Minority Microbiology Mentor Newsletter - March 2016

ASM ACTIVITIES

  • Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education (JMBE)
  • Undergraduate Faculty Research Initiative Fellowships
  • ASM Robert D. Watkins Graduate Research Fellowship
  • 32nd Clinical Virology Symposium
  • ASM Microbe 2016
  • Upcoming ASM Conferences
  • New Titles from ASM Press
  • American Board of Medical Microbiology (ABMM) Certification

FEDERAL AGENCY ACTIVITIES

  • Immunity in Neonates and Infants (U01)
  • Native American Tribes Outreach, Education, and Training to Enhance Food Safety and FSMA Compliance (U01)
  • Increased Knowledge and Innovative Strategies to Reduce HIV Incidence-iKnow Projects (R01)
  • Modeling of Infectious Disease Agent Study Research Projects (R01)
  • NSF Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Program (S-STEM)

ARTICLES OF INTEREST AND OTHER UPDATES

  • Director, Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
  • Multiple M.S. Assistantships in Wetland Ecology – Nicholls State University, Louisiana
  • Ph.D. position in microbial ecology, University of Southern Mississippi
  • PhD position - plant-microbial interactions
  • Nitrogen Cycling in Coral Reef Organisms under Environmental Change (NICE) funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).
  • Postdoc in Evolutionary ecology and genomics of social insects
  • Postdoc Molecular Ecology-Bioinformatics at IGB Berlin, Germany
  • Postdoc fellowship- soil microbial ecology
  • Postdoc in Stream Microbial Ecology at Loyola University Chicago
  • Summer 2016 REU in amphibian disease ecology in Panama

SPOTLIGHT ON MINORITY MICROBIOLOGISTS

  • Denis Wafula, Ph.D.

ASM ACTIVITIES

Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education (JMBE)
New Issue Available. The editors of JMBE – the premier journal for microbiology and biology education research – are pleased to announce the publication the journal’s first standalone themed issue focused on scientific citizenship. The new issue (volume 17, issue 1) is introduced by an editorial from guest editors Jack A. Gilbert of Argonne National Laboratory, Karen K. Klyczek of University of Wisconsin-River Falls, and Samantha L. Elliott of St. Mary’s College of Maryland. The editorial introduces the topic of scientific citizenship, discusses why it is important, and provides an outline for readers to navigate the 41-article issue. Readers can expect essays on the current state of citizen science, lessons on how to engage and train citizen scientists, how-to articles on authentic research experiences and public outreach activities, curricular and nontraditional approaches to engaging citizens in science, detailed outcomes of popular citizen science activities, and reviews of citizen science resources. To view this and all other published JMBE content, sign up for eTOC alerts, and learn more about the journal, visit http://www.asmscience.org.

Undergraduate Faculty Research Initiative Fellowships
Early-career (and future) undergraduate STEM educators are encouraged to apply for a 2016 ASM-NSF LINK Undergraduate Faculty Research Initiative (UFRI) Fellowship. This nascent professional development resource trains STEM faculty to develop undergraduate research programs by initiating successful research partnerships. As part of the fellowship, LINK will provide travel subsidies of up to $2,000 to (i) increase participation of undergraduate STEM educators at eight eligible ASM-sponsored research conferences, (ii) encourage networking and collaborations with potential research partners, and (iii) access resources and mentoring to advance undergraduate research programs. Fellowship applications are accepted on a rolling basis for each of the eight conferences. The deadline is April 4 to be considered for a UFRI fellowship for the ASM Microbe 2016 meeting (Boston, MA). To learn more, visit http://www.asmlink.org/ufri.

ASM Robert D. Watkins Graduate Research Fellowship
Senior-level graduate students are invited to apply for a 2016 ASM Robert D. Watkins Graduate Research Fellowship. With an aim to increase the number of students from underrepresented minority groups who complete doctoral degrees in the microbial sciences, the Watkins fellowship provides students with support to complete and present their microbiology research. Fellows are allowed to participate in an Education-Board-sponsored professional development program one time during the three-year tenure and – dependent on abstract submission and acceptance – are supported to present their research at the ASM Microbe Meeting. Apply by May 1. To learn more, visit http://bit.ly/watkins16nl.

