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School of Biological Sciences Stephanie Porter Lab


We are currently recruiting motivated individuals to join our lab:

Seeking Research Technician: 

To reveal whether symbiosis between plants and microbes has shifted over the course of crop domestication, the technician will help design and conduct manipulative experiments in the greenhouse and laboratory (see research questions in Porter & Sachs (2020) TREE: Our lab has a large collection of wild and domesticated legume seeds and rhizobia bacteria ready for plant-microbe growth experiments to compare symbiotic outcomes for crops and wild species. We will be working in a brand-new, state of the art greenhouse facility with automated climate and irrigation controls, as well as an adjacent brand-new Life Sciences Building on the Vancouver campus. Successful applicants should be experienced in cultivating plants under controlled conditions and interested in using microbial inoculations in experiments. Experience with the collection, analysis, and curation of experimental data, and training in plant science/horticulture and/or microbiology are preferred.

This position is open until filled with potential start dates in Spring 2024. The successful
applicant will be compensated with benefits and a salary commensurate with WA state guidelines (likely starting around $36,000). The position is funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation and will initially be for one year, with the possibility of renewal for a second year based on satisfactory performance.

The Porter Lab is committed to creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive working environment. All members of the group are expected to share in this commitment. Candidates from groups historically underrepresented in biological science research are especially encouraged.

Vancouver, WA is located in the Portland, OR metro area and is a beautiful place to live and work. As the only public four-year educational institution in Southwest Washington, WSU Vancouver is dedicated to its land-grant tradition for openness, accessibility and service to people. Situated on 351 scenic acres, WSU Vancouver is in the homelands of the Chinookan and Taidnapam peoples and the Cowlitz Indian Tribe. Employees and students alike value the beauty of campus. Recognized by Insight Into Diversity magazine as a top college for diversity, WSU Vancouver is committed to advancing equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging in all that it does.

Interested applicants, please send a cover letter, CV, and contact information for 3 references to Informal email inquiries are also welcome.

Prospective WSUV undergraduate students: Check out the new Science Scholars Program! This program:

  • connects WSUV undergraduates to open research opportunities in campus labs!
  • highlights grants undergraduates can apply for to fund a research project!
  • highlights symposia where undergraduates can present their research!

Please contact Stephanie directly regarding possible internship opportunities. We are always interested in providing opportunities to participate in research for motivated undergraduates. Undergraduates tend to start work in the lab by assisting with ongoing projects and will be encouraged to develop their own independent project as they move forward. We encourage undergraduates who complete independent projects in the lab to present their findings at local scientific meetings, and can provide some support for this. Stephanie has supervised >25 undergraduate interns, many of whom have built upon their research experience as they have gone on to diverse professional careers in biology, medicine, and plant science.

Prospective graduate students: please take a look at the Natural Science Graduate Program at WSUV. I accept graduate students through the School of Biological Sciences’ Biology and Plant Biology PhD programs. WSUV offers teaching assistantship support for PhD level graduate students and I currently have grant funding to support student research on RAship for dissertation topics related to my research emphases. You can take a look at some of the other faculty who would make great committee members here at WSUV.

I encourage all my students to pursue their own funding opportunities. This gives students experience in developing a research proposal, and provides an avenue for funding independent research ideas. Fellowship opportunities for graduate students include the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program, and the Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship.

If you are interested, please contact me with a description of your research interests and a resume or CV that includes relevant coursework and your GPA.

Prospective postdoctoral scholars: I am happy to work with those interested in developing proposals for postdoctoral funding on other topics in plant-microbe evolutionary ecology (eg. US citizens: NSF, the Ford Foundation, or for international citizens, HFSP, etc). Please contact me directly regarding postdoctoral proposals.