Assistant Director of Recruitment, Biomedical Graduate Programs @ Vanderbilt University

February 23, 2022

Job Description

The Biomedical Research, Education, and Training (BRET) Office within the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine seeks a dynamic, collaborative, and proactive individual to serve as the Assistant Director of Recruiting for the umbrella Biomedical Graduate Programs. These two programs, the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences (IGP) and the Quantitative and Chemical Biology Program (QCB), collectively recruit ~80 students each year. In addition to recruiting, the BRET office supports many aspects of PhD student and postdoc training including a variety of educational initiatives, and career and professional

The overall goal for this position is to identify candidates who match the research profile and opportunities at Vanderbilt, and then encourage and support applications from those candidates into our graduate training programs. Vanderbilt is a top tier research institution with faculty at the cutting edge of diverse biomedical and biological fields, most often with an interdisciplinary approach. Innovation, collaboration, and impact are key descriptors for the research done here. Finding trainees who are the best fit to uphold these ideals and move our programs forward is critically important for Vanderbilt and also places students into an environment that will maximize their potential for future success. Candidates being recruited to Vanderbilt should represent the diverse and vibrant research community.


The Office of Biomedical Research Education and Training (BRET) provides support and resources for Vanderbilt biomedical graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty who train graduate students and postdocs. The Interdisciplinary Graduate Program and the Quantitative and Chemical Biology Program within BRET are the two main umbrella graduate programs that recruit biomedical Ph.D. students to Vanderbilt. These programs are responsible for organizing the first year of the graduate students’ education and training, which is achieved via a collaborative effort between the BRET office staff and Vanderbilt faculty. Additionally, the BRET office provides career and professional development support for biomedical PhD students and postdocs through the Office of Career Development ASPIRE Program and the Office of Outcomes Research.


Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Report to and work in close collaboration with the directors of the Vanderbilt Interdisciplinary Graduate Program (IGP), the Quantitative and Chemical Biology Program (QCB), and the Senior Associate Dean for BRET.
  • Meet with program leaders and other faculty to identify skills sought, ideal candidate profiles and any historical difficulties in recruiting candidates. This will be a continuing conversation as needs change.
  • Develop relationships and outreach initiatives to targeted institutions and conferences to solicit applications from candidates that could be ‘best fit’. Participate in graduate student recruiting events, including on campus and off campus events, diversity-focused events, and online-virtual events. Requires travel.
  • Engage one-one-one with candidates as they learn about programs at Vanderbilt and elsewhere and help demonstrate why Vanderbilt is a strong option. Encourage applications. Answer questions about the research opportunities and programs.
  • Update and maintain content for admissions-related web pages and conduct social media campaigns.
  • Facilitate applicant engagement with faculty.
  • Display flexibility with other duties that accompany the evolving nature of these programs.
  • Maintain outcomes analysis of recruiting and conduct surveys of applicants and participants as necessary to evaluate recruitment strategies to our programs.
  • Co-Direct the Vanderbilt Summer Science Academy (VSSA), undergraduate research program
  • Aid in the application, selection, appointment, and laboratory placement of students participating in the VSSA in collaboration with faculty advisors.
  • Aid in the development of programming of VSSA activities, including orientation, a research seminar series, professional development series, social activities, and large (150 participant) student research symposium.
  • Help manage VSSA budget and event planning.
  • Mentor and advise VSSA students for their individual career goals.


  • A PhD in a STEM field is required. 
  • Commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion is necessary.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills (verbal and written) are necessary.
  • Ability to effectively collaborate with different stakeholders is necessary.
  • The willingness and ability to represent Vanderbilt through participation in national student research symposia in a professional and positive manner is necessary.
  • Availability and willingness to work non-standard hours, especially during recruitment activities, is necessary.
  • Ability to maintain confidential information is necessary.
  • Evidence of strong organizational skills is preferred.


Commitment to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

At Vanderbilt University, we are intentional about and assume accountability for fostering advancement and respect for equity, diversity, and inclusion for all students, faculty, and staff. Our commitment to diversity makes us who we are.  We have created a community that celebrates differences and lets individuality thrive. As part of this commitment, we actively value diversity in our workplace and learning environments as we seek to take advantage of the rich backgrounds and abilities of everyone. The diverse voices of Vanderbilt represent an invaluable resource for the University in its efforts to fulfill its mission and strive to be an example of excellence in higher education.


Vanderbilt University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and protected veterans are encouraged to apply.


Please note, all candidates selected for an offer of employment are subject to pre-employment background checks, which may include but are not limited to, based on the role for which they have been selected: criminal history, education verification, social media review, motor vehicle records, credit history, and professional license verification.


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