Fungal Ecology Evolution Metagenomics Postdoc (University of Illinois)

A postdoctoral position is available in the department of Plant Biology, in the School of Integrative Biology, at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. PIs Astrid Ferrer (aquatic mycologist), Katy Heath (plant and microbe evolution), and Jim Dalling (plant and fungal community ecology) are looking for a highly motivated postdoc to work on a NSF-funded Dimensions of Biodiversity project aimed at understanding the ecological and genetic controls on fungal community assembly and decomposition function in tropical wood-decomposing aquatic fungi. Both the Heath and Dalling labs are lively, highly-collaborative environments with students and postdocs working on a range of topics in ecology and evolution of plants, bacteria, and fungi.

The duties of the project postdoc will include preparing libraries for metagenomic sequencing of aquatic fungi communities from environmental DNA samples, RNAseq of cultured fungi in response to various environmental treatments, downstream bioinformatic and statistical analyses, and writing manuscripts based on these results.

Expertise in some or all of the following areas is desired: Molecular biology, (meta)genomics, bioinformatics, statistical analysis, ecology, evolution.

Strong candidates will also possess the following attributes:

  • A strong publication record from their PhD (papers published, in press, or submitted).
  • Creativity, independence, and the desire to learn new things.
  • Excellent communication skills, both written and oral.

All candidates must have received a Ph.D. in a relevant field. The position is available for 2 years, with the first year as a probationary period, and will include a competitive salary and full benefits.

Application review will begin May 1, 2014 and will continue until the position is filled. Start date is flexible, with a rough target date of August 2014. All materials should be submitted to the PIs below for consideration. Applications should include a brief cover letter, curriculum vitae, a brief description of past research accomplishments and future research goals (under two pages), and the names and contact information for three references.

Contact Dr. Katy Heath regarding the position or application process. For further information about the Heath lab, visit the lab webpage accessible at: http://www.life.illinois.edu/heath