Careers at Virginia Tech

Postdoctoral Associate (Agrawal Lab)

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Work type: Research Faculty
Senior management: College of Science
Department: School of Neuroscience
Location: Blacksburg, Virginia
Categories: Research / Scientific

Job Description

The Agrawal Lab in the School of Neuroscience at Virginia Tech is seeking a postdoctoral associate to join our team. The Agrawal lab studies neural circuits underlying flexible motor control by utilizing the compact genetic model organism, Drosophila melanogaster. We use a variety of cutting-edge techniques, including quantitative behavior with machine vision-based tracking, optogenetics, in vivo electrophysiology and 2-photon imaging, and EM-based circuit reconstruction.

Specifically, we are interested in how animals use proprioceptive sensory information to navigate and move through an often unpredictable world. Proprioception is an animal’s sense of the position and movement of its body, and it is essential for coordinated movement across the animal kingdom. Projects in the lab include understanding how proprioceptive information is relayed to the brain to integrate with motor planning, examining how neural circuits integrate wing and leg proprioceptive information in the insect CNS, and exploring how vibration sensing via the legs mediates courtship and other behaviors. See the lab website ( for more details and other potential projects.

This position is for two years with possibilities for extension. The postdoctoral fellow will be responsible for directing, planning, and executing project(s) in collaboration with Dr. Agrawal. They will also have the opportunity to publish first-author papers, contribute to related projects as a co-author, and present their work at national and international conferences and institutions. As a new lab, the position will have the opportunity for lots of interaction and mentorship from Dr. Agrawal as well as opportunities to mentor other junior scientists as desired. Dr. Agrawal is committed to providing all members of the lab with scientific training and mentorship to help them pursue their career goals.

Applicant must have a Ph.D. in a relevant field (e.g., biology, neuroscience, computational neuroscience, controls, engineering) and a curiosity and enthusiasm for science. Basic programming skills in Matlab or Python are highly desirable.

Interested applicants should apply online at Please include a current Curriculum Vitae, Research Statement and contact information of three (3) references. Please, visit the lab website at

Required Qualifications

• Ph.D. in a relevant field (e.g., biology, neuroscience, computational neuroscience, controls, engineering), Ph.D. must be awarded no more than four years prior to the effective date of appointment with a minimum of two-year's of eligibility remaining.
• A curiosity and enthusiasm for science.
• Strong organizational skills and ability to prioritize responsibilities.
• Strong interpersonal communication skills and the ability to work effectively in a team environment and independently.
• Willingness to learn new skills.

Preferred Qualifications

• Basic programming skills in Matlab or Python
• Laboratory experience in Drosophila genetics
• Able to commit at least two years' duration to the position

Appointment Type


Salary Information

$60,000 - $70,000

Review Date


Additional Information

The successful candidate will be required to have a criminal conviction check.

About Virginia Tech

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech pushes the boundaries of knowledge by taking a hands-on, transdisciplinary approach to preparing scholars to be leaders and problem-solvers. A comprehensive land-grant institution that enhances the quality of life in Virginia and throughout the world, Virginia Tech is an inclusive community dedicated to knowledge, discovery, and creativity. The university offers more than 280 majors to a diverse enrollment of more than 36,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in eight undergraduate colleges, a school of medicine, a veterinary medicine college, Graduate School, and Honors College. The university has a significant presence across Virginia, including the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia; the Health Sciences and Technology Campus in Roanoke; sites in Newport News and Richmond; and numerous Extension offices and research centers. A leading global research institution, Virginia Tech conducts more than $500 million in research annually.

Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, or military status, or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants, or on any other basis protected by law.

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact Jonathan Hedrick at during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to the event.

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