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Postdoctoral Scholar - Higher Education Race and the Economy (HERE) Lab and the Sociology of Health and Equity (SHE) Lab

Position overview

Position title: Postdoctoral Scholar
Salary range: See Table 23 for the salary range for this position. A reasonable estimate for this position is $60,000 - $ 71,952.
Percent time: 100%
Anticipated start: July 1, 2023
Position duration: 24 months

Application Window

Open date: May 12, 2023

Next review date: Monday, Jun 12, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.

Final date: Sunday, Dec 31, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description

The Higher Education Race and the Economy (HERE) Lab and the Sociology of Health and Equity (SHE) Lab in the Department of Sociology ( at the University of California, Merced are seeking a qualified Postdoctoral Fellow to collaborate on our Du Bois Science Visualization Empowerment Project funded by the National Science Foundation. The project will develop curricular materials to teach scientific reasoning and data visualization across a range of STEM courses by using the foundational work Black social scientist, W.E.B. Du Bois. Du Bois pioneered data visualization techniques that are still considered state of the art across science disciplines. Du Bois applied these methods to investigate the social causes of racial inequality and promote Black empowerment in ways that were accessible for broad audiences. In partnership with our collaborators at Fisk University (where Du Bois earned his first degree) and Princeton University, we will test curricular materials in STEM courses across our three institutions. We will use quantitative analysis of course survey and administrative data to assess curricular impacts on students from underrepresented communities of color. We particularly aim to evaluate potential benefits for students’ sense of belonging and positive associations with their racial identity.

Qualified candidates with a Ph.D. in Sociology, Education, or other related fields are invited to apply. We are seeking Fellows who have quantitative training in data analysis and data visualization and an understanding of race and racism. But qualitative scholars of race and racism are also encouraged to apply.

Successful candidates will join a cluster of postdoctoral scholars and graduate students working on a range of projects with the HERE Lab and SHE Lab. The HERE Lab work on this project is led by HERE Lab Cofounder and Associate Professor Charlie Eaton. For more on the HERE Lab, visit

The SHE Lab is led by Associate Professor of Sociology Whitney Pirtle and uses sociological frameworks and methods to critically examine the role of race, racism, and related intersections in shaping health disparities. For more on the SHE Lab, visit
Assistant Professor of Sociology Camila Alvarez is an additional PI on the project.

The successful candidate will be expected to work in collaboration with the principal investigators, other HERE/SHE Lab postdoctoral fellows, and the HERE Lab Policy and Communications Director to: (1) co-develop, deploy, and link course surveys to student administrative data, (2) conduct computational analyses, (3) author and issue briefs, papers, and code to disseminate results, and (4) consult and engage with relevant policy actors. The fellow will be encouraged to also develop their own research agenda and will enjoy professional development and incorporation into departmental life at UC-Merced. This is a full-time, 24-month academic positions with an anticipated start date of July 1, 2023.

Why the University of California, Merced?
Idyllically situated between San Francisco, Monterey, and Yosemite National Park, UC Merced opened September 2005 as the tenth campus of the University of California and the first American research university of the 21st century. The beautiful campus is first in the nation for sustainable research and campus infrastructure. UC Merced boasts a diverse faculty who are committed to social justice and who work to empower underrepresented students. UC Merced has been recognized as first in the nation for student outcomes and seventh for social mobility and has earned the prestigious Carnegie Classification for commitment to community engagement.

For more information, please contact Charlie Eaton at ( or Whitney Pirtle at (

As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program Policy: All Covered Individuals under the policy must provide proof of Full Vaccination or, if applicable, submit a request for Exception (based on Medical Exemption, Disability, and/or Religious Objection) or Deferral (based on pregnancy) no later than the applicable deadline. New University of California employees should refer to Appendix F, Section II.C. of the policy for applicable deadlines. (Capitalized terms in this paragraph are defined in the policy.) Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.


Basic qualifications

• Ph.D. in Sociology, Education, or other related fields.
• An ability to work in Stata.
• Strong methodological and data analysis skills.
• A demonstrated the ability to conduct independent and collaborative scientific research.

Preferred qualifications

• Fluency in R or Python.
• Prior research on race and/or racial disparities in the US context.
• Background expertise on the scholarship of W.E.B. Du Bois.
• Willingness to mentor and supervise graduate research assistants.
• Experience working on team-based quantitative research.

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Cover Letter - Include a brief description of your relevant experience, training, and career goals.

  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.

  • Statement of Research - Two pages max, single-spaced (1-inch margins)

  • Statement on Contributions to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion - Statement on your contributions to equity, diversity, and inclusion, including information about your understanding of these topics, your record of activities to date, and your specific plans and goals for advancing equity and inclusion. Please review the UC Merced Diversity Statement Guidelines and UC’s Commitment to Diversity

  • Writing sample #1 - Publications, dissertation chapters, or policy briefs

  • Writing sample #2 - Publications, dissertation chapters, or policy briefs

Reference requirements
  • 3 required (contact information only)

List of 3 professional references with contact information including mailing address, phone number, and e-mail address (reference letters will be automatically requested upon application submission)

Apply link:

Help contact:

Campus Information

The University of California is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and invites applications from all qualified applicants, including women, minorities, veterans, and individual with disabilities, who will enrich the teaching, research and public service missions of the university. All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, see: UC Nondiscrimination & Affirmative Action Policy (

The University of California, Merced, is the newest of the University of California system’s 10 campuses. With over 9,000 undergraduate and graduate students (, UC Merced provides outstanding educational opportunities to highly qualified students from the heart of California, the nation, and abroad. The campus has special connections to nearby Yosemite National Park; is on the cutting edge of sustainability in construction and design; and supports the economic development of Central California. The Merced 2020 Project doubled the physical capacity of the campus, and enhanced academic distinction, student success, and research excellence (

UC Merced is a smoke & tobacco free campus (

Job location

Merced, CA