Neuroscience, Data Science Assist. Professor cluster hires begin through UNM FIRST Program


Posted: Feb 17, 2023 - 01:00pm

UNM FIRST Neuroscience and Data Science Assistant Professor Cluster Search


Application window opens: January 11, 2023

First best consideration date: Wednesday, March 1, 2023 Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee. Applications received after this date will only be considered if the positions have not yet been filled.

Additional best consideration dates will likely be announced in the future, but this is contingent upon availability of positions.

Start date is negotiable, with an earliest start date of Spring 2024.


The University of New Mexico College of Arts and Sciences is seeking to recruit a cohort of nine tenure-track Assistant Professors. The positions are part of the NIH funded Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation (FIRST) grant ( awarded to the University of New Mexico (UNM). The UNM FIRST program goals are: (1) to recruit a cohort of diverse faculty who have a demonstrated strong commitment to promoting diversity and inclusive excellence in the biomedical fields of neuroscience and data science, and (2) to achieve sustainable culture change of inclusive excellence at the institutional level.

The new hires will be part of one of the following six academic departments in the College of Arts and Sciences: Psychology, Biology, Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Physics and Astronomy, Speech and Hearing Sciences, and Mathematics and Statistics.

In addition to the highest standards of scholarship, teaching, and professional activity, successful candidates will have demonstrated a commitment to promoting inclusive excellence. Several of the University’s ongoing initiatives to promote inclusive excellence include:

The selected candidates will receive competitive startup packages to support salary and research start-up costs, and will be welcomed into a diverse and inclusive vibrant scholar community. The positions have 75% protected research time for the duration of the NIH FIRST award.

Eligible candidates have not held a prior tenure-track Assistant Professor position but may have held a non-tenure track Research Assistant Professor position. Furthermore, candidates must qualify as a NIH early-stage investigator (, including not having already been the Principal Investigator or Program Director on a successfully awarded NIH independent research award comparable to an R01.

The appointment will be at the Assistant Professor rank. Salary will be commensurate with experience and qualifications and based on comparable University of New Mexico salaries at the Assistant Professor rank in each department.


Minimum Qualifications

  • A PhD, MD/PhD, PharmD, DrPH or other doctoral degree in psychology, biological sciences, neuroscience, chemistry, chemical biology, biochemistry, bioinformatics, physics, data science, mathematics, statistics, communication sciences and disorders, computer science, cognitive sciences, or a related area. This degree must be awarded by the time of the appointment.
  • Has not held a prior tenure-track position. · Satisfies the NIH Early-Stage Investigator criteria (, including not having already been the Principal Investigator or Program Director on a successfully awarded NIH independent research award comparable to an R01.
  • Research and scholarship in the general areas of neuroscience or data science.

Preferred Qualifications

  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and student success, as well as working with broadly diverse communities.
  • A publication record in the general areas of neuroscience or data science.
  • Potential for success in interdisciplinary collaboration with one of the other five departments represented in this award (Psychology, Biology, Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Physics and Astronomy, Speech and Hearing Sciences, Mathematics and Statistics).
  • Evidence of efforts to obtain intramural and/or extramural funding.
  • Research in an area appropriate for NIH R01 funding opportunities (
  • Evidence of teaching in the general areas of neuroscience or data science, or clear plans to do so.
  • Potential for teaching other courses (outside of the neuroscience or data science areas) in the home departments selected.
  • Experience serving as a mentor.


Document requirements – a complete application consists of the following:

  • Curriculum Vitae: Most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter (1-2 pages): Candidates should describe their suitability for the position by addressing both the minimum and preferred qualifications. They also should indicate which of the six departments are their top two preferred home departments, and rank order them based on preference.
  • Contributions to Inclusive Excellence Statement (2 pages maximum): Candidates should provide a personal diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) statement that summarizes their personal view on DEI issues in higher education at any level. Overall, candidates should report on their knowledge about DEI, their track record in advancing DEI, and their plans for advancing DEI efforts at UNM. The statement should include any of their specific contributions to actively mitigate inequities for any constituency. Furthermore, candidates should describe any efforts to mentor, support and amplify diverse voices in higher education and to foster healthy academic environments at their institution or outside.
  • Research Statement (3 pages maximum, not including references): Candidates should summarize previous research experience and include short- and long-term research goals. They also should describe how their research plans are tied to potential NIH funding ( and the Strategic Plans, Requests for Applications, or Notices of Special Interest published by NIH institutes.
  • Teaching Statement (2 pages maximum): Candidates should describe teaching experience. They also should include their teaching philosophy and overall pedagogical strategy. Furthermore, candidates should describe their culturally responsive approach to inclusive excellence in their teaching. In addition to specifying courses they would like to teach in the areas of neuroscience or data science, they should identify other courses of interest that would contribute to the course offerings of the preferred home departments. Candidates should include any mentoring, and should specify if done with underrepresented students.

Reference requirements

  • 3-5 required (Names and contact information only at time of application)

Apply link: 

Contact Us:

All applicants are highly encouraged to contact the Principal Investigators for this program, Dr. Jane Ellen Smith or Dr. Irene Salinas, at so that questions may be fully addressed. Applicants also are encouraged to contact the search committee chairs for their primary departments of interest (see UNM FIRST website,


New Mexico is a majority minority state. The University of New Mexico (UNM) is the premier research university in the state of New Mexico, as well as a Carnegie R1 Highest Research Activity Institution and a federally designated Hispanic Serving Institution.

UNM is located in Albuquerque, the largest city in New Mexico. Albuquerque is an ethnically diverse metropolitan area of over a half million residents that has been listed as one of the best small cities in the U.S. by National Geographic Traveler. The city has a rich culture and a location offering unparalleled opportunities for outdoor adventure. Learn more about our city here ( The University is located within one hour of Santa Fe, three hours of Taos, and within minutes of the Sandia and Manzano mountain ranges, which offer great opportunities for hiking, biking, rock climbing, skiing, and other outdoor activities.

The University of New Mexico is committed to hiring and retaining a diverse workforce. We are an Equal Opportunity Employer, making decisions without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, veteran status, disability, or any other protected class.

The University of New Mexico has implemented a mandatory COVID-19 vaccine requirement for UNM students and employees. For detailed information, visit