Job Opportunities

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology offers many opportunities for students, professionals, and volunteers.

Job Openings at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is the world's leading resource for conservation, research, education, and citizen science focused on birds. The Lab is a vibrant unit within Cornell's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), where twelve world-class, mission-driven programs are directed by full-time faculty and other renowned professionals. Lab staff teach undergraduate courses, advise graduate students, collect and disseminate world-famous digital resources on biodiversity, and engage with partner organizations and citizens around the world to conduct scientific research and conservation actions. Our management and staff are committed to the highest standards of ethics and excellence in all areas of our work, and our Board leadership includes faculty from Cornell and other universities, successful entrepreneurs and managers from the business and non-profit sectors, and conservation-minded citizens from the United States and beyond.

To apply for the positions below, please refer to the Jobs at Cornell website unless otherwise specified. For more information on the positions listed below, please contact Sue Taggart; (607) 254-2470.

For more jobs in ornithology, see listings from the Ornithological Societies of North America.

Data Service Developer

Do you have software development experience and you want to build expertise with traditional and NoSQL database administration? Want to be a part of a new team that focuses on building and operating infrastructure underpinning web and mobile applications which have global reach? Do you enjoy working in a collaborative environment? If so, you might be the right person to come work for the world leader in the scientific study and conservation of birds—and enjoy life in Upstate New York's gorgeous Finger Lakes!

The Data Service Developer will create and administer data services using traditional and NoSQL data sources within the Information Science and Macaulay Library programs of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. This position will collaborate with world-class experts and development teams to advance science and conservation. This is an opportunity to learn sophisticated database practices and explore new approaches.

Core job responsibilities include working under the guidance of Senior Infrastructure Team Data Base Administrators to :

  • Administer billion-record primary and warehouse database systems.
  • Collaborate with team members (DBAs, DevOps personnel, web service developers, software architect) to design and implement data services using both relational and NoSQL frameworks in both traditional and cloud environments.
  • Analyze metrics to improve efficiency.
  • Assist in the design and implementation of web services for consuming data and updating database systems. Design data schemas and warehouses to back data services.
  • Automate deployment, monitoring, and scaling of data services.

About the Cornell Lab of Ornithology:
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology's hallmarks are scientific excellence and technological innovation with a mission to advance the understanding of nature and to engage people of all ages in learning about birds and biodiversity to protect the planet. Founded in 1915, the Cornell Lab is a nonprofit organization supported by 78,000 friends and members. Our vibrant community includes 200,000 citizen-science participants from all walks of life and 16 million friends online who connect with us at All About Birds. The Lab has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. We are guided by the belief that science points the way to effective conservation of the planet's birds and broader biodiversity. This organizational mission critically depends on our technical teams.

Projects include the Macaulay Library (ML) and eBird. The ML is the world's largest (over 250,000 media assets) and oldest (started in 1929) scientific archive of biodiversity media recordings (audio, video and photos); it is the most heavily used archive of its kind in the world. ML assets are media-based biological specimens, much like the specimens in more traditional biological collections, but that uniquely capture the behavioral traits of living organisms. eBird (ebird.org), one of the world's largest, fastest growing biodiversity databases, currently holding over 250 million observations of birds, with contributions from every country across the globe. More than one million users use eBird web sites and mobile applications to submit data, share experiences, and explore the world of birds. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Key qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in computer science or related field, and more than one year subsequent programming experience or equivalent combination.
  • One year experience with software design and development, preferably with an object-oriented language OR one year experience working with databases (RDBMS or other).
  • Experience collaborating on and maintaining source code using version control.
  • Able to adapt to changing priorities, situations, and demands.
  • Ability to work with others to solve problems and achieve common goals. Ability to express highly technical terms in everyday language.
  • Experience collaborating with a team of software developers and stakeholders. Adhere to confidentiality practices when necessary.
  • Ability to work weekends or evenings when participating in the 24-7 on call duty rotation.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • RDMBS or NoSQL database administration.
  • Experience writing PL/SQL; Experience designing and implementing web services using REST or other approaches; Experience designing and implementing software for microservices or SOA architectures; Experience with linux server system administration; Experience installing and configuring open source and commercial enterprise software.
  • Knowledge of or interest in birds, conservation, and natural science.

DevOps Engineer

Are you a strong technical and analytical team player who seeks technical elegance and efficiency? Do you enjoy working in a collaborative environment and want to be a part of a new team that will focus on building and operating infrastructure underpinning our web and mobile applications which have global reach? Do you have expertise in DevOps? If you have answered yes to any of these questions, come work for the world leader in the scientific study and conservation of birds—and enjoy life in Upstate New York's gorgeous Finger Lakes!

The DevOps Engineer will lead efforts to adopt an "infrastructure as code" approach for the database, service, and web application infrastructure in the Information Science and Macaulay Library programs. This position will collaborate with world-class experts and development teams on challenging data-intensive projects to advance science and conservation.

