Friday, September 28, 2018

View From Your Hood: umbrella edition

Credit: @QuantumTessera 
Via Twitter: "This is the outdoor workplace here in Lake Forest."

(got a View from Your Hood submission? Send it in (with a caption and preference for name/anonymity, please) at chemjobber@gmail.com; will run every other Friday.)

Thursday, September 27, 2018

The Medicinal Chemist Jobs List: 212 positions

The Medicinal Chemist Jobs list (curated by Joel Walker and myself) has 224 positions.

Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions, but if you want to do the traditional "leave a link in the comments", that works, too.

Want to chat about medchem positions? Try the open thread.

Positions I'm not including: positions outside the United States, computational positions (this will likely change), academic positions (likely never.)

The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List: 7 positions

The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List has 7 positions; this is curated by the ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry. Want to help out? Fill out this form. 

23 new positions at Organic Chemistry Jobs

Over at Common Organic Chemistry, there's 8 new positions posted for September 26 and 15 positions posted for September 23.

The Computational Drug Discovery Chemistry Jobs List: 32 positions

The Computational Drug Discovery Chemistry Jobs List has 32 positions. This list is curated by Joel Walker. 

The Process Chemistry Jobs List: 224 positions

The Process Chemistry Jobs List has 224 positions.

Want to help? Here's a form to fill out.

Want to chat process jobs? Try the open thread. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Warning Letter of the Week: It's 5 o'clock somewhere edition

Via a missive to the President and Owner of Pharmaceutical Laboratories and Consultants, Inc. in Addison, IL, a certainly unusual comment:
Shared Space with Non-Drug Operations
In addition, our inspection revealed that you were operating a microbrewery in space shared with your contract testing laboratory where you test OTC drug products and components. You prepared and stored microbiology laboratory media in the same area you use to conduct brewery operations.

For example, our investigators observed a full fermenter located approximately ten feet from the space where media is prepared, warmed, and stored. A brewery employee was also preparing beer kegs in this area. In addition, laboratory test media, open beer bottles, and brewing materials were co-mingled within the same refrigerator.

These facility conditions pose unacceptable risks, including contamination of media during its preparation and compromised sample analyses. Conducting your testing operations in a space shared with a microbrewery is inappropriate and does not comply with CGMP. Your testing must be performed using facilities that are designed and controlled for drug laboratory testing.
What's wrong with mixing business and pleasure? (Answer: lots, in this case.)  

This week's C&EN

A few articles from this week's issue of Chemical and Engineering News:

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List: 301 positions

The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List (curated by Andrew Spaeth and myself) has 301 positions.

Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

On September 26, 2017, the 2018 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List had 296 positions.

Interested in how this is tracking overall? Check out these sweet graphics done by Andrew Spaeth.

Want to see pre-September discussion? Check out the pre-September open thread. Current discussion is on the September open thread. 

Otherwise, all discussions are on the Chemistry Faculty Jobs List webforum.

The Chemical Engineering Faculty Jobs List: 34 positions

The Chemical Engineering Faculty Jobs List has 34 positions. It is curated by Lilian Josephson (@lljosephson). 

Job posting: NMR facility director, Baylor University, Waco, TX

From the inbox, a position at Baylor:
Director, Center for NMR Spectroscopy 
The purpose of this position is to provide expertise in the scientific field of Nuclear Magnetic Resonance. Specifically, this position will oversee all aspects of the NMR and EPR facilities at Baylor University.   
Qualifications: 
  • Experience developing and implementing new NMR experiments especially multi-dimensional NMR. 
  • Possess an in-depth understanding of NMR spectroscopy and structure elucidation;
  • Demonstrated ability to apply 1D, 2D and heteronuclear NMR techniques specifically to the structural elucidation of small molecules.
  • All employees are expected to fully support Baylor’s mission to educate men and women for worldwide leadership and service by integrating academic excellence and Christian commitment within a caring community.
Link to full ad here. Best wishes to those interested. 

The Academic Staff Jobs List: 16 positions

The Academic Staff Jobs list has 16 positions.

This list is curated by Sarah Cady. It targets:
  • Full-time STAFF positions in a Chem/Biochem/ChemE lab/facility at an academic institution/natl lab
  • Lab Coordinator positions for research groups or undergraduate labs 
  • and for an institution in Canada or the United States
Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

Want to chat about staff scientist positions? Try the open thread.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Hotel coffee cups

A list of small, useful things (links):
An open invitation to all interested in writing a blog, a hobby that will bring you millions thousands hundreds tens of dollars joy and happiness. Send me a link to your post, and I'd be happy to put it up.

