Job Description

Payroll Title:
Salary Range
Commensurate with Experience
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
RX Contract
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
Days, 8 hour shifts, Monday - Friday

As a federally-funded institution, UC San Diego Health maintains a marijuana and drug free campus. New employees are subject to drug screening.

#117897 Histology and Imaging Research Specialist

Extended Deadline: Tue 10/11/2022

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 8/1/2022 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 8/10/2022. Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.


We are currently seeking a Research Technician to join the lab of Dr. Scott Sternson at The University of California, San Diego. The Sternson lab’s research investigates how the brain controls appetite. They study multiple circuits throughout the brain as well as the interactions between neural systems that mediate hunger, thirst, and stress. Critical to this effort, the lab develops cutting-edge deep-brain calcium imaging methods that are integrated with spatial transcriptomic techniques to build a rigorous, systematic framework for the cellular and molecular components of the entire sequence of appetite behaviors (food-seeking, consumption, satiety). Their goal is to use these detailed molecular and cellular models of appetite to develop mechanism-based treatment strategies for obesity and other neurological disorders.

The ideal candidate is an organized, proactive professional who will support a team of postdoctoral fellows with their research projects by performing sophisticated histological and fluorescence imaging work in support of the lab’s science. This position within the lab makes essential contributions for driving the science forward. We are targeting someone who is enthusiastic and passionate about research and would take pride in the work they do within a cutting-edge scientific lab. This is an excellent opportunity for someone looking to build their career, and this position is well-suited for a long-term career using histology and imaging for molecular analysis of detailed brain and organ anatomy.


  • Experience with fluorescence confocal or selective plane illumination ("light-sheet") microscopy

  • Prior experience with any type of histology work (RNA-FISH or in brain preferred, but not required; Prior experience with histology in brain tissue a strong plus )

  • Previous experience with mouse handling is a plus

  • Ability to keep accurate records of work performed.

  • Actively seeks opportunities to increase skills and expertise.

  • Able to learn complex tasks with general instruction.

  • Able to use experience to perform a variety of new techniques.

  • Experience with ImageJ a plus.

  • Proven ability to make innovative and independent significant contributions to research projects and protocols including development, design, and implementation into research.

  • Work both independently and collaboratively with other team members to support the science of the lab

  • Demonstrated ability to make important original contributions pertaining to the experimental investigation and analysis of multiple complex research projects including design and direction of multiple research projects, experimental design, coordination of collaborations, experimental execution, data analysis, and production of research finding for publications.

  • Excellent verbal, written, and electronic communication skills that facilitate professional, effective, and courteous interaction with a diverse population.

  • Solid computer skills using MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, email system, and a variety of web-based programs. Demonstrated ability to create and maintain databases, perform standard computer tasks, learn new programs/applications with minimal direction.

  • Outstanding organizational skills and ability to prioritize work. Demonstrated ability to be well organized in execution of complex experiments with attention to details, keep meticulous, accurate and well-organized records of experiments, to analyze, interpret, report and record experimental results and produce results in graphic or visual formats.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills including tact, diplomacy and flexibility with the ability to work in a team framework in conjunction with principles of community with staff, faculty and students.

  • Knowledge of basic lab safety requirements and EH&S procedures. Knowledge and expertise to train lab personnel and students in safety guidelines, laboratory operations, and experimental techniques. Demonstrated experience working with chemical, radioisotope, and biological hazards. Ability to recognize and take appropriate measures to correct safety measures.


  • Employment is subject to a criminal background check.

  • Persons with disabilities may be able to perform the essential duties of this position with reasonable accommodation. Requests for reasonable accommodation will be evaluated on an individual basis.

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

If applicable, life-support certifications (BLS, NRP, ACLS, etc.) must include hands-on practice and in-person skills assessment; online-only certification is not acceptable.

UC San Diego Health Sciences is comprised of our School of Medicine, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, The Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science, and our Student Health and Well-Being Department. We have long been at the forefront of translational - or "bench-to-bedside" - research, transforming patient care through discovery and innovation leading to new drugs and technologies. Translational research is carried out every day in the hundreds of clinical trials of promising new therapies offered through UC San Diego Health, and in the drive of our researchers and clinician-scientists who are committed to having a significant impact on patient care. We invite you to join our team!

Applications/Resumes are accepted for current job openings only. For full consideration on any job, applications must be received prior to the initial closing date. If a job has an extended deadline, applications/resumes will be considered during the extension period; however, a job may be filled before the extended date is reached.

To foster the best possible working and learning environment, UC San Diego strives to cultivate a rich and diverse environment, inclusive and supportive of all students, faculty, staff and visitors. For more information, please visit UC San Diego Principles of Community.

UC San Diego Health 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.

Application Instructions

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