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Microbiology Technician (G237-17CA)

School of Food and Nutrition, College of Sciences

We are looking to appoint an experienced Microbiology Technician to assist academic staff with teaching, research and industrial activities. The appointee will be familiar with the operation and maintenance of a wide range of technical equipment. The appointee will also maintain the stock culture collection. Prior research and industrial microbiological laboratory experience will be essential.

Location:Palmerston North
Term:Permanent
Grade:Grade E
Salary:$40,911 - $60,328 pa
Applications close:11:45 p.m. on 20 August 2017

Position overview

Massey University is seeking to appoint an experienced Microbiology Technician at the Manawatu campus.

This position will provide technical expertise in microbiology in the Microbiology suite for undergraduate teaching, contract work and support for postgraduate and staff research in food and industrial microbiology. The technician will have sole responsibility for the preparation of laboratory classes and assist the relevant academic in demonstrating to students. The technician will also provide technical support for postgraduate research students and be familiar in the operation of specialist equipment including PCR/molecular analyses equipment, flow cytometry, spectrophotometric analysis, growth kinetic analyser and fermenter operation. This technical support will also include academic staff and other students in research and industrial consultancy. The technician will also undertake testing for the food industry, commission and maintain laboratory equipment, train users in the correct and safe use of equipment and maintain the stock culture collection.

This is a position with a high level of responsibility, and previous research and industrial microbiological laboratory experience will be essential. The appointee will need to have good communication and time management skills, and enjoy working in teams and with students.

Job description

Purpose statement

To provide technical expertise in microbiology in the shared Massey Institute of Food Science and Technology (MIFST)/ School of Engineering and Technology (SEAT) microbiology suite for undergraduate teaching, contract work and support for post graduate and staff research in food and industrial microbiology.

Responsible to

Professor, Food Safety and Microbiology

Key accountabilities

  1. Technical support for the microbiology teaching laboratories

Responsibility: Sole responsibility for the preparation of laboratory classes and assisting the academic in demonstrating. Note we do not hire students to assist with demonstrating.

  1. Technical support for the post graduate research students

Responsibility: Training in the operation of specialist equipment including:

• PCR/molecular analyses equipment
• Protrol (Death kinetics)
• Epifluorescence microscopy
• Flow cytometry
• Microtitre plate reading
• Centrifugation
• Spectrophotometric analysis
• Impedance analysis
• Advice on general microbiological techniques – testing protocols.
• Growth kinetic analyser
• Fermenter operation

  1. Technical support for academic staff and students
    • Providing testing and analysis for academic staff required for their industry consultancy and research
    • Providing analysis and/or training for final year BFoodTech(Hons) students for their industry funded research projects

  2. Contract testing for the food industry, food pilot and other clients
    • Doing microbiological tests for clients in Riddet Innovation for products manufacturing in the FoodPilot
    • Doing microbiological tests for samples from the food industry via the Manager of the Nutrition Laboratory
    Note the number of samples from both sources is increasing at a rate of 20% per year. The Food Chemistry lab is also stretched to cope with the current number of samples being received and some of this flows into the Microbiology laboratory.

  3. Commissioning and maintaining laboratory equipment
    • The microbiological laboratory has specialist equipment that requires regular maintenance. This is important to ensure the validity of results for external clients paying for testing and research.

  4. Training users in the operation of laboratory equipment
    • Each new research student requires training. This extends to students from other parts of the MIFST not based in the laboratory but requiring the use of equipment for part of their research.

  5. Maintaining the stock culture collection
    Responsibility:
    • Responsible for safe and secure storage of stock cultures required for research and teaching. We hold an extensive culture collection of isolates vital for research projects.
    • Tracking cultures have been imported into NZ under strict biosecurity guidelines. This is a requirement for the operation of a PC2 facility.

Person specification

Qualifications

BSc or higher

Experience

Microbiological laboratory experience through prior research or industrial experience

Personal attributes and behaviours

Ability to work in a team
Good interpersonal and communication skills
Ability to work co-operatively and independently
Ability to solve problems with technical equipment
Competence in microbiology and molecular biology

 

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