Renowned as a center for bird study, science, technology, and outreach, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a vibrant unit of Cornell's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and it also functions as a nonprofit environmental organization with more than 100,000 active members and donors. As the world's premier scientific institute devoted to the study of birds, the Cornell Lab's teams of scientists are continually producing research and analyses that break new ground in the understanding of birds and their environments.
This position is based at the Cornell Lab but sits at the intersection of the Lab and the Cornell University Museum of Vertebrates (CUMV). This position will help support substantial recent growth involving the vertebrate specimen collections, most notably a large increase in the rate of traditional specimen generation, increased linkages among the traditional CUMV collections and the ‘whole specimen’ enterprise led jointly by the Cornell Lab and CUMV, substantially increased student activity in the Lab and the CUMV, and new opportunities for the active engagement of additional components of the Cornell community and the general public.
The CUMV is a dynamic institution co-located with the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in the Johnson Center for Biodiversity. The CUMV manages four renowned vertebrate collections (in Ornithology, Ichthyology, Herpetology, and Mammalogy) that are used for research, teaching, and outreach by museum staff, Cornell students and faculty, the Cornell Lab, and external collaborators. With 2M total specimens, the CUMV collections include some of the world's largest holdings of some groups of vertebrates, and they are a unique and irreplaceable record of vertebrate biodiversity over space and time. The CUMV is also central to Cornell's ‘whole specimen’ endeavor that links traditional specimens with cutting-edge digital specimen information (e.g,. sound and video recordings of behavior; CT-scans of morphology and physiology; DNA data on genomics; locational data on distributions; etc.). With three current full-time curatorial staff and eight additional affiliated faculty curators, the CUMV is formally part of Cornell's Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.
Cornell provides great benefits that include professional development, access to a variety of wellness programs, employee discounts with local and national retail brands, health care options to choose from, generous paid leave provisions: 3 weeks of vacation, 12 holidays (including end of year winter break) and superior retirement contributions.
Lab of Ornithology, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology seeks a full-time collections manager to assist with the management, organization, growth, and scientific use of Cornell's celebrated avian specimen collections, and to help coordinate the various student engagement and outreach activities that link the Cornell Lab, the Cornell University Museum of Vertebrates (CUMV), and the wider Cornell community. Assist staff curators and collection managers with day-to-day maintenance activities of accessioning, cataloguing, labeling, shelving, and caring for physical specimens in the four vertebrate collections, primarily in the ornithology collection. Specimen data entry into the CUMV database (using Specify software).
Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.
BA or BS degree in a relevant field and a minimum of 2 years experience.
Strong general knowledge of the diversity of birds and other vertebrates.
Experience in preparing avian specimens.
Public engagement skills relevant to explaining the value of natural history collections and to giving informal tours of the collections to students and other visitors.
Broad familiarity with vertebrate biodiversity, and particularly of North American and world-wide avian diversity.
Experience with any standard museum specimen database (e.g., Specify) or other relational databases.
Experience that demonstrates intrinsic motivation, flexibility/adaptability, creativity and problem solving skills.
Sound judgment, excellent reasoning and decision-making skills, meticulous record keeping and ability to work with diverse personalities.
Ability to work both independently and as part of a team.
Strong attention to detail, sound judgment, and ability to multi-task and to set priorities.
Willingness to learn new procedures and initiative to update skills as needed.
Willingness to learn and follow all safety protocols and procedures to ensure compliance in the museum.
Familiarity with various modern computer software programs, including word processing, spreadsheets and databases.
Must be able to lift 10-20 lbs.
Ability to maintain a driver's license with no restrictions.
Experience in working with natural history collections in a scientific, curatorial, or collections management context.
Organized, self-starting, eager to learn and adapt collections management skills, and very strong attention to detail.
Comfortable in field research settings.
Experience in creating a diversity of avian specimen preparation types (study skins, extended wings, skeletons, tissues, etc.).
Experience in applying for state and federal permits for museum-relevant activities.
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Visa Sponsorship is not available for this position.
Relocation assistance is not provided for this position.
University Job Title:
Collections Asst IV
Pay Rate Type:
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