32nd Clinical Virology Symposium
May 19–22, 2016 | Daytona Beach, Florida
http://www.asm.org/cvs2016
Last chance to submit your abstract for this esteemed event. Get yours in today to present your research findings alongside the foremost leaders in the field!
Abstract submission deadline: March 17, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. ET
Early bird registration deadline: April 7, 2016

ASM Microbe 2016
June 16–20, 2016 | Boston, Massachusetts
http://www.asm.org/microbe2016
Submit your late-breaker abstract today to be part of the discussion at this unmatched event. Don’t miss the Opening Keynote Session featuring Bill Gates!
Late-breaker abstract submission deadline: March 17, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. ET
Early bird registration deadline: May 5, 2016

Upcoming ASM Conferences
http://www.asm.org/conferences

@ASM Conference on The Individual Microbe: Single-cell Analysis and Agent-based Modeling
March 18–20, 2016 | Washington, DC

13th ASM Conference on Candida and Candidiasis
April 13–17, 2016 | Seattle, Washington

@ASM Conference – Special President's Edition on What Does the Biology of Flaviviruses Tell Us About Zika: The Importance of Fundamental Virus Biology
June 1, 2016 | Washington, DC

Annual ASM Conference for Undergraduate Educators (ASMCUE)
July 21-24, 2016 | North Bethesda, Maryland
Travel award submission deadline: April 15, 2016
Early-bird registration deadline: May 16, 2016

ASM Conference on Streptococcal Genetics
July 31–August 3, 2016 | Washington, DC
Abstract submission deadline: May 23, 2016
Early bird registration deadline: June 23, 2016

2nd ASM Conference on Experimental Microbial Evolution 
August 4–7, 2016 | Washington, DC
Abstract submission deadline: May 26, 2016
Early bird registration deadline: June 23, 2016

5th ASM Conference on Salmonella
August 29–September 1, 2016 | Potsdam, Germany
Abstract submission opens: April 5, 2016
Abstract submission deadline: June 24, 2016
Early bird registration deadline: July 21, 2016

Save the dates for more 2016 ASM Conferences!

New Titles from ASM Press
Antibiotics: Challenges, Mechanisms, Opportunities
“This beautifully written book deserves to be read and implemented by everyone, especially the pessimists who believe that the antibiotic era has ended. In Antibiotics: Challenges, Mechanisms, Opportunities, Walsh and Wencewicz provide the definitive, ultimate compendium of everything antibiotic.”

— Julian Davies, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Life Sciences Institute, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

Authors: Christopher Walsh, Professor Emeritus, Harvard Medical School and Senior Advisor, ChEM-H Center, Stanford University; Timothy Wencewicz, Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry, Washington University in St. Louis

Antibiotics: Challenges, Mechanisms, Opportunities provides compelling answers to these questions:

  • What are antibiotics?
  • Where do antibiotics come from?
  • How do antibiotics work?
  • Why do antibiotics stop working?
  • How should our limited inventory of effective antibiotics be addressed?

List and ASM Member Price: $130
February 2016. 477 pages, Full-color illustrations, Hardcover.

Infections of Leisure, Fifth Edition
A day at the beach: delightful, restorative-and potentially dangerous.
Leisure activities, from the mundane to the exotic, expose us to a growing list of pathogenic microbes, some new and many increasingly resistant to current therapies. Common pets, livestock, traveling, and cuisine all have the potential to cause illnesses that may be difficult to diagnose and treat.

Editor: David Schlossberg, Temple University School of Medicine (Professor), University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (Adjunct Professor), Tuberculosis Control Program, Philadelphia Department of Public Health Medical Director

Infections of Leisure, Fifth Edition features:

  • 19 chapters focused on the infection risks associated with particular types of activities, including camping, playing sports, interacting with animals, receiving body modifications, and mountain climbing.
  • Vibrant, full-color images.
  • Recommended readings chosen by expert authors.
  • Practical tips in each chapter.

ASM Member Price: $64
List Price: $80
March 2016. 411 pages, Full-color illustrations, Paperback.

Diagnostic Medical Parasitology, Sixth Edition
“To ensure that your microbiology personnel are employing practical quality procedures in the area of parasitology, you need this book!”

— Susan E. Sharp, Ph.D., ABMM, FAAM, Director, Regional Microbiology and Molecular Infectious Diseases Laboratories, Kaiser Permanente, Department of Pathology

Author: Lynne Garcia, LSG & Associates (Director).

Diagnostic Medical Parasitology, Sixth Edition features:

  • The dramatic changes that have occurred in the field of diagnostic medical parasitology over the past decade.
  • The latest information on parasitic infections, including newly recognized

human parasites.

  • Improved diagnostic techniques defined by new regulatory requirements, implementation of testing based on molecular techniques.
  • Expanded information tables, and extensive color photographs.

ASM Member Price: $176
List Price: $220
February 2016. 1410 pages, Full-color illustrations, Hardcover.

To see more titles go to http://asmscience.org

American Board of Medical Microbiology (ABMM) Certification
Certification is a voluntary process in which individuals are recognized for demonstrating required skills and knowledge. ABMM certification is achieved by meeting rigorous educational and experiential eligibility requirements and passing a comprehensive written examination. This certification confirms you have the knowledge and skills necessary to direct laboratories engaged in the microbiological diagnosis of human disease.