Core job responsibilities include:

  • Design and deploy scalable, standardized service and application platforms using scripting and tools like Puppet or Chef.
  • Develop and implement migration plans to move applications and services from existing deployments to these standardized platforms.
  • Develop robust processes that automate software testing and release onto standardized platforms.
  • Collaborate with other Infrastructure Team members, including DBAs, service developers, and system architects to achieve team goals.
  • The DevOps Engineer participates in a 24x7 on-call duty rotation.

About the Cornell Lab of Ornithology
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology's hallmarks are scientific excellence and technological innovation with a mission to advance the understanding of nature and to engage people of all ages in learning about birds and biodiversity to protect the planet. Founded in 1915, the Cornell Lab is a nonprofit organization supported by 78,000 friends and members. Our vibrant community includes 200,000 citizen-science participants from all walks of life and 16 million friends online who connect with us at All About Birds. The Lab has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. We are guided by the belief that science points the way to effective conservation of the planet's birds and broader biodiversity. And we are driven by the need to continually create new technologies.

Projects include the Macaulay Library (ML) and eBird. The ML is the world's largest (over 250,000 media assets) and oldest (started in 1929) scientific archive of biodiversity media recordings (audio, video and photos); it is the most heavily used archive of its kind in the world. ML assets are media-based biological specimens, much like the specimens in more traditional biological collections, but that uniquely capture the behavioral traits of living organisms. eBird (ebird.org), one of the world's largest, fastest growing biodiversity databases, currently holding over 250 million observations of birds, with contributions from every country across the globe. More than one million users use eBird web sites and mobile applications to submit data, share experiences, and explore the world of birds. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Key Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in an IT-related field or equivalent work experience. Must have more than 3 years relevant work experience.
  • Proven ability to quickly learn and apply new tools, technologies, and practices.
  • DevOps linux experience OR experience in setting up, maintaining and coordinating the automated patch and configuration management of production servers.
  • Experience managing the build, test and deployment lifecycle of (mostly) web applications (e.g. Rails, Java, Go). Demonstrable skills in problem solving and critical thinking.
  • Good oral and written communication skills including ability to explain technical information to nontechnical staff.
  • Must be able to work independently and as part of a team while meeting tight deadlines. Must be comfortable working in a dynamic environment where change in process is the norm.
  • Adhere to confidentiality practices when necessary.
  • Ability to work weekends or evenings when participating in the 24-7 on call duty rotation.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Linux system administration and shell scripting; Programming/scripting with Bash, Ruby or Java; Experience with continuous integration tools such as Jenkins; Experience with configuration management tools such as Chef or Puppet; Experience with source control systems such as Git; Experience with automated testing platforms such as Selenium, Cucumber, Behat; Experience with Cloud or PaaS services including AWS and Heroku; Experience with caching or application performance enhancement tools such as Varnish, memcached.
  • An interest in birds, science, and conservation is highly desired.

Director of Membership and Annual Giving

The Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Director of Membership and Annual Giving. The Director of Membership and Annual Giving reports to the Sr. Director of Development and Philanthropy and is responsible for leading the growth of the Lab's direct response program, which currently generates more than $7 million annually. The Director must have a deep understanding of direct response programs, including digital marketing, direct mail and telemarketing efforts. Must be knowledgeable of current trends in the membership and annual fund fields, working to bring the latest in best practices to the Lab to increase net revenue and number of supporters.

Key responsibilities will be to:

  • internalize the Lab's mission and strategic initiatives, to understand and strengthen all essential components of the Lab's membership and annual fund;
  • partner with Lab leadership to ensure that direct response efforts are meeting the needs of the Lab broadly and creating a sense of commitment to shared goals;
  • set near and long-term goals for the Lab's direct response programs, implement a plan for achieving those goals, analyzes and disseminates results;
  • manage multi-faceted annual fund and/or membership programs that maximize annual revenue using a mix of strategies and tactics;
  • oversee direct response program, including vendor selection, segmentation, creative testing and analytics;
  • plan and oversee digital marketing campaigns to achieve aggressive fundraising, membership acquisition and retention, and lead capture goals;
  • develop and track department operating and project budgets along with the financial specialist. Create and review financial contracts with vendors and approve expenditures;
  • foster and maintain relationships with key Lab consultants and vendors;
  • provide direct supervision, direction, and mentorship to staff within the Membership and Annual Giving Team; which includes digital fundraising and data processing team leader (with an overall team of 5 to 6).
Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, and contact information for 3 references.

