Research Technician Assistant

Updated: about 1 month ago
Location: Chicago, ILLINOIS
Job Type: FullTime


PSD Engineering and Technical Support Group

About the Department

The Engineering and Technical Support Group (ETSG) provides engineering and technical support to University research groups and assists the University’s educational mission by providing technical assistance and enabling learning opportunities for students. Projects that the group is currently working on include particle detectors, astronomical telescopes, synchrotron light source beamlines, and high-altitude balloon gondolas. The ETSG is committed to fostering an inclusive and supportive climate which encourages teamwork, open communication, and sharing of ideas.

Job Summary

This position supports the research mission of the Physical Sciences Division at The University of Chicago by providing a wide and flexible range of services to research groups including mechanical design, part and material sourcing, assembly and installation of research apparatus, and the operation and maintenance of technical equipment.


  • Under direct supervision of ETSG engineers and/or project principal investigator, provides technical support in the development, analysis, and maintenance of engineering processes, products, or equipment.

  • Assists in the development of mechanical designs in support of research activities at the University. May use CAD software to help Engineers with generating models and drawings.

  • Assists with the assembly, installation, and effort to construct, new and existing research apparatus.

  • Under direct supervision of Research Engineers, operates and maintains 3d printers and other rapid-fabrication equipment.

  • Maintains research workstations, tools, PPE, and other supplies in student laboratory.

  • Develops new skills and expertise to better support research efforts by participating in testing and repairing of equipment and machinery, learning about the process of procurement of parts and materials, and observing the evaluation of performance process.

  • Supports the management and effort tracking in accordance with project commitments and priorities.

  • Works safely and in accordance with University safety policies. Works closely with other University staff (e.g. safety, facilities, IT) as needed.

  • This job provides technical and administrative support in a laboratory environment performing basic laboratory techniques, research and analysis under direction.

  • Complies with institution, state and federal regulatory policies, procedures, directives, and mandates.

  • Performs other related work as needed.

Minimum Qualifications


Minimum requirements include vocational training, apprenticeships or the equivalent experience in related field (not typically required to have a four-year degree).

Work Experience:

Minimum requirements include knowledge and skills developed through < 2 years of work experience in a related job discipline.



Preferred Qualifications


  • Associate’s degree in computer-aided design, engineering technology, or related area, or equivalent level of experience in these areas.


  • Experience in computer aided design (CAD).

  • Experience in assembly, installation, maintenance, and/or repair of mechanical systems.

  • Experience with scientific apparatus.

  • Experience supporting research projects.

Technical Skills or Knowledge:

  • Ability to use various CAD software packages to generate 3d models and 2d drawings for engineering designs.

  • Working knowledge of conventional machining and joining technologies and methods.

  • Working knowledge of additive manufacturing and similar advanced fabrication technologies.

  • Ability to use common mechanics hand tools properly and safely.

  • Ability to work within defined processes to interpret engineering and product documentation, such as change orders, blueprints, diagrams, sketches, and photographs.

Preferred Competencies

  • Ability to support several simultaneous projects, balancing time according to set expectations and priorities.

  • Diverse, technical skill set and problem-solving ability.

  • Ability to adapt type and level of involvement according to project needs.

  • Ability to establish and maintain respectful and professional working relationships within a diverse population of faculty, staff, and students at the University, as well as with business partners and collaborating research groups around the world.

Working Conditions

  • Roughly half of work will be performed on a personal computer in an office environment, and half will be performed in the shop or laboratory.

Application Documents

  • Resume (required)

  • References (preferred)

When applying, the document(s) MUST  be uploaded via the My Experience page, in the section titled Application Documents of the application.

Job Family


Role Impact

Individual Contributor

FLSA Status


Pay Frequency


Scheduled Weekly Hours


Benefits Eligible


Drug Test Required


Health Screen Required


Motor Vehicle Record Inquiry Required


Posting Statement

Employees must comply with the University’s COVID-19 vaccination requirements. More information about the requirements can be found on the University of Chicago Vaccination GoForward .
The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/ Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.


Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.


We seek a diverse pool of applicants who wish to join an academic community that places the highest value on rigorous inquiry and encourages a diversity of perspectives, experiences, groups of individuals, and ideas to inform and stimulate intellectual challenge, engagement, and exchange.


All offers of employment are contingent upon a background check that includes a review of conviction history.  A conviction does not automatically preclude University employment.  Rather, the University considers conviction information on a case-by-case basis and assesses the nature of the offense, the circumstances surrounding it, the proximity in time of the conviction, and its relevance to the position.


The University of Chicago's Annual Security & Fire Safety Report (Report) provides information about University offices and programs that provide safety support, crime and fire statistics, emergency response and communications plans, and other policies and information. The Report can be accessed online at: . Paper copies of the Report are available, upon request, from the University of Chicago Police Department, 850 E. 61st Street, Chicago, IL 60637.

View or Apply

Similar Positions