Have a good weekend!

Request: your favorite laptop bag

I need your help. I bought this Samsonite laptop bag (17 inch) sometime last year. It's beginning to fall apart now. It gets daily use and has been to other continents and back, and for something that I paid less than fifty bucks for, it's not a bad value.

However, the stitching on the main strap is beginning to fall apart at the seams, which makes taking this bag to Europe and the like a little risky. Anyone have a suggestion for a great laptop bag? Needs to be able to hold a ridiculously large laptop (14 inch screen) and a raft of paper that never gets looked at, and also a couple of larg-ish notebooks.

Readers, what do you use? (I'm pretty set on a laptop bag, as opposed to a laptop backpack.) I'd like to not buy one for a while, so my wallet is a little more open than normal. 

Thursday, September 20, 2018

The Medicinal Chemist Jobs List: 205 positions

The Medicinal Chemist Jobs list (curated by Joel Walker and myself) has 205 positions.

Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions, but if you want to do the traditional "leave a link in the comments", that works, too.

Want to chat about medchem positions? Try the open thread.

Positions I'm not including: positions outside the United States, computational positions (this will likely change), academic positions (likely never.)

The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List: 6 positions

The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List has 6 positions; this is curated by the ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry. Want to help out? Fill out this form. 

Job postings: medicinal chemistry, Broad Institute, Cambridge, MA

From the inbox, two positions at The Broad Institute: 
Research Scientist II - Organic Chemistry (Ph.D. w/"3+ years of research experience beyond postdoctoral training in an academic or industrial setting") 
We are looking for a highly motivated and talented chemist within CDoT to support advancement of compounds from PRISM screening. The PRISM multiplex screening platform efforts are yielding many hits with provocative predictive biomarkers and patterns of sensitivity.  This position will be part of a multidisciplinary team challenged with identifying the targets and mechanism of action of these hit compounds, and advancing the compounds to later stages of drug discovery.  
Ideally you will have experience establishing SAR for chemical probes and having contributed to project teams at early stages from Target and Hit Identification through Lead Optimization. You will work closely with other chemists, cell biologists, biochemists, structural and biophysical scientists and pharmacologists. Having dual reporting structures into Chemistry and Translation Science, you will play a key role in driving projects forward within CDoT at the Broad Institute.
Also, this Group Leader position (Ph.D., w/7+ years of research experience in an industrial setting):
We are looking for a highly motivated scientist to lead and mentor a team of medicinal chemists focused on discovering novel small molecule therapeutics across a diverse disease portfolio. The successful candidate will join The Center for the Development of Therapeutics and lead a team of professional scientists at the interface of industry and academia.  
The candidate will work closely with biochemists, structural and biophysical scientists, cell biologists and pharmacologists, to rapidly progress therapeutic projects in partnership with academic scientists and industrial partners. The successful applicant will have the unique opportunity to impact both the strategy and execution of multiple therapeutic programs driven by the novel genetic and biological insights being discovered at the Broad Institute.
More Broad Institute positions here. Best wishes to those interested.  

The Computational Drug Discovery Chemistry Jobs List: 32 positions

The Computational Drug Discovery Chemistry Jobs List has 32 positions. This list is curated by Joel Walker. 

19 new positions at Organic Chemistry Jobs

Over at Common Organic Chemistry, there's 19 new positions posted for September 18.

The Process Chemistry Jobs List: 223 positions

The Process Chemistry Jobs List has 223 positions.

Want to help? Here's a form to fill out.

Want to chat process jobs? Try the open thread. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Hmmmmm, the economy

California: "Housing market falters for fourth straight month", Inventory up 17.2% YoY 
California’s housing market dropped below the 400,000-level sales benchmark for the first time in more than two years as high home prices and eroding affordability combined to cut into housing demand, the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (C.A.R.) said today... 
....While home prices continued to rise modestly in August, the deceleration in price growth and the surge in housing supply suggest that a market shift is underway,” said C.A.R. Senior Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young. “We are seeing active listings increasing and more price reductions in the market, and as such, the question remains, ‘How long will it take for the market to close the price expectation gap between buyers and sellers?’”  
...Statewide active listings rose for the fifth consecutive month after 33 straight months of declines, increasing 17.2 percent from the previous year. August’s listings increase was the biggest in nearly four years. 
What does the economy look like for you? Are we close to the top, or is there still room to grow? I'm feeling like things are either near the top, or it's past us. Readers, what do you think?  

