Researcher 2

University of Minnesota

Minneapolis / St. Paul, MN, United States 🇺🇸


Required Qualifications

BS degree in soils, engineering, or wastewater-related discipline and one (1) year of related experience or a combination of related education and relevant experience equal to five (5) years.
Experience in applied environmental research projects, including experimental design, data collection, data analysis and/or report writing and editing.
Experience must be related to one or more of the following topics: engineering, soil science, hydrology, wastewater management, soil drainage, or related discipline.
Position conducts field work in and around wastewater, including potential exposure to disease causing bacteria and viruses.

Must be able to lift 30 pounds.

Preferred Experience

Two years of post-degree professional experience in an emphasis area related to the position.
Experience working with onsite sewage treatment systems or small-scale wastewater management.
Project and program management.
Excellent oral and written communication skills.
Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships and collaborations with colleagues, partners, and stakeholders, including those that may have diverse missions, goals, and backgrounds.
Commitment to ongoing professional development.

About the Job

This position will assist with conducting research and developing education materials related to small-scale wastewater management (septic systems). The position will support the engineering and soil science staff of the Onsite Sewage Treatment Program (OSTP) located within the Water Resource Center, in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences.

This position also involves collecting, evaluating, comparing and reconciling research data so that the OSTP can achieve overall research and education objectives. Much of the work is field work across the State of Minnesota and may require long days and overnight travel. The position performs defined research-related work assignments requiring knowledge and experience in engineering, soil science and/or wastewater treatment disciplines. The researcher will work on projects for a variety of stakeholders and sponsors, including the Minnesota Department of Transportation, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and Board of Water and Soil Resources, among others. The position is annually renewable subject to performance and availability of funding.

Major Areas of Responsibility:

1. Research and field work (90%)

Working with other senior staff, the position generates, records, and analyzes water- and wastewater-related data. The position plans, installs, and monitors projects; records experimental protocols and data; and organizes experimental results.
Visits sites, collects soil and wastewater samples, conducts interviews, obtains administrative data from agencies, collects existing data, and carries out surveys.
Works with team members to create project plans that ensure that resources and staff are in place to meet the schedule.
Projects may include: Conducting multi-faceted wastewater and water resources research at Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) facilities, assessing and sampling for chemicals of emerging concern (CECs) in waste streams, evaluating septic tank modification effectiveness to reduce hydrogen sulfide, and assessing septic systems of various sizes and complexities across Minnesota.
2. Other duties as assigned, including, but not limited to program administration and OSTP educational programming (10%)

Assist in OSTP program administration and work with team members and partners to facilitate the state-wide onsite regulatory and licensing program.
Meet with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and other partners, as needed.
Work with staff to comply with University fiscal policies.
Provide input and recommendations in discussions about the local and statewide onsite wastewater research.

About the Department

The Water Resources Center is an interdepartmental unit of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences and University of Minnesota Extension. It is also Minnesota’s member of the National Institutes for Water Resources, giving it a Congressional mandate to conduct and organize research relevant to water resource concerns in the state. The center is the administrative home of the interdisciplinary Water Resources Science graduate program, involving over 100 faculty members spanning over 20 departments at the Twin Cities and Duluth Campuses. The center also provides professional training programs and hosts numerous events including the annual Minnesota Water Resources Conference.

How To Apply

Applications must be submitted online. To be considered for this position, please click on the Apply button and follow the instructions. Complete the online application and upload: (1) a cover letter describing qualifications, experience, and motivation for applying, (2) current resume.

Additional items listed below may be added by accessing your “My Activities” page and uploading documents there. 

Questions may be directed to Joel Larson, Associate Director, Water Resources Center ([email protected]).