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Postdoctoral Research Associate

Amherst College
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not specified
Date posted
Feb 22, 2024

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Job Details

Postdoctoral Research Associate

Amherst Campus
Full Time

Amherst has taken a leadership role among highly selective liberal arts colleges and universities in successfully diversifying the racial, socio-economic, and geographic profile of its student body. The College is similarly committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty, administration and staff.

Job Description:

Amherst College invites applications for a Postdoctoral Research Associate position in chemistry. This is a full-time, one-year position with the option for a one-year renewal. Given Amherst's distinction as one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country, the successful candidate will demonstrate the ways in which they bring value to and will work towards supporting a broadly diverse community.

The postdoctoral researcher will perform independent research on the photophysics of semiconducting colloidal nanoparticles (quantum dots) and nanoparticle-molecule conjugates with an eye towards three specific applications: artificial photosynthesis, bio-imaging, and quantum information science. The exact project area will fall within the broader themes of the Olshansky Lab and will be determined collaboratively between Professor Olshansky and the postdoctoral researcher. A primary goal of this research project is to support the postdoctoral researcher's growth as an independent researcher and will ideally produce a peer-reviewed publication.

The postdoctoral researcher will also be expected to train and mentor undergraduate students in the Olshansky lab and will assist in the instruction of either general chemistry or physical chemistry courses. These tasks are viewed as professional development opportunities for the postdoctoral researcher's training as a teacher-scholar. The postdoctoral researcher will be expected to take appropriate actions to support a diverse workforce and participate in the College's efforts to create a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming work environment.

Summary of Responsibilities:

Research Support
  • Carry out physical chemistry research projects in the Olshansky Research Laboratory
  • Read scientific literature and help develop new research directions
  • Analyze data and produce high quality figures summarizing work
  • Train undergraduate students in proper laboratory techniques
  • Train undergraduate students in data analysis
  • Maintain laboratory inventory and assist in ordering supplies

Instructional Support
  • Attend lectures for either a general chemistry or physical chemistry course for one semester
  • Hold weekly office hours or discussion sections to gain experience helping students in small groups
  • Assist with grading as appropriate
  • Deliver a small number of guest lectures in a course to gain experience as a lecturer


  • Ph.D. in Chemistry or related field
  • Demonstrated interest and skills in carrying out independent research
  • Excellent verbal and written communication, and organizational skills
  • Ability to work collaboratively, and the desire to train and support undergraduate students new to research
  • Experience with wet chemistry techniques
  • Familiarity with air-free techniques and Schlenk line operation
  • Experience with standard analytical techniques: UV-Vis, Fluorescence, FTIR, NMR, Mass spec
  • Experience with data analysis using programming (Matlab, python, R, mathematica, etc)
  • Some teaching experience in either general chemistry or physical chemistry
  • Experience working with or demonstrated commitment to working with a diverse community

  • Experience with nanoparticle synthesis, especially colloidal quantum dots
  • Experience with ultrafast optical spectroscopy including transient absorption and time-resolved fluorescence

Amherst College offers many opportunities for professional growth and development, continued learning, and career advancement.

Amherst College is pleased to provide a comprehensive, highly competitive benefits package that meets the needs of staff and faculty and their families. Benefits are an important part of our overall compensation, so it is critical that you review all of the options to ensure it meets your total compensation requirements. Click here for Benefits Information.

Interested candidates are asked to submit a resume and cover letter online at Please be sure to upload all requested documents prior to clicking Submit. Applications cannot be revised once submitted. (Current employees and students should apply by clicking on the Career icon from their Workday home screen) Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

To apply, visit



Amherst College

Amherst College prepares students to make a difference in the world. Our financial aid program is among the most substantial in the nation, and our student body is among the most diverse. At Amherst, you are part of a lively, inquisitive, devoted community of students, faculty, staff, and alumni who find inspiration in one another and in the process of learning.

Since our 1821 founding, Amherst has demonstrated steadfast confidence in the value of the liberal arts and the importance of critical thinking. Small classes, an open curriculum and a singular focus on undergraduate education ensure that leading scholars engage daily with talented, curious students, equipping them for leadership in an increasingly global and complex world.

Offering competitive compensation packages and a multitude of programs and services for staff, Amherst works to enrich the working life and support the well-being of each and every employee.

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