Senior Systems Engineer

Harvard Medical School

Boston, MA

Job posting number: #7227749 (Ref:hh-65291BR)

Posted: March 13, 2024

Job Description

Position Description

Our group in the Department of Neurobiology at Harvard Medical School is looking for an innovative and enthusiastic team member to join a multidisciplinary research laboratory. We are interested in understanding how computations arise from the organization and connectivity of neuronal networks. To analyze neural circuit structure and function at highest resolution and completeness possible, we combine structural and functional imaging techniques including high-throughput electron and X-ray microscopy, and in vivo two-photon calcium imaging. We seek an engineer with hardware and software skills. They should be capable of developing and working with custom instrumentation for high-throughput microscopy and big data.

Main projects include: 

  • Development and support of automated imaging platforms for electron microscopy;
  • Development and support of automated imaging platforms for X-ray microscopy (eg. microCT);
  • Development and support of high-throughput multi-photon microscopes for volumetric in vivo imaging;
  • Development and support of custom instrumentation for measuring and controlling environments and behaviors;
  • Development and support of a large data handling infrastructure, data processing, and analyses.

Success will require a close working collaboration with biologists and the ability to independently develop solutions to address biological questions. Building and optimizing novel hardware and software pipelines will play a vital role in helping us achieve our biological aims.

Typical duties of the Functional Connectomics Engineer include:

  • Independently developing and maintaining hardware for electron, X-ray, and light microscopy;
  • Developing software to generate and process large-scale image data;
  • Instrumentation systems oversight and programming;
  • Project management, particularly management and supervision of engineering and design projects of students and postdocs;
  • Communicating with vendors and coordinating jobs with internal and external service providers and collaborators;
  • Documenting projects and communicating project progress.

We offer the opportunity to:

  • Apply your skills toward understanding the brain in a vibrant academic environment;
  • Do cutting edge science with a supportive and collaborative team;
  • Invent techniques and technology with potential for patents and commercialization;
  • Author academic papers.
Basic Qualifications
  • Minimum of five years’ post-secondary education or relevant work experience
Working Conditions
  • Occasionally required to work outside of normal business hours, and may be contacted during off hours
Additional Qualifications and Skills
  • Bachelor's Degree in engineering, computer science, life or physical sciences or a related discipline preferred
  • An advanced degree in science or engineering
  • Highly proficient in Python - programming experience in other languages (e.g., C, Java, MATLAB)
  • Experience with electron microscopy and electron-optics
  • Experience with nano-positioning systems
  • Experience with non-linear (multi-photon) optics and laser scanning microscopy
  • Experience with customized instrumentation for behavioral measurement and control, including closed-loop virtual reality environments
  • Proficiency with custom machining
  • Work experience in biomedical research and/or an academic science environment
  • Management experience, particularly in an instrumentation shop or maker-space
  • Demonstrated experience teaching or training in an informal setting
  • The successful candidate will be self-motivated, skilled at prioritization, creative, and enjoy working in a dynamic and intellectually stimulating environment
  • S/he will be skilled at translating research problems into well-defined technical specifications and then designing, building, and help support user-friendly instrumentation; s/he will have excellent interpersonal skills; enthusiasm for collaborating closely with biologists; engineering and data science skills; and the ability to communicate clearly for a broad audience
  • Demonstrated experience in instrumentation engineering
  • Proficiency in a at least one programming language including, but not limited to, Python or MATLAB
Additional Information
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.

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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.

Harvard Medical School strives to cultivate an environment that promotes inclusiveness and collaboration among students, faculty and staff and to create new avenues for discussion that will advance our shared mission to improve the health of people throughout the world.

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More Info

Job posting number:#7227749 (Ref:hh-65291BR)
Application Deadline:Open Until Filled
Employer Location:Harvard Medical School
United States
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