ABMM certifies the expertise of doctoral-level microbiologists seeking to direct medical and public health microbiology laboratories. It is recognized by federal and state governmental agencies as a significant component toward meeting licensure requirements for high complexity laboratory directors and is recognized under the final rule of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA).

ABMM certification is achieved by passing an online multiple-choice exam that is offered daily in the month of June at testing centers worldwide.

Visit http://www.asm.org/abmm to learn more and apply online.

Deadline: April 1, 2016

 


FEDERAL AGENCY ACTIVITIES

Immunity in Neonates and Infants (U01)
This Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) invites applications from institutions and organizations to participate in a cooperative research group, focusing on elucidating mechanisms regulating the development and function of the immune system in neonates (0-28 days) and infants (29 days – 12 months), including immune mechanisms triggered by non-pathogenic or pathogenic microbes (including HIV), vaccines, exposure to allergens, or alterations in immune function due to environmental exposures to pollutants. The purpose of this FOA is to advance current knowledge of the developing immune system during the first year of life and to encourage innovative approaches to more fully understand the distinct characteristics of neonatal/infant immune responses. Better understanding of infant and neonatal immune development has the potential to improve public health by providing a foundation for guiding the maturation of a healthy (protective) immune system and reducing the development of immune-mediated disorders, reducing susceptibility to infections and allergens, and improving immune responses to vaccines in these vulnerable populations.  Letters of intent are due June 29, 2016, and more information is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-AI-16-001.html.

Native American Tribes Outreach, Education, and Training to Enhance Food Safety and FSMA Compliance (U01)
FDA announces the availability of funding and requests applications for Native American Tribes, Outreach, Education and Training, for the purpose of Enhancing Food Safety and FSMA Compliance for fiscal year (FY) 2016. Projects will research and identify outreach, education, training and technical assistance needs; and develop and adapt materials; and deliver training that facilitate the integration and understanding of federal food safety regulations and guidance among Native American tribes involved in agricultural produce production and food manufacturing/process, while taking into account tribal historical, cultural, and regional agricultural production and processing practices. Letters of intent are due March 4, 2016, and more information is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-FD-16-001.html.

Increased Knowledge and Innovative Strategies to Reduce HIV Incidence-iKnow Projects (R01)
The purpose of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to promote innovative research that addresses one or both of the following objectives: Devise optimal strategies to improve the identification of persons unaware of their HIV-1 infection and successfully link them to HIV testing, treatment, and prevention interventions; develop and examine the feasibility and acceptability of novel integrated interventions of biomedical and behavioral strategies that substantially reduce the likelihood of onward HIV transmission in these populations.  Full applications are due May 16, 2016, and more information is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-16-117.html.

Modeling of Infectious Disease Agent Study Research Projects (R01)
The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement (FOA) is to support innovative research that will develop and apply computational tools and methods for modeling interactions between infectious agents and their hosts, disease spread, prediction systems and response strategies. The models should be useful to researchers, policymakers, or public health workers who want to better understand and respond to infectious diseases. This research opportunity encourages applications from institutions/organizations that propose to provide the scientific and public health communities better resources, knowledge, and tools to improve their ability to prepare for, identify, detect, control, and prevent the spread of infectious diseases caused by naturally occurring or intentionally released pathogens, including those relevant to biodefense.  Full applications are due June 5, 2016, and more information is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-16-107.html.

NSF Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Program (S-STEM)
A well-educated science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce is a significant contributor to maintaining the competitiveness of the U.S. in the global economy. The National Science Foundation (NSF) Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (S-STEM) program addresses the need for a high quality STEM workforce in STEM disciplines supported by the program and for the increased success of low-income academically talented students with demonstrated financial need who are pursuing associate, baccalaureate, or graduate degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).  The program seeks: 1) to increase the number of low-income academically talented students with demonstrated financial need obtaining degrees in STEM and entering the workforce or graduate programs in STEM; 2) to improve the education of future scientists, engineers, and technicians, with a focus on academically talented low-income students; and 3) to generate knowledge to advance understanding of how factors or evidence-based curricular and co-curricular activities affect the success, retention, transfer, academic/career pathways, and graduation in STEM of low-income students.  Full proposals are due May 16, 2016, and more information is available at http://www.nsf.gov/pubs/2016/nsf16540/nsf16540.htm.

 


ARTICLES OF INTEREST AND OTHER UPDATES

Director, Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), one of the largest Institutes of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is seeking an exceptional and visionary leader for the position of director of the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (DMID). NIAID supports and conducts basic, translational, and clinical research to better understand, treat, and prevent infectious, immunologic, and allergic diseases.

