Job Description

Payroll Title:
Hiring Salary Range
$71,000 - $115,500 /year
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Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
Days, 8 hrs/day, Mon-Fri

#115700 Director of the Cryo-EM Facility at UC San Diego

Extended Deadline: Mon 5/30/2022

For the safety and well-being of the entire university community, the University of California requires, with few exceptions, that all students, faculty and staff be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus and influenza before they will be allowed on campus or in a facility or office. For more information visit: Flu Vaccine Mandate / COVID Vaccine Policy

UCSD Layoff from Career Appointment: Apply by 04/19/22 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 04/28/22. Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.

Job posting will remain open until a suitable candidate has been identified.


The UC San Diego Cryo-EM Facility, administered by the School of Biological Sciences, is a cross-campus facility serving researchers from several academic units, including Physical Sciences, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Scripps Oceanographic Institution, Health Sciences, and the Skaggs School of Pharmacy. The Cryo-EM Facility is dedicated to the high-resolution imaging of molecular and cellular samples under cryogenic conditions. The facility currently houses four TEMs: (1) A Tecnai Sphera, a 200keV instrument with a LaB6 gun and equipped with a CCD camera; (2) A Talos Arctica, a 200keV instrument with a FEG, Volta phase plates and a K2 Summit direct- electron detector (DED); (3) A Titan Krios, a 300keV instrument with a FEG, Volta phase plates, a Quantum energy filter and a K2 Summit DED; (4) A second Titan Krios, equipped with a Selectris-X energy filter and a Falcon 4 DED. The facility also houses an Aquilos cryo-DualBeam for Life Sciences for the preparation of cryo-electron tomography samples using Focused Ion Beam milling, as well as all the ancillary equipment required for cryo-TEM.

The Facility Director will be responsible for the operational management of a multi-million dollar cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) facility and enabling outside users to benefit from its capabilities. Responsibilities include: managing the day-to-day operations of the facility, training users, and supervising scientists in all aspects of the use of microscopy equipment, sample preparation, data acquisition and processing. This position has responsibility for oversight of customer billing and adhering to core budget. Critical to the position will be the ongoing development and implementation of cutting edge techniques for sample preparation and imaging under cryo-TEM conditions; interfacing with potential users across the UCSD campus as well as the surrounding San Diego "Mesa" to help them develop and implement workflows for data collection and data processing; and ensuring that the software-driven automation of the microscopes incorporates the latest developments in the field. Work closely with the Cryo-EM Project Data Specialist who assists users in the preparation and imaging of biological cryo-TEM specimens.

The Director will apply their extensive knowledge as a research professional with an in-depth understanding of statistical and / or other analysis techniques designed to support research projects of broad scope and complexity. May function as a team lead.


  • Bachelor’s degree or higher in science, preferably in the Life Sciences, or equivalent combination of education and experience. PhD in physical or life sciences or related area preferred.

  • In-depth knowledge of research function. Extensive years of experience operating transmission electron microscopes, particularly those equipped with field emission guns.

  • Proven skills associated with statistical analysis, database management and systems programming. Advanced experience using software for automated data collection in transmission electron microscopes.

  • Advanced skills in analysis and consultation. Advanced coding skills, with the ability to develop and implement computational skills that improve the cryo-EM structure determination pipeline.

  • Strong ability to communicate complex information in a clear and concise manner both verbally and in writing. Must have excellent verbal and written communication skills and an ability to calibrate communication to the appropriate level of the user’s technical understanding. Skill at clearly and concisely communicating detailed information over the phone, in writing, and in person. Ability to communicate well with groups or individuals in both formal and informal settings.

  • Advanced project management skills. Ability to lead and influence within and external to project team. Must be able to quantitatively analyze scientific results, communicate effectively with faculty, students, staff, vendors, and service engineers, have an acute attention to detail, keep accurate and clear records, spearhead the planning and writing of instrument-related grant proposals as needed, keep abreast of scientific literature concerning relevant new instrumentation and specimen preparation and imaging techniques, and manage time, set priorities and meet deadlines.

  • Advanced research skills at a level to evaluate alternate solutions and develop recommendations.

  • Superior organizational and interpersonal skills.

  • Must have the ability to manage a large, multi-user research facility and to perform all duties with limited supervision

  • Excellent manual dexterity and visual acuity are required.

  • Previous teaching experience or experience training large numbers of students and staff in the operation of transmission electron microscopes (especially those equipped with field emission guns).

  • Knowledge/understanding and at least some experience with Safety Data Sheets, hazard communication and Injury and Illness Prevention Program. Familiarity with a Chemical Hygiene Plan addressing safety precautions including appropriate clothing and shoes, safe handling of chemicals, use of protective items. Willingness and ability to keep safety training current and consistent with research involvement.

  • Skill to operate a personal computer and demonstrated knowledge of databases, general computer applications, and programs including word processing and spreadsheets. Willingness and ability to update and increase computer skills and knowledge as needed.


  • Must be willing to be available to other users on site, via various communication modalities.

  • Must be willing to come on site when problems arise that require immediate attention.

  • Must be willing to work with cryogens.

Job offer is contingent on successful engagement in the UC COVID-19 Vaccination program (fully vaccinated with documented proof or approved exception/deferral).

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, gender identity or sexual orientation. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy see:

UC San Diego is a smoke and tobacco free environment. Please visit for more information.

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