Electron Microscopy Specialist

The Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST; see www.oist.jp) is a dynamic new graduate university of science and technology in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. The university is located on 85 hectares of protected forestland overlooking beautiful shoreline and coral reefs. The campus is striking architecturally, and the facilities are outstanding (OIST campus video tour). There are no academic departments, which facilitates multidisciplinary research. Outstanding resources and equipment are provided and managed to encourage easy access and collaboration. English is the official language of the University, and the university research community is fully international, with more than 50 countries represented. OIST is rapidly gaining recognition in the worldwide academic community as a model for excellence in education and research.

Division/Section Function:

The Research Support Division (RSD) shall contribute to research and education by providing excellent common research facilities and research support services for the researchers and students at OIST. Technical sections of RSD shall provide maintenance of common equipment/facilities, operation training, fair access, consultation on experimental design and choice of methods/instruments, and technical support on data acquisition and analysis. Administrative sections of RSD shall provide support on grant applications, collaborations, health and safety and other support to research activities.

As one of the technical sections of RSD, Imaging Section offers imaging systems and expertise to support diverse research programs taking place at OIST. The services offered include consultation on research projects, sample preparation, data acquisition, image processing and etc. The section is responsible for the maintenance and development of the university’s world-class imaging facility, which houses cryo-TEMs, analytical TEMs, serial block face SEM, focussed ion beam SEM, X-ray CT microscope, confocal (two photon) microscopes, super resolution microscopes (SIM, STED, STORM), light sheet microscope and accompanying sample preparation instruments.


1919-1 Tancha, Onna-son, Okinawa, Japan 904-0495


OIST Imaging Section seeks a highly-motivated Electron Microscopy Specialist to expand imaging capability within the university. The principle responsibilities of the position will be to keep the imaging facility and equipment in a good functional condition, to provide researchers and students with consultation, training and technical assistance on sample preparation and imaging and to support the Imaging Section Leader in optimizing the use of the facility and equipment

  1. Ensure the electron microscopes and relevant equipment within the university ‘s imaging facility are in a good functional condition by carrying out routine maintenance, inspection, replacing consumable components and etc.
  2. Handle purchasing procedures of the reagents and consumables for electron microscopes and ensure that they are available for experiments.
  3. Provide training and technical assistance to researchers and students on sample preparation, operation of the instruments and data acquisition.
  4. Provide consultation to researchers and students on imaging experimental protocol, measurement and data analysis.
  5. Assist the Section Leader in the purchase of new equipment by identifying users’ needs, writing specifications and communicating with vendors.
  6. Acquire information on the latest technologies on sample preparation and imaging by attending trade shows, conferences and training courses, and apply newly-acquired knowledge and skills in the workplace.  


  1. PhD degree in science
  2. At minimum of 5 years of research experience in biological electron microscopy
  3. Practical knowledge of:

- conventional sample preparation methods for TEM and SEM
- preparation methods for cryo-EM, such as cryo-fixation, freeze-substitution, freeze-fracturing and Tokuyasu sectioning
- Immunolabelling for light and electron microscopy.
- image processing software: e.g., IMOD, ImageJ.

  1. Ability to effectively communicate and provide customer-oriented service to researchers and students in English both written and spoken (TOEIC 850 or higher)


  1. Basic knowledge of light microscopy to support correlative microscopy
  2. Knowledge of volume microscopy: focussed ion beam scanning electron microscopy, serial block-face SEM and/or array tomography, and/or cryoTEM and cryoSEM
  3. Japanese language skills

Report to 

Imaging Section Leader

Starting Date 

As early as possible

Term & Working Hours 

Term: Full-time, fixed term appointment for 2 years. Contract initially with 3-month probationary period (inclusive). This contract may be renewed.  

Working hours: 9:00-17:30 (Discretionary)

Compensation & Benefits 

Compensation in accordance with the OIST Employee Compensation Regulations

Annual salary: 4.5 million ~ 8.4 million yen (Job class: Research Support Specialist, RS2)


Relocation, housing and commuting allowances
Annual paid leave and summer holidays
Health insurance (Private School Mutual Aid http://www.shigakukyosai.jp/ )
Welfare pension insurance (kousei-nenkin)
Worker’s accident compensation insurance (roudousha-saigai-hoshou-hoken)

How To Apply 

Apply by uploading your submission documents HERE*.
*This is a secure file uploading system for handling confidential materials.

Submission documents:
- Curriculum vita in English (and Japanese if available)
- Cover letter in English (and Japanese if available)
- Names and contact information of 3~5 referees, one of which should be a previous employer

or send by post to the following address:
HR Recruiting Support Section

Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University
1919-1 Tancha, Onna-son, Okinawa 904-0495, Japan

If you have any questions, please contact us at recruiting[at]oist.jp.
(replace [at] with @ before using this email address)

Application Due Date 

February 15, 2019 (Applications will be screened upon arrival)


* OIST Graduate University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action educator and employer and is committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty, students and staff. The University strongly encourages women and minority candidates to apply.

* Information provided by applicants or references will be kept confidential, documents will not be returned. All applicants will be notified regarding the status of their applications.

*  Please view our policy for rules on external professional activities (https://groups.oist.jp/acd/information-disclosure/).

* Further details about the University can be viewed on our website (www.oist.jp).