• AACR fellows Drs. Baylin, Jones and Vande Woude
  • Van Andel Institute
Your Life’s Work. Here. Now.

Van Andel Institute is home to hundreds of dedicated scientists, educators and support staff who are focused on one, unifying mission: to improve the health and enhance the lives of current and future generations.

Employee Experience

With employees from nearly 30 countries, there are plenty of opportunities to meet people from various cultural, educational and employment backgrounds. VAI fosters a diverse and collaborative environment. Ample natural light and open spaces foster dialogue and innovation.

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Employee Perks

Sustainability Efforts

Your Work Matters

Van Andel Institute offers a highly comprehensive and competitive compensation package, which includes:

  • Competitive medical/prescription coverage, flexible spending account, and dental and vision coverage
  • Life insurance
  • Short and long-term disability insurance
  • 401(k) with employer match
  • Long-term care insurance
  • A generous vacation and paid time-off program
  • Parental leave
  • Adoption assistance

Click here to learn about our highly competitive and comprehensive compensation package.

We take our mission seriously while appreciating the individuality of our employees and the importance of continued professional and personal growth. That’s why we offer a comprehensive range of employee perks, including:

Professional Perks

  • Scientific seminars and symposia, which draw local, national and international colleagues
  • On-site library, librarian and access to Grand Valley State University’s library system
  • Weekly Research-in-Progress seminars presented by VAI labs
  • Quarterly All Hands meetings with updates from leadership
  • Computer remote access
  • Comprehensive postdoctoral career development

Other Perks

  • Subsidized on-site café with a variety of meals, snacks and Starbucks coffee
  • On-site fitness center, lockers and showers
  • Free covered parking
  • Friday social gathering
  • Sponsored sports clubs
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Lactation rooms
  • Financial wellness services
  • Discount programs

To complement its mission to improve health and enhance lives, Van Andel Institute (VAI) seeks to reduce its impact on the environment in several ways to preserve and improve it for future generations.

LEED Certification
Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. The LEED Green Building Rating System™ is the nationally accepted benchmark to recognize buildings and building owners whose goal is to reduce the impact on the environment and minimize energy consumption.

Van Andel Institute’s phase II building expansion is LEED certified at the Platinum level, which means that both the design and construction of the building incorporates green, or sustainable, features.

Sustainable Features Include

  • Triple-pane insulated glass with low-E coatings on two surfaces keeps winter heat in and reduces summer solar heat gain.
  • High-albedo (light-colored) roof coverings reflect the sun’s heat and reduce the heat island effect.
  • Photovoltaic panels on the roof provides power to implement a peak shaving plan reducing energy demands during the hottest days of summer.
  • Heat recovery system designs reclaim heat from equipment to reduce heating demand loads on HVAC equipment.
  • Low-flow toilet fixtures reduces the demand for potable water by more than 40%, also reducing the demand on the sanitary waste system.
  • Daylight controls automatically reduce lighting levels in the building to reduce energy consumption.
  • Intelligent building controls, right-sizing of equipment and system commissioning reduce overall energy usage, provide feedback on system performance, and identify areas for improvements.
  • Green roofs and ivy walls provide reduced heat island effect, control rainwater runoff and provide improved views in the urban environment.
  • The 33,000-gallon rainwater storage tank stores roof runoff for use in irrigation and cooling tower make-up water, reducing the requirement for potable water.
  • The Institute is built on a redeveloped brownfield urban site.
  • Facility-wide, employee-initiated recycling programs and sustainable purchasing policies improve the work environment and reduce the overall carbon footprint of the VAI.
  • The facility is served by four public bus lines with an aggregate of over 200 rides per day, thereby permitting staff and visitors to avoid parking costs and save motor fuel energy.

Each and every Van Andel Institute employee plays a key role in supporting our groundbreaking research and education initiatives.

Our employees are some of our strongest supporters. VAI employees regularly volunteer with Purple Community, our grassroots fundraising organization; mentor students through our robust internship program; and speak with youth participating in on-site educational programming.

Additionally, employees also support VAI’s research and education initiatives through the Employee Impact Campaign (EIC). Since its inception in 2011, VAI employees have contributed nearly $450,000.

A Culture of Respect

Van Andel Institute’s leadership is deeply committed to maintaining and enhancing a culture of respect. We continually evaluate our progress through trust surveys, town halls and other initiatives.

  • We matter to each other
  • We assume good intentions
  • We ask for help and offer help


Hear directly from some of our employees about life at Van Andel Institute.

Tell us about a day in your life at Van Andel Institute.

Why did you choose to work at Van Andel Institute?

What do you like most about working here?

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

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