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Postdoctoral Research Associate, Department of Computer Science (Wheeler Lab)
University of Montana in Missoula, Montana
Date Posted 09/21/2020
Admin-Laboratory and Research
Employment Type FullTime
Application Deadline Open until filled

The Wheeler Lab at the University of Montana, Missoula invites applications for a postdoctoral position. The postdoctoral associate will develop novel Machine Learning approaches to improve the annotation of biological sequences, with particular emphasis on the complexities posed by soil microbiome datasets. We seek applicants who value people, teamwork, trust, integrity, and product excellence. The successful applicant will join a research group that includes 9 graduate researchers, two staff software engineers, and a staff bioinformatician. In addition to independent research efforts, the person in this position will collaborate with others in the lab, and provide scientific mentoring for junior researchers.

Projects in the Wheeler lab are broad, ranging from statistical modeling of biological sequence families, algorithm design, to low-level software optimization, to FPGAs, to Deep Neural Networks, to Natural Language Processing, to web services; from genomes, to proteins, to infectious disease, to drug discovery, to animal behavior in videos. Experience with genomics data analysis is not required but is a plus. As the developer gains experience in the research domain, there will be opportunity to influence project directions, and optionally to aid in the development of future grant applications.

For further information on this position and our research, please contact Dr. Wheeler directly at travis.wheeler@umontana.edu.

The University of Montana is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and has a strong institutional commitment to the principle of diversity in all areas. In that spirit, we are particularly interested in receiving applications from a broad spectrum of qualified people who would assist the University in demonstrating its five priorities for action : Place student success at the center of all we do; drive excellence and innovation in teaching, learning, and research; embody the principle of “mission first, people always"; partner with place; and proudly tell the UM story.

Position Details
  • Position is full-time, 1.0 FTE, Letter of Appointment and includes a comprehensive and competitive benefits package including Insurance package, mandatory retirement plan, partial tuition waiver, and wellness program.
  • Salary for this position is $52,000 - $60,000 per year, commensurate with qualifications.

Required qualifications
  • PhD in computer science, computational biology, or related field.

Preferred Qualifications
  • Expertise with Machine Learning, particularly deep neural networks.
  • Ability to collaborate with senior and junior members of a research team, as well as mentoring of junior developers.
  • Prior experience in the development of methods in computational genomics.
  • Prior experience in the development of computational genomics and/or neuroscience.

About the Department of Computer Science, UM  and Missoula

The Wheeler lab  designs algorithms and statistical methods for sequence analysis in computational genomics, and develops high-quality implementations of those methods for incorporation into highly-used software pipelines and web services. We are particularly focused on the alignment of biological sequences and the accompanying problem of searching for similar sequences within large-scale biological sequence databases. The Wheeler lab is home to a diverse and highly interactive group of researchers.

The lab is located in the Computer Science  Department at the University of Montana, and is closely affiliated with the Division of Biological Sciences . The Computer Science Department dedicates itself and its resources to the growing utility of computers in research and education, as well as the increased impact of computers on our modern society. Our primary mission is to offer degrees (major, minor, graduate) for students who want to pursue a career in this discipline. Primary objectives of our curriculum include: 1) develop professionally competent and broadly educated computer scientists who wish to pursue professional careers or graduate studies; 2) mentor students and provide them with opportunities to engage in CS research; and 3) teach students how to think computationally and engage in problem-solving and critical analysis.

The University of Montana is a unit of the Montana University System with over 10,000 students. It is located in Missoula, a culturally vibrant community of about 72,000, surrounded by mountain grandeur which was recently ranked in the “top 20 best college towns with a population of less than 250,000 ” by the American Institute for Economic Research and ranked 9th in Outside Magazine’s “The 16 Greatest Places to Live in America” in 2014 . Many national publications recognize Missoula for its high quality of life . Abundant recreational opportunities in surrounding state and national forests and nearby Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park complement a thriving intellectual atmosphere.  The University of Montana offers eligible employees a generous benefits package that positively separates UM from other local employers and offers many programs and policies to support work-life balance for its employees.

To learn more about the University of Montana, Missoula, and the State of Montana, please visit the links below.

Criminal Background Investigation is required prior to the Offer of Employment In accordance with University regulations, finalists for this position will be subject to criminal background investigations. ADA/EOE/AA/Veteran's Preference Reasonable accommodations are provided in the hiring process for persons with disabilities. For example, this material is available in alternative format upon request. As an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer, we encourage applications from minorities, veterans, and women. Qualified candidates may request veterans’ or disabilities preference in accordance with state law. References: References not listed on the application materials may be contacted; notice may be provided to the applicant. Testing: Individual hiring departments at UM may elect to administer pre-employment tests, which are relevant to essential job functions. Employment Eligibility: All New Employees must be eligible and show employment eligibility verification by the first date of employment at UM, as legally required (e.g., Form I-9).

How to Apply

Priority Application Date: Monday, September 21, 2020 by 11:59 PM (Mountain Time)

Complete applications received by the ‘Priority Application Date’ will be guaranteed consideration. The position will remain open until filled. Candidates are required to submit the following materials online via "New Resume/CV" button below

A complete application Includes:

  • Letter of Interest – addressing your qualifications and experience related to the stated required skills for the position.
  • Detailed Resume – listing education and describing work experience.
  • Professional References – names and contact information for three (3) professional references.
  • Official Transcripts – presented upon hire.

  • Need additional help? Check out our UM Jobs FAQ website.

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