Employment Opportunities in the Department

Minot State University is a small (the current student body numbers around 3,500) liberal arts university drawing students primarily from North West North Dakota but also from elsewhere in the state, other states, the nearby Canadian provinces, and many other countries. One of our long-term goals is to attract students from an ever wider region. We view Minot State's future as a destination campus for those seeking an excellent, economical liberal arts education.

Minot State University is located in the city of Minot. Minot (rhymes with "why-not") is located in the picturesque Souris/Mouse River valley, 110 miles north of the state capital, Bismarck. With the advent of the shale oil development in Northwest ND, Minot has been rapidly expanding and the population is currently estimated to be around 50,000. New housing developments and shopping opportunities become available every month and this region of ND has the lowest unemployment in the nation.

Minot is the traditional trade center of northwest North Dakota, and its trade area stretches west into Montana and north into Canada. It serves as regional center of cultural activities. The city is also host annually to the North Dakota State Fair (which is cooler than you think) and to Norsk Høstfest (the largest Scandinavian festival in North America). Theater, symphony, dance, opera and other music can all be found in Minot (Minot can boast of being one of the smallest cities in North America to host its own symphony). For more cosmopolitan tastes, Winnipeg (5 hours), Regina (4 hours) and Minneapolis (9 hours) are within reach.

While Minot does offer all amenities, it is also small enough for good family living, has a low crime rate, and offers spectacular natural resources. Kids can ride bikes and leave them in the front yard, with only rare problems. The Badlands of North Dakota are within 2 hours drive. The Black Hills and Badlands National Park (South Dakota), Glacier National Park (Montana) and Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming) are within a day's drive. And the wide-open spaces and flat-to-rolling topography often surprise visitors with their subtle beauty and awesome vistas. North Dakota boasts more National Wildlife Refuges (NWFs) than any other state, and at least 10 different NWFs are within 2.5 hours of Minot, most within 1 hour. Northern Lights can sometimes been seen in Minot.

The weather in North Dakota is widely variable. Summers are beautiful with pleasant and long days. Winters can be spectacularly cold but offer some of the best winter recreation in North America.

To learn more about the city of Minot see www.minotnd.org 

At Minot state, the successful applicant will join an energetic group of scientists. The Faculty in Biology at MSU consists of five members.

The other department members are:

Dr. Heidi Super, Professor (BA, Carroll College, PhD, University of Chicago, 1992) joined MSU in 1999. Heidi is a molecular geneticist whose focus is in cancer genetics, in particular in chromosome abnormalities associated with leukemias. Heidi studies one such gene, called MLL, which is mutated in as many as 70% of all infant and childhood leukemia cases. MLL is found on human chromosome 11 and is mutated through chromosome translocations with many other chromosomes.

Dr. Alexandra Deufel, Professor (BSc, University of Calgary, PhD, Lehigh University, 2003) joined MSU in 2002. Alex is a functional morphologist interested in the function and evolution of the snake feeding apparatus. Her research entails recording and analyzing the behavior of the animals to describe exactly what they do, as well as a detailed analysis of their morphology, through dissection and histology. Behavioral and morphological characters are then used to explore existing and develop new hypotheses of phylogenetic relationships of snakes.

Dr. Paul Lepp, Associate Professor (BA, Gustavus Adolphus College, PhD, Michigan State University, 1997) has been at MSU since 2005. Paul works in bioinformatics, phylogenetics, and microbial ecology of the flora of the human mouth. His specializes in the molecular biology and phylogenetic analysis of Archaea. Dr. Lepp is currently the chair of the department.

Dr. B. Thorpe Halloran, Assistant Professor, (BA, Texas A&M University, MS, Texas State University, PhD, Louisiana State University) has been at MSU since the fall of 2018. Thorpe is a fisheries ecologist who research interests center on examining the life history of freshwater fishes in relation to water quality, microhabitats, and prey availability. His current focus is characterizing ichthyofauna and benthic macroinvertebrate communities in prairie streams.

Dr. Joseph Pettit, Assistant Professor (BA, Metropolitan State College of Denver, MS, Indiana State University, PhD, Indiana State University, Post Doc, Czech University of Life Sciences) has been at MSU since 2020. Joseph is a plant ecologist that focuses on plant animal interactions. Pollination ecology of spring herbs and forests as habitat for wildlife are the two main avenues of research for Joseph.

Faculty in the Department of Biology are dedicated to being engaged in the business of science (e.g., publishing papers, giving research seminars and presenting at conferences, and actively pursuing grant funds). It is through this dedication that we remain vital and provide role models and research programs for our undergraduate students.

The new faculty member would be expected to teach Mammalogy, Ornithology, Herpetology, or entomology, and other coursework will depend on the successful applicant's areas of expertise and interests, in coordination with the Biology curriculum.

Minot State University is committed to equal opportunity employment. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.