This week's C&EN

From this week's issue of Chemical and Engineering News

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List: 278 positions

The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List (curated by Andrew Spaeth and myself) has 278 positions.

Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

On September 14, 2017, the 2018 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List had 254 positions.

Interested in how this is tracking overall? Check out these sweet graphics done by Andrew Spaeth.

Want to see pre-September discussion? Check out the pre-September open thread. Current discussion is on the September open thread. 

Otherwise, all discussions are on the Chemistry Faculty Jobs List webforum.

The Chemical Engineering Faculty Jobs List: 28 positions

Welcome to the Chemical Engineering Faculty Jobs List, which has 28 positions. It is curated by Lilian Josephson (@lljosephson). 

Faculty positions: Biopharmaceutical Discovery Cluster Hire, University of Delaware, Newark, DE

From the inbox, a cluster hiring opportunity at the University of Delaware: 
The University of Delaware is seeking applications for several open rank tenure-track professorships as part of a multiyear hiring effort in the area of biopharmaceutical discovery. Applicants must have a doctoral or equivalent degree, documented evidence of high quality research productivity, and a strong commitment to both research and teaching. 
Applicants with research interests broadly relevant to biopharmaceutical discovery that span chemistry (e.g. chemoproteomics, molecular probes for biological imaging, metabolomics); biology (e.g. diseases of immune or tissue dysfunction) and engineering (e.g. synthetic biology, protein design, metabolic engineering) will be considered.   Successful applicants could have faculty appointments in one or more of several departments, including Chemistry and Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and Psychological and Brain Sciences.  
...Using the Interfolio® online system at UD, http://apply.interfolio.com/54714 , applicant should submit a) a cover letter; b) a statement of current and long-term research plans; c) a statement of teaching philosophy; d) a curriculum vitae; and e) three contact references.  Any questions can be directed to Susan Cheadle (scheadle@udel.edu) or to Dr. Joseph Fox (jmfox@udel.edu), Chair, Faculty Search Committee, Biopharmaceutical Discovery Cluster Hire University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716.  Review of applications will begin on receipt and continue until October 31st for full consideration. Positions will remain open until filled.
Full ad here. Apply here. Best wishes to those interested.   

Postdoctoral positions: Krusemark Lab, Purdue University College of Pharmacy, West Lafayette, IN

From the inbox, two postdoctoral positions with Professor Casey Krusemark.

The first position:
Applications are invited for a post-doctoral research associate in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology at Purdue University in the laboratory of Prof. Casey J. Krusemark. Highly motivated candidates skilled in one or more of the following areas: molecular biology, synthetic organic chemistry, biochemistry, enzymology, chemical biology, bioconjugate chemistry are encouraged to apply. Candidates with research experience in organic chemistry will be given special consideration. The position requires a PhD in chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, medicinal chemistry, or a related field of study that has equipped the applicant with the necessary knowledge and skills to perform the duties of the position. The two main project areas of interest are synthesis of DNA-encoded combinatorial libraries and design of DNA-based biochemical assays. 

Applications are invited for a post-doctoral research associate in the Departments of Chemistry and Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology at Purdue University. This is a unique research opportunity involving the design and synthesis of DNA-encoded combinatorial libraries and joint mentorship by Prof. Mingji Dai and Prof. Casey J. Krusemark.

The Academic Staff Jobs List: 16 positions

The Academic Staff Jobs list has 16 positions.

