Cornell University, School of Integrative Plant Science – Section of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology - Geneva

Position ID:Cornell-PlantPath-PDAVEGETABLE [#20192, WDR-]
Position Title: Post-Doctoral Associate
Position Type:Postdoctoral
Position Location:Geneva, New York 14456, United States [map]
Subject Area: Plant Pathology
Appl Deadline:2021/12/01 11:59PMhelp popup finished (2021/10/21, finished 2021/12/23, listed until 2021/12/21)
Position Description:    

*** this position has been closed and new applications are no longer being accepted. ***

* this map is a best-effort approximation. Open in Google Maps directly.

Effective January 1, 2022, all new Cornell hires, regardless of role and work location, must be fully vaccinated and present proof of an FDA- or WHO- authorized or approved COVID-19 vaccination or have a university-approved disability/medical or religious exemption. Failure to demonstrate compliance with this requirement prior to the first day of work will result in the delay of employment with Cornell and may result in the offer of employment being rescinded.

Cornell University embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty, and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented and/or marginalized identities to apply.

Cornell University – College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

School of Integrative Plant Science – Section of Plant Pathology and Plant Microbe Biology

Cornell AgriTech at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station, Geneva, New York

Post-Doctoral Associate Position



Position Function


The College of Agriculture and Life Science is a pioneer of purpose-driven science and Cornell University's second largest college.  We work across disciplines to tackle the challenges of our time through world-renowned research, education and outreach.  The questions we prove and the answers we seek focus on three overlapping concerns: natural and human systems; food, energy and environmental resources; and social, physical and economic well-being.


This is a one year renewable appointment up to a maximum of 5 years within the Plant Pathology and Plant Microbe Biology Section of the School of Integrative Plant Science, Cornell University, Cornell AgriTech, Geneva, NY 14456.  The position is currently available with a start date as soon as possible.  


Applications are sought for a post-doctoral research position studying oomycete pathogens of vegetables including Phytophthora capsici. Oomycete pathogens cause significant yield loss to vegetable growers and can be limiting factors to production in New York. This project has the goal of furthering our understanding of pathogen biology, epidemiology and genomics, working closely with breeders to identify host resistance as well as pathogen effectors. 


The position entails working with colleagues across the US to isolate and characterize pathogen populations, including genome-wide association studies. This information will be used to identify effective disease management strategies for growers in New York. Research will involve laboratory, greenhouse and field experiments, molecular and bioinformatic sills necessary for population studies, data collection including disease assessment of research trials, and data analyses. The goal of the project is to increase our understanding of the population biology of P. capsici, genome-wide studies to identify fungicide resistance markers and effectors. This is a team-oriented project and interest in working across disciplines including plant pathology, plant breeding and horticulture is critical. The successful candidate will work primarily with Dr. Christine Smart and will take a lead role in design, implementation, and data analysis for the project.


This is a one year term appointment that is renewable upon successful performance and funding.


Anticipated Division of Time


Research: (75%)

·         Conduct independent and collaborative research under the general direction of PI, to design and carry out genome-wide experiments on P. capsici. These include:

o   Perform pathogenicity assays to confirm QTL associated with effectors

o   Assess genomic regions identified as putative fungicide sensitivity QTL

·         Conduct independent and collaborative research under the general direction of PI, to isolate and characterize populations of P. capsici from five states.

o   Work with team members to collect and isolate pathogen

o   Isolate genomic DNA, and perform genotyping-by -sequencing

o   Analyze results using bioinformatic tools

·         Conduct independent and collaborative research under the general direction of PI, to Screen breeding lines for resistance to P. capsici



Research Communication (15%): Publish peer-reviewed journal articles, present at scientific meetings, seminars, workshops and assist with the coordination of data for extension/outreach materials.


Proposal Development (5%): Support the development of new research proposals.


Personal and Professional Development: (5%)

·         Continuously seek out and obtain training to enhance position performance.

  • Regularly take advantage of workshops and programs to further develop experience and skill level.
  • Through staff meetings provide input into research projects based on observations and experiences.
  • Various other duties as assigned.



The position requires a Ph.D. in a relevant discipline at time of appointment (e.g., Plant Pathology, Microbiology, Plant Breeding) and experience with bioinformatics.


Supervision Exercised

Provide general training and assistance to temporary technicians and undergraduate researchers in the lab including helping new lab members learn necessary skills following established best practices.


How to Apply:

Interested candidates should apply online at Academic Jobs Online ( with a letter of motivation, Curriculum Vitae, statement of contribution to diversity, equity and inclusion and names and contact information for three references.


Employment Assistance: If you require an accommodation for a disability in order to complete an employment application or to participate in the recruiting process, you are encouraged to contact Cornell University's Department of Inclusion and Workforce Diversity at voice (607) 255-3976, fax (607) 255-7481, or email at For general questions about the position or the application process, please contact the Recruiter listed in the job posting. Applicants that do not have internet access are encouraged to visit your local library, or local Department of Labor. You may also visit the office of Workforce Recruitment and Retention Monday - Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. to use a dedicated workstation to complete an online application. Notice to Applicants: Please read the required Notice to Applicants statement by clicking here. This notice contains important information about applying for a position at Cornell as well as some of your rights and responsibilities as an applicant. EEO Statement: Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.

Application Materials Required:
Submit the following items online at this website to complete your application:
And anything else requested in the position description.

Further Info:
Cornell AgriTech
Barton Laboratory
15 Castle Creek Drive
Geneva, NY 14456

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