Required Qualifications: Bachelor's degree in business, marketing, communications, fundraising or related field

  • required with at least 3 years related experience in the non-profit sector, preferably in a membership or annual fund role.
  • Must have proven history of direct supervisory role and be comfortable with working with an experienced team.
  • Experienced in collaborating with and managing budgets and tasks of external vendors to achieve organizational goals.
  • This is a data driven position and candidate must be adept with fundraising databases (the Cornell Lab uses Blackbaud Raisers Edge), Excel and generally comfortable with statistics.
  • Must possess a strong data-driven focus on growth, efficiency and increased net revenue to support the Lab's operations.
  • Proven understanding of direct response programs, including digital marketing, direct mail and telemarketing efforts.
  • Ability to communicate clearly, concisely and effectively, both orally and in writing, with all internal and external stakeholders, including the public.
  • Ability to meet deadlines and to handle multiple tasks simultaneously, with minimal supervision.
  • Highly capable of working with computer software: database, spreadsheet (such as Excel), graphing and charting, word processing (such as Word) and presentation (such as Power Point), Internet.
  • Self-starter who takes lead on initiatives while proactively involving peers and managers to achieve common goal.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Expert knowledge of Raiser's Edge.
  • Knowledge of internet usability, e-commerce, and Internet-based promotional strategies.
  • Knowledge of birds, nature and/or conservation highly preferred.
  • Prior development or fundraising experience at an environmental or higher education organization is preferred.

Donor Relations Manager

The Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Donor Relations Manager. The Donor Relations Manager serves as an integral member of, and provides important support to, the Lab of Ornithology's Development team. Key responsibilities will be to:

  • sustain positive and mutually rewarding relations between the Lab and its supporters, partnering with MGOs, faculty and staff to plan and implement personalized stewardship activities for major-gift-level donors and sponsors (individual, foundation and corporate) to the Lab.
  • collaborate closely with the Lab's leadership (both staff and volunteer) to track and facilitate donor and prospect engagements; create stewardship, cultivation and solicitation collateral, Letters of Agreement, briefing materials, correspondence and talking points; coordinate donor recognition and engagement events and trips; and spearhead other personalized activities.
  • serve as the primary liaison between the Lab's team and AA&D on donor and gift stewardship and accounting (resolving questions of gift crediting, account establishment, etc.), as well as oversee the documentation process for all donor/prospect activity in the various donor databases.
  • maintain current knowledge of and information on the Lab's prospect pool; conduct prospect research to determine giving potential of donors and prospects; and provide guidance on potential prospects for donor events, trips and other activities.
  • initiate and prepare sensitive and confidential correspondence and other documents with a high level of discretion.
Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, and contact information for 3 references.

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent; 3 but less than 5 years' experience or equivalent.
  • Must have strong interpersonal skills and strong customer service skills.
  • Must display ability to work well under pressure and handle all personnel and financial matters with discretion.
  • Ability to handle situations with a high degree of confidentiality, discretion, and diplomacy while fostering excellent working relationships.
  • Demonstrated respect and sensitivity for cultural differences and the ability to foster relationships with current and potential donors.
  • Experience working in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment.
  • Exceptional communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Proven skills in narrative and persuasive writing.
  • Demonstrated experience with proof reading and editing materials.
  • Strong planning and project management skills; ability to balance competing priorities and work well under deadlines.
  • Work well in group problem solving situations.
  • Demonstrated organizational skills and detail oriented.
  • Must be able to change direction/tasks quickly.
  • Must take initiative and have the ability to work independently.
  • Highly capable in working with database software, spreadsheet software (such as Excel), FileMaker, graphing and charting software, word processing software (such as Word) and presentation software (such as Power Point), internet software, Word Press, and others.
  • Must be able to complete background and informational research, analyze and report findings for use by leaders and management.
  • The ability to learn and understand the Lab's priorities and its accounting and financial processes is required.
  • Support may be required at times throughout the 7 day week and is not limited to the normal 5 day work week thus must be able to work weekends and evenings.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Bachelor's degree with 4 or more years collaborating with a development team and project management preferred.
  • Knowledge of Cornell AAD Peoplesoft, Raiser's Edge, Cornell online systems, and Cornell's accounting procedures helpful.
  • Basic understanding of the concepts and principles of donor relations (including gift and grant stewardship).
  • Fundraising and/or volunteer management experience, in a university setting is preferred.
  • Events management experience.
  • Prior experience conducting background and informational research, analysis and reporting is helpful.
  • An appreciation of birds and conservation is preferred.

Major Gifts Officer

The Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Major Gifts Officer. Duties include:

  • The Major Gifts Officer (MGO) within the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology is a front-line fund raising professional responsible for development and maintenance of relationships with approximately 150 (households) having giving potential of $100,000 or more.
  • Research, develop, and implement appropriate solicitation strategies for prospects (current or prospective Lab Members) while proactively advancing the mission of the Lab, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Cornell.
  • Collaborate with Lab Program Directors and Lab staff, AA&D, and regional staff and colleagues in areas across the division especially: Gift Planning, Donor Relations, and Principal Gifts.
  • Reporting to the Senior Director of Development and Philanthropy, develop personal relationships with new prospects and collaborate with individuals who can help foster prospects' relationships with the Lab and Cornell.
  • These natural partners, whom we call "prime" and "secondary," may be Lab directors or staff, Lab administrative board members, friends and peers of the prospect, or vice presidents, vice provosts, deans, directors, faculty members, trustees, presidential councillors and major gift committee members of Cornell University.
  • Maintain an in-depth knowledge of the Lab's annual and strategic priorities within the context of the university's priorities, and inspire the respect and confidence of the executive, academic, administrative, trustee, and volunteer leadership of Cornell.
This position is located in Ithaca, New York and will require extensive travel. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent, with at least 3-5 years of experience in major gift fundraising, comprehensive campaign fundraising, and estate planning.
  • Willingness and ability to travel 100+ days a year.
  • Some evening and weekend work is required.
  • Ability to identify and evaluate donor prospects and to establish and maintain personal relationships with these prospects.
  • Excellent and proactive written, interpersonal, and telephone communication skills are required.
  • Must be a collaborative problem solver and bring an entrepreneurial approach to designing creative donor engagement strategies.
  • Must be friendly and adaptive.
  • Position requires comfortable personal interaction with many unique, varied, and accomplished donors.
  • Aptitude for computer software applications, relational databases, and the internet, including their uses as research and management tools.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with individuals from across the university, as well as key alumni, volunteers, and executive staff.
  • Abilities to learn and understand the Lab's and the University's priorities and to articulate these clearly to donor prospects.
  • Must be able to exercise sound judgment and leadership, and to operate in a collaborative, professional, and ethical manner.
  • Ability to work in a time-sensitive, goal oriented, and deadline driven environment.
  • Must be able to work with highly sensitive and confidential information.
  • Must have valid driver's license and the ability to travel.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Active commitments to science, conservation, nature, and higher education.
  • Fundraising experience in a university setting and/or with conservation organizations is preferred.
  • Volunteer management experience would be beneficial.

Merlin Project Coordinator

Merlin is one of a number of projects that carry out the Lab's mission to interpret and conserve the earth's biological diversity through research, education, and citizen science focused on birds. Merlin Bird ID is nominally a mobile application to help beginners identify birds; however, the project is a multi-facetted effort to teach humans and computers to identify organisms in the natural world. Merlin activities include engaging the community in dataset curation, connecting users to citizen science, and other branches that relate to identifying birds and teaching field identification. Merlin gathers curated content for exemplar species account material and high volumes of media to train algorithms to classify birds and other animals. The recently endowed Macaulay Library of Natural History (MLNH) joins eBird observations, Macaulay Library media assets, and other datasets into a coordinated network that enables data to flow throughout the system. Merlin relies on these datasets and plays a role in user-facing tools to collect and curate datasets that will be used to identify birds and other taxonomic groups.

The Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Merlin Project Coordinator. Specific duties include:

  • Collaborate with the immediate supervisor and application developers to handle the day-to-day coordination of Merlin.
  • Coordinate the Merlin help center and communication with users.
  • Help expand to a global community by working with the Merlin team to further partnerships with other Cornell programs, external academic institutions, nongovernmental organizations and governmental departments and agencies in the U.S. and abroad.
  • Assist with Merlin content generation processes worldwide.
  • Assist Merlin development staff and partners gathering requirements for new Merlin activities.
  • Assist the entire Merlin team in the planning, implementation, and tracking of existing and future projects.
  • Assist in mass media related to the program.
  • Assist with the coordination of work with staff to ensure efficient, high-quality, and timely production.
  • Work closely with Cornell students and outside contractors to meet goals and objectives for Merlin.
Annual term appointment with possible renewal based on performance and available funding. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Required Qualifications

  • Formal training beyond a HS Diploma of 6 months to one year's duration or equivalent, or Associates Degree; more than four years, but less than six years of equivalent.
  • Deep understanding of birds and bird distribution is required.
  • Proven skills in project management and coordination are essential, along with excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Familiarity and proficiency with the Internet and content management systems is critical, along with a strong interest in using the Web as a tool to conduct research, engage and educate the public.
  • Mastery of common computer skills including word, email, and excel.
  • Prior knowledge of social media outlets.
  • Strong communication skills (written and oral) to clearly articulate vision and plans, and provide instruction effectively to all levels of management, staff, new partners, funding agencies, Merlin users, and visitors.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with all levels of management and staff internally and externally.
  • Ability to value teamwork and be able to stimulate cooperation between all employees and partners.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.
  • High level of integrity and dependability with a strong sense of urgency and results-orientation.
  • Provide high level of initiative to anticipate needs of the project and fulfill project objectives with very minimal supervision.
  • Ability to prioritize activities and multitask is essential.
Preferred Qualifications
  • Bachelor's degree preferred.
  • Proficiency in Spanish or Portuguese.
  • At least five years of experience watching birds.
  • Knowledge of birds in Latin America.
  • Experience with WordPress helpful.