This list is curated by Sarah Cady. It targets:
  • Full-time STAFF positions in a Chem/Biochem/ChemE lab/facility at an academic institution/natl lab
  • Lab Coordinator positions for research groups or undergraduate labs 
  • and for an institution in Canada or the United States
Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

Want to chat about staff scientist positions? Try the open thread.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Anthropology has quantified its faculty job market - chemistry needs to do the same

Chemistry desperately needs this fascinating analysis applied to anthropology by Professor Robert Speakman and his colleagues at the University of Georgia. We don't know these numbers for chemistry that Professor Speakman and his co-authors have established for anthropology:
Based on NSF data [6–8], we know that between 1995 and 2014 a total of 9,558 Anthropology doctorates (all subfields) were conferred in the US. According to our database, derived from the 2014–2015 AnthroGuide [25], approximately 1,989 individuals who graduated between 1995 and 2014 from a US institution were employed as tenure-track anthropology faculty at BA/BS, MA/MS, and PhD institutions in the US. These data indicate a faculty employment rate of approximately 21% for those who graduated since 1995. We acknowledge that some programs focus on PhD training for foreign nationals from Latin America, Africa, and/or Asia who then return to their country of origin to pursue academic positions. Nonetheless, it is apparent that only about 1 in 5 US-derived anthropological PhDs is successful in getting a tenure-track faculty position in a US anthropology department. 
I really like these lines from the conclusion:
...First, there is the nature of the job market, coupled with the production of too many PhDs competing for each position. Next, there is the fact that there are extreme disparities in the placement rate of certain programs over others in placing their graduates... We recognize that these revelations will be perhaps of no surprise to faculty in the trenches of departments everywhere. However, now they are quantified for all to see.
Here's hoping that chemistry will move in this direction as well. 

A headline that sums a lot up, I suspect

This is an eye-catching headline in The New York Times (by M.H. Miller), and one that I think reflects a lot of people's thinking: 
I Came of Age During the 2008 Financial Crisis. I’m Still Angry About It.
The article itself is pretty interesting in itself. The author sounds like he has quite the debt load, and that his family in Michigan isn't doing well at all. 

(One of those funny aspects of Our Modern Times, it seems, is that it seems like the number of families where neither the parents nor the children are financially upwardly mobile is growing. Here's hoping my impression isn't true.) 

Friday, September 14, 2018

View From Your Hood: Jayhawk sunset edition

Credit: Julian Silverman
From @heterocat: "Somehow they get the sunsets here to match the school colors." 
 
(got a View from Your Hood submission? Send it in (with a caption and preference for name/anonymity, please) at chemjobber@gmail.com; will run every other Friday.)

Ten years ago: Reserve Money Market breaking the buck

Ten years ago, I barely understood money market funds, and then on September 16, 2008 (via Wikipedia):
The Reserve Primary Fund was a large money market mutual fund. 
On September 16, 2008, during the Global financial crisis of September–October, 2008, it lowered its share price below $1 ("breaking the buck") because of exposure to Lehman Brothers debt securities. This resulted in demands from investors to return their funds as the financial crisis mounted.  Normally, the net asset value of money market funds is kept at $1. 
Reserve Management had multiple other funds frozen because of this failure. It has liquidated a few funds, and post periodic updates about plans to liquidate other funds on its website.
I had been looking for work for quite some time during my postdoc - I think I knew that the economy was in trouble by that point. I have clear memories of discussing the Reserve Fund failure with my interviewer, who was kind enough to pick me up in his car.

Glad things are somewhat better now than back then. 

Thursday, September 13, 2018

BREAKING: Charges dismissed against Prof. Patrick Harran in #SheriSangji case

Via Kim Christensen of the Los Angeles Times:
A Los Angeles judge has dismissed criminal charges against UCLA chemistry professor Patrick Harran, nearly 10 years after a staff research assistant suffered fatal burns in a laboratory he supervised. 
In what was thought to be the first U.S. criminal case arising from an academic lab accident, Harran was charged with four felony counts of willfully violating state occupational health and safety standards in the death of Sheharbano “Sheri” Sangji, who died 18 days after the Dec. 29, 2008 fire. 
In June 2014, Harran struck a deferred-prosecution agreement in which he would avoid the charges if he met certain conditions for five years. He agreed to teach organic chemistry courses for college-bound inner-city students in the summers, perform 800 hours of community service in the UCLA Hospital system and pay $10,000 to the Grossman Burn Center. 
Last week at a regularly scheduled status hearing on the case, Harran’s attorney Thomas O’Brien asked Los Angeles Superior Court Judge George Lomeli to shorten the term of the agreement, which was to have run until June 2019. Lomeli, who had approved the original deal, granted the request. 
“Dr. Harran completed all of the conditions he was supposed to complete, so the court dismissed the matter,” O’Brien said Wednesday. 
Prosecutors objected to the dismissal. 
Sangji’s sister, Naveen Sangji, said in an email to The Times that that the family was “not informed that this was even a possibility” and should have been given an opportunity to raise its own objection. She said she learned of the decision on Tuesday, five days after Lomeli rendered it. 
“Our family had planned to be present and to speak, as is our right, at the final hearing which was to be nine months from now,” she said. The family has long contended that the deferred-prosecution agreement was little more than “a slap on the wrist” for Harran. 
Sheri Sangji, 23, was not wearing a protective lab coat when a plastic syringe she was using to transfer t-butyl lithium from one sealed container to another came apart, spewing a chemical compound that ignites when exposed to air. She suffered extensive burns and died 18 days later.
Read the whole Los Angeles Times article here. Here's coverage from a San Diego television station.

