Business Administrator

University of Chicago

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL, USA
Posted on Friday, October 20, 2023


PME Awschalom Lab

About the Department

The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering (PME) was established in May 2019 and evolved from the Institute for Molecular Engineering, founded in 2011. The PME integrates science and engineering to address global challenges from the molecular level up. The PME’s rigorous academic and research programs are made possible through the University of Chicago’s unique partnership with Argonne National Laboratory. The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering is the first new school at the University of Chicago in three decades and the first school in the nation dedicated to molecular engineering. In the next phase of growth as a School, the PME will continue to expand its team of world-class faculty researchers and empower students from diverse backgrounds to collaborate with faculty in cutting-edge facilities. The PME aims to bring solutions for urgent societal problems to the forefront, while training the next generation of scientific leaders and entrepreneurs.

Job Summary

The PME is seeking a Business Administrator to support the day-to-day operational and business needs of a group of faculty members within the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering. The Business Administrator reports to the Vice Dean for Research and Infrastructure, providing professional support and solving straightforward problems for a broad range of program operations, business operations, and academic activities. Additionally, the Business Administrator may prepare and monitor budgets and draft budget presentations. Responsibilities include management of calendars, meetings, recruitment, project coordination, data coordination and management, recruitment and/or scheduling, preparing and summarizing data for presentations, assisting with grants and administrative procedures, monitoring aspects of the protocol for compliance, communications, and supporting collaborative efforts.


  • Plans, directs, coordinates, and manages daily operational and business needs.
  • Supports operational projects at the direction of the supported faculty, including liaising with internal and external constituencies and stakeholders.
  • Performs routine and complex assignments for the unit usually in the areas of procurement, event planning, and support services.
  • Monitors expenses and provides regular updates, ensuring that spending limits are adhered to and are within budget.
  • Plans and executes various administrative tasks, including assisting with special projects and events; designing, producing, and copy-editing complex documents, reports, and presentations; and collecting and preparing information for meetings with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Performs ongoing assessments of office organization and function, identifies operational deficiencies, and recommends and implements solutions.
  • Manages administrative, expense and logistic support, including but not limited to calendar management, room reservations, expense management, mail, travel logistics, and recruitment efforts.
  • May prepare presentation decks; creates, edits, and proofs communications on behalf of supported faculty.
  • In collaboration with PME HR and Academic Affairs, initiates non-faculty appointments (postdoctoral researchers, students, temporary staff, academic visitors, and interns), including drafting the description of duties, onboarding, and offboarding with high confidentiality and discretion.
  • Serves as liaison for postdoctoral researchers, research staff, and students within the labs for space assignments, IT needs, purchasing requests, reimbursements, and accounts payable.
  • Assists in the monitoring of the various financial and budgetary activities, including vendors contracts. Preparing and monitoring the budget for a unit.
  • Researches and analyzes data to create reports, and may create other reports for grants and contracts.
  • Performs other related work as needed.

Minimum Qualifications


Minimum requirements include a college or university degree in related field.

Work Experience:

Minimum requirements include knowledge and skills developed through 2-5 years of work experience in a related job discipline.



Preferred Qualifications


  • Bachelor’s degree.


  • 3+ years of progressively responsible business and administrative experience.
  • Working within an academic or complex administrative environment.

Technical Skills or Knowledge:

  • Project Management methodologies.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint).
  • Strong computer skills including calendaring, document management (e.g., Dropbox, Box, etc.), database management, and spreadsheet skills.
  • Familiarity with report writing/submission and manuscript drafting, editing, and review.

Preferred Competencies

  • Commitment to providing a high level of service and working in a team environment.
  • Demonstrated administrative, problem-solving, organization and coordination skills.
  • Demonstrated excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Excellent time management skills and handle multiple, concurrent tasks within deadlines with minimal supervision.
  • Prioritize urgent tasks while ensuring established deadlines are met.
  • Flexible and adaptable to changes in workflow and procedures.
  • Handle stressful, sensitive and confidential situations and information with absolute discretion.
  • Interact comfortably with senior executives, faculty, and staff.

Application Documents

  • Resume/CV (required)
  • Cover Letter (required)
  • Professional References Contact List (3) (required)

When applying, the document(s) MUST be uploaded via the My Experience page, in the section titled Application Documents of the application.

Job Family

Administration & Management

Role Impact

Individual Contributor

FLSA Status


Pay Frequency


Scheduled Weekly Hours


Benefits Eligible


Drug Test Required


Health Screen Required


Motor Vehicle Record Inquiry Required


Posting Statement

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, military or veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

We seek a diverse pool of applicants who wish to join an academic community that places the highest value on rigorous inquiry and encourages a diversity of perspectives, experiences, groups of individuals, and ideas to inform and stimulate intellectual challenge, engagement, and exchange.

All offers of employment are contingent upon a background check that includes a review of conviction history. A conviction does not automatically preclude University employment. Rather, the University considers conviction information on a case-by-case basis and assesses the nature of the offense, the circumstances surrounding it, the proximity in time of the conviction, and its relevance to the position.

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