DMID supports research to prevent and control diseases caused by virtually all human infectious agents with the exception of HIV. DMID projects include basic biology of human pathogens and their interaction with human hosts, as well as translational and clinical research toward the development of new and improved diagnostics, drugs, and vaccines for infectious diseases. DMID provides funding opportunities and a comprehensive set of resources for researchers as part of an extramural research portfolio that currently encompasses 300 different organisms, including emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases such as pandemic influenza, Ebola and Zika viruses, and drug-resistant microbes. The division has a budget of $1.48B (FY 2015) and is composed of six scientific branches and six research support offices with nearly 200 staff members.

The DMID director reports to the NIAID director and provides scientific direction, oversight, and management for this large, complex, and dynamic extramural research program. The DMID director serves as a principal advisor to the NIAID director on biomedical scientific affairs involving infectious diseases other than HIV. The DMID director also serves as an expert consultant, advisor, and spokesperson both nationally and internationally on NIAID infectious disease research activities. 

DMID seeks exceptional candidates for the director position.
Key responsibilities of the DMID director position include developing, directing, and coordinating DMID’s basic, translational, and clinical extramural research programs; demonstrating strategic vision to advance the infectious diseases research agenda and field; proactively evaluating research needs on a national and international scale and developing and recommending new programs as needed; formulating and implementing plans for solicitation of new research; overseeing program operations, program planning, and evaluation; managing resource allocations to include staff, physical, and financial resources; recommending policies for the execution of multidisciplinary research; and establishing and maintaining research collaborations with industry and public sector organizations.

Qualifications

Applicants must have an earned M.D., Ph.D., or equivalent degree, be a U.S. citizen, and exhibit exceptional leadership ability managing complex basic, translational, and clinical research programs. Applicants must have experience leading research programs encompassing the frontiers of fields such as immunology, the biology of infectious agents, the development of strategies to prevent and treat infectious diseases, and the development of novel tools and technologies to advance basic and clinical research efforts. The successful candidate will possess the training and experience to lead complex, multidisciplinary, and collaborative activities required to deliver scientific discoveries that will illuminate our understanding of human health and disease. The selected candidate must obtain and maintain a Top Secret security clearance based on a special background investigation with eligibility for sensitive compartmented information (SCI).

Application

Salary is commensurate with experience, and a full package of benefits is available, including retirement, health and life insurance, long-term care insurance, leave, and Thrift Savings Plan (401k equivalent). Email a one- to two-page cover letter describing the reasons for your interest in the position and your scientific management experience, resume, curriculum vitae, and bibliography to NIAID-DMIDDirector-Apply. Electronic applications are preferred; however, you may submit paper applications to NIAID-DMIDDirector-Apply, NIAID Office of Workforce Effectiveness and Resources, 5601 Fishers Lane, Room 2G69 Bethesda, MD 20892-9817. 

Email NIAID-DMIDDirector-Apply with questions or for more information about the position.

Review of applications will begin on or about March 30, 2016. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. All information provided by applicants will remain confidential and will be reviewed only by authorized officials of NIAID.

Visit Careers at NIAID to learn more about NIAID and how you can play a role in this exciting and dynamic research organization.

NIH is dedicated to building an inclusive and diverse community in its training and employment programs. HHS, NIH, and NIAID are equal opportunity employers.

 Multiple M.S. Assistantships in Wetland Ecology – Nicholls State University, Louisiana
The Wetland Plant Biology Lab in the Department of Biological Sciences at Nicholls State University (www.nicholls.edu/biology) is seeking to fill multiple M.S. positions beginning in the summer/fall of 2016. Students will earn a M.S. degree in Marine and Environmental Biology. 1) Two 2-year positions are available to participate in a condition assessment of 40 wetlands across the state of Louisiana, which is part of a larger EPA-funded project to assess the status of wetlands across the United States. Potential research projects include quantifying invasive plant species distributions, comparing soil carbon stocks across different wetland types, or developing an independent research project of the successful applicants choosing. 2) One 2-year position is available investigating the long-term impacts of the Deep Water Horizon oil spill on the ecological structure and function of the plant-microbial-benthic complex in Louisiana salt marshes. This research is collaborative in nature and may focus either on the effects of oiling on soil carbon density, the effects of macro-invertebrate density on plant recovery, or other possible topics of interest. 3) Up to two 2-year positions are available investigating the long-term (~20 year) effects of nutrient enrichment on soil carbon dynamics in coastal wetlands. Specific research projects will focus on identifying how enhanced nutrient supply influences wetland plant growth and decay patterns as related to organic matter quality and microbial activity. For more information about these projects, contact Dr. Sean Graham at sean.graham@nicholls.edu. Minimum Qualification: • B.S. in Ecology, Soil Science, Marine/Coastal Science, Environmental Science, or related field • undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or greater • GRE scores of 300 or greater (Q+V) • highly motivated and capable of working independently Preferred Qualification: • undergraduate research experience • experience driving/trailing a boat • strong desire to publish research Salary/Stipend: $18,000/year, plus full tuition coverage. To Apply: email the following information to Dr. Sean Graham (sean.graham@nicholls.edu) 1) a short cover letter describing research experience and interests 2) CV or resume 3) transcripts (unofficial is acceptable) 4) GRE scores (and TOEFL scores if applicable) 5) contact information for three professional references Closing Date: Applications will be reviewed as they are received. The application deadline for assistantships starting in the fall semester is March 26. For additional details regarding University Admissions, see http://www.nicholls.edu/biology-graduate/application-information/.      

