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Postdoctoral Associate

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado

Employment Type:

Research Faculty



Date Posted:


Job Summary

We are looking for a Postdoctoral Associate to join our team in the Beckman Center for Light Sheet Microscopy and Data Science as a light sheet microscopy specialist. This team member will build and integrate two light sheet microscopes to image a wide range of spatiotemporal resolutions from subcellular components of living cells to macroscopic samples such as embryos, organoids, and tissues. The postdoctoral associate will have the opportunity to collaborate closely with biologists and engineers, and to develop independent research projects. This role will be supervised by the Beckman Center leadership team of Palmer, Anseth, and Dragavon, and will have the opportunity to add additional members to their mentoring team. This is a unique opportunity to pursue instrumentation development and innovation, as well as apply advanced microscopy to diverse interdisciplinary research projects, and develop independence as a researcher.

Candidates must have a Ph.D. in science or engineering, and extensive experience building microscopes. Applicants should have expertise in optics, light sheet microscopy, microscope development, fluorescence microscopy, and be comfortable working with researchers from diverse biological fields. We value critical and creative problem solvers.

The University of Colorado Boulder is committed to building a culturally diverse community of faculty, staff, and students dedicated to contributing to an inclusive campus environment. We are an Equal Opportunity employer, including veterans and individuals with disabilities.

Who We Are

At the University of Colorado BioFrontiers Institute, researchers from the life sciences, physical sciences, computer science, and engineering are working together to uncover new knowledge at the frontiers of science and partnering with industry to transform their discoveries into new tools. The Beckman Center for Light Sheet Microscopy and Data Science is housed within the BioFrontiers Advanced Microscopy Core. Professor of Biochemistry Amy E Palmer, Tissone Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering Kristi S. Anseth, and BioFrontiers Advanced Imaging Core Director Dr. Joseph Dragavon lead the Beckman Center and will supervise the postdoctoral associate.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

  • Construct and integrate two light sheet microscopes:
    • An adaptive multi-view system for long-term live imaging of multicellular structures, and a lattice-light sheet-like system for live imaging of single cells. There is ample opportunity for instrumentation innovation and development.
  • Collaborate with your mentoring team to develop and implement independent research projects.
  • Once the integrated light sheet system is developed, the postdoctoral associate will collaborate with biologists and bioengineers to help them design experiments applying light sheet microscopy to a diversity of biological samples.
  • Help train users and maintain the light sheet microscopes, as well as develop educational and promotional materials about the instrument to increase its impact.
  • Work with the Director of the BioFrontiers Advanced Light Microscopy Core to help integrate the light sheet into the suite of imaging technologies found within the core.

What You Should Know

  • Position to start ASAP.
  • This opportunity is funded for three years, but we encourage qualified candidates to apply for external postdoctoral fellowships if appropriate, to support their career aspirations.
  • We are working in an interdisciplinary environment that prioritizes education, collaboration, diversity, equity, inclusion, and scientific impact, and are looking for candidates who share these same interests.
  • All University of Colorado Boulder employees are required to align with the campus COVID-19 vaccine requirement. New employees must provide proof of vaccination or receive a medical or religious exemption within 30 days of employment.

What We Can Offer

  • $65,000 is the salary for this position annually. 
  • Relocation assistance is available.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be ambitious. Be pioneering. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • A Ph.D. in the sciences or engineering (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Engineering, or related fields).
  • Significant experience in light microscopy and microscope development, preferably expertise in light sheet microscopy.
  • Experience in programming for device control (LabView or other), data representation, and image analysis.

What You Will Need

  • A deep understanding of optics, lasers, fluorescence microscopy, engineering, and programming.
  • Skills in critical and creative thinking for system troubleshooting.
  • Strong communication skills for educational and collaborative projects.

What We Would Like You To Have

  • Python or MATLAB.
  • Experience in data visualization and analysis.
  • Background in data management for large data sets.
  • Experience applying microscopy to biological questions.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials:
  1. Resume/CV
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Please submit a document that describes your Microscopy experience: 
    • In the “Description of Microscopy Experience” document, please detail any experience you have with optics, building microscopes, data management and data processing, and image analysis.  If this work led to publications or patents, please include references. (Up to two pages)
  4. Optional: Transcripts/Proof of Degree
If you are selected as the finalist, your degree will be verified by the CU Boulder Campus Human Resources Department using an approved online vendor.  However, if your degree was obtained outside of the United States, please submit a translated version (if applicable) as an optional attachment.

During the application process you will need to enter contact information for a reference.  We will request the letter of recommendation and additional materials, if needed, as the search progresses.

Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

Note: Application materials will not be accepted via email.  For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Information

Posting Contact Name: Mae Hsu

Posting Contact Email: