Hawaii Education & Engagement Manager

Website NOIRLabAstro NSF’s NOIRLab

National center for ground-based, nighttime optical astronomy.


NSF’s NOIRLab is the preeminent US national center for ground-based, nighttime optical and infrared astronomy. NOIRLab is a Federally Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC) which operates as a matrix organization, providing services across a range of programs: Gemini, Rubin, MSO (CTIO and KPNO), and CSDC; with facilities in three geographic locations: Arizona, Chile and Hawai’i. The mission of NOIRLab is to enable breakthrough discoveries in astrophysics by developing and operating state-of-the-art ground-based observatories and providing data products and services for a diverse and inclusive community.

In this position, the successful candidate will serve as NOIRLab’s primary interface with our local host community on Hawai‘i Island, and will work out of the Gemini Hilo Base Facility. Responsibilities will include the management of some staff and interns, as well as oversight and leadership for programs like the annual Journey through the Universe program and participation in other community events. A deep understanding, appreciation, and experience working on local Hawai‘i Island issues and concerns is critical to the success of this position, as well as working closely with the Hawai‘i Island and Indigenous communities. The successful candidate must be sensitive to issues related to astronomy on Maunakea and be adept at listening to community needs, be familiar and have connections with local leadership, and be able to adapt and develop programs to meet these needs.

The Education & Engagement (E&E) Manager–Hawai‘i will work closely with the NOIRLab E&E Manager to implement local E&E programming on site in that aligns with strategic goals, mission and vision for NOIRLab’s Communications Education and Engagement (CEE) Division. This position will actively participate in strategic planning and be a partner in implementing CEE goals and realizing its vision.

Additionally, this position will support broader NOIRLab Education and Engagement initiatives across locations in Arizona and Chile and it is expected that travel will be required.

NOIRLab operates the international Gemini Observatory, Vera C. Rubin Observatory, Kitt Peak National Observatory, the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory), the US-ELT Program and the Community Science and Data Center (CSDC) in the United States and in Chile. NOIRLab is the US national center for ground-based observational nighttime astronomy, and has sites of operations in Hawai‘i, Arizona, and Chile. NOIRLab launched in October 2019, with about 450 full-time staff and an approximately $80M USD annual budget.

Essential Functions:

  • Provide strategic perspectives and leadership in planning, coordination and execution local and indigenous outreach and educational programming as well as virtual programming in Hawai’i Island area such as the flagship Journey through the Universe
  • Engage in local community groups, individuals and events to develop and maintain partnerships in the Hawai‘i community, primarily in east Hawai‘i.
  • Works with E&E manager to ensure that overall program scope and resources are in balance with our institutional mission and priorities.
  • Evaluate existing and potential new programming for educational effectiveness for local target audiences.
    Ensures that processes and workflows are established and in line with the NOIRLab and CEE Values — scientific authenticity, transparency, collaboration, inclusion, creativity, horizontal and efficiency.
  • Work actively to harmonize E&E programming across all sites with mutual goals and objectives and facilitate a smooth flow of information with peers in other CEE and NOIRLab teams.
    Monitor the progress of ongoing projects, provide feedback and prioritize and re-prioritize urgent and important tasks with staff.
    Produce reports and presentations for oversight committees and agency requirements
  • Coaches, mentors, supports, motivates, develops, and evaluates staff.
  • Through personal example, set the highest standards.
  • Works on site or in the community in Hawai‘i a substantial part of the time
  • Be NOIRLab’s representative in key Maunakea outreach working groups and strategic committees.
  • Lead some public tours of facilities (including summit facilities) ensuring the safety of guests and provide accurate and timely information to visitors to our facilities.

Other Functions:

Other duties as assigned.

Required Education, Experience, Skills, Abilities:

  • Minimum 4-year degree in education, or STEM-sciences
  • Deep knowledge, appreciation, sensitivity and experience working on Hawaiian Indigenous issues and ability to develop and implement programs that address identified needs of Indigenous and local host community (Hawaii)
  • Minimum of 5 years experience in community relations/engagement preferably in astronomy or other scientific field with some staff management experience
  • Minimum of 5 years experience in staff and project management/coordination

Preferred Education, Experience, Skills, Abilities:

  • Knowledge and mastery of modern astronomical research, instruments, and basic astronomy concepts
  • Ability to travel internationally
  • Ability to work at altitudes of up to 14,000’
  • Clean driving record
  • Ability to lift up to 50 pounds

Physical Demands:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel; and talk or hear.
The employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; reach with hands and arms and stoop; kneel; crouch; or crawl.

The employee must regularly lift and /or move up to 10 pounds and occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds.

Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.

Must possess – sufficient mobility, strength, or dexterity in both arms and hands and both legs to a) reach upward, sideways, downward to work with paper files; b) sufficient mobility and dexterity to utilize computer systems, fax machines, copiers, and other office machines.

Must possess – 1) ability to read and understand instructions, drawings, safety guides, and other written materials necessary to perform job; 2) sufficient visual capacity to perform the applicable functions without assistance of visual aids other than eye contacts or eyeglasses; 3) sufficient spoken aural capacity to hear and understand instructions, warning bells, fire alarms, or shouted instructions without assistance of auditory aids other than a hearing aid; and 4) ability to impart information orally so that others understand and can respond appropriately

Mauna Kea: Ability to work at 14,000’ for 8 hour shifts. Longer shifts and working during inclement weather occasionally required. Required to pass High Altitude medical examination (post offer and potentially at specified intervals while employed if medically necessary).

Preference will be given to qualified internal candidates.

Please list 3 professional references in your application (references will only be contacted later in the recruitment process) and attach: a cover letter and a CV or resume, PDF files preferred. Please name any attachments with the following format: Lastname Docname. Application documents that are not uploaded as part of the application may be sent to employment@aura-astronomy.org.

The position will remain open until filled. To be considered in the first round of reviews, please submit your application by June 16, 2023.

Veterans, disabled individuals or wounded warriors needing assistance with the employment process should request assistance at employment@aura-astronomy.org.

The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA) is a consortium of 47 US institutions and 3 international affiliates that operates world-class astronomical observatories for the National Science Foundation and NASA. AURA’s role is to establish, nurture, and promote public observatories and facilities that advance innovative astronomical research. In addition, AURA is deeply committed to public and educational outreach, and to diversity throughout the astronomical and scientific workforce. AURA carries out its role through its astronomical facilities.

AURA offers an excellent benefits package including paid time off, health and welfare benefits, and retirement plan contributions, competitive salary commensurate with experience, and a very attractive work environment. Details on benefits can be found at https://hr.aura-astronomy.org/employee-benefits-guide/

As a recipient of U.S. Government funding, AURA is considered a government contractor and is subject to Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action regulations. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA does not discriminate based on race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/gender identity expression, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws. The statements below as well as the requests for self-identification are required pursuant to these regulations. We encourage your participation in meeting these federal reporting requirements which are included for protection and to assist us in our recordkeeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.

Equal Opportunity Employer, Protected Veterans, Individuals with Disabilities

The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)

To apply for this job please visit recruiting2.ultipro.com.