Howard Hughes Medical Institute for Software Engineer – Visualization in Ashburn, VA

Software Engineer Job Summary:

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute has an exciting opportunity for a Software Engineer (Visualization) at our Janelia Farm Research Campus (JFRC) in Ashburn, VA. The Software Engineer will work with neuroscientists and other members of the Scientific Computing team to design visualization tools and user interfaces to further research at Janelia Farm Research Campus. The candidate will be expected to have a solid understanding of graphics/user interface toolkit like VTK and OpenGL. The candidate will be expected to program in C++ and Python, with the ability to understand and prototype code in MATLAB/Java.

Software Engineer Principal Responsibilities:

  • Project Initiation. The candidate will be proactive and initiate discussions with researchers to understand the thrust of their domain science and their software and programming needs. The candidate will be able to coordinate the development of the project based on an understanding of the requirements and feedback from users.
  • Software Development. Will work in close collaboration with the lab head, neuroscientists, and computer scientists to develop software tools that enable human inspection of automated image analysis. Will program software in Python and C/C++. Will be proficient in various visualization toolkits like VTK and OpenGL. Will be able to understand MATLAB/Java.
  • Software Maintenance Will maintain standards for all phases of the Software Development Lifecycle, from standards for capture and documentation of requirements for acceptable testing practices and deployment/production support procedures.
  • Software Architectures. Will design, architect, and maintain software/hardware architectures and frameworks that are robust, cost-effective and reliable.
  • Project Management. Will work closely with upper management and the researchers to juggle tasks and priorities. Will be flexible about dynamically shuffling priorities to accommodate a very rapidly changing research environment.
  • Communication. Will have to communicate effectively both orally and through written reports and memos. Will have to communicate regularly and maintain an active working relationship with other groups, the end user, and senior scientific personnel.  Provides an unparalleled level of customer service.

Software Engineer Preferred Qualifications:

  • BS/MS in Computer Science, Mathematics, Engineering, or natural sciences.
  • Minimum of 5 years of programming experience in visualization/graphics/user interfaces, preferably in the physical or biomedical sciences.
  • Experience working closely with scientists in a pure research environment.
  • Proven skill was designing displays for scientific data, especially in the natural sciences.
  • Experience with large data set handling preferred. Experience with GUI toolkits such asQt preferred.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work as a team member and team resource and willingness to lend a hand with any project.

Additional Information:

HHMI offers a competitive Software-Engineer-salary and excellent benefits package. For consideration, please forward your resume in confidence to [email protected]. Please include a cover letter detailing previous research experience and three references. Please also include “Scientific Visualization” job title in the subject line.

To learn more about HHMI and Janelia Farm visit

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