Job Opportunities

Columbia’s Zuckerman Institute seeks two scientists as part-time instructors for a middle school after-school program

The Mortimer B. Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute is an interdisciplinary research institute at Columbia University focused on the mind and brain. We are seeking two scientists to be instructors for the 2018-2019 Discover Science program, run jointly with the Double Discovery Center at Columbia College. The Double Discovery Center at Columbia College works with low-income and first generation college bound Manhattan area youth from ages 12-27 to ensure high school graduation, college enrollment and completion and responsible adulthood.

The Discover Science program is a hands-on after-school science program for middle school students, with a focus on neuroscience. The program aims to give groups of middle school students a 5-week exposure to the process of science and lab techniques, in a fun, interactive setting that emphasizes active learning. The program will run for two hours once per week on weekday afternoons in the Education Lab at the Jerome L. Greene Science Center, for five consecutive weeks at a time during the fall and spring semesters.

The Discover Science instructors will work closely with the Senior Manager for Education Programs. Each Instructor will work for four hours per week for three seven-week periods in November-December, January-February and March-April. This comprises a session for course planning, five sessions teaching a two-hour weekly course to a group of students, and a session for course material refinement. The instructor will also be expected to mentor high school or college interns to the program, who will assist with teaching and mentoring the middle school students.

The Discover Science instructors will:

  • Attend an orientation session with other course instructors and interns
  • Work with program staff to develop course materials
  • Work to revise and improve existing course materials
  • Teach and facilitate workshops for middle school students
  • Mentor high school or college-level interns
  • Occasionally attend other program events

The instructor will be paid hourly at $30 per hour. Key dates for the program are available upon request.

Minimum qualifications

  • Columbia University affiliate
  • Ph.D. (or Ph.D. candidate) in a biomedical science

Ideal qualifications

  • Experience working with youth in science education
  • Experience designing interactive and engaging lesson plans
  • Willingness to learn pedagogy implementation techniques and inquiry-based science learning strategies
  • Passion for communicating science
  • Neuroscience research background preferred

To apply: Send C.V. or resume and cover letter to  with “Discover Science Instructor position” as the subject line.