I guess I shouldn't have been surprised by this, but I am rather taken aback by it, especially since there was a 5 year length for the deferred prosecution. Remarkable.

UPDATE: C&EN's summation of the legal proceedings. (article written by Jyllian Kemsley.)

The Medicinal Chemist Jobs List: 201 positions

The Medicinal Chemist Jobs list (curated by Joel Walker and myself)  has 201 positions.

Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions, but if you want to do the traditional "leave a link in the comments", that works, too.

Want to chat about medchem positions? Try the open thread.

Positions I'm not including: positions outside the United States, computational positions (this will likely change), academic positions (likely never.)

The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List: 5 positions

The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List has 5 positions; this is curated by the ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry. Want to help out? Fill out this form. 

18 new positions at Organic Chemistry Jobs

Over at Common Organic Chemistry, there's 18 new positions posted for September 11.

The Process Chemistry Jobs List: 216 positions

The Process Chemistry Jobs List has 216 positions.

Want to help? Here's a form to fill out.

Want to chat process jobs? Try the open thread. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Your morning random click

A recent tweet of mine: 
Weird #scicomm/chemistry communication idea of the day:  
Stain removal clinic, i.e. people write in with a pic of their stain on their clothes, chemists recommend the best approach.
This conversation lead to this amazing Illinois extension website with suggestions for how to get stains out of clothing. Enjoy the random clicking!  

This week's C&EN

A few of the articles in this week's issue of Chemical and Engineering News

    Tuesday, September 11, 2018

    The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List: 242 positions

    The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List (curated by Andrew Spaeth and myself) has 242 positions.

    Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

    On September 12, 2017, the 2018 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List had 240 positions.

    Want to see pre-September discussion? Check out the pre-September open thread. Current discussion is on the September open thread. 

    Otherwise, all discussions are on the Chemistry Faculty Jobs List webforum.

    Job posting: Assistant Lecturer in Chemistry, York University, Toronto, ON

    From the inbox, a position at York University:
    Assistant Lecturer in Chemistry  
    Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, York University 
    The Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, invites applications for an teaching-focused (alternate-stream) tenure-track appointment at the Assistant Lecturer level in Chemistry, to commence July 1, 2019. 
    Applicants must hold a PhD in Chemistry or a related discipline, with a preference for the former. The successful candidate will demonstrate excellence or clear potential for excellence in teaching university-level chemistry courses and a strong commitment to pedagogy and student success. A record of pedagogical innovation in classroom delivery, of implementation of technology-enhanced learning and of laboratory development is preferred, as is experience in curricular development and innovation. The successful candidate is also expected to provide evidence of service contributions or the potential to contribute to administrative and committee tasks as well as outreach efforts.
    Full ad here. Best wishes to those interested. 

    The Academic Staff Jobs List: 20 positions

    The Academic Staff Jobs list has 20 positions.

    This list is curated by Sarah Cady. It targets:
    • Full-time STAFF positions in a Chem/Biochem/ChemE lab/facility at an academic institution/natl lab
    • Lab Coordinator positions for research groups or undergraduate labs 
    • and for an institution in Canada or the United States
    Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

    Want to chat about staff scientist positions? Try the open thread.

    Monday, September 10, 2018

    The McNaughton story ends: plea deal, deferred sentence

    Via Anon105PM, a coda to the Brian McNaughton story - the inevitable plea deal (article at The Chronicle of Higher Education, written by Jack Stripling): 
    Brian McNaughton, the former Colorado State University professor who was charged with a felony for fabricating a job offer to secure a pay raise, reached a plea deal this week that will allow his case to be dismissed in a year if he remains law abiding and completes 100 hours of community service. 
    Under the agreement, McNaughton pleaded guilty to attempting to influence a public servant, a crime punishable by up to six years in prison. He was granted a deferred sentence, however, making him eligible to withdraw his guilty plea in a year if he complies with the terms of the deal. In addition to community service, McNaughton must complete a “cognitive thinking class.” 
    McNaughton declined to comment on the plea deal.
    (Read the whole thing here.)

