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Research Assistant Professor

Job Description


155-NN_FACULTY - Research Assistant Professor - Career

Business Title:

Research Assistant Professor

Additional Titles:



Employee Type:

Faculty (+) (Fixed Term)

Job Family:

Faculty - Academic - Not OT Eligible

Position Details:

Washington State University (WSU) Health Sciences and the Department of Medical Education and Clinical Sciences of the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine invite applications for a dynamic and engaged Research Assistant Professor passionate about community health and health equity. This full-time, 12-month non-tenure track position is administratively located in either Seattle or Spokane, WA. The faculty member’s primary responsibility will be to participate in a collaborative, extramurally funded program of research focused on health research with Indigenous populations within the portfolio of the Institute for Research and Education to Advance Community Health (IREACH). The faculty member will work on existing programs, grants, and centers; and will be fully supported to develop new areas of research aligned with his or her interests, as well as continue working on their ongoing research.

IREACH is one of the largest units dedicated to American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander health in the United States. Recent new areas of inquiry and active research include Hispanic/Latinx and rural health. IREACH also houses an emerging practice-based research network of 200 primary care facilities around the state that serve rural, American Indian, and other underserved populations. Comprising about 85 faculty, post-docs, and staff members, IREACH supports a multidisciplinary faculty who are conducting exciting, innovative extramurally funded research. Our 16 faculty and postdocs come from public health, economics, demography, epidemiology, biostatistics, sociology, psychology, public health, public administration and management, and internal medicine. We have a strong community engagement team and have worked with more than 150 partners of all kinds in 17 states. IREACH is organized into units led by master’s or doctoral-level leaders as follows: Fiscal/Administrative, Outreach and Engagement; Methods and Study Design; Communication; and IT. Especially important for conducting rigorous, culturally informed research is the IREACH Methods and Study Design unit comprised of 3 epidemiologists, 1 demographer, and 3 biostatisticians. In addition, IREACH has an in-house editor and a dedicated IRB/compliance coordinator. Our research portfolio includes community-based work on Alzheimer’s disease, cardiovascular disease, cancer, COVID-19, substance use, maternal/child health, and many other health inequities. The total active IREACH research portfolio exceeds 85 million dollars. More about the work of IREACH can be found on our home page (https://ireach.wsu.edu/).

Position Details

This position will work closely with our multidisciplinary team of scientists to conduct research with a primary focus on improving health in Native, rural, and other underserved populations. The successful candidate’s personal research focus is flexible but must relate in some way to advancing public health, population science, or reducing health disparities in our priority populations. Specific areas of need within IREACH include advanced quantitative research methods and study design; neuroepidemiology (including cognitive function, Alzheimer’s disease, and related dementias, and brain imaging); social epidemiology; practice-based research, food sovereignty and food systems, biomarkers for disease susceptibility and trajectory; and implementation science. The expectation is that the successful candidate will obtain funding and conduct research broadly related to one of the above areas. However, individuals with other research interests relevant to the IREACH mission are encouraged to apply.

Publication in peer-reviewed journals, presentation at professional societies, and engagement with relevant community groups are expected. Our faculty typically mentor graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and early career faculty. The successful candidate is expected to contribute to a robust and collaborative academic life, including participating in College of Medicine and university committees, and in IREACH service activities. Classroom teaching is not required or expected but may be negotiated if desired.

Most of the successful candidate’s time – up to 90% – will be focused on extramural research. This time can represent a combination of independent, collaborative, or cross-disciplinary scholarship through both internal and external grant funding. The remaining time (up to 20%) comprises grant writing and service. If mentoring or teaching are undertaken, these activities will be considered academic service.

Occasional travel (< 10%) is required. IREACH faculty engage in both on- and off-site work.

