Lab Supervisor, Physics

Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not Specified
May 27, 2021
Employment Type
Full Time
Physics Job Description

Job Summary

Manage lecture demonstrations and introductory physics teaching laboratories. Responsible for pre-class set up and testing of all apparatuses for the introductory physics laboratories to ensure in working order, in-class troubleshooting, and purchasing and maintenance of all instructional laboratory/demonstration equipment and supplies. Update and maintain equipment and experiment database and instruct faculty in its use.

This is a one-year, limited-term position with the possibility of renewal.

Take appropriate actions to support a diverse workforce and participate in the College's efforts to create a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming work environment.

Essential Functions

Lab Setup Pre-class Activities (60%)

Assembly, set up, and pre-class testing of introductory laboratory apparatuses and lecture demonstrations, as well as putting the equipment away when not needed, moving equipment among rooms and to/from storage. Manage student assistants (if any) and verify their work prior to start of classes.

Support during classtime (10% = 3.5 hr/week)

Be available at the start of class for emergency adjustments and repairs and check in to verify all needed equipment is present and working as intended. Assist during introductory physics laboratory sessions in place of student learning assistants on occasional basis as needed.

Maintenance (10% - 3.5 hr/week)

Update and maintain equipment and experimental activities database and instruct faculty in its use.

Other Functions

Miscellaneous Tasks (20%)

At the beginning of each semester, instruct and assist new faculty and student learning assistants in the setup and operation of electronic whiteboards and the video capture and display of classroom activities including in-class demonstrations, and then again as needed on an emergency basis during the semester, as these tasks are now regularly required by the college to meet student accommodations. Propose and develop new in-class demonstrations and/or improvements to existing demonstrations and experiments. Organization of equipment storage and coordination of lab classroom operations, including supervision of student assistants, if any. Participate in department outreach activities and other functions (such as presentations of the major) as needed; attend annual departmental retreat.

All employees are expected to participate in the College's efforts to create a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming work environment.

Minimum Qualifications (knowledge, skills, education, experience, certifications, licenses)

Bachelor’s in physics or related field required. Must be proficient in written and spoken English. Effective interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills are required. Knowledge and skills in the areas of instrumentation are required.

Experience working with individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Preferred Qualifications

Knowledge and skills in machining, electronics, and data acquisition systems is preferred. Experience in the field of physics education and/or laboratory instruction is preferred. Experience with databases is preferred.


Mechanical and electrical troubleshooting; data collection and analysis abilities sufficient to verify proper operation of lab equipment, and ability to use the lab classroom Macintosh computers for lab instruction, data collection, and analysis. Use of computer database and spreadsheet software for equipment tracking and purchases.

Additional Information

Ability to move heavy equipment is required. Occasional evening and weekend work will be required, such as for special college events and departmental retreats.


Please attach BOTH a current resume and a cover letter in order for your application to be considered for this position . You may combine your resume and cover letter into a single file or attach multiple files to your application, but BE SURE you have provided all attachments BEFORE SUBMITTING your application. You will NOT be able to attach additional files after you have hit the Submit button.

Review of applications will begin

June 14, 2021

Compensation Grade:

Grade I

Position Type:


About Smith College

Located in Northampton, MA, Smith College is one of the largest women’s colleges in the country and is dedicated to excellence in teaching and research across the liberal arts. A faculty of outstanding scholars interact with students in small classes, as advisors, and through student-faculty research projects. The College is a member of the Five College Consortium with Amherst, Hampshire and Mt. Holyoke Colleges, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Students cross-enroll and faculty cross-teach across the Five Colleges.

Smith College is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, age, color, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression or veteran status in the recruitment and employment of faculty and staff, and the operation of any of its programs and activities, as specified by all applicable laws and regulations. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.