    I don't really think that Brian McNaughton deserves prison time, in the sense that the injured party with standing (the taxpayers of Colorado, presumably) probably should reserve prison for those who are most in need of being kept apart from society. But if Brian McNaughton had been a cashier at a grocery store and stolen $5000 from the till, would he have gone to prison? Probably, I dunno.

    I can't help but notice something that happens when professors are charged with crimes: the system-as-a-whole (prosecutors, defense attorneys, employers, judges) delivers a result that consistently avoids prison. I have plenty of biases and thoughts about the criminal justice system in America, but the overriding one is this: if we have one set of punishments for those who have money and status, but another for those who do not, we don't have a system that is delivering justice.

    Job posting: Senior Thermoelectric Engineer, Matrix Industries, Menlo Park, CA

    From the inbox: 
    Senior Thermoelectric Engineer, Matrix Industries 
    Join the Matrix team! We are looking for someone who is smart, adaptable, hard-working, and excited about ushering in the thermoelectric revolution. As a Senior Thermoelectric Engineer, your responsibilities would include synthesizing new materials, measuring thermoelectric properties, and designing and building thermoelectric modules. You should enjoy applying the principles of heat transfer, solid-state physics, and engineering mathematics to open-ended problems. We expect you to learn on the job, but we’d like you to have experience in one or more of the following areas: solid-state synthesis, nanomaterials, semiconductors, electrical and thermal transport measurements, PVD, and spark plasma sintering. You can learn more about Matrix at our website: http://www.matrixindustries.com. Benefits include medical, dental, free lunches, and the best group of co-workers you could ask for. We are located in Menlo Park, CA. 
    If interested, please send a resume with cover letter to Arjun Mendiratta, mendiratta@matrixindustries.com. 
    Best wishes to those interested.  

    Friday, September 7, 2018

    Thea Ekins-Coward was not an employee, UH argues

    From the annals of employee safety and universities comes this gem via Honolulu Civil Beat (as a reminder, Dr. Thea Ekins-Coward was a postdoctoral fellow at UH-Manoa, when a cylinder ruptured due to a hydrogen explosion caused by a sparking pressure gauge. She lost her arm.):
    The fate of a lawsuit filed by a researcher severely injured in a lab accident may come down to what her employment status was at the University of Hawaii Manoa. 
    Thea Ekins-Coward was a postdoctoral fellow when the explosion occurred in 2016; she filed a lawsuit against UH claiming negligence in 2017. 
    The question about her employment status may elevate the case to the Hawaii Supreme Court after attorneys for Ekins-Coward filed a petition to the state’s high court last month, contending she was never a UH employee. 
    UH lawyers, who declined to comment for this report, argue in court documents that Ekins-Coward cannot pursue restitution in court. They say her only recourse is workers’ compensation. 
    Although postdoctoral fellows are not considered employees while they are conducting research, a UH internal policy says they may be “treated as employees only for workers’ compensation benefits,” according to Ekins-Coward’s attorneys. They say this was not made known to her until after the explosion. 
    “At least at the beginning, they made it a point to say that she was not an employee,” Claire Choo, one of Ekins-Coward’s attorneys, told Civil Beat. “She only found out after she was in the hospital.” 
    In March, Circuit Court Judge Bert Ayabe, agreed with the university’s argument that the court did not have jurisdiction in the case. Ayabe ruled that the decision must be left up to State Department of Labor and Industrial Relations Director Leonard Hoshijo. Hoshijo could not be reached for comment.
    Universities still manage to exist in this weird gray area of the law, where it seems like no one is really an employee...

    Thursday, September 6, 2018

    The Medicinal Chemist Jobs List: 189 positions

    The Medicinal Chemist Jobs list (curated by Joel Walker and myself)  has 189 positions.

    Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions, but if you want to do the traditional "leave a link in the comments", that works, too.

    Want to chat about medchem positions? Try the open thread.

    Positions I'm not including: positions outside the United States, computational positions (this will likely change), academic positions (likely never.)

