Job Openings >> Research Biologist and Instructor
Research Biologist and Instructor
Title:Research Biologist and Instructor
Department:Conservation Research
This position includes teaching and research activities focused on freshwater ecology in the Great Lakes region. The incumbent will be the lead instructor for an annual Freshwater Ecology course offered through the Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area (ACCA). Responsibilities for the course will include developing lecture material, organizing field excursions, teaching the course, and managing associated logistics. Research responsibilities will include developing and executing an applied research project focusing on migratory fishes or other high-priority topics for the Great Lakes. Research using the aquarium facilities of the Conservation Research Department is encouraged, as well as using other existing Shedd assets when appropriate. Some outreach effort (e.g. Great Lakes FishFinder app) is also expected.

Duties & Responsibilities:
  • Demonstrate professionalism in accordance with Shedd’s mission and values.
  • Manage budget and logistics for own Great Lakes research project(s)
  • Manage budget and logistics for Freshwater Ecology course
  • Nurture coordination and collaboration with academic and agency researchers in the Great Lakes region
  • Develop and teach the annual Freshwater Ecology course through Shedd’s ACCA partnership, including recruiting, teaching, and evaluating students
    • Work with program manager and administrative assistant to ensure smooth functioning of all logistical and practical aspects of the course
    • Work with ACCA schools and Conservation Research manager to advertise the course and collect tuition payments
    • Prepare and deliver classroom lectures and Shedd-based activities
    • Plan, organize, and execute field excursions for the course
  • Develop and implement an independent research program focused on Great Lakes fishes, with special emphasis on migration and movement patterns. 
  • Partner with regional academic and agency researchers to coordinate and collaborate on priority research topics.  Shedd has particularly strong ties with the Center for Limnology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and joint research and outreach projects are encouraged (e.g. migratory fish studies; World Fish Migration Day outreach events)
  • Publish research results in peer-reviewed scientific journals
  • Publicize research activities and results through blogs, tweets, and other social media in accordance with Shedd Public Relations guidelines
  • Work closely with the Shedd Development team (and potentially outside collaborators) to write grants to support project costs
  • Work with other Shedd departments as needed to enhance Shedd programming (e.g., Learning programs, Development and Marketing initiatives)
  • Other duties as assigned

  • Minimum: Ph.D.
  • Preferred: Postdoctoral experience       
  • Minimum: 2 years managing an individual field research program
  • Preferred: 4 years managing an individual field research program, and familiarity with the fishes and management challenges of the Great Lakes region
  • Minimum: 2 years teaching college-level courses in the biological/environmental sciences
  • Preferred: 4 years teaching college-level courses in the biological/environmental sciences
Designations/Certifications: Must be willing to obtain Wilderness First Aid certification prior to teaching

To apply:                                                                                                                                                                   
Please submit a cover letter (maximum length 1000 words) summarizing your background, teaching experience, and research interests; a curriculum vitae; a brief synopsis of research ideas addressing Great Lakes fish migrations/movement (maximum length 1000 words); and pdfs of two papers/manuscripts. Please also provide names and contact information for three references. The letter, CV, and reference information should be sent to Megan Rachal ( To discuss the specifics of this position contact Dr. Chuck Knapp ( or Dr. Peter McIntyre (  

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