June 28, 2016

Laboratory Scientist: Molecular Virology and Serology

EcoHealth Alliance seeks an adventurous, highly organized, collaborative and self-driven laboratory scientist with technical expertise in molecular virology to work internationally under our disease ecology and pandemic prevention programs. This position will be primarily focused on diagnostic testing, laboratory capacity building, and training in Liberia, one of our international project sites. The position offers an opportunity to join an interdisciplinary program and work within cutting edge international research projects. The successful candidate will be responsible for implementing lab-based research, laboratory team development and management, and technical training of local personnel in molecular virology and serology techniques related to emerging disease detection under the USAID PREDICT program. The Lab Scientist will participate in project development, implementation, data analysis, and writing scientific manuscripts, reports and grants, working closely with both in-country science staff and EHA scientists in New York. The candidate should expect to spend a concentrated amount of time (approximately 60%) in Liberia in support of new and ongoing international field projects. When not traveling, the candidate will be based at EHA headquarters in New York City.

Responsibilities will include local oversight of the laboratory components of a large-scale, coordinated viral ecology project, while also training local lab technicians in real-time and conventional gel-based PCR techniques as well as serological assays. The Lab Scientist will help develop a cohesive lab team that will work with our field team to ensure safe, efficient sample handling, sample and information management, sample testing, and data management using existing project protocols. The Lab Scientist may also conduct training workshops and other capacity-building activities in the West Africa region including Sierra Leone and Guinea. The position will require interaction with local government officials and in-country US government personnel (e.g. US Embassy, USAID, CDC), often at a high level. Therefore, the successful candidate must have project management experience, maturity, diplomacy, and excellent interpersonal skills, as well as cultural awareness and sensitivity. The successful candidate will have experience working in resource poor settings as well as in well provisioned conditions, and a demonstrated aptitude for creative problem solving and working through logistical challenges. In addition to working in the aforementioned locations, the Lab Scientist should be prepared to support other EHA projects and programs as needed. The candidate will be expected to be proactive in developing collaborations both within EcoHealth Alliance and externally to both strengthen current projects and develop new research projects that fit with the mission and direction of EcoHealth Alliance.

Description and Responsibilities

The responsibilities of this position include:

  • Lead the development of a local laboratory technical team, in coordination with EHA’s PREDICT Country Coordinator and local field team, to safely and successfully handle test, and store biological samples according to project protocols.
  • Identify and train a small number of local individuals in BSL-2 safety, personal protection, PCR and serology techniques, sample management, data management, and data analysis, according to standard and project-specific SOPs.>
  • Assist with and develop other projects within the EcoHealth Alliance’s portfolio related to Emerging Infectious Diseases.
  • Act as a key liaison with in-country collaborators, US Government officials, including both scientists and policy-makers, and other partners.
  • Maintain and develop new relationships with local collaborators, including scientists and government officials.
  • Liaise with EcoHealth Alliance scientists to assist with development and planning of new avenues of scientific investigation.
  • Help generate quarterly and/or annual reports to funders.
  • Obtain necessary US and local permits and permissions, including ethical approval, to conduct research (e.g. IRB and IACUC) as well as to ship biological samples internationally.
  • Present research at scientific conferences, meetings, and EHA outreach.
  • International and domestic travel will be required to locations that may include the following: West and Northern Africa, the Middle East, South and Southeast Asia, and South and Central America. Expect to spend approximately 6-8 months per year in the field and the remainder of the time coordinating projects from the New York headquarters. Initially, the applicant should expect to spend 6-10 weeks continuously in Liberia working to establish a laboratory team and assist the Country Coordinator in preparing for and conducting field activities.


  • Minimum of a master’s degree (doctoral degree preferred) in molecular virology, microbiology, or related laboratory science field. Must have experience working with RNA viruses. Completed post-doctoral training is desirable.
  • Minimum of three years international laboratory experience related to the study of infectious disease.
  • Minimum of two years project management experience.
  • Willing to travel internationally for extended periods of time.
  • Previous experience training international laboratory teams mandatory.
  • International experience managing projects in West Africa is desirable.
  • Previous experience writing grant applications and with grant administration is desirable.
  • Publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
  • Excellent interpersonal and oral and written communication skills.
  • Fluency in English (proficiency in additional languages is a plus).
  • Cultural awareness and sensitivity.
  • Proven ability work independently under challenging field conditions.
  • A strong sense of team spirit and collaboration.
  • A sense of humor.
  • An understanding of the One Health framework and links between human and animal health and ecosystems.

The position is based at EcoHealth Alliance’s headquarters in New York City. EcoHealth Alliance is an equal opportunity employer offering a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefit package including health, dental, and vision coverage, and a 403(b) pension plan. For further information about EcoHealth Alliance, please visit our website: www.ecohealthalliance.org

How to Apply:

Send an email with a single attachment labeled with your first and last name only (“first last.pdf”) in PDF format containing with (a) a cover letter, (b) CV, and (c) three references to jobs@ecohealthalliance.org with “EHA 2016 LAB SCIENTIST” in the subject line. Emails without the subject line or with multiple attachments will not be received. No formal text is required within the body of your email, since emails will not be evaluated. All inquires will receive an automatic response confirming receipt. Applicants will be evaluated and only appropriate candidates will be contacted.

Thank you for your interest in EcoHealth Alliance!