Opportunities at Silent Spring Institute

We are always seeking applications from exceptional individuals who want to be part of our team.


Bioinformatics and Data Scientist
Postdoctoral Fellow: Endocrinology, Reproductive Toxicology, or Informatics for a Transdisciplinary Environmental and Social Science Team
Senior Scientist
Internship in Outreach and Special Events

Bioinformatics and Data Scientist

Silent Spring Institute seeks a versatile data scientist, machine learning expert, bioinformatician, or statistician to tackle big data problems in environmental health and cancer prevention. The position can be structured as a permanent position or a postdoctoral fellowship. We will also consider hiring a consultant for short term project-specific work.

Work in a multi-disciplinary mission-driven team with experts in epidemiology, toxicology, chemistry, computer science, and community-based research, all focused on impartial research to identify and reduce environmental hazards to human health.

Collaborate with investigators at Harvard, Northeastern, UC Berkeley, US EPA, US CDC, and other top-tier research institutions, as well as with diverse environmental and health advocacy groups.

Projects may include

  • Analysis of high-throughput toxicity testing and gene expression data for insights about the mechanisms of chemical carcinogenesis and endocrine disruption
  • Developing predictive models to identify hazardous chemicals from in vitro data
  • Mapping the “exposome” and “metabolome” by developing computational methods for new, more comprehensive analyses of chemicals in human tissues
  • Analyses in Veterans Administration Health care database relating pharmaceutical or environmental chemical exposures and adverse health effects.
  • Text mining to uncover trends in published research on suspected carcinogens
  • Identifying the unique exposures of workers in high-risk occupations

Other responsibilities

  • Publish in high profile peer-reviewed journals
  • Present research at conferences and public events
  • Provide occasional statistical support and training to colleagues
  • Lead study design and development
  • Contribute to grant proposals


  • Expertise in machine learning and big data
  • Programming and data management experience, including familiarity with R
  • Doctorate or Master’s degree in related field (or equivalent experience)
  • Dedication to rigorous science in the public interest

To apply, send a cover letter describing your interests and experience related to this job, resume, writing sample, and copies of academic transcripts to Laura Borth at careers@silentspring.org with “data scientist position” in the subject line.

Postdoctoral Fellow: Endocrinology, Reproductive Toxicology, or Informatics for a Transdisciplinary Environmental and Social Science Team

We are seeking a candidate with doctoral training in endocrinology, developmental biology, or cancer biology with a focus on environmental health. Applicants should demonstrate a strong research record as well as experience in statistics, biology, toxicology, chemistry, computer science, or informatics. R programming is an asset. The ability to communicate and work independently within a multidisciplinary and multinational team of scientists is required.

This research fellowship is part of a unique opportunity to engage in environmental health-social science training. In addition to a strong background in their discipline, the candidate should have an interest in public health, community-based participatory research and the social context of environmental health. This two-year appointment is part of the NIEHS Training Program, “Transdisciplinary Training at the Intersection of Environmental Health Science and Social Science” (EH+SS), co-directed by Silent Spring Institute and Northeastern University’s Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute (SSEHRI). This training program will prepare scientists for successful research careers at the nexus of environmental health, social science and policy. Fellows will be expected to publish and develop proposals within their scientific area of expertise and will also have opportunities to contribute to interdisciplinary publications.

The postdoctoral fellow will spend 2/3 of her/his time at Silent Spring Institute and 1/3 at Northeastern University. The fellow will collaborate with Silent Spring Institute and Northeastern scientists on one or more ongoing research projects and will have access to cutting edge resources and technologies at Northeastern University and other collaborating institutions. Examples of projects include:

  • Develop Adverse Outcome Pathway models for breast cancer. This research is part of an international effort using bioinformatics, computational biology, toxicology, and systematic review approaches to identify biological pathways in cancer etiology
  • Apply novel approaches in biomonitoring and exposure assessment, including metabolomics and other omics techniques to identify early effect markers associated with chemical exposures.
  • Combine experimental and computational approaches to develop novel chemical safety screening methods that capture biological mechanisms related to endocrine disruption and carcinogenesis. 
  • Environmental Justice. In collaboration with environmental and health advocacy groups, fellows can  work on projects that translate the best science into environmental public health strategies at the local, regional and national level.

