Research Assistant

Posted on September 18, 2022
Expires: November 15, 2022
Research Assistant Positions

Job Summary

We are currently seeking applications for research assistant positions supervised by Prof. Alessandro Maria Selvitella (WebpageGoogle Scholar), at Purdue University Fort Wayne starting during the AY 2022/2023. These positions will support the research of Prof. Selvitella’s lab and they will focus on developing new mathematics, data science, and machine learning tools for the study of the laws that govern morphology and biomechanics of animals and humans through growth. These positions will benefit from and contribute to the many activities of Prof. Selvitella’s lab, such as: Thematic Program on the Mathematical Laws on Morphology and Biomechanics 2021 – ongoing, the annual Workshop in Mathematical and Computational Biology (2021 and 2022), and the Midwest Workshop of Women in Experimental Biology: Towards an Integration of Modern Machine Learning Methods to the Biological Sciences 2022.

Application Procedure

Interested candidates should submit: (i) an up-to-date CV/resume, (ii) two reference letters, and (iii) a letter of interest to Prof. Selvitella at The letter of interest should describe your background, why you are interested in these topics, and how the positions advertised in this notice are in line with your long-term career goals. Applicants must be eligible to work in the US and must be able to show that proof within 3 days of hire. Applications will be accepted until the positions are filled. Full consideration will be given to those applications submitted not later than 15th November 2022.


The research assistants will lead their research projects under the supervision of Prof. Selvitella and will have the opportunity to interact with other students in Prof. Selvitella’s lab and with his collaborators. The research assistants will:

  • Work with Prof. Selvitella on a specific research project centered on the development of new data science, machine learning, statistical, and mathematical methods for the study of the mathematical laws of morphology and biomechanics through ontogeny.

  • Perform statistical analysis of datasets of interest to the project using statistical software such as R, Python, and/or Matlab.

  • Prepare manuscripts/research reports on the project and identify possible venues for submission, such as journals or conferences with focus on data science, machine learning, statistics, applied mathematics, biomechanics, morphology, and organismal biology.

  • Report to Prof. Selvitella on progress/activities once per week (1hr meetings).

Required Qualifications

These positions require theoretical and applied knowledge of fundamental statistical, mathematical, data science, and/or machine learning concepts typically obtained through specific education and training. Required qualifications include:

  • MS in data science, computer science, statistics, mathematics, or related fields (e.g MS in quantitative biology).

  • Project management skills.

  • Problem solving skills.

  • Excellent written and verbal English language communication skills.

  • Collaborative skills for working well in a team environment.

  • Proficiency in statistical software (e.g. R, Python, Matlab).

Preferred Qualifications

  • Background in statistics, mathematics, data science, machine learning and/or the analysis of data from morphology or biomechanics experiments (3 years experience).

  • Strong collaborative skills for working well in a team environment.

  • High Proficiency in statistical software (e.g. R, Python, Matlab).

Diversity Statement

All of Prof. Selvitella’s activities are grounded in Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, as well as collaboration, interdisciplinarity, and community impact. Students with the most diverse backgrounds are invited to apply for the positions and will enrich the research activities of the lab. Purdue University is committed to creating an environment that enhances learning by recognizing the inherent worth of all individuals at the university. Diversity stimulates creativity, promotes the exchange of ideas, and enriches campus life. The term diversity encompasses differences of culture, background, and experience among individuals and groups. Such differences include, but are not necessarily limited to, differences of race, ethnicity, color, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, class, age, and disabilities, as well as political and religious affiliation, and socioeconomic status.

EOE/AA Statement

Purdue University is an EOE/AA employer. All individuals, including minorities, women, individuals with disabilities, and veterans, are encouraged to apply.

Funding Source

These positions are funded through the NSF grant on RUI: Collaborative Research: DMS/NIGMS 1: The mathematical laws of morphology and biomechanics through ontogeny, Award # 2152789. PIs: Prof. Alessandro Maria Selvitella (Purdue University) and Prof. Kathleen Lois Foster (Ball State University).

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