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A complete application consists of:
All documents must be in English or include an official English translation.
If you have questions, send an email to ORISE.FDA.CFSAN@orau.org. Please include the reference code for this opportunity in your email.
*Applications will be reviewed on a rolling-basis.
A research opportunity is currently available at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), Office of Food Safety (OFS), Division of Food Processing Science and Technology (DFPST) located in Bedford Park, Illinois.
Proficiency testing and inter-laboratory studies have a major role in developing and implementing guidelines for Model Laboratory Standards and Accreditation requirements of Food Safety modernization Act (FSMA). FSMA necessitates standardization and validation of microbiological methods. Due to rapidly changing technologies and the vast resources required to validate methods, there is a wide gap in the need for bringing new, reliable methods to the field and the availability of independently (and FDA) validated protocols. Validation of both microbiological and chemical analytical methods used by the FDA is one of the most important expected research outcomes. Validation of analytical methods developed by FDA researchers or BAM procedures is critical to ensure that performance characteristics of the analytical methods are known and established. Use of officially validated methods ensures accurate and precise laboratory data that will be universally accepted. FDA does have a systematic approach for conducting method validations effectively. Methods must be validated by subjecting them to conditions of actual use in the field in order to measure their fitness of purpose. Food microbiological method validations present unique challenges because of the problems associated with preparation and distribution of the test samples with known, homogeneous and stable microflora. The Moffett Proficiency Testing program consisting of multidisciplinary team of scientists from both FDA and Institute of Food Safety and Health. The team is involved in detecting and quantifying a variety of pathogens/contaminants in foods; validating analytical methods according to latest ISO 16140 series of Standards and FDA, AOAC guidelines. Studies include development of newer protocols for developing homogenous and stable bulk food samples including dry ingredients (nuts, spices, flours and infant formula), fresh produce, dairy products, seafood, and other manufactured foods.
Under the guidance of a mentor, the participant will be trained in food microbiology and will learn by assisting in laboratory research projects involving bacterial foodborne pathogens. The project will provide diverse experience and training in the areas of food microbiology, including complex assays such as conventional and rapid assays for detection, identification and enumeration of pathogens in food. The participant will be involved in the following specific tasks, which are not limited to:
Anticipated Appointment Start Date: January 2021
This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and FDA. The initial appointment is for two to four months, but may be renewed upon recommendation of FDA contingent on the availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. The appointment is full-time at FDA in the Bedford Park, Illinois, area. Participants do not become employees of FDA, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits.
Completion of a successful background investigation by the Office of Personnel Management is required for an applicant to be on-boarded at FDA. OPM can complete a background investigation only for individuals, including non-US Citizens, who have resided in the US for a total of three of the past five years.
FDA requires ORISE participants to read and sign their FDA Education and Training Agreement within 30 days of his/her start date, setting forth the conditions and expectations for his/her educational appointment at the agency. This agreement covers such topics as the following:
The qualified candidate should have received a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree in one of the relevant fields, or be currently pursuing the degree with completion by the appointment start date. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date.