Silent Spring Institute

Situated just outside Boston with a staff of about 20, we recently celebrated our 20th anniversary in 2014 as the nation’s leading scientific research organization focused breast cancer prevention through environmental research and outreach programs. Our research focuses on women’s health and environmental pollutants, especially hormone disruptors and animal mammary gland carcinogens. We develop and apply new technologies to identify safer chemicals and measure exposures. This is an opportunity to be part of a nationally recognized, innovative, mission-driven team.  Our publications list is here.   Our website is here: silentspring.org.

Northeastern University

The Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute, at Northeastern since 2012, continues the legacy of the Contested Illnesses Research Group at Brown University, which began in 2000, in training graduate students and postdocs in community-based participatory research aimed at transforming and improving environmental health.  By linking environmental health science, sociology, science and technology studies, and work with CBOs, SSEHRI develops novel approaches to studying environmental health questions. It currently has 5 faculty members, 2 postdocs, 11 doctoral students, 2 MA students, and 1 MPH student. Both the Silent Spring Institute and Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute have extensive collaborations with many breast cancer, environmental health, and environmental justice organizations.  Our website is here: northeastern.edu/environmentalhealth/

This position is appointed through Northeastern University and offers a competitive salary and benefits package.

To apply, please do ALL of the following:

  1. Send an application packet containing a cover letter, a curriculum vitae, writing samples (published or unpublished), and graduate and undergraduate transcripts to Professor Phil Brown by email at p.brown@northeastern.edu AND to careers@silentspring.org (put “T32 postdoc” in subject line).
  2. Send three letters of reference, including one from the dissertation advisor, to Professor Phil Brown by email at p.brown@northeastern.edu.

We are currently seeking applicants for one position to start as soon as possible but before September 2017. Review of applications will begin immediately, and the search will remain open until the position is closed or filled.  Questions? Write to Phil Brown at p.brown@northeastern.edu

Senior Scientist

Senior scientist applicants should expect to develop and lead an independent research program within our mission. Our scientists publish in high-impact scientific journals, compete for federal grants, and participate in scientific conferences. We collaborate with researchers at Brown, Harvard, and Tufts, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, University of Southern California, USGS, and CDC. Senior scientists are supported by outstanding research assistants and access to funds for pilot studies and proposal development. Click here for publications by Silent Spring Institute researchers.


Silent Spring Institute seeks a part-time Bookkeeper for seven to 14 hours a week. Excellent Microsoft Excel skills required as well as experience in QuickBooks accounting software.


  • Maintain general ledger, process accounts receivable, accounts payable, payroll, timesheets and month-end closing activities.
  • Perform bank reconciliations.
  • Maintain amortization and depreciation schedules for inventory and leasehold improvements.
  • Assist with year-end audit activity providing reports and fulfilling requests of outside auditors.

Experience Required:  Three or more years in accounting or bookkeeping with demonstrated computer competence.

Education, Skills and Abilities Required:  Bachelor's degree, familiarity with a variety of computer software, attention to detail, good communication skills, ability to respond to deadlines.  Strong knowledge of QuickBooks and Excel preferred.

To apply: Please send a cover letter and resume to Diane Czwakiel at careers@silentspring.org with “Bookkeeper” in the subject line.


We seek applicants with skills and interests in environmental health science and policy and non-profit management. Responsibilities will be tailored to the skills and interests of the applicant. Each intern will work directly as an assistant to a supervising staff member, and interns are encouraged to develop an independent project to be completed during the internship as well. Responsibilities may include literature searches, interviewing, environmental sampling, data management, and writing, among other possibilities. Undergraduate and masters level interns are expected to spend approximately 20% of their time on office support tasks (telephones, etc.). Interns are expected to maintain regular work hours, with some flexibility to accommodate major assignments and exams. Examples of previous and projected intern activities:

  • Identify from chemical engineering references the consumer products that are likely sources of exposure to endocrine disrupting compounds
  • Using GIS, map likely air pollutant exposures on Cape Cod
  • Assist in developing web site capabilities and content
  • Help maintain and expand the Institute’s 6,000-item special library
  • Using interviews and published literature, identify the best models of community based participatory research
  • Interview breast cancer activists about environmental attitudes

We are actively seeking to fill the Farla H. Krentzman Internship in Environmental Health, a summer-long internship designed for an undergraduate or graduate student with a strong science background and interest in public health. The candidate will have the opportunity to assist with variety of projects ranging from reviewing epidemiological literature to upgrading our digital app. The candidate will benefit not only from working closely with Silent Spring's research team, but will also come away with an understanding of how non-profits operate.

