Biology Upperclass Lab Assistant - Biology


The Upperclass Biology Lab Assistant should be an open-minded, willing to learn prospective Biology major familiar and comfortable with the following: willing to take and follow directions. He or she should be a person who appreciates a clean, tidy and organized workplace and be able to work around living and preserved organisms without squeamishness. Characteristics desired: Honesty, reliability, common sense. The candidate should have no known allergies to chemicals or preservatives. The position requires mostly manual work such as washing dishes, equipment, tables; unless in an actual teaching situation, the position will not require much conversation with busy faculty or other students. This work will require enough fine-motor coordination to wash glassware and handle equipment without breakage or damage. He or she should be able to stand on a ladder to reach higher shelves, and stand for necessary periods of time washing laboratory equipment or performing other duties. It is imperative that he or she have no known allergies to preservatives or chemicals normally found in a biology laboratory environment.

Work Schedule

 The Upperclass Biology Lab Assistant will make his or her own schedule at the beginning of the semester. The supervisor prefers the Upperclass Biology Lab Assistant to work Mondays through Fridays for hours per day, for a total of 9-10 hours per week.


 The successful candidate will be working in the Biology Labs and faculty offices. 


Specific duties include but are not limited to:

  • Check WGS Rooms 215, 216, 217, 218, 205, and 206 to see if there are dirty glassware, dissection tools, dissection pans, etc. that need to be washed
  • Return dried glassware, dissection tools, pans etc. to their proper storage cabinets or shelves
  • Wash lab benches as needed/directed, keep laboratories tidy
  • Help set-up and tear down each Bi 101 lab; help set up Bi 101 lab practicals
  • Check with each Biology professor in rotation to see if they have chores with which they need assistance. At times the student may be asked to do one or more of the following:
    • Grade lab quizzes or help set up a lab test
    • Grade the objective portions of Bi 101 lecture tests
    • Making photocopies for faculty
    • Organize hard copies of handouts or other papers
    • Run on-campus errands such as to bookstore, registrar, or other administrative office
  • Keep chalk boards, white boards, and their trays clean
  • Water all the plants at the end of each week
  • Consolidating used paper into recycling container
  • Put microscopes away properly in their designated places in cabinets with cords wrapped around bases, check microscopes for functionality
  • Occasional painting or cleaning
  • Learn to use autoclave and then autoclave bacterial plates
  • Learn to make sterile agar plates and then make them for the Bi 101 Microbiology lab
  • Time permitting, help set up Organismal Diversity labs in spring semester
  • Organize or post materials on a bulletin board
  • Moving equipment from one place to another such as from laboratory to basement storage area or vice versa
  • Other chores as needed

The successful candidate will have an exemplary work ethic, be able to assist the Biology Department and staff and students, understand the “big picture” while also not be afraid to roll up his or her sleeves to do the work that will support an academic community that nourishes the mind, body, and spirit of the whole student.

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