    42 new positions at Organic Chemistry Jobs

    Over at Common Organic Chemistry, there's 24 new positions posted for September 4 and 18 positions for August 29.

    The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List: 3 positions

    The Analytical Chemistry Jobs List has 3 positions; this is curated by the ACS Division of Analytical Chemistry. Want to help out? Fill out this form. 

    The Computational Drug Discovery Chemistry Jobs List: 25 positions

    The Computational Drug Discovery Chemistry Jobs List has 25 positions. This list is curated by Joel Walker. 

    The Process Chemistry Jobs List: 210 positions

    The Process Chemistry Jobs List has 210 positions.

    Want to help? Here's a form to fill out.

    Want to chat process jobs? Try the open thread. 

    Wednesday, September 5, 2018

    The Brian McNaughton story only gets weirder

    Readers of the blog will undoubtedly remember the odd case of Brian McNaughton, the Colorado State professor who faked an outside offer letter in order to get a raise. Via The Chronicle of Higher Education's Jack Stripling and Megan Zahneis, an answer to my question: Why did the Larimer County District Attorney go after Professor McNaughton?
    Final as it seemed, the separation agreement never envisioned a person like Kyle Strunk. A private investigator and fiscal hawk, he would not rest until McNaughton’s lie was exposed. The website for Flatirons Private Investigations describes Strunk as a retired military intelligence officer who speaks Arabic and German. According to his biography, Strunk maintains a secret security clearance, and his two decades of sleuthing have sent him to the Middle East, Oceania, and Asia.  
    But the assignment that has most animated Strunk of late started closer to home, near his Broomfield, Colo., headquarters. In Strunk’s telling, Stacey McNaughton first contacted him to ask if the private investigator would surveil her ex-husband when their children were visiting him in Fort Collins. Strunk says he never did that particular snooping. But he took a keen interest in what he learned about Brian McNaughton, a public-university professor who had defrauded the taxpayers of Colorado and seemed to have gotten away with it. 
    This was just the sort of thing that got a rise out of Strunk and his buddies, a group known as the Colorado Society of Private Investigators. 
    “We investigate public corruption,” Strunk says, “and this kind of met that test.”
    This past spring, Strunk sent a records request to Colorado State for correspondence related to McNaughton. What he found angered him. This wasn’t some employment dispute that could be quietly worked out by lawyers, he concluded; it was felony forgery. But that crime, Strunk was convinced, had been swept under the rug by the university. 
    The records Strunk obtained, including a recorded phone call, showed that Jason Dobbins, a detective with the university police, believed he had an “open and shut” case of identity theft and forgery against McNaughton. But the police appeared to sit on the case for 10 months, during which time McNaughton negotiated with the university as if the criminal matter had been shelved. 
    It was only after Strunk and others mounted a campaign, pressuring public officials to bring the hammer down on McNaughton, that the university police referred the case to the Larimer County district attorney. 
    “The whole state of Colorado,” Strunk says, “was flooded with letters saying, ‘This person did this; why aren’t you doing anything about it?’ ”
    So that explains it: Professor McNaughton had the bad luck of having someone find out about his forgery, and that person implemented a campaign of pressure on the parties that could do something: the university police and the Larimer County DA.  

    This week's C&EN

    Tuesday, September 4, 2018

    The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List: 201 positions and September Open Thread

    The 2019 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List (curated by Andrew Spaeth and myself) has 201 positions.

    Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

    On September 5, 2017, the 2018 Chemistry Faculty Jobs List had 201 positions.

    Want to see pre-September discussion? Check out the pre-September open thread. This will serve as the open thread for the month of September 2018.

    Otherwise, all discussions are on the Chemistry Faculty Jobs List webforum.

    The Academic Staff Jobs List: 20 positions

    The Academic Staff Jobs list has 20 positions.

    This list is curated by Sarah Cady. It targets:
    • Full-time STAFF positions in a Chem/Biochem/ChemE lab/facility at an academic institution/natl lab
    • Lab Coordinator positions for research groups or undergraduate labs 
    • and for an institution in Canada or the United States
    Want to help out? Here's a Google Form to enter positions.

    Want to chat about staff scientist positions? Try the open thread.

    Monday, September 3, 2018

    Happy Labor Day!



    To my American and Canadian readers, a very happy Labo(u)r Day to you and your family. To people in the rest of the world, happy Monday! Back tomorrow.