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New Contributor III

Two Year Post Doc Position with Dr. Tom Roper available at Virginia Commonwealth University

A two year postdoctoral position is available at Virginia Commonwealth University in the Chemical and Life Sciences Engineering Department.  VCU, in collaboration with MIT, University of Washington and the Clinton Health Access Initiative, has received funding from the Gates foundation to undertake research to reduce the cost of medically important therapies which will impact health in lower income countries.  This is a unique opportunity to expand your scientific skills and impact global health in a positive way. 

The research project will involve redesigning and/or improving the preparation of these molecules using both chemistry, biocatalytic and/or chemical engineering techniques with the intent of cost reduction, and efficiency using the principals of green chemistry.  Ultimately we envision moving these existing processes from the existing batch to more efficient chemical, biocatalytic and continuous flow manufacturing processes. This exciting opportunity will afford the opportunity to work and collaborate with MIT, the University of Washington, and the Clinton Health Access Initiative. 

The successful applicant will need to be interested with mentoring and supporting graduate and undergraduate students and have the skills to do so, as well as work in collaboration with a larger and more diverse group of scientists working in the general field of Pharmaceutical Engineering. 

Basic Qualifications: 

  • Ph.D.  in Organic Chemistry, Chemical Engineering or related field
  • Experience with modern organic synthesis and associated techniques (if Organic Chemist)
  • Experience with scale-up modeling and kinetics and an understanding of continuous chemistry concepts (if Chemical Engineer)
  • Experience with parallel chemistry operations
  • Expertise in modern analytical techniques including NMR, IR, CG.  Knowledge of HPLC is particularly important for this position
  • The desire to be a leader in the laboratory, helping others who are less experienced, and ensuring the highest levels of laboratory safety are ensured.
  • Excellent communication skills are needed to ensure accuracy of reporting, including the ability to develop and justify original research proposals, compose manuscripts for publication, and verbally describe research efforts.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in multi-disciplinary teams, displaying excellent interpersonal skills, as well as the ability to develop research plans for multiple individuals
  • An Entrepreneurial mindset
  • Generate conclusion reports, present data in team meetings & participate in writing of abstracts & publications
  • Conduct scientific work programs and make contributions both independently or as a member of a team with other R&D staff
  • Work through problems logically and apply innovative solutions
  • Maintain customer focus, motivate self, and demonstrate a high degree of urgency
  • Use scientific literature and database resources in the execution of project related work

Preferred Qualifications (a selection of these):

  • Experience with flow chemistry and conversion of batch processes to flow
  • Using kinetic understanding, predict the ability of a reaction to be carried out in flow
  • Use the principals of green chemistry to drive the improvement of processes and use metrics to measure the impact.
  • Experience with development and/or screening of biocatalysts and biocatalytic processes directed towards chemical transformations.
  • Experience in Design of Experiments (DOE) and how the technique is used.

  You will be joining the laboratory of Dr. Tom Roper who recently joined VCU after a 22 year career at GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals.  Dr. Roper held senior positions in the Pharmaceutical Development Division of GSK, including responsibilities for Process R&D and Analytical development for API in the US, and most recently was the Global Head of Exploratory Development Sciences. 

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