Job Description

Payroll Title:
Hiring Salary Range
$48,900 - $60,000 /year
Appointment Type:
Appointment Percent:
Total Openings:
Work Schedule:
8 hrs/day, Mon-Fri

#113902 R&D Engineer 1

Filing Deadline: Fri 2/18/2022

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 01/11/22 for consideration with preference for rehire. All layoff applicants should contact their Employment Advisor.

Special Selection Applicants: Apply by 01/21/22. Eligible Special Selection clients should contact their Disability Counselor for assistance.


Uses professional engineering concepts. Develops and proposes engineering plans and specifications for equipment and instruments with limited scope and complexity. Follows standard practices and procedures in analyzing situations or data from which answers can be readily obtained.

Under supervision, incumbent is responsible for the maintenance and operation of automated laboratory equipment for the Systems Biology Research Group. The application area for automation is primarily for adaptive laboratory evolution of microorganisms as well as additional areas such as strain phenotyping and characterization. The projects where the technology will be applied will be in the areas of strain construction for industrial biotechnology, combating antimicrobial resistance, and for general discovery.

The position will require skills for operating and troubleshooting automated equipment to meet project goals and knowledge about bacterial physiology. Knowledge on troubleshooting and repair is required for the automated platform and effective communication with vendors and service repair units.The position requires programming skills to augment software to control the automated equipment in multiple computer languages. The position requires the operation of the automated platforms with various microorganisms and environmental conditions to meet project goals and timelines. Most of the activities for the position will be on site.


  • BS degree in engineering or an equivalent combination of additional education and experience.

  • Basic knowledge of engineering principles and methods to perform entry-level professional engineering functions.

  • Experience in use of various computer software programs including Matlab, SQL, Python, JavaScript, CSS, and html (or similar languages)

  • Ability to work with bacterial cultures using aseptic technique for conducting physiological experiments such as growth characterization, clonal isolation, and preservation of cell lines.

  • Ability to conduct experiments using equipment including liquid handing platforms (e.g., Tecan), high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analytical equipment, benchtop and plate reader spectrophotometers and similar optical devices, and culturing platforms such as stir plates and culture shakers.

  • Knowledge of the fundamental concepts of the field.

  • Analytical skills, and strong skills in attention to detail.

  • Effective written and verbal communication skills.

  • Experience in the use of test equipment, the scientific method for running experiments, and interpretation of results.

  • Experience in implementation of the design process including defining the problem from verbal and written instructions, concept generation, use of engineering fundamentals to evaluate the feasibility, and project planning to meet cost and schedule objectives.

  • Experience with computers including installation of software.

  • Demonstrated ability to develop, design and follow through with fabrication of lab experiments.

  • Experience with MS Office (i.e. Word, Excel, PowerPoint) or similar web-based software platforms.

  • Experience in implementing engineering tests in a fashion that ensures reliable results are achieved.

  • Experience in use of computer software programs to support documentation and analysis of engineering projects. Ability to pickup new software packages as the project needs require.

  • Excellent interpersonal skills; ability to work and communicate with a wide variety of people; ability to communicate with a diverse group of people in a helpful, effective and informative manner, demonstrating tact and diplomacy; skill in expressing oneself verbally and in writing; knowledge of correct English grammar, spelling and punctuation.

  • Create a lab environment conducive for student and post-doc productivity, professionalism, and safety.


  • May be required to work weekends for various support and maintenance issues related to primary duties.

  • Ability to work some evenings and weekends to support tasks.

  • Background check required.

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.

Application Instructions

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