Research Assistant I

companyHarvard FAS
locationUnited States
PublishedPublished: 12/8/2023
Laboratory and Research
Full Time


Research Assistant I

Harvard Medical School


Position Description

The Gu lab investigates the critical role of the vasculature in brain function. Specifically, this position will be assisting in research on mechanisms of brain control of blood flow and the influence of blood flow on neuronal function and metabolism. Experimental methods include live imaging of brain function, optogenetics, electrophysiology, mouse genetics, and viral methods.

We are seeking a highly motivated, attentive, and independent individual for a full-time research technician position. The research technician will learn from and work primarily with Drs. Luke Kaplan and Shivang Sullere, to assist investigations exploring mechanisms of neurovascular coupling.

The technician’s responsibilities include surgical implantation of cranial windows in mice, basic molecular biology (viral cloning), and immunohistochemistry. The resources for these experiments are available within the lab and at core facilities on our campus. Although the focus is benchwork, the technician will also participate in weekly lab meetings with the option to participate in journal clubs. The technician will also have the opportunity to perform analysis and contribute intellectually.

Prior laboratory experience is required, along with strong organizational skills and an eagerness to learn. Experience with rodent surgeries is a strong plus. Willingness to surgically operate and interact with mice is a critical necessity of this position. Successful candidates will be independent, flexible, self-motivated, and able to assimilate new information and execute quickly. Past technicians have gone on to pursue PhD/MD/MD-PhD programs.

Basic Qualifications

  • College background or equivalent work experience, preferably in a related discipline.
  • At least, one- year of related lab experience.

Additional Qualifications and Skills

  • Bachelor's or Master's degree with prior experience in a wet lab environment.
  • Must have good communication skills, organization, and be a team player.
  • Experience in one or more of the following techniques would be preferred: stereotaxic mouse surgeries, craniotomy, mouse work, viral cloning & molecular biology, and injections. Otherwise, qualified candidates without mouse surgery experience can learn the procedures on the job, but all candidates must be willing to work with mice including performing survival and non-survival procedures.
  • Analytical skills to resolve problems that require the use of basic scientific, mathematical, or technical principles.
  • Some experience with programming, using MATLAB is preferred.
  • Candidates should be communicative with excellent interpersonal skills, attentive to detail, organized, and thoughtful about the protocols and techniques being executed.
  • Creativity, flexibility, and perseverance to troubleshoot and overcome inevitable experimental difficulties and changing experimental goals in light of new results.

Additional Information

Offer contingent upon successful completion of a pre-placement medical evaluation.

This is a one-year term position from the date of hire, with the possibility of extension, contingent upon work performance and continued funding to support the position. 

The health of our workforce is a priority for Harvard University. With that in mind, we strongly encourage all employees to be up-to-date on CDC-recommended vaccines.

Please note that we are currently conducting a majority of interviews and onboarding remotely and virtually. We appreciate your understanding.

The Harvard Medical School is not able to provide visa sponsorship for this position.

Not ready to apply? Join our talent community to keep in touch and learn about future opportunities! (https://www.gem.com ?formID=16341e35-cbc6-4904-88a3-09b35763307e)

Work Format Details

This position is based primarily on-campus, in Massachusetts. This may include in-person during emergency situations (if applicable). Additional details will be discussed during the interview process. Certain visa types may limit work location. Individuals must meet work location sponsorship requirements prior to employment.


We invite you to visit Harvard's Total Rewards website (https://hr.harvard.edu/totalrewards) to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:

  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.
  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.
  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.
  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.
  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.
  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.
  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

Job Function


Department Office Location

USA - MA - Boston

Job Code

403108 Research Assistant I Lab

Work Format




Salary Grade





55 - Hvd Union Cler & Tech Workers

Time Status


Pre-Employment Screening

Criminal, Identity


35 hrs. per week | Monday - Friday | 9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

We are committed to cultivating an inclusive workplace culture of faculty, staff, and students with diverse backgrounds, styles, abilities, and motivations. We appreciate and leverage the capabilities, insights, and ideas of all individuals. Harvard Medical School Mission and Community Values


EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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