Job Listings

Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Project Engineer - Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (144098)

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Job Location:
Urbana, Illinois
Laboratory and Research

Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Project Engineer

Illinois Sustainable Technology Center

Prairie Research Institute

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


The Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) is part of the Prairie Research Institute (PRI) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, which is centrally located between Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis. ISTC integrates applied research, technical assistance, and information services to advance efforts in the areas of pollution prevention; water and energy conservation; and materials recycling and beneficial reuse. Learn more at

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer that recruits and hires qualified candidates without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, disability or veteran status. For more information, visit

ISTC is seeking to hire a Visiting Assistant Research Scientist, Project Engineer (up to five depending on applicant pool and programmatic need) to design and lead technical teams to execute large scale research at various industrial host sites, develop project proposals, and provide technical oversight and leadership of design development tasks including management of project and task scope, schedule, and budget. Types of projects will include, but are not limited to, the following: carbon capture, waste valorization, wastewater treatment, biomass, renewable and other clean energy based systems. Position is based in Champaign, Illinois.

Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Identify research needs and project opportunities based on discussions with potential funding source.
  • Evaluate new technologies / new methodologies and assess ability to implement at host site.
  • Construct project work team and establish technical approach. Ensure that responsibilities are assigned, and execution of tasks are begun and completed according to schedule.
  • Review and interpret results to assure validity.
  • Assist in developing responses to federal, state, commercial, and foundation funding opportunities.
  • Obtain required clearance to attend meetings at national laboratories and government facilities.
  • Travel within and outside the state of Illinois (including internationally) visiting industrial sites, power plants, wastewater treatment facilities, etc. Travel to field and test sites may include outside of normal business hours and overnight stays.
  • Manage project lifecycle (proposal-initiation-execution/control-closeout).
  • Hold regularly scheduled project progress review meetings to assist the project manager in meeting the following: Project contract's terms, conditions, schedule, budget, and design requirements.
  • Ensure the safety of staff and equipment.
  • Respond to requests for information and provide technical expertise to PRI staff, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, academia, industry, and the general public.
  • Serve as the liaison between the Survey and industrial facilities where project is occurring (i.e. host site)
  • Attend, participate in, and contribute to meetings, conferences, and workshops.
  • Provide technical content for articles and reports.
  • Contribute in the areas of education, outreach, and/or other service to the Survey, PRI, the University of Illinois, and the state of Illinois.
  • Enhance the reputation of the Survey and PRI at the state, national, and international level.
  • Keep abreast of developments in this discipline.
  • Maintain a continuing business relationship with major clients as part of ongoing business development efforts (account management).
  • Perform other duties as needed in order to further the mission and goals of PRI.

Required Qualifications: Bachelor's degree in environmental, chemical, industrial, electrical, civil, or mechanical engineering, or related discipline. Alternate degree fields will be considered/accepted depending on the nature and depth of the experience as it relates to this position. At least 5 years related industry or research experience with bachelor's degree or at least 3 years related industry or research experience with master's degree. Demonstrated experience managing project teams. Solid ability to write comprehensive reports and proposals. Effective communication, personal relations, collaboration, organizational, teamwork, and leadership skills. Demonstrated ability to perform effectively in a diverse and fast-paced work environment consisting of multiple and changing priorities with stringent deadlines, under minimal supervision. Attention to detail, sound judgment, and strong conflict resolution skills. Affinity for cooperative or interdisciplinary research with scientists at the Survey, professionals at other Surveys or other academic units, as well as governmental and other academic institutions. Proficiency in commonly employed software and databases as well as project management software. Valid driver's license.

Preferred Qualifications: Master's degree in environmental, chemical, industrial, electrical, civil or mechanical engineering, or related discipline. Alternate degree fields will be considered/accepted depending on the nature and depth of the experience as it relates to this position. Project Management Professional (PMP) certification.

This is a full-time, visiting academic professional, grant supported, 12-month position subject to the continued availability of funding and programmatic need. Position may become a regular, non-visiting position at a later date depending on funding and programmatic need. The starting date is negotiable and the salary is commensurate with experience.

Applications must be received by October 29, 2021. Interviews and hiring may be conducted before the closing date due to this being a multi-hire search. To apply, please visit to complete an online profile and to upload 1) a cover letter that clearly articulates how your qualifications and experience make you a viable candidate for this position and should address the qualifications listed above, 2) a rsum/CV, and 3) the names and contact information (including e-mail addresses) of three professional (not personal) references. All requested information/documentation must be submitted for applications to be considered. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

For further information please contact Lori Walston-Vonderharr, Human Resources, Prairie Research Institute, at or 217-244-2401.

The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer. The University of Illinois System requires candidates selected for hire to disclose any documented finding of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment and to authorize inquiries to current and former employers regarding findings of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment. For more information, visit Policy on Consideration of Sexual Misconduct in Prior Employment. As a qualifying federal contractor, the University of Illinois System uses E-Verify to verify employment eligibility

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