Job Description

Payroll Title:
Hiring Pay Scale
$20.67 - $22.28 / Hour
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
TX Contract
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
Days, 8 hrs/day, Mon-Fri

#121386 Lab Assistant 2

Extended Deadline: Fri 4/7/2023

UC San Diego values equity, diversity, and inclusion. If you are interested in being part of our team, possess the needed licensure and certifications, and feel that you have most of the qualifications and/or transferable skills for a job opening, we strongly encourage you to apply.

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 02/10/2023 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 02/21/2023 Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.

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


The School of Biological Sciences is a large and complex school within Academic Affairs and is overseen by the Dean of Biological Sciences with the assistance of Associate and Assistant Deans and the Chief Operations Officer. BioSci has four academic departments, Cell and Developmental Biology, Ecology Behavior and Evolution, Molecular Biology and Neurobiology with a Shared Services Administration unit supporting the the Dean, the School and the four departments. This position is within the Neurobiology section. The School has over 100 faculty FTE, 17 teaching professors, ~50 professional researchers, ~150 postdoctoral scholars, ~55 adjuncts, ~20 Unit 18s, ~145 staff in career/casual titles, and ~425 student workers and volunteers and involves members of ~9 bargaining units. There are approximately ~5,500 undergraduate students enrolled in 8 majors, with annual enrollments of ~28,000 students (~9300 per term); ~350 graduate students with annual enrollments of ~2,400; more than $34 million per annum in extramural funding, and approximately ~$65 million in total annual expenditures. The school occupies space in 10 buildings, totaling 302,000 SF, including class laboratories and instructional support space, research labs, and recharge facilities.

Our mission is to advance knowledge of basic biological sciences and apply our research discoveries in ways that improve human health, protect our environment and enrich our economy. We fulfill our mission every day by educating and preparing the next generation of scientists, physicians, medical researchers and educators for 21st century careers, and by increasing public understanding of biology and encouraging scientific discovery among K12 teachers and school children.

To learn more about this vibrant center of scientific discovery refer to the school's webpage at

Under supervision of the Principal Investigator (PI), the Lab Assistant will manage the satellite mouse facility. Work with the Animal Care Program to coordinate mouse deliveries, housing and daily care. Manage mouse breeding colonies, including genotyping and mating. Manage AALAS compliance, personnel training, lab safety, lab equipment and supplies. Maintain laboratory infrastructure and supplies for the lab and attend lab meetings.

Under supervision by the PI and other senior lab personnel, assist with conducting experimental procedures that include: performing surgeries on mice to prepare them for behavioral, optogenetic and imaging experiments; utilizing immunostaining and microscopy for histological experiments; and conducting imaging experiments in freely behaving mice. Conduct conventional histological techniques including tissue collection and preparation. Collect and organize data for record-keeping and publication. Apply conventional experimental methods, combining neuroanatomical, histological and behavioral approaches, and assist in experiments that aim to identify neural activity underlying motivation and affect. Perform other duties as assigned.

  • Must be willing to work occasional evenings and weekends as required to keep steady workflow and meet deadlines.

  • Must be able to work with rodents as animal subjects, and to work with bio-hazardous materials.


  • Graduation from high school or a GED and one (1) year of laboratory experience; OR two (2) years of college including courses in the biological sciences; OR an equivalent combination of education and experience.

  • Relevant experience working with and handling rodents in laboratory setting. Experience in behavioral studies with mice preferred.

  • Familiarity or experience in managing mouse colonies, including genotyping, crossing and creating and maintaining accurate breeding records.

  • Familiar with federal guidelines for Good Laboratory Practices for humane use of animals. AAALAC or AALAS certifications desirable. Knowledge of research animal care protocols and procedures as defined by AAALAC and AALAS, and governmental agencies, and sensitivity to the humane care of animals in research.

  • Proven knowledge of animal protocols and experience with animal care procedures, husbandry, anesthesia/analgesia requirements, postoperative care, euthanasia, experimental use records and carcass disposal of UCSD or another accredited institute.

  • Familiarity with small rodent surgery including anesthesiology procedures and chemical injections. Excellent experience and ability to perform brain surgeries, including precise and stereotaxic injections of dyes and viruses, and use of different brain atlases for precise injections of tracer compounds. Good hand/eye coordination and surgical skills and knowledge for fine dissection.

  • Familiarity applying and adapting protocols for histological immunohistochemistry, including: use of peroxidase and avidinbiotin complexes and fluorochrome-conjugated antisera for single and multiple labeling.

  • Skills in histology, including perfusion, brain sectioning, immunostaining, and imaging (both epifluorescence and confocal).

  • Demonstrated ability to train all lab members on proper methods for storage, handling and disposal of chemicals, biochemicals, hazardous chemicals and biohazardous materials including viral and bacterial preparations and radioisotopes.

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

  • Solid computer skills in Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, email etc. with the ability to independently learn new programs.

  • Excellent English verbal and written communications skills, to articulate information on one’s position, plan of action, evaluation or interpretation in a professional, logical, clear, effective, concise, and courteous manner. Skill at negotiating with various personalities and developing an internal and external network of contacts.

  • Effective interpersonal skills including tact, diplomacy and flexibility with the ability and experience to work in a team framework in conjunction with the Principles of Community with staff, faculty and students. Participate and contribute to discussions regarding procedures and goals of department.

  • Willingness and demonstrated ability to embrace and consistently uphold the UC San Diego Principles of Community for a collaborative work environment.


  • Must be able to work with rodents as animal subjects, and to work with bio-hazardous materials.

  • Must have good hand/eye coordination for animal surgery duties, etc.

Pay Transparency Act

Annual Full Pay Range: $43,159 - $50,738 (will be prorated if the appointment percentage is less than 100%)

Hourly Equivalent: $20.67 - $24.30

Factors in determining the appropriate compensation for a role include experience, skills, knowledge, abilities, education, licensure and certifications, and other business and organizational needs. The Hiring Pay Scale referenced in the job posting is the budgeted salary or hourly range that the University reasonably expects to pay for this position. The Annual Full Pay Range may be broader than what the University anticipates to pay for this position, based on internal equity, budget, and collective bargaining agreements (when applicable).

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

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.

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.

Application Instructions

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