Requirements: Excellent academic record. Chemistry, biology, statistics coursework an asset for research interns. Energetic, flexible, constructive outlook. Excellent attention to accuracy, ability to work independently within a multidisciplinary team. Commitment to careful and impartial research in a context of partnership between scientists and the public. To apply, send cover letter describing your interests and experience related to this internship, resume, writing sample, and copy of academic transcript (photocopy is fine) to Diane Czwakiel, Administrative Manager, Silent Spring Institute, 320 Nevada Street, Suite 302, Newton, MA 02460, or email to careers@silentspring.org with 'Internships' in the subject line. Please designate the time period you are interested in.

Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition/Silent Spring Institute Lead Intern in Special Events and Outreach

The Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) is different from other breast cancer organizations. We believe that to eradicate breast cancer we must prevent it. MBCC is dedicated to preventing environmental causes of breast cancer through community education, research advocacy, and changes to public policy. Our annual fundraising events and allow us to continue to work towards this goal. Our interns will assist with building and promoting special events and projects for the organization and occasionally for MBCC’s sister organization, Silent Spring Institute (SSI). This internship involves frequent communication with Cheryl Osimo, MBCC Executive Director and SSI Event and Outreach Coordinator.                                           

The flexibility of the position is substantial. Tasks will primarily be completed from school or home (not the MBCC office), as phone and internet will be the primary communication tools for assignments. Interns must commit to a set weekly schedule of at least 15 hours per week but hours can be arranged according to the intern’s schedule. Travel is minimal except for possible on-site assistance required the day before and the day of major 2016/2017 events: Against the Tide in Hopkinton in June, Against the Tide in Brewster in August, and the Gay and Lesbian Dance in January.  This is an unpaid internship with no reimbursement for travel expenses or cell phone costs.

Responsibilities may include: 

  • Media & Communication:
    • Proofing and distributing press releases and calendar listings to news media outlets including print and online newspaper, radio, and television. This includes maintaining communication with media contacts to follow up and provide additional information.
    • Interviewing event participants/supporters and composing feature stories and other articles for media. This may require phone and/or email contact of a sensitive nature, since some contact will be required with those who have been touched by breast cancer. Phone interviews are critical for obtaining information used in press releases and media coverage.
  • Marketing & Outreach:
    • Initiating contact with local community businesses and individuals to encourage community sponsorship and individual or team event participation.
    • Posting event materials in various locations. This responsibility includes targeting high traffic locations that will increase event participation.
    • Assisting with social media event promotion campaigns on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and more.
  • Administrative:
    • Database building, management, and maintenance to ensure accurate and thorough records of progress in communications and marketing responsibilities

Qualifications: College Junior or Senior. Graduate students will also be considered. Minimum GPA of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale.

  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills.
  • Detail-oriented, organized, the ability to work independently and manage multiple tasks simultaneously with competing deadlines.
  • Proficiency with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube and other social media outlets. Prior experience with social media campaigns is preferred.
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Office Excel, Photoshop and Wordpress is preferred but not mandatory.

Compensation: All positions are unpaid but we are willing to work with institutions to offer students academic credit.

How to apply: Now accepting applicants for all internships. Interns are needed for the following time periods.

  • Summer 2017: May 2017 to September 2017
  • Fall 2017: September 2017 to December 2017
  • Winter 2018: December 2017 to September 2018
  • Year-Long*: September 2017 to September 2018

*limited space available, please inquire as to the availability of this internship.

Start dates and durations are negotiable.  Please send a cover letter, resume with GPA details, references, and a writing sample to Cheryl Osimo at: cherylosimo@comcast.net. Contact 508-246-3047 for any questions.

To learn more about Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition visit www.mbcc.org.