Director of Research Support Services - College of Engineering

Job description

Job no: 507031
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Dean - Engineering
Union: PSU
Categories: Grants and Research, Professional Staff Union (PSU)

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.

Job Summary

Direct and manage research support services for the College of Engineering (CoE). The College of Engineering has five departments, 17 centers and institutes, and more than 150 research active faculty and staff. This director position will build and manage a team of staff (2-3) focused on providing faculty and research staff with support in the development and submission of sponsors (including industry & non-profit foundations), compliant grant proposals (including interpreting sponsor guidelines), complying with University policies and developing appropriate budgets. This position reports to the Associate Dean of Research.

Essential Functions

  • Provide leadership for the research support service team in College of Engineering. Serve as a resource for investigators and research administrators, in the interpretation of proposal and agency requirements. Facilitate flow of information between investigators and administrative offices including research compliance. Keep abreast of existing and emerging sponsor regulations, practices, and policies and potential impact on the institution and sponsored programs. Contribute to development of customer communications, services and training.
  • Direct and supervise a team that provides faculty with high-quality, timely support in the development of competitive grant proposals for individual faculty and faculty teams. Monitor staff workloads and recommend staffing needs. Hire staff, assure thorough and appropriate training; evaluate direct reports.
  • Educate and train faculty on the overall grant submission process. Facilitate the development of collaborations and partnerships within CoE departments and across the University. Compile grant submission data, prepare related reports and provide information to the Associate Dean of Research to facilitate planning for college research needs. Serve as a liaison between faculty, the office of Research Administrative and Compliance under Research and Engagement as well as granting agencies on behalf of the College.
  • Oversee and participate in review of draft proposals, including project narratives, budget, and other supporting documentation, in a timely manner to meet grant application deadlines. Review and facilitate the submission of proposals to ensure compliance with University and federal policies and procedures.
  • Work to promote and coordinate proposal services to college faculty and staff. Interpret policies and rules effecting research support. Work with the Associate Dean in charge of Faculty Development to organize faculty workshops on sources of external funding, develop a program of pre-submission grant review and provide information about grant writing to individual faculty, programs, and departments.
  • Track grant match commitments and provide information to college financial staff to reflect impacts on college budget.
  • Develop a system to track proposal submissions against awards.

Other Functions

Perform related duties as assigned or required to meet the College of Engineering and University goals and objectives.

Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Bachelor's Degree and 4 years of experience directly related to research administration or grant/contract administration. One (1) year of relevant experience may be substitute for every one (1) year of required academia.
  • Experience with major sponsors such as NSF, NIH, DoD, DoE, USDA, industry partners or non-profit foundations.
  • Experience in budget development and working knowledge of federal regulations including OMB Circulars.
  • Demonstrated understanding of fiscal management principles, budgetary/accounting procedures, personnel management, and computer spreadsheet and related software.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, including experience working with diverse populations.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with faculty, researchers, administrators, federal and state agency personnel.
  • Proven effective oral and written communication, organization, analytical and problem solving skills.
  • Excellent organizational and communication skills to oversee numerous projects with competing priorities and deadlines.
  • Ability to understand and contribute to the implementation of departmental and institutional goals for achieving non-discrimination and creating a respectful, inclusive environment that is supportive of diversity.
  • Ability to use sound judgment in normal, time critical and emergency situations.

Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Previous supervisory experience.
  • Certified Research Administrator from the Research Administrators Certification Council.
  • Experience working in a university setting.
  • Experience working with Kuali software.

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical office environment.

Work Schedule

  • Monday – Friday, 37.5 hours per week.
  • Required to work some nights and weekends to meet proposal deadlines.

Salary Information

Level 27

PSU Salary Ranges

Special Instructions to Applicants

Please apply online and provide cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references by the application deadline of January 18, 2021 for priority consideration. Applications may be accepted after the priority date until a suitable candidate pool has been identified.

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University. To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans. It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

Advertised: Dec 21 2020 Eastern Standard Time
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Job No:
Posted: 12/22/2020
Application Due: 2/18/2021
Work Type: Full Time
Salary: