Research Program Specialist - Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD), Silver Spring, MD

Posted: Thursday, September 28, 2017

AUCD, a leading national disability organization, is seeking a highly-qualified, full-time Program Specialist to support technical assistance (TA) to over 125 interdisciplinary training and research centers on disabilities in 56 states and U.S. Territories. This position will contribute to the full range of AUCD TA initiatives, with specific emphases on: (1) monitoring scholarly research within AUCD's network that generates new knowledge and promoting its effective use to improve health and quality of life of people with disabilities of all ages, their families, and communities; (2) supporting efforts to identify and address gaps in research, including gaps in disability research relevant to underrepresented groups; and (3) developing content for  newsletters, websites, and other communications emphasizing the impact of AUCD network research.  

AUCD has a direct impact at the local, state and national levels to advance policy and practice through research, education, leadership, and services for and with individuals with disabilities, their families, and communities to support independence, productivity, and a satisfying quality of life. This position supports the provision of TA to 52 Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) programs, 10 Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics (DBP) programs, and 67 University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDDs), and also addresses research findings of 14 Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Centers (IDDRCs).

The Research Program Specialist will report to the Program Manager, Maternal and Child Health Technical Assistance. This individual will also work closely with the UCEDD TA department, as well as other staff teams including: Communications, Public Health, and Policy.  The AUCD office is located in downtown Silver Spring, MD, one block from the red line Silver Spring Metro station and next to a county-maintained parking garage. 

Job Responsibilities

Research, writing, and data collection

  • Monitor relevant scholarly research from inside and outside the AUCD network, identifying major themes and gaps in disability research, public health, and workforce development topics
  • Utilize online databases to identify research in a variety of topics impacting people with disabilities, their families and communities; use findings to inform how AUCD (across teams) responds to emerging needs
  • Support and assist in data collection for program reports

Online and print dissemination

  • Solicit, develop, and package content for newsletters, fact sheets, webpages, and other publications and resources
  • Collaborate with the AUCD communications team to develop and implement strategies for disseminating publications and resources to a variety of disability community and other stakeholders
  • Promote opportunities for LEND, DBP, UCEDD, and IDDRC network members to disseminate research and products
  • Coordinate translation of key materials into Spanish, and other languages as needed

Technical Assistance

  • Support in-person and virtual meetings, trainings, topical work groups, and the development of informational resources to meet the needs of LENDs, DBPs, UCEDDs, and IDDRCs
  • Respond to requests for information, referrals, and assistance from member programs, federal project officers, people with disabilities and their family members, and others
  • Assist with program evaluation and quality improvement initiatives; provide individualized and generalized TA to the network on best practice across these areas
  • Collaborate with existing (and develop new) organizational partners and coalitions on activities and initiatives that engage AUCD network members or are relevant to aspects of their work
  • Assist with updating AUCD's Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit, including translation of content into Spanish, as well as maintaining and promoting the Spanish version
  • Carry out other assigned activities that further the mission and goals of AUCD

Required Qualifications

  • Completion of a bachelor's degree in a social science, education, administration, policy, or related field
  • Two (2) years of professional or graduate level academic experience in human services, health sciences, disability, public health, or related fields
  • A professional and resourceful style; the ability to work independently and as a team player, take initiative, and manage multiple tasks and projects at a time
  • Passion for and commitment to AUCD's mission are essential

Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Demonstrated strong oral and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated group process and collaboration skills
  • Demonstrated skills in planning and facilitating logistics for training events (webinars, conferences, etc.)
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Cultural competence in working with individuals from diverse backgrounds
  • Proficiency in the use of information technology, including internet-based communication tools, word processing, and spreadsheet or database software
  • Excellence in organizational, analytical, time management/productivity, and problem solving skills

Desired Qualifications

  • Familiarity with the AUCD network and service systems for people with disabilities; prior participation in LEND, DBP, and/or UCEDD interdisciplinary training is preferred, though not required
  • Knowledge of issues, policy initiatives, research, and practice related to health and quality of life for people with disabilities of all ages, and their families and communities
  • Experience using research databases (PubMed, ERIC, etc.) and translating research findings into accessible, actionable language
  • Basic knowledge of program evaluation and quality improvement practices
  • English/Spanish bilingual proficiency strongly preferred

Benefits

AUCD provides a family-friendly work environment; a competitive salary based on education and experience; generous health, dental, disability, life insurance and retirement benefits; and three weeks' vacation, sick and personal days, and paid holidays. This position provides a unique opportunity to exercise your expertise, creativity and initiative in a fast-paced yet relaxed office atmosphere. AUCD is committed to an inclusive culture that values all types of diversity, and as such has experience accommodating a wide range of disability and related workplace needs. 

Application Procedures

Please submit: (1) a letter of interest, (2) a resume of relevant experience, (3) names and contact information of at least three professional references, and (4) any accommodations needed for the application and interview process to Sarah DeMaio (sdemaio@aucd.org) with "Application for Research Program Specialist" as the subject line. Applications will be accepted and reviewed immediately. The position will remain open until filled.

The online job posting can be found here: http://www.aucd.org/index.cfm/employment.

For more information about AUCD, visit: www.aucd.org.

AUCD is an equal opportunity employer. Persons from traditionally underrepresented or unrepresented cultural backgrounds and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.