The University

Founded as the people’s university in 1890, WSU fulfills that commitment by transforming lives through education, research, and community outreach. In 2015, the University celebrated 125 years of delivering life-changing knowledge and discoveries to citizens across the state, region, nation, and around the world. The state’s only land-grant institution and one of two public research universities, WSU provides a world-class education to nearly 30,000 students through its multi-campus, statewide locations and online. The University strives to ensure that higher education is accessible at an affordable cost—a decades-long WSU commitment to the state’s citizens. The University offers more than 200 undergraduate fields of study and 127 graduate and professional degree programs. Many academic programs win recognition nationally for excellence. WSU is one of just 108 public and private universities in the United States—out of more than 4,500—singled out for its “very high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The University’s research agenda is focused on addressing challenges in health, sustainability, smart systems, national security, and opportunity and equity. WSU is a major driver of Washington’s economy, partnering with many of the state’s leading industries, including agribusiness, aerospace, health care, technology, and construction. The University is responsible for nearly 20,600 jobs statewide and generates an overall economic impact of more than $3.3 billion annually. The institution’s operating budget expenditures total nearly $2 billion annually.

The College and the Department

The Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine is Washington’s premier community-based medical school. It is named after the university’s late president, Elson S. Floyd. Dr. Floyd was committed to the vision that Washington State University, as the state’s land-grant institution, should train doctors to serve all of Washington. The mission of the School is to: develop practical solutions to challenging problems in disease prevention, health care access, and delivery; train primary care physicians who will work in Washington and help alleviate a shortage of doctors, especially in rural and under-served areas; and develop a strong research component, with faculty members who work on innovative projects, sharing what they know with students in classroom and research settings.

The Department of Medical Education and Clinical Sciences is a unique department within the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine that aims to prepare insightful and compassionate physicians. Designed to ensure faculty unity and continuity across a range of clinical disciplines and specialties, members of the department work to establish educational goals, plan, and teach course content and conduct research.

The department’s primary focuses include delivering the MD program; fostering scholarship; providing service to the university and community; and serving as the academic home for clinicians and researchers. As a faculty member, the candidate will be expected to participate in all required Department of Medical Education and Clinical Sciences faculty development opportunities and to monitor your WSU-issued email account for official college communications.

The Area


Located on the Puget Sound in northwestern Washington, Seattle is a large city home to over 770,000 residents, as well as Fortune 500 companies and a lively performing arts and sports scene. Known as the “Emerald City” due to the lush surrounding greenery, the city’s proximity to mountains and forest makes it an eclectic mix of urban and rural living. Seattle is one of the fastest-growing cities in the country. It is home to major philanthropic organizations, many institutions of higher learning, a large diversity of cultural events, superb restaurants, parks, and recreational opportunities, and international corporations such as Amazon, Facebook, Starbucks, and Boeing.

The IREACH offices in Seattle are in the middle of Seattle’s three major urban hot spots – South Lake Union, the Central Business District, and Capitol Hill – and are easily accessible from almost anywhere. Virtually all IREACH faculty and staff walk to work or take public transportation. On-site perks include restaurants, green space and patio gathering spots, complimentary citywide shuttle, EV charging stations, on-site showers/locker rooms, and bike storage. The Seattle office is linked to both the Spokane and Pullman campuses through a sophisticated videoconferencing system used for teaching classes at a distance possible.


Located in the University District along the riverfront in downtown Spokane, WSU Spokane is the University’s health sciences education and research campus. The campus is home to the Elson S. Floyd College of Medicine, which graduated its inaugural class in 2021. The University has relocated all health sciences disciplines to Spokane and built new facilities on the campus in recent years. Among the new construction are an $80 million Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Sciences Building and a $34.6 million Nursing Building. Nearly 1,700 undergraduate, professional, and graduate students pursue degrees at the 48-acre campus. The campus also houses programs offered by Eastern Washington University and is located just across the Spokane River from Gonzaga University.

Spokane is a major healthcare hub and the largest along the northern corridor of the United States between Minneapolis and Seattle. It offers the latest diagnostic and therapeutic care in all fields of medicine and boasts four major hospitals, including Providence Health’s 644-bed Sacred Heart Medical Center. Complete with a rich cultural scene, historic neighborhoods, and beautiful

homes, a unique urban appeal, and easy access to four-season outdoor recreation, Spokane offers a high quality of life for the nearly half a million residents who live in the region.

