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Theory and Simulation Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Boise State University (HR)
Boise, Idaho
Starting salary for this position is $49,025.60
Closing date
Aug 14, 2022

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Field of specialization
Biochemical, Engineering
Work Function
Job Type
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Job Details

About Us:

Boise State University, powered by creativity and innovation, stands uniquely positioned in the Northwest as a metropolitan research university of distinction. Learn more about Boise State and the City of Boise at

Boise State University is building an inclusive community of faculty and staff whose unique skills, cultural contributions, work history, and perspectives create a rich and rewarding academic experience for our students. Research demonstrates that people thrive when they feel welcome, respected, and inspired. We seek applicants who are committed to helping us achieve our vision of a diverse and inclusive community. Applications from members of historically marginalized groups, including women, BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color), those with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ+ community, those who have served in the military, and members of other underrepresented communities are strongly encouraged.

Job Summary/Basic Function:

Serves in a temporary position that enables an individual with their Ph.D. to continue their training as a researcher and gain skills and experience that will prepare them for their research career in academia or elsewhere. As a postdoc, the position can perform mostly independent research, collaborate on a multi-scholar research initiative, or even may have lead responsibility for discrete components of a larger research project or program, all while under the general direction of a senior or principal researcher

Department Overview:

The MSMSE is part of a vibrant College of Engineering (COEN) at Boise State. The College offers a variety of accredited programs and enjoys a high level of support from the local high-tech industry in Idaho and the Intermountain West. The MSMSE program is ABET-accredited and one of the fastest growing MSE programs in the U.S., offering B.S., M.S., M.Engr., and Ph.D. degrees. With over 50 doctoral students, it is the largest engineering Ph.D. program in the state. A recent Micron Foundation gift of $25M seeded construction of the world class Micron Center for Materials Research building, which includes a state-of-the-art, multi-lab DNA nanotechnology facility.

Level Scope:

After earning a Ph.D., the next step in the academic or research career path is often a postdoc. A postdoc is a continuation of a researcher’s training that enables them to further their professional development and start to transition from student to independent researcher. Postdocs also often take additional leadership or teaching responsibilities in their laboratory or department. These positions are usually two to three years and it is not unusual for a researcher to do more than one postdoc.

Essential Functions:

 60% of Time the Postdoctoral Research Fellow must:

  • Conduct examinations of the structure and dynamics of molecular excitons in DNA-template dye aggregates using state-of-the practice theory, modeling, and programming tools.
  • Perform as part of a multidisciplinary team consisting of engineers, physicists, and chemists with expertise in a variety of steady-state, ultrafast, and single-molecule experimental methods and computational approaches.
  • Participate as an active and supportive member of the qDNA research group, maintaining a high level of communication with its members, as well as publishing results in a timely manner and presenting annually at one or more professional conferences (travel funding is available).

35% of Time the Postdoctoral Research Fellow must:

  • Problem solve research challenges and model development, as applicable.
  • Contribute discrete components of a larger project under the general direction of a senior or principal researcher.
  • Prepare complete documentation of research activities for reference purposes, including following applicable data management protocols.
  • Analyze, interpret, and document research findings for review.
  • Compare actual and expected results and suggest solutions to correct the deviations.
  • Evaluate existing research or modeling techniques and recommend improvements to ensure quality and productivity.
  • Assist in the preparation of proposals and reports.
  • Assist in teaching classes.

5% other duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities:


  • The selected candidate must be able to meet eligibility requirements for work in the United States at the time the appointment is scheduled to begin and to continue working legally for the proposed term of the appointment.
  • Excellent teamwork and communication skills.
  • Scientific writing skills demonstrated through peer reviewed publications.
  • Ability to acquire accurate, reproducible data.
  • Critical eye towards consistency, reproducibility, and the scientific method in general.
  • Excellent project and time management skills.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and mentoring skills.
  • Advocate for safety and ethics in the work place.


  • Preference is given for a Ph.D. in materials science and engineering, physics, chemistry, biochemistry, bioengineering, electrical engineering, chemical engineering, or a related field.
  • Demonstrated theoretical understanding of and expertise in density functional theory (DFT), time-dependent (TD) DFT, and molecular dynamics (MD), as they apply to the study of molecular aggregates and DNA scaffolds.
  • Working knowledge of machine learning, data science, and programming (e.g., Python or other relevant language) techniques applied to materials research.
  • Working theoretical background knowledge of the chemistry of dyes and nucleic acids, as well as energy transfer mechanisms at the molecular level.

Minimum Qualifications:

Requires a minimum of a Ph.D. or equivalent terminal degree in a relevant discipline.

Salary and Benefits:

Starting salary for this position is $49,025.60. Boise State University is committed to offering a benefits package that provides health and financial protection plans as well as resources to promote health and well-being. Our program provides flexibility so you can choose the benefits that are right for you and your family. Learn more about our benefit options at

Required Application Materials:

  • Please submit a letter of application indicating your interest in and summary of qualifications for this position. In addition, attach a curriculum vitae that includes three professional references with contact information.


Boise State University, powered by creativity and innovation, stands uniquely positioned in the Northwest as a metropolitan research university of distinction. Learn more about Boise State and the City of Boise at

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