Why choose Bigelow Laboratory for Postdoctoral Research?

Bigelow Laboratory offers one of the best career growth opportunities for early career scientists interested in bold science for our blue planet. Unlike at large universities where postdocs are often ignored or given few opportunities for career advancement, postdocs at Bigelow Laboratory are an integral part of our research and educational programs. We see your success as our success.

Cutting edge, multidisciplinary science

Bigelow Laboratory scientists and our Discovery Centers use innovative approaches to study the foundation of global ocean health and unlock its potential to improve the future of all life on our planet. Creative, cutting-edge science is our hallmark, fusing the best of scientific inquiry and entrepreneurial ingenuity. Our scientists are highly productive, frequently publishing high-impact scientific papers. Postdocs at Bigelow are encouraged to collaborate across groups, facilitated by our open lab building layout and broad pool of technical expertise in our scientific staff.

Funding opportunities

In addition to funding support on research grants, postdocs at Bigelow are eligible to apply for internal funding to support research. For example, Bigelow sponsors a Postdoctoral Fellowship that funds a 10-week independent project with an undergraduate student intern, and postdocs can apply as co-investigators for internal seed funding for new ideas. Postdocs are also eligible to be co-investigators on proposals to major funding agencies. Funding is available to support postdocs to teach in our educational programs. Bigelow Laboratory also welcomes Postdoctoral Fellows who receive external funding, such as from the National Science Foundation’s postdoctoral fellows programs, NASA’s Postdoctoral Program Fellows, and various foundation-supported fellowships.

Teaching and mentoring opportunities

Postdocs at Bigelow Laboratory are integral parts of our diverse educational programs. Postdocs have the funded opportunity to co-teach sections of our fall Sea Change Semester for undergraduate students, and postdocs can also be the primary mentor for undergraduate interns during our summer intern program. Postdocs are also eligible to apply for professional development funds to support skill building related to teaching. As adjunct research faculty with Colby College – one of Bigelow Laboratory’s major educational program partners – postdocs can also participate in educator and course development opportunities through Colby College’s Center for Teaching and Learning.

Dedicated professional development training and opportunities

Bigelow Laboratory strongly believes in supporting the growth and development of our postdocs. We offer a monthly training series – taught by our scientists and other professionals – that covers diverse professional development topics such as grant writing, applying for jobs, mentoring, research ethics, course development, conflict resolution, project management, and more. Postdocs at Bigelow also get the opportunity to serve on our various governance committees of the institution, helping to shape the policies of the organization and getting real-life experience relevant to future career stages. This kind of professional development opportunity is highly unique to Bigelow, and provides a competitive advantage in the job market. Postdocs at Bigelow are also eligible to apply for promotion to a Research Scientist position as they begin to take on more intellectual leadership of projects.

Quality of Life

Bigelow Laboratory believes that the greatest asset of our independent research institute is our people. Thus, we aim for everyone to be able to thrive. Our postdoc positions are well paid for the cost of living of the area, and employment includes generous employee benefits like health care, retirement plan match, and paid leave. Our state-of-the-art oceanfront campus in East Boothbay is located in scenic Midcoast Maine, perfectly situated to provide access to the very best Maine has to offer. Within a reasonable commuting distance of most major Maine cities, this mid-coast peninsula offers the perfect balance between small town coastal charm and urban accessibility. Bigelow Laboratory is an inclusive community of scientists from around the world that welcomes and supports diverse opinions and cultures. We strive to maintain an environment that allows our employees to flourish through respectful, inclusive, and equitable treatment of others. We believe there is power in embracing the full diversity of humanity to advance science and are committed to supporting each other as individuals worthy of respect.

Competitive job placement success

Postdocs from Bigelow Laboratory have a high placement rate (over 90%) in the competitive academic job market, leveraging the broad portfolio of experience and cutting-edge research they are able to do. In the past decade, most of our recent postdocs have secured tenure-track academic positions at research intensive universities as well as education-focused liberal arts institutions, with some also going into federal or commercial research.