[ES_JOBS_NET] Research Fellow, La Brea Tar Pits and Museum

Erika Marín-Spiotta marinspiotta at wisc.edu
Sun Feb 19 12:39:24 MST 2017

Research Fellow, La Brea Tar Pits and Museum
Los Angeles, CA, US

The *La Brea Tar Pits and Museum* (LBTPM, Los Angeles, California)
seeks a *Research
Fellow* to join an NSF-funded project to reconstruct paleo-food web models.
The successful candidate will help design, implement, and assess a
classroom-based citizen science initiative to process and identify plant,
insect, and/or other animal microfossil samples from Project 23, a series
of excavations that preserve late Quaternary microfossils within an
asphaltic matrix. The Research Fellow will work closely with an
interdisciplinary team of researchers at La Brea (PIs L. Chiappe, E.
Lindsey, collections staff and volunteers), UC Merced (PIs J. Blois and J.
Yeakel), and the University of Maine (PI J. Gill) as well as with educators
from the Education Department and Citizen Science Office of the Natural
History Museum of Los Angeles County. He/she will be based at the LBTPM,
with trips to Merced, California and Orono, Maine as necessary.  The
Research Fellow will also have the opportunity to pursue independent
research questions related to the broader project goals of reconstructing
and assessing millennial-scale food web models and response to climate
change and extinction.

A member of the Natural History Museum’s family of institutions, the LBTPM
oversees the renowned La Brea Tar Pits, one of the world’s richest Ice Age
sites that has yielded an estimated 5 million fossil specimens representing
more than 600 species of animals and plants of Late Pleistocene age. These
collections afford a huge potential for a broad array of research and
public programs and are continuously growing through ongoing excavations.
The Research Fellow will be expected to design, develop, implement, and
assess a crowd-sourced, classroom-based project to identify ice age fossils
from one of the most productive fossil sites in the world; integrate
results with a team effort to build novel, Bayesian food web models to test
food web responses to 50,000 years of climate variability; receive
cross-training in cutting-edge, interdisciplinary paleontology techniques
(e.g., fossil excavation, radiocarbon dating, paleobotany, stable isotope
ecology, Bayesian modeling); participate in project meetings with PIs as a
member of an interdisciplinary team; disseminate project results through
papers in peer-reviewed journals and conference presentations; help develop
classroom modules for implementation in schools in California and Maine;
facilitate an active communication with schools and teachers; and
contribute to research shaping future exhibits at the LBTPM, which receives
350,000 visitors per year.

The Research Fellow will also be offered: access to excellent laboratory
facilities in California and Maine; the opportunity to conduct research
that advances basic and applied science, with a strong outreach component;
mentorship and training by an interdisciplinary and interdepartmental team
committed to advancing early career researchers, diversity in STEM, and
strong communication skills; a vibrant region to live and work with a high
quality of life; training and mentoring for exciting career opportunities
in education, academia, museums, or outreach.

The successful candidate will have an MS (PhD preferred) in Biology or
Biology Education, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Geoscience,
Paleontology, Museum Studies, or a related field. Other preferred
qualifications include: experience working with museum outreach, citizen
science, and/or biology education; familiarity with Quaternary paleoecology
and paleoclimates and/or California flora and fauna; and demonstrated
research success through peer-reviewed publications. A passion for working
with students and teachers as well as outstanding written and oral
communication skills are paramount (fluency in Spanish is highly

The position is for up to 36 months, with annual renewal pending
satisfactory progress. While the Research Fellow will report to Senior Vice
President of Research and Collections, he/she will work together with staff
from the La Brea Tar Pits and Museum, the Education Department and Citizen
Science Office to meet the educational components of the position.
Competitive salary, plus an excellent benefits package is available for
eligible employees. For more information, please see nhm.org.

Applicants should send a cover letter indicating their interest and
qualifications for this position (including a paragraph outlining potential
projects of interest), a CV, and contact information for three professional
references to *Tyler Hayden* at thayden at nhm.org. Please also direct any
questions about the position or application to thayden at nhm.org
<thayden at nhmm.org>.

*The application deadline is March 15th*. The start date is expected during
Summer 2017.

*The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is an Equal Opportunity
Employer. *
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