Opportunities at Silent Spring Institute

Organization Overview

“Silent Spring Institute is the leader in producing high-quality scientific evidence on cancer-causing agents in the environment.” 

– Dr. Margaret Kripke, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, member President’s Cancer Panel, 2003-2011

Silent Spring Institute is a scientific research institute and one of the nation’s leading authorities on cancer-causing chemicals in our everyday environments. Our goal is breast cancer prevention. We are a collaborative, high-energy staff of 20, including 13 scientists. In addition to conducting scientific research, we work with advocacy groups and others to educate policymakers, funders, and the public, and to translate research into policy that emphasizes prevention. Silent Spring was founded in 1994.

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


Managing Director
Bioinformatics and Data Science for Public Health
Senior Scientist
Internship in Outreach and Special Events


Managing Director

The Managing Director is a new position, created to strengthen continued growth and successful implementation of our 2017-2022 Strategic Plan. The Managing Director will be a key driver of our leadership team, with responsibilities to coordinate priorities across our organization and lead the organizational systems to support growth. We seek an experienced, creative, and wise individual to develop this role and take Silent Spring Institute to the next level.


The Managing Director will work with and support the Executive Director to implement the vision of the Board of Directors and Strategic Plan.

The Managing Director will manage the day-to-day operations of the organization.  This includes overseeing human resources, finance, and information technology functions. The Managing Director will ensure that systems are in place to support the Executive Director and the research, communications, and development programs of the Institute and to enable the Institute to plan for a vital future.

Specific activities will include

  • Maintaining the spirited and collegial culture of the Institute’s staff and our high quality of work
  • With the leadership team, coordinating planning processes to maximize impact in support of our mission
  • Ensuring systems are in place to support research, communications, finance, and development
  • Overseeing facilities maintenance and operation
  • Overseeing HR, including hiring and performance review processes
  • Working with the Executive Director, Director of Finance, Director of Research, and others to develop and implement budgets and staffing plans
  • Coaching staff to support the success of projects and encourage their professional development

The Managing Director will be part of and coordinate the work of the Institute’s leadership team, comprised of all directors. Since Silent Spring is a small organization, this role will require a good deal of “rolling up your sleeves” as well as supervisory and strategic activities.

Reports to:  Executive Director


  • Excellent interpersonal, leadership, and communications skills
  • Capacity to lead, manage, and motivate experienced professionals
  • Demonstrated experience in similar senior administrative positions, ideally in a non-profit, academic, or professional services environment. Demonstrated track record of strong project management and organizational skills.
  • Solid working knowledge of human resources principles and practices
  • Quantitative skills and demonstrated experience in managing budgets and tracking success metrics
  • Deep interest in environmental health science.
  • Commitment to the mission of Silent Spring Institute and to support impartial scientific research in partnership with the public.

Compensation:  This is a full time position.  We offer competitive salaries, 4 weeks vacation to start plus holidays, health insurance, and other benefits.

To apply: Send a cover letter, resume, and example of your writing to careers@silentspring.org with “Managing Director” in the subject line.


Bioinformatics and Data Science for Public Health

Silent Spring Institute seeks a versatile bioinformatician, data scientist, machine learning expert, 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

  • Develop and implement new methods for analyzing gene expression data from high-throughput screening platforms to gain insights about the mechanisms of chemical carcinogenesis
  • 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 and effect markers 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 the analysis of large genomic data sets, esp. with DESeq2, Limma
  • Programming and data management experience, including experience with R
  • Doctorate degree in statistics, mathematics, or 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.

Benefits include a competitive salary consistent with academic settings, an intellectually stimulating and friendly workplace with a public interest mission, 4 weeks of vacation and 12 days sick leave per year, funding for classes and conferences to support staff development, and reimbursement for T-pass.  Silent Spring pays 75% of health insurance premiums.

Silent Spring Institute is an independent non-profit research organization dedicated to identifying—and changing—the links between the environment and women's health, especially breast cancer. Our research focuses on breast cancer and environmental pollutants, especially hormone disruptors and animal mammary gland carcinogens. We develop and apply new technologies to differentiate hazardous and safer chemicals, to measure exposures, and to identify effective exposure reduction strategies. We are funded by grants from the NIH, EPA, and other federal and state agencies, as well as private foundations and charitable contributions.  Our publications list is here.


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.



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 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

MBCC Outreach & Communications Internship

Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (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 educational outreach allows 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, Executive Director. 


The flexibility of this internship is substantial given its work from home nature. Phone and internet will be the primary communication tools for assignments. Interns must commit to at least 15 hours per week. Travel is minimal except for on-site assistance required the day before and the day of the following major events:

  • Against the Tide in Hopkinton in June 2019
  • Against the Tide in Brewster in August 2019

Additionally, there may be other events that will require on-site support.

Responsibilities include:

  1. Media & Communication:
    • Proofing and distributing press releases and calendar listings to news media outlets including print and online newspaper, radio, and television. This includes finding up-to-date contact information for media.
    • 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.
  1. 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.
  1. Administrative:
    • Database building, management, and maintenance to ensure accurate and thorough records of progress in communications and marketing responsibilities.

Qualifications: College and Graduate students with 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 Word and Excel.

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

How to apply: Interns are needed for the following time periods:

  • January 2019 through August 2019 (Spring/Summer Internship)
  • September 2019 through December 2019 (Fall Internship
  • January 2019 through December 2019 (Full year)

Start dates and durations are negotiable.

Please send a cover letter, resume, references, and a writing sample to Cheryl Osimo at cherylosimo@comcast.net. Please use “MBCC Outreach & Communications Internship” in the subject line of your email.

To learn more about MBCC and our sister organization, Silent Spring Institute, please visit www.mbcc.org and www.silentspring.org. Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition is an Equal Opportunity Employer.