Montana State University

Tenure Track Faculty Position
Vacancy Announcement
*Update* January 14, 2014

Department Head and Professor
Department of Microbiology & Immunology
College of Letters & Sciences and College of Agriculture

Search Number     14-173
Start Date Negotiable and upon successful completion of search process
Appointment Full-time (1.0 FTE) tenure track, academic year appointment

Competitive; dependent upon experience and qualifications

Benefits Eligible
Montana State University values diverse perspectives and is committed to continually supporting, promoting and building an inclusive and culturally diverse campus environment. MSU recognizes the importance of work-life integration and strives to be responsive to the needs of dual career couples.

Founded in 1893 as a Land Grant University, Montana State University (MSU) is composed of nine academic colleges and a graduate school and boasts a friendly, supportive faculty and campus environment. Currently, the University hosts an enrollment of over 15,000 students, including approximately 2,000 graduate students. MSU is classified as one of 108 U.S. Research Universities (very high research activity) by the Carnegie Foundation.

MSU is located in Bozeman, Montana, an extended community of about 70,000 nestled in the Rocky Mountains in Southwest Montana. In addition to providing access to an extraordinary ecosystem for teaching and research programs, Bozeman is renowned for year-round recreational and cultural opportunities to include access to world class ski areas, multiple blue ribbon trout streams and the Gallatin National Forest. The Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport is served by several major airlines and is the busiest airport in the state.

Named an All American City, Bozeman boasts high-quality medical facilities, a very low crime rate, many fine restaurants, acclaimed public and private schools, a symphony orchestra and choir, an annual opera, and nationally known events such as the Sweet Pea Festival of the Arts held in early August of each year. Bozeman is listed as one of National Geographic's "World's 25 Best Ski Towns." ranked Bozeman #2 on the list of American Dreamtowns - small towns that offer the best quality of life without metropolitan hassles. The K-12 educational system, growing reputation of Montana State University, and pristine natural environment of the area combine to make Bozeman one of America's most desirable university towns. Bozeman is located in the beautiful Gallatin Valley, 90 miles north of Yellowstone National Park.


The Department of Microbiology & Immunology is a newly combined department. The Department of Microbiology & Immunology has a unique combination of expertise in pathogen biology, innate and acquired immunity, cell and developmental biology, host/pathogen interactions, biofilm biology, and environmental biology. The department is housed in the newly renovated Cooley Labs, renovated laboratory space in Leon Johnson Building, and the Molecular Biosciences building. The department houses Center for Zoonotic and Emerging Infectious Diseases and contributes significantly to the Center for Biofilm Engineering and Thermal Biology Institute. The Center for Biofilm Engineering and Thermal Biology Institute are housed at Montana State University, offering unique research opportunities in Environmental Microbiology, Medical Microbiology, and Industrial Microbiology. Montana State University has both small and large ABSL-2 facilities and ABSL-3 laboratory space on campus. The Department of Microbiology & Immunology currently consists of 18 tenure-track, 5 research, and 6 teaching faculty, 35 graduate students and 307 undergraduate students. Research expenditures at Montana State University are approximately $90 million per year, of which ~$7.1 million are housed within the Department of Microbiology & Immunology. Current research programs are funded by NIH, USDA, DoD, NSF, DoE, and Montana Agricultural Experimentation Station (MAES). The Department of Microbiology & Immunology offers a dynamic research and teaching environment with state-of-the–art facilities for biochemistry, flow cytometry, genomics, proteomics, cell biology, microbiology and bioinformatics.

