Full Job Description

Job no: 513958 
Work type: Research Faculty 
Senior management: Agriculture & Life Sciences 
Department: Hampton Roads AREC 
Location: Tidewater VA, Other – Virginia 
Categories: Research / Scientific 

Job Description 

Virginia Tech’s Hampton Roads Agricultural Research and Extension Center is recruiting a full-time postdoctoral associate to join a multistate, transdisciplinary team investigating the boxwood blight pathogen biology and epidemiology, and developing practical and sustainable management solutions for this disease. Boxwood is the No. 1 evergreen shrub crop in the U.S., and an iconic plant in American landscapes, including many historic gardens. Boxwood blight is an emerging disease that is affecting everyone on the horticultural chain from grower to consumer, while posing an increasing risk to the American boxwood heritage. 

This is one of the three postdoctoral positions we are recruiting for the project. These postdoctoral associate positions present tremendous opportunities not only to shape the future of boxwood and boxwood heritage through research and development but also to set a new model for plant biosecurity in the 21st century through stakeholder partnership and international collaboration. The post doctoral associate positions are great opportunities for junior scientists to develop and advance their professional career by honing their skills and connecting with peers and industry leaderships. Self-motivated scientists with a doctoral degree awarded no more than four years prior to the effective date of appointment with a minimum of one year of eligibility remaining are encouraged to apply. All postdoctoral associates are required to publish their research results in a timely manner. The postdoctoral position may have some managerial opportunities/responsibilities. These include: (1) to facilitate internal communications among 14 (co-)Project Directors (PD) and their associates at twelve institutions/labs located in seven states, a 10-member advisory panel (AP) representing different sectors of the environmental horticulture industry across the country, and many stakeholder and international collaborators, (2) to coordinate and review individual teams’ quarterly progress reports then assemble them into a quarterly newsletter and share with AP and other stakeholders, and (3) to schedule and organize quarterly project meetings (online only) and annual meetings, while assisting the Extension Team to translate research results into relevant outreach materials. 

This position is available on September 1, 2020. The postdoctoral associate will be housed in the Hong Lab. This position is benefit eligible and salary will be commensurate with experience. This postdoctoral associate will also receive close mentoring from other project 
leaders and Co-PDs of respective subject areas at collaborating institutions in addition to Virginia Tech. Further, the Postdoctoral Associate will regularly interact with AP and other industry leaders as well as international collaborators. 

In addition to the online application, required application materials include (1) a cover letter describing how your research experience matches the listed primary responsibilities and will help you succeed in the position, what your career goals are and, if you are hired, how you will use the opportunities to help advance your professional pursuits, (2) curriculum vitae, (3) two relevant research publications, and (4) contact information for three references. Review of applications will begin on August 17, 2020 and continue until a suitable candidate is selected. All inquiries should be directed to the Search Committee Chair, Dr. Chuan Hong at chhong2@vt.edu or 757-363-3908, 1444 Diamond Springs Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23455. 

Required Qualifications 

  • A PhD degree in plant science, microbiology, or a closely related discipline awarded no more than four years prior to effective date of appointment with one year of eligibility remaining.
  • A basic understanding of plant pathology, epidemiology, and plant disease management
  • Strong statistical analysis and modelling skills
  • Research experience with plants under control environments
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills

Appointment Type 


Salary Information 

Commensurate with Experience 

Review Date 

August 17, 2020 

Additional Information 

The successful Candidate will be required to have a criminal conviction check 

Must have a driver’s license check 

Must have an acceptable and safe driving record 

About Virginia Tech 

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech pushes the boundaries of knowledge by taking a hands-on, transdisciplinary approach to preparing scholars to be leaders and problem-solvers. A comprehensive land-grant institution that enhances the quality of life in Virginia and throughout the world, Virginia Tech is an inclusive community dedicated to knowledge, discovery, and creativity. The university offers more than 280 majors to a diverse enrollment of more than 36,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in eight undergraduate colleges, a school of medicine, a veterinary medicine college, Graduate School, and Honors College. The university has a significant presence across Virginia, including the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia; the Health Sciences and Technology Campus in Roanoke; sites in Newport News and Richmond; and numerous Extension offices and research centers. A leading global research institution, Virginia Tech conducts more than $500 million in research annually. 

Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status, or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants, or on any other basis protected by law. 

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact Dr. Chuan Hong chhong2@vt.edu during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to the event. 



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