Ph.D. position in microbial ecology, University of Southern Mississippi
A Ph.D. student position is available in the research laboratory of Dr. Kevin A. Kuehn at the University of Southern Mississippi. This position is part of a 3 year funded NSF project that seeks to understand the relative importance of algal photosynthetic priming vs. photolysis in facilitating microbial-mediated (bacterial and fungal) organic matter decomposition in freshwater wetland ecosystems. The successful applicant is expected to have excellent communication skills, and will be creative, motivated and capable of working both independently and in a collaborative group setting. Applicants having experience in aquatic or microbial ecology would be considered a plus. A Master’s degree in biology, ecology, or closely related field is preferred; however, exceptional students with a B.S. degree will also be considered. Responsibilities of the Ph.D. student will include completing graduate coursework, research pursuant to the grant objectives, publishing their research findings, working with project collaborators, and participating in outreach related activities. The stipend for this graduate research assistantship is $20k/year and includes a full tuition waiver and health care benefits. The anticipated start date is negotiable. The University of Southern Mississippi, a Carnegie Research I institution with approximately 17,000 students, is located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, with additional campuses located nearby on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. This position will be based in Hattiesburg. Hattiesburg is the medical, commercial, and cultural center of south Mississippi and is ranked among the top small metropolitan areas in the United States. The Department of Biological Sciences currently has 32 faculty with research strengths in ecology, evolution, molecular biology and microbiology. Further information about the department may be found at www.usm.edu/biological-sciences. Interested applicants should send a cover letter, short statement of research interests and future goals, CV, contact information for three references, and copies of transcripts and GRE scores (unofficial is fine) to Dr. Kevin A. Kuehn (kevin.kuehn@usm.edu). Review of applicants will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Questions concerning this position should be directed to Dr. Kevin A. Kuehn. The University of Southern Mississippi is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer/Americans with disabilities act institution. The University of Southern Mississippi encourages minorities, women, veterans, and persons with disabilities to apply.      

PhD position - plant-microbial interactions
In the Group of Plant Nutrition we combine basic research on mechanisms driving and mediating plant nutrition with field trials to solve topical problems in plant production. In the multidisciplinary team, we are recruiting a motivated PhD student for a project that combines community ecological analyses of microbial root symbionts with plant physiological ecological analyses to mechanistically elucidate microbe-plant-soil feedbacks. Specifically, the PhD student will address soil constraints to sustainable plant production, in a project entitled ‘Ecological intensification of organic rooibos cultivation in South Africa (EcoInt)’. Root-associated microbes are powerful mediators of plant nutrition and health and for this they are increasingly considered promising for farming on marginal land. The collaborative research project with Stellenbosch University and various stakeholders in South Africa aims to establish a knowledge base on suspected declines of beneficial and accumulation of antagonistic microbes, which are thought to be responsible for yield declines in monospecific and long term cultivation of Rooibos tea, Aspalathus linearis, a legume bush endemic to South-Africa. The research will also engage producers to test promising methods of raising on-farm biological soil fertility. For further information please contact Dr. Hannes Gamper (no applications) by email: hannes.gamper@usys.ethz.ch, or Prof Johannes J. Le Roux (no applications) by email: jleroux@sun.ac.za and/or visit the working group’s websites: http://www.plantnutrition.ethz.ch, http://academic.sun.ac.za/cib/team_research.asp.  Applications online with a short motivation letter describing your reasons for applying and qualifications for the position, a detailed CV, and contact details of three referees by April 15, 2016 to: ETH Zurich, Olivier Link to apply:  https://apply.refline.ch/845721/4483/pub/1/index.html.

