Research Assistant Position
Job DescriptionThis position is responsible for supporting the Dean, along with all offices and departments under his supervision – including and especially the Office of Academic Affairs – with any tasks for which research and administrative support is required. Although the responsibilities of this position vary on any given week, there will be an emphasis on the identification and interpretation of trends in data for senior decision makers, on developing proposals for academic initiatives, and on writing assessments and analyses of projects currently underway at SAIS. The incumbent should delight in the process of telling stories with words, numbers, and graphs, should be able to see the relationship between those stories and the strategic challenges and opportunities facing the school, and should be able to present these connections in a way that enables informed decision making at the executive level.
This position will last the duration of the 2020-21 academic year and any rising second-year students are eligible to apply.
The most important attributes for this position are as follows:
Discretion. The incumbent will have access to confidential and sensitive information, and will be expected to hold this information, along with their awareness of it, in strict confidence.
Initiative. The role is best suited to a “go getter” who is willing to think about what would be helpful to the office, presents these ideas regularly to his or her supervisor, and pushes promising lines of inquiry on their own. There will be no hand holding in this position.
Written communication skills. The incumbent should be ready to produce readable emails, memoranda, records of decision, and proposals throughout their tenure.
Comfort with MA-level statistics. This includes having a functional relationship with Microsoft Excel, and understanding concepts like means, weighted means, normal distribution, and statistically significant differences. Experience performing data analysis with software such as R, Python, or Tableau is preferred.
Application Instructions: Candidates interested in the position should submit (1) a one-page cover letter discussing why they are a good fit for the role and highlighting experience applying quantitative skills in a professional setting and (2) a one-page CV/resume. Applicants should combine these documents into a single PDF file.
A Note on the Process: All applications will be read. Those candidates deemed most promising from the written applications will be invited for an informal interview with the current research assistant and the Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs. Finalists may meet individually with Dean Cohen, and then a selection will be made.
A Note on Concentrations: There is no concentration preference for this position. Although the Dean is a professor in the Strategic Studies program, this role will not intersect with his work on that portfolio.
Contact: Questions, concerns, and anything else may be directed to Joseph Wood (firstname.lastname@example.org).