Required Qualifications

  • An earned Ph.D. in Public Health, Epidemiology, Biostatistics, Nursing, Medicine (i.e., an MD), or in another field relevant to public health research, at the time of hire.
  • Minimum two (2) years experience as a faculty member.
  • Demonstrated experience conducting research in Native health, rural health, behavioral health/addictions, health technology, social determinants of health, environmental health, or similar disciplines aligned with IREACH’s mission.
  • At least 5 years of experience working with underserved populations, preferably American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, or rural populations.
  • Demonstrated high-level organizational and multi-tasking competencies while also being flexible.
  • Demonstrated ability to interact with large groups and individuals at all work levels.
  • Demonstrated experience writing successful grant applications. Track record of external research funding, preferably NIH.
  • Proficiency in the use of computers and software applications.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Demonstrated experience mentoring junior faculty, and/or postdoctoral fellows.
  • Demonstrated experience bringing together community organizations and academic constituents.
  • Demonstrated experience engaging community organizations in the research process.
  • Demonstrated sensitivity to and desire to promote health equity, inclusion, and diversity.

Additional Information:

Area/College: WSU Spokane Health Sciences
Department Name: Institute for Research and Education to Advance Community Health (IREACH)
City, State, Zip: Seattle, WA 98101 or Spokane, WA 99202
Department Link: https://ireach.wsu.edu  

FTE: 100%
Tenure Track: No
Temporary End Date: This is a temporary position expected to end 12 months after the start of the appointment. Renewal is dependent on the need for extension and/or if additional funding is secured to extend employment.

Annual Salary Range: $90,000 to $120,000

In accordance with RCW 49.58.110, the above salary reflects the full salary range for this position. Individual placement within the range is based on the candidate’s current experience, education, skills, and abilities related to the position.


WSU offers a comprehensive benefits package which includes paid sick and vacation leave; paid holidays; medical, dental, life and disability insurance package for employees and dependents; retirement; deferred compensation and optional supplemental retirement accounts.
For a more detailed summary of benefits offered by WSU for Faculty visit: https://hrs.wsu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/2022-Benefit-Overview-for-Faculty-and-AP.pdf. Find total compensation information here: https://hrs.wsu.edu/managers/recruitment-toolkit/total-compensation/.

Screening Begin Date: March 1, 2023; open until filled

Background Check: This position has been designated by the department to require a background check because it requires access to children or vulnerable adults as defined by RCW 74.34, engages in law enforcement, requires security clearance, interacts with WSU students in a counseling or advising capacity, has access to personal identifying and/or financial information, unsupervised access to university buildings/property, or other business-related need.  A background check will not be completed until an initial determination of qualification for employment has been made.

Application Instructions: Applicants must attach the following documents to their online application: 1) curriculum vitae, 2) cover letter, 3) diversity, equity, and inclusion statement, 4) and contact information for four (4) professional references. Applicants are required to include contact information for professional references within the application. Application materials should clearly communicate how the applicant meets all required qualifications and additional requirements.

Required Documents:

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Cover Letter
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion statement
  • Contact information for four (4) professional references

Time Type:

Full time

Position Term:

12 Month

WASHINGTON STATE UNIVERSITY IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY/AFFIRMATIVE ACTION EDUCATOR AND EMPLOYER. Members of ethnic minorities, women, special disabled veterans, veterans of the Vietnam-era, recently separated veterans, and other protected veteran, persons of disability and/or persons age 40 and over are encouraged to apply.

WSU employs only U.S. citizens and lawfully authorized non-U.S. citizens. All new employees must show employment eligibility verification as required by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

WSU is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation in the application process, contact Human Resource Services: 509-335-4521 (v), Washington State TDD Relay Service: Voice Callers: 1-800-833-6384; TDD Callers: 1-800-833-6388, 509-335-1259(f), or hrs@wsu.edu .

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