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Post-Doctoral Scientist
George Washington University in Washington, Pennsylvania
Date Posted 04/28/2021
Admin-Other Administrative Positions
Employment Type FullTime
Application Deadline Open until filled

Posting Details

Job Description Summary:

A Post-Doctoral Scientist position for highly motivated candidates is available in the laboratory of Dr. Jimmy Saw to investigate microbial diversity, ecology, and evolution in extreme habitats. Dr. Saw is an Assistant Professor in Microbiology at the Department of Biological Sciences at The George Washington University in Washington, DC. More information about his research can be found at The Saw lab utilizes both culture dependent and independent methods to characterize microbial communities. Metagenomics is one of the main techniques used in the lab to uncover previously uncharacterized microbial lineages from various environments. The lab also uses phylogenomic approaches to reconstruct evolutionary relationships among microbial groups. We are interested in characterizing microbial lineages that may have first innovated some biological processes or functions early in their evolution.

This position will investigate previously uncharacterized and largely unknown microbial lineages (both Archaea and Bacteria) from extreme environments such as hot springs, steam vents and fumaroles, and other related geothermal features. The postdoc will work on enriching and cultivating novel microbial lineages based on metabolic pathway predictions from genomic and metagenomic sequence data. The successful candidate will participate in field work, data collection, generation, and analysis. There will also be opportunities for them to mentor undergraduate and graduate students in the lab and participate in outreach activities. The candidate will also have freedom to formulate and develop their own research projects in addition to the one specified in this description and will be able to write grant proposals in collaboration with the PI.


  • Performing laboratory experiments such as DNA extraction from environmental samples, enrichment and cultivation of specific microbial lineages of interest, microscopy, preparation of buffers and reagents, recording of experimental results, observation and analysis of experimental data.
  • Manuscript and grant writing.
  • Supervision and training of junior lab members and laboratory management.
  • Performs other work related duties as assigned. The omission of specific duties does not preclude the supervisor from assigning duties that are logically related to the position.
Minimum Qualifications:

Qualified candidates will hold a Doctoral degree in a related discipline. Degree must be conferred by the start date of the position.

Additional Required Licenses/Certifications/Posting Specific Minimum Qualifications:

Candidate to hold a doctoral degree in microbiology, bioinformatics, or a related discipline. Degree must be conferred by the start date of the position.

Preferred Qualifications:

- Has a strong background in microbial metabolism and also experienced in or knowledgeable in both “wet lab” experimental skills and “dry lab” or computational skills is highly desired. Some of the desirable “wet lab” skills crucial for this position are: DNA extraction from environmental samples such as soil or sediments, molecular biology skills, and experience with enrichment and isolation of microbes.

- Desirable computational skills important for this position are: familiarity with the command line environment, Unix, Bash, etc, and tools to characterize microbial genomes and populations (such as metaSPAdes, Metabat2, and DADA2).

- Experience working with 16S rRNA amplicon and metagenomic data.

- Knowledge of bioinformatic tools such as DADA2, Qiime, metaSPAdes, Metabat2, etc.

- Experience in R and/or Python to analyze microbial genomic data.

- Previous experience in working with extremophilic or related habitats.

- Highly motivated and independent, with the ability to work in a dynamic team environment.

- Exceptional organizational skills.

- Strong oral and written communication skills.

- Ability to work with limited supervision.

Typical Hiring Range Commensurate with Experience How is pay for new employees determined at GW?

Campus Location: Foggy Bottom, Washington, D.C.
College/School/Department: Columbian College of Arts & Sciences (CCAS)
Family Research and Labs
Sub-Family Field Research
Stream Individual Contributor
Level Level 3
Full-Time/Part-Time: Full-Time
Hours Per Week: 40
Work Schedule: Mon-Fri, 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Will this job require the employee to work on site? Yes
Position Designation: Essential: Employees who perform functions that have been deemed essential to maintaining business or academic operations. Employees are generally expected to work from home during an event and may be asked to physically report to work.
Telework: No
Required Background Check Criminal History Screening, Education/Degree/Certifications Verification, Social Security Number Trace, and Sex Offender Registry Search
Special Instructions to Applicants:
  • Applicants should submit curriculum vitae (CV), cover letter stating career goals and research interests, and contact information for at least two references. List of peer-reviewed publications should be in the submitted CV. This position will be funded for 2 years but subject to renewal based on satisfactory performance in the first year.
Internal Applicants Only? No
Posting Number: R001291
Job Open Date: 04/26/2021
Job Close Date:
If temporary, grant funded or limited term appointment, position funded until:
Background Screening Successful Completion of a Background Screening will be required as a condition of hire.
EEO Statement:

The university is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer that does not unlawfully discriminate in any of its programs or activities on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or on any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

*Please mention to employers when applying for this job*
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