Data Analytics and Computational Support Specialist - 502208

Job description

Data Analytics and Computational Support Specialist - 502208


This position will help to establish a culture of excellence in Data Science, Data Analytics and Computational Learning by implementing and managing technical aspects of University research and teaching endeavors. The incumbent will work collaboratively with a range of University constituents, including senior administrators, faculty leadership, and technical staff. The ideal candidate will be a technically-adept leader who will bring people together across disciplines using shared technological tools, and develop new programs that advance important campus-wide initiatives. This position will serve as the primary contact for faculty and staff to provide technical analysis, consulting, and day-to-day support for computational hardware and software in multi-technology academic research environments.

The University of Richmond (UR) is seeking to hire a staff-member in the area Data Analytics and Computational Support to help develop our burgeoning programs in Data Analytics, Data Science and Computational Learning. The University is a research-intensive predominately undergraduate institution (PUI) listed #22 on the US News & World Report rankings of national liberal arts colleges. Our students seek to do more in the fields of Data, Computation and Quantitative Learning, and our faculty and administration are very interested in developing courses and supporting research in these areas. We have allocated significant resources for related computing capacity and ongoing support. The University is in the process of securing a centrally-managed computational resource that will provide compute cycles, data storage and server capabilities.



  • Develop annual operating budget for the Data Science, Data Analytics program
  • Develop life-cycle funding analyses for planned hardware and software purchases
  • Develop and implement usage allocation methodologies and policies
  • Manage user-reservations of computational hardware
  • Work with University partners (e.g. Controller and Grants Accounting) to develop recovery methodologies for federal, state, and private grants
  • Serve as a staff-member of the Data Analytics faculty-advisory committee

Computational Support

  • Installs, configures, updates and supports end-user software including application software on computing-intensive hardware according to security best practices and University standards.
  • Performs general software troubleshooting. Identifies and assesses system-related problems. Initiates corrective actions as appropriate and reports data security issues to Information Services.
  • Installs and maintains software including batch job performance analysis/troubleshooting, user training and coaching, and shell scripting.
  • Troubleshoots system/component level issues, backups/recovery, user account management/administration as well as system/component level performance tuning
  • Maintains data and user security by administering users and groups.
  • Designs, implements, and maintains backups and ensures recoverability; test and repair full system recovery methods.
  • Evaluates and recommends system hardware and software.
  • Provides technical support to system users. Answers user questions regarding hardware, software, and system applications. Responds to special requests and accepts trouble reports. Investigates and resolves user problems. Maintains communications with system users and other faculty and staff members to reach satisfactory resolution of problems.
  • Creates and maintains technical documentation for recommended solutions.
  • Remains current with technology through self-study and/or attendance at seminars or workshops.
  • Foster and support faculty engagement with computational tools.
  • Perform other duties and assist with projects as assigned.


  • Familiarity with basic scripting languages necessary for programming environment variables, wrappers, etc. A knowledge of Python is particularly valuable.
  • Debugs programs by testing for and fixing errors.
  • Verifies program operation by confirming tests.
  • Installs and uses code libraries and drivers, e.g., for GPU-based computation.


  • Demonstrated administrative acumen
  • Self-motivated, with a keen sense of responsibility and passion for problem solving.
  • Ability to perform under minimal supervision. A wide degree of creativity and latitude is expected; independent problem-solving ability is critical. Relies on experience and judgment to independently analyze and solve complex problems quickly and meticulously.
  • Demonstrated ability to provide guidance and instruction to users, interact with users of varying levels of expertise, communicate technical information to non-technical users, and deal with frustrated individuals.
  • Ability to concentrate despite interruptions. Work under pressure on multiple projects simultaneously to meet deadlines.
  • Ability to learn new hardware and software independently.
  • Strong inter-personal and communication skills, both written and oral, in a multi-cultural environment.
  • Thorough understanding of LINUX-based and Windows-based operating system best practices, including devices and drivers, filesystem concepts, security configuration and patching, performance analysis and system tuning.
  • Understanding of networking and distributed computing environment concepts, routing, and networked file systems.
  • Knowledge of systems architecture.
  • Knowledge of server and workstation backup/restoration best practices.
  • Experience with scripting languages.
  • Understanding of web technologies: HTML, apache, IIS.
  • Thorough knowledge of software design, software debugging, software development fundamentals, software documentation, software testing, software maintenance, software performance tuning, and software architecture.


  • Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or a related field is required along with at least 5 years of system administrative experience.
  • A terminal degree is preferred; an equivalent combination of experience and education (graduate degree) will be considered.
  • 7+ years’ experience in LINUX system administration working in progressively complex environments.
    • UNIX/Linux System Administration certification preferred.
  • 2+ years’ experience writing shell scripts in Unix/Linux server environments
  • Technical fluency in the following preferred: Python, Amanda (backup software), SQL, Bourne shell, csh, R, Apache, GIT, Jupyter servers.


  • Full-time, exempt position
  • Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.; 7.75 hrs./day; 38.75 hrs./week
  • Required to work as needed and occasionally work after hours and weekends as required to meet planned project deadlines and respond to unplanned outages.


At the University of Richmond, we’re creative, inclusive, and determined. We’re Spiders, and our mission is to create positive change in the UR community and beyond. Located minutes from downtown Richmond, Virginia, the University of Richmond ( blends the intimacy of a small college with exceptional academic, research, and cultural opportunities usually found only at large institutions.

We are a private, well-supported, highly selective liberal arts institution that enrolls nearly 3300 students. Our campus is nestled on 350 acres of beautiful rolling woodlands in Richmond, Virginia. The metropolitan Richmond area is known for its outstanding museums, theater, music, restaurants, beautiful historic neighborhoods and public parks. Richmond is an affordable, capital city and we are conveniently located; two hours from Washington D.C.; 1.5 hours from the Blue Ridge Mountains to the west; and a similar travel time to the Atlantic Ocean to the east. Outdoor activities abound in Richmond especially near the James River Park system that runs through the center of the city.

UR is committed to developing a diverse faculty, staff and student body, and to modeling an inclusive campus community which values the expression of differences in ways that promote excellence in teaching, learning, personal development and institutional success. In keeping with this commitment, our academic community welcomes candidates from diverse backgrounds and candidates who support diversity. EOE




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Job No:
Posted: 2/11/2021
Application Due: 5/12/2021
Work Type: Full Time