Duties and

The newly merged Department of Microbiology & Immunology seeks a distinguished and visionary academic leader with a broad background in microbiology to be Department Head. This individual will play a key role in maintaining and growing an internationally recognized faculty with expertise in General Microbiology, Environmental Microbiology, and Medical Microbiology. The position offers the exciting opportunity for leadership for advancing established areas of excellence and in developing new strategic initiatives. There are opportunities for substantial departmental faculty growth with 3-4 tenure track lines available and unique programmatic grant opportunities due to Montana classification as an IDeA eligible state. The Department Head will be responsible for directing the Department’s undergraduate degree programs in General Microbiology, Biomedical Microbiology, Environmental Microbiology, Biotechnology, Pre-Veterinary program, and Medical Laboratory Science program, as well as the department’s M.S. and Ph.D. programs. The Department’s graduate program is interdisciplinary and coordinates with faculty across departments, colleges, and research centers (e.g., Sciences, Agriculture, Engineering, the Center for Biofilm Engineering, and the Thermal Biology Institute) for graduate-level research. Duties include managing departmental budgets, conducting annual retention, promotion and tenure reviews of faculty; coordinating departmental teaching responsibilities; facilitating departmental and interdisciplinary research; coordinating departmental advising; representing Microbiology & Immunology to the colleges, university, and state; and supervising the operation of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology facilities. Teaching responsibilities of the department’s faculty include participation in the undergraduate and graduate curricula within the department, as well as WWAMI co-operative medical and MSU-WSU co-operative veterinary programs.

1.   PhD or equivalent in a microbiology/molecular biology discipline.
2.   An established, nationally competitive independent, funded research program in environmental or medical microbiology and/or related disciplines and a substantial record of publication in high quality, peer-reviewed journals.
3.   Research, teaching and service qualifications commensurate with appointment to Full Professor.
4.   Experience leading personnel and managing budgets.
5.   Demonstrated ability to teach effectively and to direct graduate student research.
1.   Demonstrated ability in administration, and academic and research program development.
2.   Experience and demonstrated leadership in directing multidisciplinary projects.
3.   Experience working with, teaching, or mentoring diverse groups of diverse students.
The Successful
Candidate Will

  • Demonstrate excellent verbal and written communications skills.
  • Demonstrate how they will effectively represent the Department at the College and University levels.
  • Demonstrate a desire to facilitate the professional development of both students and faculty/staff of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology.
  • Maintain an independent, extramurally funded research program.
  • Demonstrate a desire to maintain and seek new programmatic grants within the department as well as across departments.

    1.   In accordance with MSU policy, hiring will be conditional upon successful completion of a pre-employment background check.

    Screening of applications will begin on February 1, 2014 and will continue to be accepted until the position is filled.


    To apply, submit the following:

    • (1) a letter of application addressing all of the above required and preferred qualifications, and
    • (2) an administrative philosophy statement (1-2 pages), and
    • (2) a current curriculum vitae, and
    • (2) a summary of current research (2-3 pages), and
    • (3) the names, addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses of five professional references.

      An application packet addressing all the above requirements and qualification as listed is highly encouraged. Missing materials and information may not be requested and may result in your application not being considered for the position.

      Electronic submissions in PDF format are preferred, and must have the applicant's signature on the letter of application. For electronic submittals, please indicate "Applicant - Search #14-173" in the subject line of the email.

      • Submit materials to:


      • Jennifer Hodges
      • Search Committee Administrative Assistant
      • Department of Microbiology
      • Montana State University
      • PO Box 173520
      • Bozeman MT 59717-3520
      • (406) 994-2020

        For questions related to the department and its role at the University and Colleges, contact:

        • Dr. Matthew Fields, Interim Department Head
        • Department of Microbiology
        • Phone: (406) 994-2901 or (406) 994-7340
        • Email:

          • Dr. Mark Quinn, Department Head
          • Department of Immunology & Infectious Diseases
          • Phone: (406) 994-4707
          • Email:

            In order to receive Veterans Preference during the application review process, it is highly recommended that the required forms are included at the time you submit your application materials. Click here for the forms and information regarding Veterans Preference. Important note: Your preference form is submitted to a different location than your application materials. A DD214 is not a required document.

    Posted 10/31/13; 11/04/13 *updated screen date; 1/14/14 *updated screen date