University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Director of Strategic Programs – Center for Data Science


The Center for Data Science in the College of Information and Computer Sciences, University of Massachusetts Amherst, seeks a Director of Strategic Programs.


The Director of Strategic Programs (DSP) will design and execute the Center’s strategy for engaging and retaining external partners in the Center’s research, industry collaborations, and educational initiatives.  Reporting to the Executive Director, and working as a member of the Center’s executive team, the DSP (a) applies technical and research development expertise to develop and implement strategic and innovative plans, programs and policies to position the Center for success with stakeholders; (b) communicates externally to describe Center capabilities and communicates internally to coordinate collaborations; and (c) develops research/education/business opportunities at the local, state, national and international level. Ideal candidates will have demonstrated success in research development, strategic communications, and/or external relations.


The DSP’s primary responsibilities:

  • Develops and executes strategies for fostering new research partnerships and collaborations that pertain to the Center for Data Science and its various constituents;

  • Develops opportunities for data science research by using technical expertise and experience to identify federal, state, local and corporate funding opportunities;

  • Directs and develops industrial outreach with the Center’s established research partnerships;

  • Directs and oversees the Center’s communications program, including planning, organizing, implementing, and evaluating marketing materials, advertising, public relations, media relations, community relations, branding strategies, social media, website design, events, conferences, and online and print publications;

  • Develops and implements plans to increase alumni engagement with the Center for Data Science.



  • Bachelor’s degree in computer science, technical, scientific, communications or a related field and 6 years of experience with software engineering, project management, and communication campaigns required or a Master’s degree and 4 years of experience in the same (preferred).

  • Excellent written, oral and presentation skills.

  • Proven initiative and ability to work with a high level of independence, maintain confidentiality, prioritize assignments, and manage time effectively.

  • Exceptional organizational skills and attention to detail.

  • Willingness to learn new skills and material relevant to the Center for Data Science, and to operate within the unique structure of a university research center.

  • Facility with modern computer-based information management tools.

  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with clients, corporate representatives and funding agencies and use these relationships to develop new business and educational opportunities.


About University of Massachusetts Amherst:

University of Massachusetts 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.


The University’s College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS) is nationally recognized for its research activities, and has one of the highest ranked and most competitive graduate research programs in the nation. Its faculty, which includes 10 ACM Fellows and 8 AAAI Fellows, is distinguished by a unique culture of collaboration that enhances both research and teaching. Faculty members consistently work together across traditional boundaries between specialties within computer science, as well as across other disciplines. The College recently received a $15M gift to expand its data science and cybersecurity activities.


The Center for Data Science housed, is a leading interdisciplinary hub for research, education and industry collaboration in data science.  At the Center’s launch in April 2015, the University announced a projected investment of $100M, with plans to hire 40 additional faculty over the coming decade to augment the over 150 data science-related faculty in the Five Colleges.  The Center’s Industry Affiliate Program includes many actively engaged companies such as Amazon, MassMutual, McKesson, Microsoft, and Pratt & Whitney, as well as multiple local startups.  The College has created new educational programs in data science, doubling the number of data science courses and tripling the number of MS students.  The Center is creating new research initiatives bringing together faculty research, industry partners, entrepreneurs, philanthropies, and state/federal government in areas including healthcare, education, workforce analytics, energy, agriculture, conservation, machine learning, information integration, scalable systems, computer vision, and human language technology.


Additional Information:

The annual salary range is $56,100-85,300 (commensurate with skills and experience) with full benefits.  Normal starting range $56,100-$63,400.


Application Instructions:

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and names and contact information of three professional references.

Review of applications will begin on October 4, 2016 and may continue until a suitable candidate pool has been identified.  


The University of Massachusetts 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, the University of Massachusetts 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 University of Massachusetts to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.