Postdoctoral Associate, Quantitative Ecologist/Applied Statistician

The Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Postdoctoral Associate, Quantitative Ecologist/Applied Statistician. Specific duties include:

  • Lead the development of hierarchical models that reconcile multiple data sets, to answer questions focused on the seasonal mechanisms of songbird populations.
  • In addition to model development and validation via simulations, the postdoc will apply the model to help further conservation efforts led by the Tricolored Blackbird Working group- a multi-partner group whose members include California Audubon and U.C. Davis.
  • This applied component of the research will be carried out in close collaboration with Dr. Marcel Holyoak and Dr. Bob Meese (Department of Environmental Science and Policy- U. C. Davis).
  • Use different data sets for Tricolored Blackbird populations, which include predicted abundance, mark-capture-recapture records for multiple sites, breeding observations, and other count records for California.
  • Present results at professional meetings, conferences, and popular seminars. Prepare peer reviewed papers and other research products, including reports and relevant information to conservation partners.
This is a full-time one year appointment, with reappointment conditional on satisfactory performance and available funding.

Qualifications:

  • PhD in quantitative ecology, computer science, applied mathematics, or a related field with strong background in statistics and model development.
  • Experience with R and other statistical languages.
  • Ability to apply quantitative methods to answer ecological questions or hypotheses.
  • Strong record of success conducting research and scholarly activities, including publication in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Experience related to dynamic models in population ecology, including estimation of demographic parameters.
  • Experience in ornithology is a bonus, but not required.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE: Please send a single pdf file containing a letter of application outlining qualifications and experience for the position, curriculum vitae, one example publication and appendix code, and the names and contact details for two references. Email to set2@cornell.edu or in hard copy to Susan Taggart, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road, 291A Johnson Center for Birds & Biodiversity, Ithaca, NY 14850. Inquiries about position specifics can be directed to Dr. Viviana Ruiz-Gutierrez (vr45@cornell.edu) or Dr. Evan Cooch (eg@cornell.edu). Review of applicants will begin February 29, 2016 and continue until the position is filled.

Principal Web Service Developer

Do you have expertise as a web service developer? Want to be a part of a new team that focuses on building and operating infrastructure underpinning web and mobile applications which have global reach? Do you enjoy working in a collaborative environment? If so, you might be the right person to come work for the world leader in the scientific study and conservation of birds—and enjoy life in Upstate New York's gorgeous Finger Lakes!

The Principal Web Service Developer will help create a robust web-service tier for web and mobile applications for the Information Science and Macaulay Library programs of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. This position will collaborate with world-class experts and development teams to advance science and conservation.

Core job responsibilities:

  • Design and implement REST-based web services and transform existing software and systems into a service-focused architecture.
  • Automate deployment, monitoring, and scaling of services, incorporating cloud technologies as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with other team members, including DBAs, DevOps personnel, and system architects, to design and implement an operational infrastructure that supports automated testing, deployment, and scaling.
  • Analyze metrics to improve efficiency.

About the Cornell Lab of Ornithology:
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology's hallmarks are scientific excellence and technological innovation with a mission to advance the understanding of nature and to engage people of all ages in learning about birds and biodiversity to protect the planet. Founded in 1915, the Cornell Lab is a nonprofit organization supported by 78,000 friends and members. Our vibrant community includes 200,000 citizen-science participants from all walks of life and 16 million friends online who connect with us at All About Birds. The Lab has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. We are guided by the belief that science points the way to effective conservation of the planet's birds and broader biodiversity. This organizational mission critically depends on our technical teams.

Projects include the Macaulay Library (ML) and eBird. The ML is the world's largest (over 250,000 media assets) and oldest (started in 1929) scientific archive of biodiversity media recordings (audio, video and photos); it is the most heavily used archive of its kind in the world. ML assets are media-based biological specimens, much like the specimens in more traditional biological collections, but that uniquely capture the behavioral traits of living organisms. eBird (ebird.org), one of the world's largest, fastest growing biodiversity databases, currently holding over 250 million observations of birds, with contributions from every country across the globe. More than one million users use eBird web sites and mobile applications to submit data, share experiences, and explore the world of birds. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Key qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in computer science or related field, and more than 3 years subsequent programming experience or equivalent combination.
  • At least two years' experience with software design and development, preferably with an object-oriented language.
  • At least one year experience writing SQL.
  • Experience integrating multiple system components into a coherent software system.
  • Experience collaborating on and maintaining source code using version control.
  • Able to adapt to changing priorities, situations, and demands.
  • Ability to work with others to solve problems and achieve common goals.
  • Ability to express highly technical terms in everyday language. Experience collaborating with a team of software developers and stakeholders.
  • Adhere to confidentiality practices when necessary.
  • Ability to work weekends or evenings when participating in the 24-7 on call duty rotation.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Experience building web applications or other software utilizing middle-layer services; Experience optimizing SQL; Experience designing and implementing web services using REST or other approaches; Experience designing and implementing software for microservices or SOA architectures; Experience with linux server system administration; Experience installing and configuring open source and commercial enterprise software.
  • Knowledge of or interest in birds, conservation, and natural science.

