Associate Biosafety Officer

Saskatoon, SK, Canada .
full-time . August 10, 2023


The Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO), Canada’s Centre for Pandemic Research, is a world leader in infectious disease research and vaccine development for humans and animals. Located at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada, VIDO is home to one of the largest and most advanced containment level 3 facilities in the world. To strengthen the preparedness for emerging infectious diseases we are currently expanding our infrastructure to include containment level 4 capacity, a GMP vaccine manufacturing facility, and a new animal housing facility. Our vision includes having the capacity to study any emerging disease in any animal model embracing a One Health approach to prevent emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases in humans and animals.

Reporting to the Biosafety Officer, you will work to implement the comprehensive biosafety program for VIDO at the University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. This entails implementing the biological safety, biocontainment, biosecurity, and medical surveillance programs. The Associate Biosafety Officer will assist the Biosafety Officer in communicating with research personnel, the University of Saskatchewan Safety Resources Office, and Canadian regulatory agencies to ensure that VIDO meets all regulatory requirements, minimizes environmental risks, and protects human health.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to, assisting with programs supporting work involving risk group 2, 3 and 4 pathogens. Also required is conducting local risk assessments for work with human and animal pathogens, laboratory audits, pathogen inventory audits, respiratory protection assessment, training and fit testing, biosafety training, coordinating importation of regulated biological materials, medical surveillance, annual validation testing of autoclave cycles and biosafety cabinets, and hazardous waste disposal.  

Education Required:
·        Bachelor’s degree in biological sciences

Experience Required:
·        Experience in a research, teaching, or diagnostic laboratory with emphasis in microbiology, molecular biology, virology, genetics, public health, or related field
·        Good understanding of the principles and practices used in biological and microbiological sciences
·        Experience in the application of biological safety principles and practices
·        Experience applying working knowledge of regulatory requirements for work with regulated biological materials and dealing with relevant federal, provincial, and local regulatory agencies (PHAC, CFIA, Environment Canada, Transport Canada, Saskatchewan Occupational Health and Safety, University of Saskatchewan Safety Resources)
·        Working knowledge of Windows- or Mac-based software, including word processing and spreadsheets

Other Requirements:
·        Ability to manage and prioritize multiple projects within the confines of time, budgets and available personnel
·        Superior organizational skills and attention to detail
·        Excellent written and oral communication skills with the ability to work cooperatively with administrative staff, researchers, facility operations and maintenance personnel, lab technicians, clinical veterinarians, animal technicians, external contractors, administrators, university, civic, provincial, and federal government regulators, etc.
·        Willingness to learn and stay current in the rapidly advancing field of biosafety, biocontainment and biosecurity
·        Ability to undergo and maintain a favorable background check and Public Health Agency of Canada Security Clearance
·        Ability to wear personal protective equipment including positive air purifying respirator or negative air purifying respirator
·        Ability to work in many and varied conditions, including containment level 3 and 4 areas where risk group 3 and 4 human pathogens are handled and stored. Participation in the established medical surveillance plan is required.

Status: Permanent
Employment Group: Non--Union
Shift: Monday - Friday, 7.5 hours per day (37.5 hours per week)
Full Time Equivalent (FTE): 1.0
The successful applicant will be required to provide the following current verification(s) where 'Yes' is indicated below. Further information is available at:
Facility Access Screening including Criminal Record Check: Yes
Driver's License and Abstract Check: Not Applicable
Education/Credential Verification: Yes
Vulnerable Sector Check: Not Applicable
Interested candidates are asked to submit their application including a cover letter, CV, and the names of three references.

Review of applications will begin immediately; however, applications will be accepted and evaluated until the position is filled. We thank all applicants for their interest; only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.
For more information visit:

The University believes equity, diversity, and inclusion strengthen the community and enhance excellence, innovation, and creativity. We are dedicated to recruiting individuals who will enrich our work and learning environments. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, in accordance with Canadian immigration requirements, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority. We are committed to providing accommodations to those with a disability or medical necessity. If you require an accommodation to participate in the recruitment process, please notify us and we will work together on the accommodation request. The University of Saskatchewan’s main campus is situated on Treaty 6 Territory and the Homeland of the Métis. We pay our respects to the First Nations and Métis ancestors of this place and reaffirm our relationship with one another. Together, we are uplifting Indigenization to a place of prominence at the University of Saskatchewan.

Know someone who would be a perfect fit? Let them know!