Research Associate

Temple University

Philadelphia, PA, US

The Water Health & Applied Microbiology (WHAM) Laboratory within Temple University’s College of Public Health announces the availability of one research associate position in the area of environmental health. The Water, Health and Applied Microbiology (WHAM) Laboratory is housed within the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics in the College of Public Health at Temple University. The lab is currently led by Dr. Heather Murphy. The lab team consists of research fellows, graduate and undergraduate students interested in the field of water and health. The laboratory primarily focuses on microbiological contamination of water supplies and the subsequent impacts on public health.


The researcher associate will work closely with Dr. Heather Murphy and the rest of the WHAM lab research team in the execution of three funded research projects through the Academy of Natural Sciences, PA Cure and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.


The research associate will contribute and support various different aspects of the above-mentioned projects including but not limited to; Drafting case study reports describing the practical applications of two sanitation planning tools, the Pathogen Flow Tool (PFT) and the Pathogen Mapping Tool (PMT).  These case studies will be used by current and potential stakeholders in Uganda to gain support for implementing the tools for their own sanitation planning needs, supporting various literature review activities, preparation of annual reports and milestone reports as needed; support enrollment and recruitment activities for the WET trial including reaching out to potential enrollment sites via telephone, social media, and e-mail to ensure adequate enrollment, support the creation of maps using GIS software that displays in an interactive manner water quality data across the Philadelphia watershed, perform tasks related to water sample collection on urban waterways within the city of Philadelphia as well as from private wells in rural PA, assist in the preparation of field gear, the collection of samples and the processing of the samples in the laboratory. Processing will include both physio-chemical and microbiological analyses, interact with households involved in the private well water study as needed, assist with data entry and data management for all studies as needed.

Required Education and Experience:

The desired candidate will hold a Bachelor’s degree in a field related to the environment with at least three years of relevant work experience or hold a Masters Degree with a focus in Environmental Health and >6 months of relevant work experience. An equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered.

Required Skills and Abilities:

*Excellent organizational and time management skills

*Excellent interpersonal skills and effective and oral and written English communicator

*Ability to multi-task as well as to prioritize multiple projects and quickly change direction and focus.

*Experience conducting reviews of the scientific literature and summarizing the findings

*Demonstrated computer skills, and proficiency with MS Office Suite programs.

*Working knowledge of GIS software

*Must be reliable and punctual

*Ability to work independently and in a team environment.

*Ability to communicate effectively with a diverse group of study stakeholders.

*Ability to interact well with all levels and types of staff and organizations and engage external partners in a professional manner.

Preferred/ Desirable:

*Knowledge of microbiology and environmental pathogens

*Laboratory experience in microbiology

*Knowledge in R

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter describing their research experience and training as it relates to the proposed position as well as research interests to Dr. Heather Murphy. The cover letter, current curriculum vitae, and a list of three references should be sent electronically to Dr. Heather Murphy, Ph.D., [email protected].

This is a grant funded position.