Employment Opportunity

Program Coordinator

Cambridge, MA

Founded in 1780, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences is an independent policy research center that conducts multidisciplinary studies of complex and emerging problems.

The Academy membership encompasses over 5,600 members and reflects the full range of disciplines and professions: math and physical sciences, biological sciences, the social sciences, humanities and the arts, journalism, business and philanthropic leaders, educational, scientific, and cultural administrators as well as public affairs and public policy.

Working with Academy staff, Academy members, and project committees, the Program Coordinator provides logistical and programmatic support for the projects within the Education Program area. With the launch of the Higher Education Forum project, we are hopeful that The Academy can provide leadership and learning on pressing issues in higher education with a cross-disciplinary and cross-sector approach. As we move forward in our Education Programs, we are committed to promoting equity and social justice promoting throughout project development and implementation; the ideal program coordinator will share this commitment.

This position is based at the Academy’s headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts, or its Washington D.C. office

Job Description

  • Reporting to the Program Director of Education & the Development of Knowledge, the Program Coordinator will provide day-to-day administrative support to the Education program area, interacting regularly with committee members and other project participants, Academy members, partner organizations, the program staff, and with other Academy departments.
  • Assist Program Director with the development of the program area, including assessment of project needs and implementation of strategies to meet those needs.
  • Work with the Events department, provide logistical support for conferences, meetings, focus groups, and other events, including but not limited to preparing conference materials, processing reimbursements, and providing on-site staff support.
  • Manage project budgets and track expenditures/transactions for aspects of the project that the programs area is directly involved with (events & meetings; travel; consultant salaries; publications).  Complete required paperwork, including, but not limited to event budgets, purchase orders, meeting code requests, and travel reimbursements.
  • Work closely with development office to manage grants and track schedules for grant reporting.
  • Coordinate production, processing, and distribution of formal and informal documents and project publications.
  • Assemble travel materials and briefing books for Academy staff attending project meetings and other events
  • Coordinate the production and distribution of formal and informal publications and other project deliverables.
  • Assist with conducting web-related background research for projects and reports. 
  • Maintain and update program-related tracking reports and project summaries.
  • Assist with drafting and editing grant applications.
  • Draft, edit and proofread reports, correspondence, and presidential briefings
  • Maintain and update program-related databases, tracking reports, and project summaries.
  • Support the program area’s public relations and outreach activities, including collaborating with project staff and Academy members to monitor policy outcomes; updating website content; and formulating social media and digital communication strategies in coordination with the Communication department.
  • Perform other job duties as assigned. 


  • Associates degree or equivalent experience required; bachelor’s degree preferred.
  • One to three years of experience required, ideally in a non-profit office, academic environment, or research institute.
  • Some knowledge of education policy and/or research (k-12 or higher education) a plus.
  • Commitment to promoting equity and social justice throughout project development and implementation.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office (Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Word), Adobe Acrobat, various document processing and database applications and querying, and internet searches.
  • Comfort using online platforms, web-interfaces, and social media; marketing and public relations skills a plus.
  • Experience with budget-tracking and management a plus
  • Strong administrative and organizational skills, with an emphasis on time management and the ability to plan, organize and implement various activities. 
  • Ability to work both as part of a team and independently.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and flexibility. Strong customer service background.
  • High attention to detail; curiosity and problem-solving skills; initiative and follow-through on projects.
  • Demonstrated experience in managing multiple tasks in a high tempo environment with little supervision.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills; ability to proofread and edit.
  • Ability to learn quickly, prioritize, and work accurately and proactively with little supervision. 
  • Ability to comfortably and professionally interface with a wide range of constituents, including Academy members, staff, and the public at large.
  • Ability to exhibit confidentiality and good judgment.
  • Must be able to occasionally lift to 40 lbs., climb stairs, and operate a handcart

Application Instructions

Applicants should submit an online application including their resume and a cover letter indicating their interest and qualifications for this position.

Commitment to Diversity:

The American Academy is committed to the diversity of its staff and membership. As a scholarly organization and research center, the Academy recognizes that diversity of thought, class, experience, sex, gender, race, physical or mental ability, age, religion, national origin, and sexual orientation is a value to uphold and is central to the mission and work of the organization. A more pluralistic staff embracing diversity of thought, approach and life experience fosters a more nuanced understanding of contemporary issues facing the nation and the world. Working together in a climate of respect and openness models the civil discourse that is fundamental to the work of the Academy.

Portfolio of projects:

The Program Coordinator will work with the Program Director of Education and the Development of Knowledge to develop the Forum for the Future of Higher Education, which will be newly housed at the Academy in 2022. Additionally, this role will assist in the development and execution of exploratory meetings and events that will help determine the direction of the education program area. Past commissions within the unit have included the Commission on the Future of Undergraduate Education, Commission on Language Learning, The Lincoln Project: Excellence and Access in Public Higher Education, as well as exploratory meetings on Mental Health and Well-Being in Higher Education and the Future of the Ph.D.