Web Application Developer - Android Apps

The Information Science Program designs, develops, and maintains applications and services for citizen-science and education projects. These projects engage the public to collect, archive, analyze and disseminate information about birds and their environments. Maintains the supporting web, application, database servers, and associated storage devices, which support a number of the Lab's web applications.

The Information Science Program at the Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Web Application Developer. Duties include:

  • Develop and maintain Android applications and related services for the eBird and Merlin projects. eBird, a real-time, online bird checklist program, is the world's largest and fastest growing biodiversity data resource, collecting millions of bird observations from the general public. Merlin is a bird identification system using eBird data, along with photos and recordings, to help novices identify birds. Upcoming projects include an 'in the field' data entry app for submitting bird observations to eBird, closely integrating native phone capabilities, including calendar, GPS, camera, and voice memos, and extending the Merlin Android app to add image-recognition functionality for identifying birds from a 'just taken' photo.
  • Work closely with a dynamic team of biologists, UI designers, application developers, database administrators, and computer scientists within a collaborative development environment.
  • Help guide overall Android development strategy and recommend best solutions for project requirements.
  • Utilize Android software development tools, team code repositories, and open source libraries and is expected to stay current with Android practices and processes (Java for Android, Android SDK, ADT, test distributions, Google Play submission, and analytics).
Annual term appointment with possible renewal based on performance and available funding. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree with 3-5 years relevant experience or equivalent combination.
  • A thorough understanding of object-oriented programming and web applications.
  • Proven experience in java programming and Android application development.
  • Experience using Android device features such as location, camera, and internet access.
  • Experience integrating with APIs and web services.
  • Demonstrable skills in problem solving, critical thinking, and written and verbal communication.
  • Proven experience in documenting and testing code.
  • Ability to learn technical material quickly.
  • Must be able to work independently and function effectively as part of a larger team.
  • Ability to establish realistic goals and deliver work on schedule.
  • Proven experience in providing support to multiple areas.
  • Must be able to use sound judgment in decision making and in accomplishing tasks that are urgent or of a sensitive or confidential nature, balance conflicting priorities, and make decisions from a range of choices.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • 5 years of experience in computer or information science preferred.
  • 3-5 years of experience working on substantial computer software and collaborating with a team of programmers on software projects is desired.
  • Experience designing and implementing responsive Android UI interfaces that accommodate multiple screen sizes, and degrade gracefully.
  • Experience with CBTs such as Titanium and PhoneGap.
  • Experience implementing rich internet applications.
  • Experience with relational database table design, SQL programming and performance testing.
  • Prior use and understanding of the eBird system.
  • An interest in birds, nature, biology, science, and/or conservation helpful.

Web Developer

eBird has evolved from a stand-alone citizen-science project focused on collecting data, into a cooperative partnership involving several distinct user groups spanning multiple scientific domains and dozens of partner organizations, each with its own unique interests in the eBird Enterprise. eBird collects information about the distribution and abundance of birds, taking advantage of the enormous popularity of watching birds to create a global network of volunteers who submit bird observations via the Internet to a central data repository. Through a combination of broad-based community engagement and global partnerships, the volume of data coming into eBird has increased exponentially (30–40% annually) for the last decade. eBird is regarded as one of the largest and fastest growing biodiversity databases in the world. Presently, the eBird database contains nearly 250 million observations. More than 1 million people access eBird via the web and mobile apps, and more than 255 thousand participants have collectively spend over 18 million hours in the field recording birds. Data have been contributed from every country in the world. eBird data are relied upon for a variety of research initiatives in Information Science, other Lab projects and programs (e.g., Merlin, Citizen Science, Education, Conservation, and Bird Population Studies), external academic institutions (e.g., Cornell, Carnegie Mellon, Northeastern, U of New Mexico, U of Utah, and Oregon State), governmental departments and agencies in the U.S. and abroad (e.g., U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Oak Ridge National Labs, US Department of Defense, CONABIO [Comision Nacional para el Conocimento y Uso de la Biodiversidad], and nongovernmental organizations (e.g., PRBO Conservation Science, Bird Studies Canada, Audubon) and private companies.

The Lab of Ornithology is currently seeking a Web Developer to collaborate with application developers and interface designers to:

