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Research Assistant

Apply now Department: 3670080080 Veterinary Diagnostic Lab
Job no: 513544
Employment type: Staff Full Time (Unclassified - Term)
Location: Manhattan, Kansas
Categories: Research / Scientific / Grants, Veterinary Medicine
Pay Grade: 06B

About This Role:

The Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (KSVDL) within the College of Veterinary Medicine is seeking applicants for a Research Assistant. The person in this position will perform histology duties related to service and research. Duties will include trimming (grossing) of fixed biopsy and necropsy tissues, embedding tissues in paraffin wax, cutting tissues on a microtome, and preparing glass slides of the tissues in accordance with those QA/QC guidelines of an AAVLD accredited laboratory. Also, routine filing of slides, tissue blocks, data entry, operating and maintaining automated histology equipment, immunohistochemical staining, disposing of tissues, and updating standard operating procedures. Significant attention must be given to the KSVDL QMS (Quality Management System) and subsequent compliance. Working hours could vary as needed to meet customer demands for rapid turnaround times for biopsy submissions and could include working on Saturdays/weekends. The initial contract will be 6 months, with demonstration of proficiency in skills and contributing to a positive team environment at this time, this contract will be renewed annually after the initial time period.


  • Prepare tissue sections for histopathology: diagnostic and research samples (glass slides). Embed processed tissues in paraffin wax, cut tissue sections on microtome and prepare glass slides, stain tissue sections using appropriate stains for routine histopathology (H&E) and special stains as requested, coverslip slides (all steps of producing glass slides from beginning to end). Perform special stains to determine the presence of fungi, bacteria, mycobacteria or other infectious agents/abnormal cellular morphology in formalin fixed tissue sections. Maintain embedding station, autostainers and automatic coverslipper and tissue processors.
  • Trim biopsy, necropsy and research tissues for histopathology. This task includes trimming samples for margin evaluation when necessary, documenting tissue/biopsy samples received, and providing written images/drawings/photographs for use by the pathologist reading the slides. Includes writing on or printing cassettes with the semi-automated cassette printer, cleaning and maintaining the trim areas and associated equipment.
  • Additional duties include maintaining the downstains trim room, maintaining inventory of trimming supplies, discard tissues as needed, tidy the room as needed. Dispose of tissues after set dates and as cleared by pathologists/supervisor. File paraffin blocks, slides and paperwork, entering specimen data on computers in current LIS.
  • Other duties as required to assist in the histopathology and immunohistochemistry areas. Cross-train in other areas of the laboratory to assist when help is needed for high workload times or when other laboratory personnel are absent. These procedures include immunohistochemistry of infectious agents and cell identification for diagnostic and research material. Assistance in multiple tasks for the process of immunohistochemical staining for prion diseases (scrapie, chronic wasting disease), very limited fluorescent antibody testing and limited operation of digital pathology projects will be required. Assists in writing standard operating procedures and other tasks as assigned by supervisor.


Why Join Us:

Kansas State University offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes health insurance, life insurance, retirement plans, paid time off – vacation, sick, and holidays.   To see what benefits are available, please visit:

We Support Diversity and Inclusion:

Kansas State University embraces diversity and inclusion.  The university actively seeks individuals who foster a collegial environment and cooperative interactions with coworkers, students, and others.  The University is dedicated to promoting the Principles of Community.

What You’ll Need to Succeed:

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree in microbiology, biology, chemistry, animal science or other related fields.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Certification in histotechnology, ASCP [histotechnician (HT) or histotechnologist (HTL)]; histology experiences.
  • Familiarity with laboratory tests and procedures, working knowledge of chemistry, familiarity with animal diseases, interest in animals, a good team player, and knowledge of safe laboratory practices.

Other Requirements:

  • Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States at the time of employment

How to Apply:

Please submit the following documents:

  1. Resume
  2. Cover letter
  3. Contact information for three professional references

Screening of Applications Begins:

Screening begins immediately and continues until the position is filled.

Anticipated Hiring Salary Range:


Equal Employment Opportunity:

Kansas State University is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, age, national origin, disability or status as a protected veteran.

Background Screening Statement:

In connection with your application for employment, Kansas State University will procure a Background Screen on you as part of the process of considering your candidacy as an employee.

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