Science Policy and Administrative Manager

Van Andel Research Institute
Job Location: 
Grand Rapids, MI

Medical/Vision/Dental, Employer Paid Life/Accidental Death & Dismemberment, Short/Long Term Disability, Long Term Care Insurance, Retirement

Job Description: 

Van Andel Research Institute (VARI)is currently seeking to hire an individual for a Science Policy and Administrative Manager who will work out of the Office of the Research Director.

This is the job for you if…
You’re a pioneer, a visionary, a hands-on, roll-up-the-sleeves type person who loves the challenge of developing, executing, and guiding multiple complex science and operation initiatives. You have vision, not for what we can be tomorrow, but for what we strive to be five years from now. And you have the strategic insight and expertise needed to guide our Institute toward that vision.

You’re a natural networker who is comfortable interacting at all levels – able to streamline the interaction with senior management, scientific staff, administration, Board of Trustees, and other members of the community both internal and external to the Institute.

You’re a manager and welcome the opportunity to oversee the primary activities, coordinate, and lead team efforts of assigned staff to ensure completion of tasks and attainment of the Office’s goals (i.e., hire, train, reward, motivate, performance management, termination).

You have a knack for solving unsolvable challenges. (We’re a not-for-profit, so resourcefulness and creativity is essential.) You’re a team player who proactively shares your knowledge and expertise with coworkers.

You’re driven to work at one of the fastest growing Research Institutes in the world. The mission of improving the health and enhancing the lives of current and future generations through biomedical research and science education resonates with you.

Essential Duties Include:
As the Science Policy and Administration Manager, you’ll:
• Help develop strategic planning for scientific programs by working closely with investigators to create concepts and plans.
• Provide quantitative and qualitative analyses and assessments, applied knowledge about NIH systems, programs, and data to develop reports on the state of research in cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.
• Anticipate needs, write draft talking points, and contribute to the writing of reports and presentations for board meetings; scientific work scopes for research collaboration agreements; and, documents describing plans and progress of scientific programs. Serves on various committees.
• Formulate policy, design operational systems to support science policy direction, and evaluate statutes, legislative intent and executive intent, and operating procedures.
• Analyze and monitor developments in research that may impact VARI, assessing political and institutional constraints and making recommendations to policy makers.
• Convene and lead work groups to develop, update, and review VARI policy and advocacy position statements and materials.
• Represent VARI in meetings with outside partner organizations and government agency officials on major cross-cutting policy issues to further VARI goals.
• Interact with policy, research, and advocacy organizations to ensure relevance of public policy information and help advance VARI goals.
• Provide technical assistance and guidance to stakeholders and present materials for stakeholder groups.
• Oversee the activities of the assigned staff to ensure completion of tasks and attainment of the Office’s goals (i.e., hire, train, reward, motivate, performance management, termination). Manage the execution of key projects within the various research groups.


• You possess a Ph.D., M.D., MBA, MPH or similar advanced degree with an understanding of medically related research and/or pharmaceutical industries. If not these industries, some other related scientific field is also acceptable.
• Ideally, you have ten+ years of experience working at a senior management or Faculty level (in a scientific or research-related area) engaged in strategic planning, organizational and scientific oversight, and business development. You can articulate high-level strategic vision, while drilling down to specific actions that illustrate how you’ll get there.
• You’re a natural Leader. You possess exceptional leadership and experience working in a heavily matrix environment with multiple partnerships. You have demonstrated ability to manage multiple work groups and lead cross-functional teams. You meet problems head on, come up with solutions, and then are not afraid to make a decision.
• You have a natural collaborative style and strong interpersonal skills. You believe in follow-through, and a commitment to excellence. This comes naturally to you, and you understand it’s not a part of your job, it is your job, and you can’t be successful without it.
• Your DNA is comprised of strong organizational skills and attention to detail. You can effectively communicate (written and verbal), provide outreach, administration and management of a major research program.
• You’re not afraid of technology. You can utilize SharePoint, Microsoft Office, database programs, and information architecture.

Contact Information: 

Apply today!
You’re convinced that you are just what Van Andel Research Institute needs, and you want an opportunity to prove it to us. Here’s what you do next. Craft a cover letter that illustrates the mastery of your expertise, what you bring to this role, and the difference you can make. We want to know the following:
• Why should we hire you? What unique experience do you bring that aligns with the above job?
• What is the most innovative science policy you’ve implemented?
• Why are you passionate about leading people and projects?
Please submit this letter along with a curriculum vitae, and the names and address of three references to:
Cover letters must cover the above areas to be considered!

About Our Organization: 

Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) conducts biomedical research, with a focus on cancer and Parkinson diseases and also emphasizes translating scientific research results into clinical applications. VARI is located in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan, and is acknowledged as one of the leading independent research institutes expanding the life science industry in this region. Collaborative partnerships among world-class health care, research, and educational organizations have led to dramatic growth in the life sciences sector in the region, making Grand Rapids a career destination choice in this area.