  • Develop, test, and maintain web sites, web-based applications, and visualizations focused on the eBird enterprise and other Lab projects.
  • Develop, test, and maintain software, components, and services for related content management systems.
  • Use technologies and development tools including HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Eclipse-based IDEs, team code repositories, open source libraries, Java and JSP to extend and enhance the functionality of eBird-based projects.
  • Provide consultation and training to staff and collaborators on the use of software and infrastructure.
  • Create documentation and examples to help other developers use the infrastructure.
  • Conduct functional tests, system tests, performance profiling, and security audits.
  • Contribute to team brainstorming and problem-solving initiatives.
Annual term appointment with possibility of renewal based upon performance and available funding. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Required Qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree with 1-2 years relevant experience or equivalent combination.
  • A thorough understanding of object-oriented programming and web application development is essential.
  • Experience developing Java based web applications is required.
  • Must have experience working with designers to create and maintain scalable, responsive HTML/CSS/JavaScript systems across large web sites and applications.
  • Must be proficient with web performance techniques for efficiently delivering front-end code, data, and assets.
  • Experience with WordPress customization and administration is required.
  • Candidate must show strong problem solving, critical thinking, and writing skills, work effectively on a team, learn technical material quickly, establish realistic goals, and deliver quality work on schedule with minimal supervision.
  • The ability to prioritize activities and multitask is essential.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • 2-5 years' experience in web development in a team setting is preferred.
  • Experience and demonstrated expertise in: content management or web publishing systems; Java web application development using Springsource Tool Suite or Eclipse IDE; JSTL front-end templating; the PHP/Apache/MySQL web development stack; designing and implementing APIs and web services; interactive client-side data visualization (D3); CSS pre-processors (SASS/LESS); workflow (Grunt/Gulp), version control (Git), and deployment (Jenkins); JavaScript frameworks (Angular, Ember, Backbone); relational database table design, SQL programming and performance testing using Oracle.
  • Prior use and understanding of the eBird system and interest in birding and ecology is highly desired.

Web Service Developer

Do you have some experience developing software, but want to become a web service developer? Want to be a part of a new team that focuses on building and operating infrastructure underpinning web and mobile applications which have global reach? Do you enjoy working in a collaborative environment? If so, you might be the right person to come work for the world leader in the scientific study and conservation of birds—and enjoy life in Upstate New York's gorgeous Finger Lakes!

The Web Service Developer will help create a robust web-service tier for web and mobile applications for the Information Science and Macaulay Library programs of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. This position will collaborate with world-class experts and development teams to advance science and conservation. This is an opportunity for a less-experienced developer to work with and learn from experienced team members.

Core job responsibilities include working under the guidance of senior Infrastructure Team to:

  • Design and implement REST-based web services and transform existing software and systems into a service-focused architecture.
  • Automate deployment, monitoring, and scaling of services, incorporating cloud technologies as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with other Infrastructure Team members, including DBAs, DevOps personnel, and system architects, to design and implement an operational infrastructure that supports automated testing, deployment, and scaling. Analyze metrics to improve efficiency.

About the Cornell Lab of Ornithology:
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology's hallmarks are scientific excellence and technological innovation with a mission to advance the understanding of nature and to engage people of all ages in learning about birds and biodiversity to protect the planet. Founded in 1915, the Cornell Lab is a nonprofit organization supported by 78,000 friends and members. Our vibrant community includes 200,000 citizen-science participants from all walks of life and 16 million friends online who connect with us at All About Birds. The Lab has a strong entrepreneurial spirit. We are guided by the belief that science points the way to effective conservation of the planet's birds and broader biodiversity. This organizational mission critically depends on our technical teams.

Projects include the Macaulay Library (ML) and eBird. The ML is the world's largest (over 250,000 media assets) and oldest (started in 1929) scientific archive of biodiversity media recordings (audio, video and photos); it is the most heavily used archive of its kind in the world. ML assets are media-based biological specimens, much like the specimens in more traditional biological collections, but that uniquely capture the behavioral traits of living organisms. eBird (ebird.org), one of the world's largest, fastest growing biodiversity databases, currently holding over 250 million observations of birds, with contributions from every country across the globe. More than one million users use eBird web sites and mobile applications to submit data, share experiences, and explore the world of birds. Applicants to provide cover letter, resume, contact information for 3 references.

Key qualifications:

  • Bachelor's degree in computer science or related field, and more than one year subsequent programming experience or equivalent combination.
  • One year experience with software design and development, preferably with an object-oriented language.
  • Experience integrating multiple system components into a coherent software system.
  • Experience collaborating on and maintaining source code using version control.
  • Able to adapt to changing priorities, situations, and demands.
  • Ability to work with others to solve problems and achieve common goals.
  • Ability to express highly technical terms in everyday language. Experience collaborating with a team of software developers and stakeholders.
  • Adhere to confidentiality practices when necessary.
  • Ability to work weekends or evenings when participating in the 24-7 on call duty rotation.
Preferred Qualifications:
  • Experience building web applications or other software utilizing middle-layer services; Experience writing and optimizing SQL; Experience designing and implementing web services using REST or other approaches; Experience designing and implementing software for microservices or SOA architectures; Experience with linux server system administration; Experience installing and configuring open source and commercial enterprise software.
  • Knowledge of or interest in birds, conservation, and natural science.

Internships

To apply for an internship, send a cover letter and resume to the contact person listed. Most internships are unpaid but hours are flexible and course credit is possible. Minimum commitment is generally six hours per week. Cornell undergraduates are eligible to be considered for a limited number of paid internships each year. The Nancy Horton Bartels ‘48 Scholars gift supports Cornell undergraduate interns at the Lab during the summer. The Kristen Rupert and John Foote Undergraduate Research Fund supports the engagement of Cornell undergraduates at the Lab, with preference given to students involved in interdisciplinary projects with other colleges, departments, and units at Cornell.

