Assistant Director, Thesis Advisement & Curriculum Development (SPF)

Notre Dame
Mar 07, 2018
Executive Administration Jobs
C-Level & Executive Directors
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Assistant Director, Thesis Advisement & Curriculum Development (SPF)
University of Notre Dame
Office of VP & Assoc Provost for Innovation: ESTEEM
Location: Notre Dame, IN

Are you interested in helping to lead one of the most dynamic, innovative graduate programs in technology and entrepreneurship in the world with global reach and impact; to have the opportunity to help shape — and learn from — some of the brightest young technology minds from around the globe? Are you keen to advance the bold and ambitious goal of Notre Dame — "to be a powerful force for good in the world" — through innovation and entrepreneurship, through "fixing things that matter?"

We in the ESTEEM Graduate Program, as part of the IDEA Center at Notre Dame, have a vision to unlock discoveries, fuel genius and advance the Common Good. We are looking for a highly qualified, passionate change agent to be a catalyst for impact – both within our ESTEEM Graduate Program, our IDEA Center and across Our Lady's University.

Notre Dame has recently established an Office of Innovation (within the Provost's Office) and through the IDEA Center is strategically and significantly investing in its commercialization and startup enterprise. ESTEEM is the only academic program within the IDEA Center and is positioned to help lead a significant growth in academic programming (with a substantial experiential learning construct) across the entire university (for graduate and undergraduate students). We are committed to having all students – from any discipline – participate in this rapidly growing ecosystem of innovation and startups here at Notre Dame and the broader community.

About the ESTEEM Graduate Program
The ESTEEM Graduate Program is a one-year Master of Science degree program at the University of Notre Dame that equips students from technical backgrounds with the skills and experience to launch new businesses, become innovators within large corporations, and be leaders of dynamic, innovative teams. Over the course of a year, students are immersed in an entrepreneurial sandbox, where they get their hands dirty with entrepreneurship and innovation through a cutting-edge curriculum, a capstone commercialization thesis for an emerging technology, and outstanding out-of-the-classroom experiences.

ESTEEM emphasizes the action of entrepreneurship, not just the study of it. By the time they graduate, due to the rigorous academic experience (including a high degree of experiential learning), exposure to real-life business ventures, and exceptional mentorship, ESTEEM students find their technical skills impactful and marketable in a rapidly changing economy. Students are launched into career tracks outside of narrow technical roles, taking positions of leadership at the intersection of business and innovation.

About the IDEA Center
ESTEEM, as of mid-2017, is now part of the University's IDEA Center (Innovation, De-Risking and Enterprise Acceleration). The IDEA Center is the University of Notre Dame's collaborative innovation hub dedicated to expanding the technological and societal impact of the University's innovations. It provides the necessary space, services and expertise for idea development, commercialization, business formation, prototyping, entrepreneurial education and student entrepreneurial efforts. It is designed to bring the best Notre Dame faculty, staff and student ideas and innovations to market.

Job Description
    • This faculty position's primary responsibility is to lead all thesis-related operations, including matching of thesis projects to ESTEEM students, development of the thesis guidelines, and serving as a thesis adviser to approximately 15-20 ESTEEM students per year
    • Oversee and manage other contracted part-time capstone thesis advisers
    • Engage heavily with the IDEA Center, College of Engineering, College of Science, and Mendoza Business School faculty to ensure awareness of the ESTEEM Program, improve faculty engagement and solicit university-research capstone thesis projects from the IDEA Center
    • Provide overall leadership, direction, and participate in hands-on capstone thesis advising and mentoring; securing commercial advisors for all capstone thesis projects; teaching/mentoring ESTEEM students and their advisors throughout the academic year
    • In addition to leading the capstone thesis classes, teach a minimum of one course in the ESTEEM curriculum based on the candidate's background
    • Design the ESTEEM curriculum (with the Associate Dean of Entrepreneurship/Director) and engage with ESTEEM teaching faculty to develop a rigorous, innovative academic experience for all ESTEEM students
    • Lead planning of outside-the-classroom annual events, including a day-trip to Chicago, a week-long Spring Break field trip, and any others
    • Play a strong supporting role to the Associate Dean of Entrepreneurship/Director of the ESTEEM Program in building the overall quality of the ESTEEM Program with students, faculty, staff, the IDEA Center and all external partners

Minimum Qualifications
    • Minimum of a Master's degree (terminal degree), preferably in Engineering or Science; PhD received in Engineering or Science preferred (but not required); strong track record in research and technology commercialization and/or startups
    • Strong self-starter with experience in team-based cross-disciplinary projects
    • Strong involvement with and exposure to design and product development including market studies, business model development, and prototyping technologies
    • Experience in entrepreneurship (either as a founder/co-founder or in another fast growing startup); demonstrated history of helping to create, grow and manage companies, programs, lab facilities, etc. with demonstrated results
    • Able to effectively communicate with a wide spectrum of audiences – including science and engineering audiences as well as business leaders and entrepreneurs
    • Strong proficiency in conducting market exploration and market assessments related to the commercialization of research and/or startups
    • Excellent written and oral presentation skills

Preferred Qualifications
    • Some understanding of the Business Model Canvas and Lean Startup Methodology
    • Prior teaching experience preferred at the university level
    • Strong project management skills

Applicants will need to submit a cover letter, CV, and arrange for three Letters of Recommendation to be submitted through the Interfolio system linked here and at the following web address


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