JOE - October 2012

The University of Texas-Pan American
Academic Affairs
Cluster Hire for the Rio Grande Valley Biomedical Health Initiative
Position Title/Short Description
Title: Cluster Hire for the Rio Grande Valley Biomedical Health Initiative
Section: 1 -- US: Full-Time Academic (Permanent, Tenure Track or Tenured)
Location: Edinburg, TX, USA
JEL Classification: I1 -- Health
Keywords: Cluster hire, diabetes and obesity research, cost effectiveness analysis, translational research, health disparities, minority health issues
Deadline Information: Review of applications will continue until position or positions are filled.
Deadline Date: 11/1/2012

JOE ID Number: 201210_397540

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Full Text of JOE Listing:
The University of Texas-Pan American (UTPA) seeks nationally prominent researchers and scholars who are interested in being part of a new research cluster of four faculty focused on biomedical research with a specific emphasis on diabetes and obesity to begin as early as Spring semester 2013 but no later than Fall semester 2013. Applicants must be eligible for appointment at the Associate or Full Professor level at UTPA. This cluster hire of four faculty is part of an extensive new multi-institutional effort supported by The University of Texas (UT) System to develop a research network in South Texas on diabetes and obesity prevention and intervention. These four positions will be located at UTPA and are intended to enhance and expand existing inter-disciplinary and multi-institutional research programs on diabetes and obesity. For those with a passion and drive for conducting translational research on diabetes and obesity within the Latino/Hispanic community as part of a larger translational research network of investigators, joining this newly established network will provide the intellectual space to contribute to current programs and to develop new research ideas and directions. A competitive salary and start-up resources will be provided. Primary responsibilities include developing new and innovative externally-funded research programs, providing limited teaching to graduate and undergraduate students, mentoring junior faculty in research, and contributing to program development endeavors. Development of collaborative research partnerships is expected to occur with faculty at UT Brownsville and among faculty with the UT San Antonio Regional Academic Health Center (RAHC) divisions of Medical Education in Harlingen, Medical Research in Edinburg, and Public Health in Brownsville, Texas.

For those interested in the physiological, social, psychological, or economic dimensions of diabetes and obesity, the Rio Grande Valley of the South Texas border region, provides excellent opportunities for conducting research that has meaningful impacts on individuals and communities. The UT System is partnering with health officials to address health disparities through state-of-the-art collaborative research programs covering clinical, population, and laboratory-based research in multiple cities: Brownsville, Harlingen, Edinburg, and Laredo. This will result in unique opportunities for experienced researchers interested in addressing these conditions as part of a comprehensive interdisciplinary effort.
The cluster hire includes research positions for a Clinical Psychologist, Biochemical Researcher, Health Economist, and an expert in Bioinformatics. Applicants for each of these positions must have demonstrated evidence of leadership, skill in interdisciplinary research and collaboration along with an outstanding research program, including high-profile publications and a successful record of extramural funding. Determination of academic rank of Associate or Full Professor will be based on an evaluation of the applicant’s résumé. Detailed descriptions for each position are as follows:

Clinical Psychologist F12/13-007

Ideal candidates will have a doctoral degree in clinical psychology with demonstrated expertise in clinical health, clinical psychology research, and experience with interventions in diabetes, obesity, and Latino/Hispanic health. The successful candidate will also be expected to play a significant role in developing a doctoral program in Clinical Psychology at UTPA.

Biochemical Researcher F12/13-008

Doctoral degree in biology, chemistry, biophysics, or a relevant discipline is required as well as an excellent record of externally supported research productivity in the area of biomedical biochemistry, biophysics or molecular physiology of obesity/diabetes. Incorporation of nano-biotechnology or medical bioengineering in research efforts is particularly attractive.

Health Economist F12/13-009

Integral to this team will be a health economics expert who can conduct cost-effectiveness analysis, comparative effectiveness research, and evaluation. Applicants must have a doctoral degree in economics or a relevant field. It is essential that the applicant also have a demonstrated track record in obtaining federal grants to support research activities with expertise in one or more of the following areas: modeling of health care costs and cost- effectiveness analysis, translational research, obesity/diabetes prevention and management, health disparities, minority health issues or community-based participatory research.

Bioinformatics F12/13-010

Applicants must have a doctorate in bioinformatics, mathematics, computer science, biostatistics, or other related scientific disciplines with demonstrated record of scientific work in bioinformatics. Demonstrated evidence of leadership, good communication, and interdisciplinary research collaboration skills is essential along with an outstanding research program, including high-profile publications and a successful record of extramural funding.

Available resources for this cluster include:
• Clinical research units supporting a range of clinical and population-based studies from health surveys to clinical trials, including extensive databases on clinical, epidemiological, biological and genetic data.
• An existing cohort of 2,600 adults and its biological and genetic archive are also available for studies on a range of issues such as exercise physiology, genetic, and laboratory based research on diabetes and obesity and related conditions.
• A Diabetes Registry dedicated to surveillance, investigation, research, education, and policy development for the prevention, control, and reduction of the diabetes and its complications along the Texas-Mexico border.
• Laboratory and animal research facilities providing the opportunity for interaction between basic and translational research. A graduate medical education program in the region is being expanded and will provide further resources for clinical research. The Regional Academic Health Center (RAHC) Campus in Harlingen currently supports the education of over 100 3rd and 4th year medical students who come for clinical education from the University of Texas Health Science Center-San Antonio School of Medicine. Medical students are strongly advised to participate extensively in a wide range of research projects.

UTPA is located in Edinburg, TX, fifteen miles from the border with Mexico and one hour away from tropical South Padre Island. UTPA is a comprehensive regional University with an enrollment of over 19,000 students. Enrollment is predominantly Mexican-American. Edinburg offers affordable housing, convenient transportation options and a safe family oriented lifestyle. The program is located in a lush semi-tropical region that is at the threshold of where Latin American and U.S. cultures meet. Though it is one of the most dynamic and fastest growing areas in the country, the South Texas population is confronted by economic, health, and educational disparities. For additional information about UTPA, please visit Interested persons should apply as soon as possible, with the expectation that a review of applications will begin as soon as October 1, 2012, and continue until the position or positions are filled.

Application Instructions:

Applications should be submitted electronically to:
The Search Committee via and should include a letter of interest identifying the position desired and outlining an approach that you envision and why you would be a strong candidate along with a CV, and three references with their contact information. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

UTPA is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer. Women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. This position is security-sensitive as defined by the Texas Education Code 51.215 and the Texas Government Code 411.094(a) (2). A criminal background check will be conducted and official transcripts will be required of all candidates invited to campus. Texas law requires faculty members whose primary language is not English to demonstrate proficiency in English as determined by a satisfactory paper-based test score of 500 (computer-based of 173 or internet-based of 61) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or a satisfactory test score of 6.0 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

Email for Applications:

For more information, email:

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