Bartels Science Illustration Internships

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology will offer at least one paid Bartels Science Illustration Internship each year, lasting from three to six months, 39 hours per week. Recipients will work on a project illustrating birds, wildlife, and/or plants for the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's print publications, outreach materials, and web sites. We are seeking students (artists just starting their career) at least 18 years old who have previous experience and exceptional talent in illustration, painting, or drawing who are interested in advancing their skills in ornithological art. Interns will work on projects that help the Lab achieve its mission, and these projects often result in publication of the intern's work. For more information, please download this file. You may also contact Diane Tessaglia-Hymes, design director, by email at dianeth@cornell.edu, or call 607-254-2417 (work) or 607-342-4811 (cell).

Scholarships

The Francis M. Peacock Scholarship for Native Bird Habitat provides financial aid to a college senior or graduate student to study areas in the United States that provide winter or summer habitat for our threatened or endangered native birds. The award is given by the Garden Club of America and is administered by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. For more information about this scholarship and how to apply, see the proposal guidelines. If you wish to apply, you will also need to submit a personal information form.

The Walter E. Benning Fund provides scholarship assistance to a Cornell University graduate student studying ornithology and its relevance to conservation. The annual award is about $500. Apply by January 15 of every year by submitting a short (two page maximum) proposal describing your research, relevance to conservation, schedule of completion, and funding. Mail to Irby Lovette, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, 159 Sapsucker Woods Rd., Ithaca, NY 14850

Volunteers

Interested in leading bird walks in Sapsucker Woods, helping in the visitors’ center at the Johnson Center for Birds and Biodiversity, or becoming a docent? For more information, please contact us at 254-2473 or (800) 843-2473.

Student Jobs

Working just a few hours a week provides you with a multitude of benefits. You will meet new people and adapt more quickly to your new environment. You will develop new skills and improve existing skills while building a network of contacts and good references that will ultimately increase your marketability for summer and post-Cornell jobs. Working part-time also helps improve your time-management skills. Not to mention you'll earn money to help cover some of your Cornell expenses!

To apply for the positions below, please send a cover letter and resume to the contact person listed. Full-time registered Cornell students are eligible to be considered for these positions.

IT Team Student Assistant

The IT Team at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology supports research, administrative, and outreach functions at the Lab by providing a wide set of core IT services including administration and management of virtual server infrastructure, SAN/NAS storage, linux and Windows servers, printers, and desktops. The student assistant will work both independently and as part of the team to complete a variety of tasks and projects including: managing device and software inventories, building desktops with Casper and Configuration Manager, and developing scripts for monitoring and sysadmin.

This position will provide opportunities to work with a top-notch IT Team managing 250+ workstations, 50+ servers, and 500+TB of storage. This is a paid position 8-16 hours per week for Fall 2015 with possibility for Spring 2016 school year. We offer a flexible work schedule but time worked generally would need to be sometime Monday to Friday 7am to 5pm at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. There is an on-demand bus route that serves the Lab (TCAT route 41). Free parking is available.

Required Qualifications

  • · The candidate must be a current Cornell undergraduate student, Federal Work Study preferred.
  • · Easily pick up new technical skills
  • · Attention to detail
  • · Dependable
Preferred Qualifications
  • · Familiarity with Windows and Mac operating system installations, updates, and upgrades
  • · Familiarity with Windows and linux scripting

Interested applicants should send a letter describing their interest and qualifications for the position along with a resume and contact information for at least two references to David Childs, IT Team Lead, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road, Ithaca, NY 14850, dac388@cornell.edu.

Student Research Assistant, SFO

Spring Field Ornithology (SFO) is an 8-week intensive course taught by Dr. Stephen Kress, consisting of evening lectures and weekend field trips. The course attracts over 100 students from around the greater-Ithaca area each year.

We are seeking a creative and energetic undergraduate student with a strong interest in ornithology to work with staff and the instructor to update the media (photos and sounds) for the lecture portion of SFO. Primary job duties include:

  • Updating sounds for approx. 250 lecture slides using sounds from the Macaulay Library
  • Updating images for approx. 400 lecture slides using provided sources
Basic Requirements:
  • Interest in ornithology, particularly birds and birding in North America
  • Ability to identify by sight and sound most common birds in eastern North America
  • Web research
  • Experience with Excel
This is a paid position 5-6 hours per week for the fall of 2015, with the possibility of additional work in the spring. We offer a flexible work schedule but generally Monday to Friday 8am to 5pm at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. There is an on-demand bus route that serves the Lab (TCAT route 41). Free parking is available. To apply for the position, please send a cover letter and resume to:
Marc Devokaitis
SFO Course Coordinator
mjd356@cornell.edu

Work Schedule: Flexible
Weekly Hours: 5-6
FWS Required: No
Positions Available: 1
Paid: Yes
Wage: $10.00
Employment Dates: 09/01/2015 - 12/15/2015

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