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Tenure Track Assistant Professor - Biomolecular Engineering

Virginia Tech

Blacksburg, VA, USA

Date added to AEES Website:

November 7, 2023

Date to remove from AEES Website:

January 4, 2024

About the Role


The Department of Biological Systems Engineering (BSE) at Virginia Tech seeks applications for a tenure track faculty position in Biomolecular Engineering (e.g., metabolic, enzymatic, bioprocess, biopharmaceuticals, biomaterials engineering or synthetic biology) at the Assistant Professor rank (9 months; teaching and research). We seek candidates who are motivated to contribute to a collegial, interdisciplinary community with a strong tradition of both fundamental and applied research.

Ranked (USN&WR) among all U.S. programs as 10th in undergraduate programs and 12th in graduate programs, the BSE department currently has 24 tenure-track faculty, 51 graduate students, and 130 undergraduate students. The Department's program in Biotechnology and Bioprocess Engineering is dynamic and rapidly expanding with innovative ongoing research in biopharmaceuticals, renewable biofuels/biomaterials, metabolic engineering, engineered living materials, and synthetic biology. The BSE Department seeks to form a multidisciplinary team that can drive and support the regional and national biomanufacturing base through research, scale-up, and outreach efforts. The program's research laboratories are located in a state-of-the-art, collaboration-friendly research building on the main campus. The BSE Department is affiliated with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Engineering, which is ranked (USN&WR) among all U.S. engineering schools as 13th in undergraduate programs and 30th in graduate programs.

Virginia Tech is a public, land-grant university with an enrollment of approximately 36,000. Virginia Tech is committed to teaching and learning, research, and outreach to the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world. Building on its motto of Ut Prosim (that I may serve), Virginia Tech is dedicated to InclusiveVT - serving in the spirit of community, diversity, and excellence. Virginia Tech actively seeks a broad spectrum of candidates to join our community in preparing leaders for the world.

Virginia Tech's main campus is located in Blacksburg, VA, an area consistently ranked among the country's best places to live. In addition, Virginia Tech’s presence in the Washington, D.C., area offers unique proximity to government and industry partners. Virginia Tech’s activities in the DC Metro area are expanding rapidly, with Virginia Tech's new Innovation Campus in Alexandria, VA slated to open in 2024. Virginia Tech offers excellent opportunities for multidisciplinary collaborations, with potential partnerships that include the Fralin Life Science Institute, the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science (ICTAS), the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, the College of Veterinary Medicine, the Center for Applied Innovation in Agriculture, and other academic departments (e.g., Biochemistry, Microbiology, Food Science & Technology, Chemical Engineering).

The successful candidate will have a PhD in a relevant engineering/science-based discipline with at least one prior degree in an engineering discipline by appointment start date, an outstanding record of academic achievement, strong interest in and aptitude for undergraduate and graduate teaching and mentoring, an appropriate record of scholarly achievement, ability to work collaboratively on interdisciplinary research and instruction, the potential for securing extramural funding, and a willingness to expand disciplinary boundaries to address complex technical and societal challenges. Preferred qualifications include an excellent publication record in high-impact journals, engagement with undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral research experience, successful applications for research grants or other programmatic support, an established profile within appropriate professional societies, and experience working with the biotechnology industry. The successful candidate will be expected to initiate, build, and sustain an externally-funded, internationally-recognized research program that leverages the existing research strengths of the Biotechnology and Bioprocess Engineering focus area in the BSE Department. The successful candidate will contribute to enrichment of students’ academic experiences through teaching (and developing, as appropriate) undergraduate and graduate courses in core and specialized topics (e.g., thermodynamics, transport, unit operations, protein separations, metabolic engineering, bioprocess engineering, mathematical modeling and optimization). The successful candidate will also have the opportunity to advise graduate students and provide research opportunities to undergraduate students. International engagement and recognition are encouraged and expected as the successful candidate’s career advances. Position requires occasional travel to attend conferences and meetings. Completion of a criminal background check is required.

Applicants must apply online at (posting number 527533). Application materials include a cover letter, CV, up to three relevant research publications, and contact information for at least three professional references. In addition, applicants must provide a research statement and a statement of teaching and mentoring philosophy (up to three pages each) including the candidate’s ideas for supporting an equitable and inclusive educational environment consistent with the Virginia Tech Principles of Community; specific examples of experiences, activities, and plans will help us identify candidates who can support and extend our University’s commitment to inclusive excellence. Review of applications will commence on January 4, 2024 and continue until the position is filled. Questions regarding the position should be directed to the Search Committee Chair, Dr. Ryan Senger, at (540-231-9501).

The department fully embraces Virginia Tech’s Commitment to increase faculty, staff and student diversity; to ensure a welcoming, affirming, safe and accessible campus climate; to advance our research, teaching, and service mission through inclusive excellence; and to promote sustainable transformation through institutionalized structures. Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status, or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants, or on any other basis protected by law. If you are an individual with a disability and need accommodation, please contact the Human Resources Services Center at or at (540) 231-9331.

Required Qualifications

PhD in a relevant engineering/science-based discipline with at least one prior degree in an engineering discipline by appointment start date; An outstanding record of academic achievement; Strong interest in and aptitude for undergraduate and graduate teaching and mentoring; An appropriate record of scholarly achievement; Ability to work collaboratively on interdisciplinary research and instruction; The potential for securing extramural funding.

A willingness to expand disciplinary boundaries to address complex technical and societal challenges; Excellent oral and written communication skills; Willingness and ability to effectively supervise undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate researchers; Position requires occasional travel to attend conferences and meetings

Preferred Qualifications

Eligibility to become a licensed professional engineer; An excellent publication record in high-impact journals; Engagement with undergraduate and graduate students; Postdoctoral research experience; Successful applications for research grants or other programmatic support; An established profile within appropriate professional societies; Experience working with the biotechnology industry.

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