Nitrogen Cycling in Coral Reef Organisms under Environmental Change (NICE) funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG)
Project description: Nitrogen (N) is one of the limiting nutrients in highly productive coral reef environments and thus plays a key role in the metabolism of reef organisms and the functioning of their ecosystems. Recent research revealed that microbe-mediated N2 fixation is ubiquitous in coral reefs, and that active N2-fixing prokaryotes are associated with many different reef organisms. However, the interplay of N2 fixation with other key processes of the marine N cycle, i.e. nitrification and denitrification, and the susceptibility of all these processes to key environmental disturbances (e.g. warming and nutrient enrichment) has not yet been investigated in coral reefs. NICE will thus quantify all major processes and identify associated microbial players of the N cycle in hard 2 corals and other common reef organisms. An interdisciplinary approach combining expertise from coral physiology, molecular microbial ecology, and biogeochemistry will be used. The field work for this project will be carried out at the Central Red Sea in close collaboration with the partners Prof. Dr. Christian Voolstra and Dr. Benjamin Kürten from the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Thuwal, Saudi Arabia, and PD Dr. Ulrich Struck from Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin. The appointment is for a three-year period. Salary will be according to the German TV-L 13 for a 65% position. Requirements: Applicants should hold a Master degree in marine biology, microbial ecology, or related fields. They should fluently speak English and possess good scientific writing skills. Expertise in molecular, physiological, and biogeochemical tools is an asset. Application: To apply, please send a motivation letter and a complete CV with list of publications and skills along with names of two referees (with email addresses and phone numbers) in a single pdf-file to Prof. Christian Wild (christian.wild@uni-bremen.de) above. Only short-listed candidates will be notified. Travel expenses for interviews cannot be covered. Closing Date: March 15, 2016 or until a qualified candidate is identified.    

Postdoc in Evolutionary ecology and genomics of social insects
Postdoc position in evolutionary ecology and population genomics of paper wasps The Sheehan lab at Cornell University seeks a postdoc for evolutionary ecology projects using comparative and/or population genomics in Polistes paper wasps. Paper wasps are a diverse group of primitively eusocial insects that have served as a model system in studies of social behavior. From a population genetics perspective, Polistes wasps are especially appealing for a few reasons including small genome sizes, males are haploid allowing for perfectly phased data and wasps are abundant in a wide variety of habitats making it easy to get large numbers of samples. They can also be reared in the lab. A 2-3 year position is available (initial 12 month appointment with the possibility of renewal). Start date is flexible. Information about salary and benefits at Cornell can be found here: https://postdocs.cornell.edu/postdoctoral-associatesbenefits. The lab is especially interested in using comparative and population genetic approaches to examine the ecological and evolutionary causes and consequences of cooperative nesting and visual recognition in wasps, though postdocs are very much encouraged to develop independent projects making use of population and comparative genomic data being generated by the lab. Possible areas of independent project may include (but are not limited to) environmental adaptation, mimicry, host-parasite interactions, microbiomes, sensory ecology, historical phylogeography, speciation, etc. Depending on the nature of the project and the postdoc's interest, the postdoc will have the opportunity to conduct fieldwork in the US or abroad, conduct behavioral or cognitive experiments and/or carry out molecular work. Required qualifications: Ph.D. or equivalent degree in biology, evolution, ecology, genetics, bioinformatics, or related field. Publication of work based on dissertation. Working knowledge of bioinformatics pipelines and standard population genomic analyses. Proficiency in scripting language (e.g. Python or Perl) and depth in some area of comparative or population genomics is preferred. Prior wet lab or field experience is not required. To apply please submit a cover letter describing your relevant experience and research interests as they relate to the system, a CV, the contact information for three references, and 1-2 relevant publications to Dr. Michael Sheehan (msheehan@cornell.edu). Diversity and inclusion are a part of Cornell University's heritage. Cornell is a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and Individuals with Disabilities. Please feel free to contact me at the above email address with any questions. Michael J Sheehan Assistant Professor Neurobiology and Behavior Cornell University 215 Tower Rd Ithaca NY, 14853 (607) 254-4302 , msheehan@cornell.edu 

Postdoc Molecular Ecology-Bioinformatics at IGB Berlin, Germany
The Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB) is part of the Forschungsverbund Berlin (FVB) and the German Leibniz Association. IGB and its partners in the Berlin-Brandenburg Institute for Advanced Biodiversity Research have formed a consortium to implement a major new interdisciplinary research initiative funded by the Federal Ministry of Research and Education (BMBF; http://www.bbib.org/bridging-in-biodiversity-science.html). Within the work package “Aquatic-terrestrial coupling”, we offer a: Postdoc Position in Molecular Ecology and Bioinformatics Background: The overall project aims to bridge disciplines, scales and systems in biodiversity research and to provide a proof-of-principle for the bridging approach. The work package on aquatic-terrestrial coupling uses surveys, field experiments in kettle holes and a large mesocosm experiment in IGB’s LakeLab (www.lake-lab.de) to establish relationships between land-use characteristics and effects of terrestrial carbon subsidies on plankton biodiversity and processes. Requirements: We are seeking to recruit a dedicated postdoc with demonstrated expertise in molecular ecology and bioinformatics, particularly of large sequence data sets. The ideal candidate has a strong background in molecular biological analyses and bioinformatics. A solid understanding of, and research experience in, aquatic biodiversity, ecology and biogeochemistry will be particularly useful, although these qualifications are not a strict requirement. Application: Please upload your complete application (CV, motivation letter, statement of research interests, copies of qualification documents, list of published or submitted papers, contact details of 3 references) at http://www.igb-berlin.de/job-offers.html. Review of applications will start immediately and continue until the position has been filled. However, for full consideration applications should be received by 29 February 2016. The preferred starting date is 1 April, but a later start is possible. For informal enquiries, please contact Hans-Peter Grossart (hgrossart@igb-berlin.de) or Mark Gessner (gessner@igb-berlin.de) The IGB and FVB are equal opportunity employers and specifically welcome applications by female scientists. Preference will be given to applicants with disabilities when qualifications are equivalent.     

