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Senior Research Technician - Shen Laboratory


Grand Rapids, MI
ID: 1012-085

Senior Research Technician

The people of Van Andel Institute (VAI) are what make us a global leader in biomedical research and science education. A hub for ideas and advancements, VAI is fueled by a community of bright minds who share a relentless curiosity and a deep commitment to making the world a better place.

We are currently seeking to hire a full-time Research Technician or Sr. Research Technician in the laboratory of Hui Shen, Ph.D. In this role you will provide support in performing established and new single-cell protocols, to study cellular and molecular heterogeneity in healthy and diseased tissues.    


Why choose the Shen Laboratory?

  • The Shen Lab is well funded for studies of the epigenome and its interaction with the genome in various diseases, with a specific emphasis on female cancers and cross-cancer comparisons.
  • The Shen team uses computational and experimental techniques as tools to understand the etiology, cell of origin, and epigenetic mechanisms of various diseases, ultimately aiming to provide evidence to devise better approaches for cancer prevention, detection, therapy, and monitoring.
  • Team members have experience and expertise with genome-scale DNA methylation and transcriptional profiles in primary human samples, having made major contributions to The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and Genomic Data Analysis Network (GDAN).
  • The lab culture is caring – one of independence and is a supportive environment.
  • Our innovative single-cell protocols are uniquely positioned and provide a powerful tool to study many aspects of biology.

In this position you can expect the following:

  • Single-cell NGS library preparation and quality control (QC).
  • Lab automation instruments operation.
  • Performing experimental protocols, particularly using our plate-based scRNA-seq protocol (STORM-seq).
  • Maintaining lab inventories, records, and sample tracking.
  • You will be required to work onsite to be able to complete the duties and responsibilities of this role.

To qualify for this position, you need to have:

  • Experience in NGS library preparation and QC.
  • Demonstrated experience in detailed record keeping.
  • BS in Biological Sciences or appropriate combination of education and experience.

The following skills are an asset to have and a growth opportunity for which we are willing to provide training for the right person:

  • Single cell library preparation
  • Laboratory automation
  • Cell culture experience
  • Flow cytometry experience

The top areas you will be measured on for success in the first 90 days:

  • Ability to create sequencing libraries
  • Attention to detail
  • If necessary, achieving milestones to fill gaps in experience

How to Apply: 

If you possess the desired qualification and attributes, we welcome speaking with you and strongly encourage you to apply today!

In your application, provide the following in one combined document:

  • cover letter highlighting key qualifications,
  • resume
  • names and contact information of 3 references.

This position will be open until filled and will be reviewing applications on an ongoing basis. If you have any difficulty uploading your application or any questions, please email Megan Doerr at


Who we are:

Van Andel Institute began with a vision: to improve human health.

Founded by the Van Andel family in 1996 in downtown Grand Rapids, Mich., the Institute is now home to more than 400 scientists, educators and support staff each one deeply connected to the work we do and driven by an urgent desire to make a difference.

Every day, VAI scientists collaborate at the forefront of fundamental and translational science in pursuit of breakthrough treatment strategies for cancer, Parkinson’s and other diseases. With a growing reputation as a worldwide hub for exceptional basic research, we engage the world’s brightest minds to leverage our unique catalytic collaborative approach to translate our discoveries through partnerships with academia, clinical, industry and philanthropic collaborators. We operate without walls — integrating diverse perspectives and our shared values, with the aim of orchestrating joint programs to accelerate the connection between discovery and impact.


Why choose the Van Andel Institute?

VAI is a hub for ideas and advancements fueled by a community of 35 faculty and over 400 scientists, educators, and support staff, each one of us deeply connected to the work we do and driven by an urgent desire to make a difference.

We understand that attracting the highest caliber of talent means offering an exciting job and high-quality benefits that meet one’s personal needs. Our benefits are designed to allow you peace of mind for your wellbeing and support our diverse and changing lives outside of work.

VAI also operates under a flexible/hybrid work model, offering as much flexibility as possible to support individual workstyles and provide stability, social cohesion, identity, and belonging. We believe by providing this flexibility our employees will continue to innovate and connect to the work we do and ensures we are driven by an urgent desire to make a difference.

The Institute is located in fun, affordable, and family-friendly Grand Rapids, MI. Located on the banks of the Grand River, Grand Rapids offers all the big-city excitement you'd expect from a million-resident metropolis, featuring hundreds of restaurants and nightspots, theaters, museums, sports, and concerts. The safe and clean downtown is surrounded by an eclectic mix of walkable neighborhoods.


VAI is committed to achieving excellence through increasing diversity. We actively encourage applications from women, persons of color, persons with disabilities, and other underrepresented groups.

Van Andel Institute is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) and Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA) Employer. 

As Van Andel Institute is a drug and alcohol-free employer, all prospective new employees undergo a urinalysis/drug test as part of our pre-employment process.  This is a 7-panel drug screen and it includes testing for Marijuana, Cocaine, Amphetamines, Opiates, PCP, Barbiturates, and Benzodiazepines.


This position is located at 333 Bostwick Avenue NE, Grand Rapids, MI. View the Google Map in full screen.