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Entomology Collection Manager - KU Biodiversity Institute

A Collections Manager in the Division of Entomology of the Biodiversity Institute at The University of Kansas administers a world-class collection consisting of nearly five million recent and fossil insect specimens in a wide range of preservation states. Tasks include preservation and curation of the physical collection; the management of data, records, and transactions of the collection; the maintenance and development of the collection’s specimen-level database in Specify; and facilitation of the use of the collection by University faculty, staff, students and the external research community. In addition, the Collection Manager trains and oversees graduate and undergraduate students as well as other grant-funded personnel in collections work-flow operations such as specimen preparation and digitization. This full-time, state-funded position reports to the Biodiversity Institute Assistant Director for Collections and Facilities. For additional information and to apply, go to: A complete application will include a letter of application addressing qualifications, a CV, a statement of collection management philosophy, names and contact information for three references, and representative publications (optional). Salary range starting at $45,000 contingent upon qualifications. Initial review of applications begins July 18, 2022.

Job Description

1. Collection management, conservation, and divisional operations (45%)

  • Ensure long-term integrity and preservation of collection and collection-storage environment.

  • Maintain and improve collection-care protocols.

  • Continue to develop and maintain Specify collection database.

  • Maintain and organize records of collection activity, use, and status for annual reports, grant submittals, and other documentation.

  • Process specimen loans, exchanges, and gifts; oversee specimens moving into and out of the collection; maintain appropriate records of such activities.

  • Collaborate with curators to plan and implement divisional goals, priorities, and programs.

  • Collaborate with other museum collection managers to achieve high quality collections care and economy of scale in all collections-related activities.

  • Assist and supervise users of the collection, including students, and help to train them as appropriate.

  • Respond to inquiries from scientists, governmental and consulting agencies, the public, and other users.

  • Participate in the museum’s public programming by providing information and specimens and assisting in exhibit design; assist in museum public functions.

2. Collection strategic development, improvement, and acquisition (20%)

  • Organize and prepare documentation necessary for specimen accession, including national and international permits and associated documentation.

  • Oversee the preparation and staging of newly accessioned specimens, and the digital capture of associated data for their integration into the collection and collection database, respectively.

  • Foster research use of the collection by qualified researchers.

  • Improve the curatorial state of the collection as research use suggests and time permits.

  • Participate in acquisition of specimens by facilitating gifts and exchanges, and by occasional fieldwork and expeditions as approved by the curators.

3. Supervision (20%)

  • Train and supervise graduate student curatorial assistant(s).

  • Hire, train, and supervise undergraduate assistants.

  • Train and supervise volunteers working in the collection.

4. Professional development (10%)

  • Work closely with the entire BI collection management staff to ensure consistency of practice.

  • Participate in collection-management training and development through professional societies.

  • Undertake research in area of expertise when not in conflict with collection management duties.

  • Participate in relevant professional societies and workshops.

5. Other Divisional and Institutional duties as appropriate (5%)

Required qualifications:

  1. Master's degree or other advanced degree in biology, entomology, museum studies or related field from an accredited university.

  2. Working knowledge of the taxonomy and identification of insects.

  3. Demonstrable knowledge of care and management of natural history collections, with a special emphasis on preventative conservation and collection-storage environments.

  4. Familiarity with biodiversity informatics, including relational databases (e.g., Specify), web-based applications, and distributed networks.

Preferred qualifications:

  1. Previous collection-management experience in a natural history collection, with a special emphasis on entomological collections.

  2. Expertise in one or more taxa that constitute divisional strengths and programmatic priorities.

  3. Working knowledge of specimen photography and associated equipment.

  4. Experience supervising and training students and volunteers.

Position requirements: Ability to lift up to 25 pounds and utilize ladders to reach cabinets and shelves with or without accommodations. This position is required to work on-site. KU is an EO/AAE. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability, genetic information or protected Veteran status.

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