Institutes of Health is recruiting for three tenure-track/tenure-eligible investigator positions within the Center for Cancer Research at the National Cancer Institute near Washington, D.C. Areas of research for each position include: 1) HIV-related malignancies or viral oncogenesis; 2) RNA biology; and 3) chromosome or chromatin biology, RNA biology and/or cell biology as it relates to cancer research. Review of applications begins Oct. 15 or Nov. 1, depending on the position. You can learn more about the tenure process within the Intramural Research Program or view a video about tenure-track opportunities at the NIH on its website. H/t to Barbara Gordon (ASBMB executive director) for forwarding these job postings. 
  • The Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, Calif., is hiring faculty members at the associate- or full-professor levels across a breadth of disciplines, including neuroscience, cancer biology, plant science, aging, physiology and metabolism, synthetic biology, immunology and pathogenesis, integrative biology, gene regulation and human genetics. The job posting does not specify the number of open positions. Applications will be accepted through Nov. 30. In addition to research, the Salk Institute trains graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and is affiliated with the University of California, San Diego. You can read more about academic training, research areas or the history of the institute on Salk’s website. 
  • The J. Craig Venter Institute has openings for assistant professors within the departments of immunology and microbiology and informatics, and the postings indicate several positions will be filled per area. Within immunology and microbiology, the focus is on the application of -omics and bioinformatic techniques to advance human-microbiome research. For informatics, candidates are sought with experience in machine learning, modeling, systems biology, biostatistics and/or genome analysis and visualization. Researchers who combine bench experiments with informatics are encouraged to apply. Positions are at the La Jolla, Calif., or Rockville, Md., locations, and review of applications begins Nov. 1. JCVI also hosts student internships and professional-development courses that faculty are able to participate in. You can read more about the history of the JCVI and its diverse research areas on the institute’s website.
  • Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y., is searching for candidates to fill multiple openings for assistant professors in the research areas of cancer biology, quantitative biology and theoretical neuroscience. One of the postings indicates several positions are available within the Simons Center for Quantitative Biology with a focus on dry-lab research in a number of areas, including transcription regulation, single-cell analyses and cancer genomics. Applications will be reviewed beginning Oct. 15 or Nov. 1, depending on the position. CSHL also is home to the Watson School of Biological Sciences, which trains Ph.D. students, in addition to other science policy and outreach initiatives. You can read more facts and figures about the institution on its website.
  • The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Wash., lists a number of open faculty positions on its careers site. The most recent posting is for a laboratory-based faculty position at any rank within the Pathogen Associated Malignancies Integrated Research Center. The researcher will focus on the biological mechanisms of pathogenesis, host immune responses or development of vaccines and therapies. Applications received by Nov. 30 will receive full consideration. The research center also hosts a number of graduate and student internship programs. You can read more about education and training or the mission of Fred Hutch, as it is known for short, on its website.
  • The Mayo Clinic has numerous faculty openings at its locations in Scottsdale, Ariz., Jacksonville, Fla., and Rochester, Minn. The most recent postings are for faculty within the research areas of cardiovascular diseases, neurobiology of disease and aging, cancer immunotherapy and polycystic kidney disease. No application deadline is provided, but the recruiter for scientist positions is listed in the postings as Adriana Semko ( Additionally, the Mayo Clinic of College of Medicine and Science offers an extensive array of undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate medical and scientific education programs. You can learn about education programs and the mission and values of the Mayo Clinic on its website.
  • The Whitehead Institute, in conjunction with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Department of Biology, located in Cambridge, Mass., is hiring for two tenure-track assistant professors in the areas of fundamental biology and mammalian biology. Review of applications will begin Oct. 15. All faculty members also are professors at MIT. You can check out more about ongoing research and the history of the institute on its website.
  Donna Kridelbaugh is the ASBMB careers blogger. Connect with her on Twitter (@science_mentor) or at her website (