Postdoc fellowship- soil microbial ecology
Sylvie Quideau, Ed Bork, and Cameron Carlyle at the University of Alberta are seeking a motivated postdoc fellow to join a collaborative project investigating soil microbial response to disturbance in mixed grass prairies. Candidates must have a Ph.D. in soil microbiology, biogeochemistry, or microbial ecology. Experience with molecular approaches to characterize community composition and function is required. Strong verbal, written, and computational skills are essential. The project is funded by an NSERC-CRD grant. The successful candidate will be provided with an annual fellowship of CAD 45,000. The position can start immediately and no later than August 2016. The initial appointment period will be for one year with the potential of renewal for an additional year. Interested candidates should e-mail their transcript, a detailed curriculum vitae, a cover letter that summarizes their qualifications and research goals, and the names and contact information of three references to Dr. Sylvie Quideau at sylvie.quideau@ualberta.ca. Only successful candidates will be contacted.     

Postdoc in Stream Microbial Ecology at Loyola University Chicago
Job Title: Postdoc in Stream Microbial Ecology Background: Loyola University Chicago (LUC), College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Biology invites applications for a full-time postdoc, with expertise in the area of stream microbial ecology. The position is for one year with the possibility of renewal for a second year based on performance. For more information about the department visit www.luc.edu/biology. Duties and Responsibilities: The postdoc will work with Dr. John Kelly and Dr. Timothy Hoellein on a funded research project that will seek to quantify and identify sources, sinks, and biological interactions of microplastic particles in the eight major tributaries of Lake Michigan. The project will include extensive fieldwork as well as molecular analysis of plastic-associated bacterial communities. Minimum Qualifications: Applicants must have a Ph.D. in biology, ecology, microbiology, or a related field, experience with stream ecology fieldwork, and a valid U.S. driver’s license. Under- represented minority candidates and those with prior experience in molecular microbial ecology, bioinformatics analysis of high-throughput sequencing data, and/or geographic information systems are especially encouraged to apply. Special Instructions to Applicants: Special Instructions to Applicants: Applicants should apply on-line at http://www.careers.luc.edu and submit a letter of intent, a current Curriculum Vitae, and a brief statement describing their research interests and experience. They also should provide the names and email addresses of three individuals prepared to speak to their professional qualifications for this position. Referees will not be solicited immediately but might be at subsequent points in the review process. For further information, please contact Dr. Kelly (jkelly7@luc.edu). The position is available immediately and will remain open until filled. LUC is an Equal Opportunity employer with a strong commitment to hiring for our mission and diversifying our faculty. As a Jesuit Catholic institution of higher education, we seek candidates who will contribute to our strategic plan to deliver a Transformative Education in the Jesuit tradition. To learn more about LUC’s mission, candidates should consult our website at www.luc.edu/mission/. For information about the university’s focus on transformative education, they should consult our website at http://www.luc.edu/transformativeed/ 

Summer 2016 REU in amphibian disease ecology in Panama
The Voyles Lab at University of Nevada, Reno is looking for an undergraduate student to assist with NSF-funded research through the REU program. The research is focused on amphibian chytridiomycosis, an infectious disease that has been linked to amphibian declines in Panama and around the world. The REU project will focus on host-responses to infection and may help guide conservation strategies for amphibians in the region. The selected student will spend 10-12 weeks in Panama conducting field and laboratory research. The student will work collaboratively with a postdoc and graduate students under the guidance of Dr. Jamie Voyles (U. Nevada, Reno) and Dr. Corinne Richards-Zawacki (U. of Pittsburgh). The student will also have the opportunity to conduct independent research, be involved with data analysis and writing for publication. Prospective applicants should note that the research often involves considerable physical challenges, including traveling to Panama, hiking long distances with field equipment, backpacking and camping in remote locations, and working long hours in uncomfortable weather conditions. We are looking for applicants with some or all of the following experience and skills: - Prior research experience in microbiology, physiology or ecology, including laboratory and field research. - Ability to travel internationally (i.e., holds a current U.S. passport that will be valid for the next 6 months) - Ability to speak Spanish - Driver's license and previous experience with 4-wheel drive, manual transmission vehicles - Experience backpacking and camping in remote locations - Patience, a strong work ethic, appreciation for details and interpersonal communication skills. To apply, please send a Letter of Interest, CV, and contact information to request three letters of recommendation to: Jamie Voyles and Goncalo Rosa (see email contacts below). Review of applications will begin Feb 25, 2016. For questions an more information, please contact: Goncalo Rosa goncalo.m.rosa@gmail.com; Jamie Voyles jvoyles@unr.edu; Voyles Lab (http://voyleslab.weebly.com/)       

