The oat breeding program at South Dakota State University (SDSU) is focused on developing new and improved oat varieties for use as forage, feed, and food. The SDSU oat program has developed varieties which are grown in multiple states across the Northern Plains of the US, as well as abroad. The breeding program itself works closely with the oat milling industry, including General Mills, a major global food company whose oat breeding program is located at SDSU to develop oat varieties with improved milling and nutritional characteristics. The SDSU Agronomy, Horticulture, and Plant Science Department is looking for a post-doctoral research associate to lead research related to the successful implementation of genomic selection into SDSU oat breeding program to increase the speed and accuracy of our breeding mission. In addition, the researcher will act to network with major food companies, and collaborate with the USDA genotyping lab in Fargo as well as with the international oat research community to advance the techniques and methodologies available throughout the oat breeding and milling communities.
Support oat breeding through the implementation of genomic selection and advanced phenotypic trait analyses into SDSU oat breeding program.
Work closely with the USDA and other groups in the oat community to genotype breeding lines, process and develop marker sets, develop models using previously collected genotyping and phenotyping data for key traits, apply novel analysis approaches to enhance prediction accuracy and simulate cross progenies and predict their performance within the necessary timeframe of breeding operations.
Evaluate strategies to improve genomic prediction models, build and maintain best practices of model development and data dissemination within the SDSU program and external collaborators.
Advance research program through university mentoring and extension opportunities.
Assist in developing proposals to federal agencies for the continued advancement of the SDSU oat breeding program.
Communicate results through presentation at conferences and scholarly publications.
Ph.D. in bioinformatics, computational genomics, molecular plant breeding, or related discipline.
Expertise with statistical models and applications to genetics and plant breeding.
Experience in data analysis platforms (R, python, etc), computational infrastructure (cloud computing, linux environments, databases, etc), and reproducible science (version control, scripting, workflow languages).
Experience in conducting genomic selection analyses.
Ability to work independently.
Effective written communication skills.
Effective verbal communication and interpersonal skills.
Demonstrated ability to work in a collaborative research environment.
Demonstrated organizational and time management skills.
Valid driver’s license and willingness to travel.
About South Dakota State University
SDSU is a land grant institution and the state’s largest institution of higher education. Ranked as the Number 2 best place to work in South Dakota by Forbes, South Dakota State University is the state’s largest, most comprehensive university with more than 200 programs and an enrollment of approximately 12,000 students. SDSU offers a rich academic experience in an environment of inclusion and access through inspired, student-centered education, creative activities and research, innovation and engagement that improve the quality of life in South Dakota, the region, the nation, and the world. Its employees embrace the university’s core values of being people-centered, expanding knowledge through creativity, embracing organizational and personal integrity, commitment to diversity, and excellence through continuous improvement. As the state’s 1862 Morrill Act land-grant institution, the work of the university is carried out on its main resident campus in Brookings, at sites in Sioux Falls, Pierre, Rapid City, Aberdeen and through Extension offices and Agricultural Experiment Station research sites across South Dakota.