Posted: Oct 26, 2021

Assistant Director for Research

Application Deadline: Jan 31, 2022

Assistant Director for Research
Education Policy Innovation Collaborative (EPIC)
College of Education
Michigan State University

Position Title:  Assistant Director for Research

University Job Classification: Specialist – Research, Fixed Term

Appointment:   Full Time, Annual

The Education Policy Innovation Collaborative (EPIC) at Michigan State University (MSU) is seeking an Assistant Director for Research to join the EPIC leadership team. EPIC is a policy lab located within the College of Education. EPIC partners with state and school district leaders to produce rigorous and objective mixed-method research with consequence that strengthens evidence-based decision-making for practice and policy in Michigan, with implications for historically disadvantaged students throughout the country. 

The Assistant Director for Research will join the EPIC team in a leadership role to help lead the center’s externally-funded, multi-year, mixed-methods research projects. The EPIC team includes Faculty Director Dr. Katharine Strunk, Managing Director Emily Mohr, Assistant Director Dr. Tara Kilbride, staff researchers, postdoctoral research associates, operational staff, several affiliated faculty, and doctoral students.

The Assistant Director for Research will oversee EPIC postdoctoral research associates, staff researchers, and doctoral students to ensure that all research products meet high standards of rigor and clarity. We are seeking a person who is excited to be a member of a dynamic and motivated group and who is driven by a desire to produce both rigorous and policy-relevant research aimed at driving improvements for Michigan students and educators.

Specific duties for the Assistant Director for Research will include some or all of the following:

  • Leading center-wide research projects focused on partner-driven research evaluating the impact of policies and programs using large-scale longitudinal administrative data and EPIC-collected surveys and qualitative data;
  • Providing expertise in quantitative methodologies, including substantial experience conducting statistical/econometric analysis and quasi-experimental design using panel data in STATA;
  • Overseeing, writing, and editing clear and concise reports, publications, manuscripts, and policy briefs for both academic and general audiences;
  • Providing mentoring, training, and professional development to other EPIC researchers;
    Responding to ad hoc data and analysis requests, both internal and external;
  • Producing data summaries, tables, and visualizations; and
  • Other duties as appropriate based on the specific interests and expertise of the selected candidate.

The position, which includes benefits, is a fixed term, annual, 100% time position beginning in the spring or summer of 2022 with options for annual renewal. Salary is commensurate with experience and training.

Michigan State University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer. Michigan State University is committed to achieving excellence through cultural diversity. The university actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans, and persons with disabilities.

Required Degree Ph.D.

Minimum Qualifications:    

  • A Ph.D. in education, public policy, economics, statistics, political science, sociology, or a similar field;
  • Expertise in standard econometric models and techniques;
  • Experience with large-scale quantitative data management and analysis;
  • Significant expertise with STATA statistical software;
  • Experience planning and executing quality assurance on complex analyses using large-scale data sets;
  • Demonstrated knowledge or interest in partner-orientated education research;
  • Extreme attention to detail;
  • Strong organizational skills;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite products;
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and competing priorities with little supervision, as well as maintain flexibility.

Desired Qualifications

  • Experience with research project management, including developing and maintaining project timelines with contingency plans, coordinating the work of others and ensuring project deliverables are met at a high standard for quality and accuracy;
  • Experience with data collection and analysis activities across a large team;
  • Experience presenting research products to a wide variety of audiences;
  • Excellent interpersonal, verbal and written communication skills.

Required Application Materials:  Interested candidates should send: 1) a letter of application stating qualifications for and reasons for interest in this position; 2) current resume or curriculum vitae; and 3) the names and contact information for three references. We will review applications on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Special Instructions to Applicant:  Applicants must apply online at: The posting is available at Questions can be directed to Emily Mohr at [email protected].