 


SPOTLIGHT ON MINORITY MICROBIOLOGISTS

Denis Wafula, Ph.D.
The use of treated wastewater for agricultural soil irrigation is rapidly expanding. However, the effect of this practice on soil microbial communities which are essential is maintaining soil health is under-studied. The paper ‘Impacts of Long-term Irrigation of Domestic Treated Wastewater on Soil Biogeochemistry and Bacterial Community Structure’ (D Wafula, JR White, A Canion, C Jagoe, A Pathak, and A Chauhan in Applied and Environmental Microbiology 81 (20), 7143-7158), reports a study on an agroecosystem that has been receiving  treated wastewater for over 30 years. The results shows that bacterial communities shifted as a consequence of wastewater application. There is an increase in the abundance of most Proteobacteria and decrease in the abundance of Actinobacteria. There are also changes in the composition of the denitrifying bacterial guilds. The effect of these changes on soil health is not yet known but there is need to incorporate microbial community composition in designing wastewater reuse projects.

Denis Wafula is a postdoc in the Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics Department at the University of Maryland, College Park. His current research is mainly focused in the development of chimeric proteins that are used in the delivery of RNA interference therapeutics into stem cells using receptor-mediated endocytosis. Dr. Wafula earned a B.S in Biological Sciences and M.S in Microbiology from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. He then earned an M.S. in Marine Sciences (Molecular Ecology) from Savannah State University and Ph.D in Environmental Sciences (Biomolecular Sciences) from Florida A & M University. He completed a postdoc appointment at the University of New Mexico where he managed to develop thermostable live vector vaccines for Tularemia and HPV.  During his post-doctoral career Dr. Wafula has been lucky to supervise or help undergraduate and graduate students. He believes by being the best teacher and mentor to the younger scientists, he can open their eyes to the ability of underrepresented minorities to contribute to science.   

 


In July 2006, the Committee on Microbiological Issues Impacting Minorities (CMIIM) of the American Society for Microbiology Public and Scientific Affairs Board developed a monthly e-newsletter which contains information pertinent to minority microbiologists.  Currently, there are very few minority-based newsletters for scientists, and there are none for microbiologists. 

This e-newsletter provides a central means of distributing pertinent information to underrepresented minorities in the field of microbiology.  Some examples include career advice, networking tips, relevant news articles, unique funding and career opportunities, microbiological issues affecting minorities (e.g., HIV), minority issues affecting microbiologists (e.g., minority retention), and scientific articles published by minorities or by minority-serving institutions (MSIs). 

The target populations are African-Americans, Latino-Americans, Native Americans, Alaska natives, and Pacific Islanders; however, all ASM members are invited to sign up and to share this information with others who may find this e-newsletter beneficial.  

Signing up to receive The Minority Microbiology Mentor is very easy and is open to ASM members and non-members:  simply go to http://asm.org/index.php/component/content/article/31-forms/forms/238-subscribe-to-listserv, enter your email address, and select "MinorityMicroMentor" then submit, and you will receive confirmation of your subscription by email.  If you are an ASM member, you will be prompted to Log In before signing up.

The Committee on Microbiological Issues Impacting Minorities is chaired by Dwayne W. Boucaud, Ph.D., Professor in the Quinnipiac University Department of Biomedical Sciences in Hamden, CT.  The Minority Microbiology Mentor Editor-in-Chief is Crystal N. Johnson, Ph.D., associate professor at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA, and the Associate Editor is Andrea M. Rocha, Ph.D., ORAU postdoctoral research associate within the Biosciences division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, TN.

The MMM can post employment ads only if they are first featured on the ASM’s Career Connections site:  http://www.asmcareerconnections.org/home/index.cfm?site_id=756. Career Connections is offering a discount for job postings that are featured in the MMM.  Please contact CMIIM@asmusa.org with your ad needs.

For more information about the Committee on Microbiological Issues Impacting Minorities (CMIIM) go to the committee’s web page:  http://www.asm.org/cmiim

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