Kennedy Center Administrator

University of Chicago

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL, USA
Posted on Monday, February 12, 2024


BSD PED - Kennedy Center - Administration

About the Department

The Kennedy Center promotes collaborative research in the causes, prevention and treatment of mental retardation and developmental disabilities. The members are a multidisciplinary group of scientists who have active research programs in areas related to understanding brain function and the cause of developmental abnormalities. Operating under the umbrella of a Program Project grant, as well as their own individual funding, Center members share research facilities and promote an interdisciplinary research agenda. The Kennedy Center provides rigorous training to young researchers, clinicians and students through a variety of programs and tailors research programs based on the interest of the individual researcher.

Job Summary

The Kennedy Center Administrator will oversee administrative operations of the Joseph P. Kennedy Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center and manage several training programs based in the Biological Sciences Division that are managed by the Director of the Kennedy Center in the Department of Pediatrics.

Responsibilities will include the following:

Grant management for several federal and private foundation grants: assist in preparation of grant applications, budgets, and progress reports for federal agencies; monitor budgets and approve purchases; appoint personnel.

Supervise students and employees of the Kennedy Center and act as the liaison to the Offices of Academic Affairs, Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs, Human Resources, and Grant Administration.

Manage several NIH-funded training programs including the PREP, IMSD, NESSTP, IRACDA and the MD/PhD dual degree GDDTP. These programs promote diversity in science and provide research training, mentoring and education for biological sciences trainees at all levels from college students, postbacs and graduate students through faculty. Responsibilities include: program admissions; organization of academic and career development workshops, symposia, and conferences; NIH appointments; travel awards; websites; and serving as a contact and resource person for our students, faculty, staff and participants.

This position is wholly/partially funded by contractual grant funding which is renewed under provisions set by the grantor of the contract. Employment will be contingent upon the continued receipt of these grant funds and satisfactory job performance.


  • Oversees administrative operations of the Kennedy Center.

  • Manages application processes of training programs and onboarding of trainees.

  • Plans and schedules training activities (workshops, journal clubs, Symposia, etc.) for professional development of trainees.

  • Oversees and maintains the physical office space, ordering equipment repairs and upgrades.

  • Serves as a primary resource for interpreting University policies and guidelines for the Center’s students and other trainees.

  • Serves as a liaison to the University community regarding administrative issues such as finances, non-academic personnel, communications, and other relevant correspondence.

  • Composes correspondence, create seminar announcements and brochures, and maintain program websites.

  • Processes invoices, travel and expense reimbursements for the section.

  • Assists in preparing grant applications, progress reports and other documents as needed.

  • Sets and communicates program priorities and performance standards and assesses operations using these criteria. Plans and conducts quality assurance reviews and recommends changes as appropriate.

  • Analyzes program budgets and recommends or makes budgetary recommendations. Has moderate/high levels of interactions with faculty, researchers and staff for committee work or information.

  • 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.

  • Advanced degree.


  • Experience working with graduate student programs.

  • Experience in an academic research environment.

Preferred Competencies

  • Ability to demonstrate excellent interpersonal/communication skills in order to communicate effectively with faculty, graduate students and various administrative offices at all levels of the University.

  • Ability to prioritize and handle multiple tasks simultaneously while working under pressure of deadlines.

  • High level of tact, discretionary judgment, maturity and professionalism with regard to access of confidential material and interactions with graduate students and faculty members.

  • Strong computer skills and attention to detail while being able to work for extended periods of time at a computer.

  • Ability to oversee symposia arrangements in various campus locations.

  • Familiarity with central administration within a complex research university environment.

  • Ability to handle public contract with courtesy, clarity, and diplomacy.

  • Ability to maintain calm and courteous demeanor and to work productively despite heavy workload, competing priorities, complex problems, and tight deadlines.

  • Excellent problem-solving skills.

  • Ability to use appropriate resources to resolve an issue.

  • Ability to follow an issue through to resolution.

  • Considerable skill in working both independently and as a team member.

  • Ability to take initiative and organize and complete projects with minimal supervision.

  • Proficiency with word processing applications and spreadsheets and databases.

  • Familiarity with program evaluation, data collection and outcomes research.

Working Conditions

  • Standard office environment.

  • Ability to sit for at least 2 hours to 4 hours.

  • Ability to use computers extensively for at least 2 hours to 4 hours.

Application Documents

  • Resume (required)

  • Cover letter (required)

  • List of References (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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