St. Mary's University
  • 20-May-2019 to 30-Sep-2019 (CST)
  • Sponsored Programs, Academic Research, and Compliance
  • San Antonio, TX, USA
  • Commensurate with qualifications
  • Salary
  • Full Time

Competitive Pay; Generous vacation, sick, & holiday benefits; Excellent health & welfare benefits with 100% tuition assistance available.

The Research Administrator (RA) is a member of the Office of Sponsored Projects, Academic Research, and Compliance (SPARC), which is the central administrative unit responsible for all externally-funded projects. SPARC works collaboratively with other university offices, including the Office of Development and the Undergraduate Research Office, to support and facilitate scholarship and scholarly development of faculty and students.  The SPARC staff provide support to faculty and staff throughout the entire lifecycle, including proposal and project development, some post-award activities, and academic-based compliance for all academic research and sponsored projects. SPARC also works to create an environment that is conducive to scholarship and scholarly development of faculty and students, including the internal grant funding program and the University's NIH Biomedical and Biobehavioral Research Administration Development (BRAD) grant.


ESSENTIAL DUTIES & RESPONSIBILITIES include the following. Other duties may be assigned.

Pre-Award/Proposal Development:

  • Meets with faculty and staff to discuss their grant project ideas, and maintains a database of faculty scholarly interests.
  • Works with faculty and staff to identify internal and external sources of support for which they would be potentially competitive. Supports the development by faculty of active search activities for ongoing identification of federal, state, and private grant opportunities. Disseminates relevant grant opportunities to appropriate faculty and administrators.
  • Reviews and understands the terms and conditions of funding opportunity announcements, including linked/footnoted terms and conditions not provided in hard copy or electronic copy. Interprets grant guidelines to determine whether the grant application meets all sponsor requirements.
  • Maintains a roster of external subject matter experts for review of draft proposals and facilitates the review process.
  • Works with faculty to assemble, prepare, edit and/or proof-read grant proposals, budgets and related forms according to the funder's requirements and specifications.
  • Works collaboratively with various university offices (Business Office, Provost's Office, Deans, etc.) and external partners to gather information needed for grant applications and seek internal approvals.
  • Supports the formal submission of proposals and applications, and maintains adequate documentation of proposal development; works with the ASSIST, RESEARCH.GOV, FASTLANE and other similar web-based submission platforms.

Post-Award Project Implementation:

  • Assists faculty and staff with award acceptance and orientation to project implementation
  • Monitors project spending and commitment activity. Reviews and certifies monthly expenditure statements, and facilitates quarterly review by principal investigators.
  • Tracks project deliverable requirements, and backstops awardees in meeting those requirements.
  • Submits annual progress reports
  • Maintains records of project activities
  • Participates in contract closeout processes and audit inquiries; submits final reports and certificates.


  • Supports secretariat functions for compliance committees, including IRB, IACUC and other research protections,
  • Maintains an awareness of current and changing federally mandated policies and procedures related to research administration that include but are not limited to Responsible Research Conduct, Time and Effort Reporting, Misconduct, Conflict of Interest, Non-discrimination, and all federal certifications. Identify areas of compliance vulnerability.

Other Activities:

  • Assists the Director in planning and offering faculty grants workshops and training activities.
  • Assists in the coordination and organization events, such as conferences, meetings, site visits, or sponsor reviews, related to sponsored projects as needed.
  • Participates in and contributes to process improvements and group projects.


SUPERVISION: The position reports to the Director of SPARC


EDUCATION: Bachelor's degree required. (Computer Science, Accounting, Business Administration, or a related field desirable)



  • Two years' experience working with federal or private funding agencies on grants, contracts, or other agreements (preferably within an academic or higher education complex), or equivalency;
  • Ability to work effectively and efficiently under extreme pressure and meet deadlines/goals
  • Strong communication and organizational skills required.        
  • Working knowledge of federal government compliance requirements as contained in documents such as the Uniform Guidance. This position requires a basic understanding of federal cost allocation principles in order to ensure that federal grant funds are appropriately utilized.
  • Proficient in using electronic research administration application software such as and NSF Fastlane and web-based applications for document sharing, uploading, storing, and organizing documents.
  • Demonstrated record of working with faculty across disciplines (humanities, natural, and social sciences) to secure and administer grants.
  • Experience working with faculty to prepare a federal or state grant proposal from start to finish.
  • Superior writing, editing and grantsmanship skills with high attention to detail.
  • Strong quantitative skills and comfort working with complex budgets
  • Excellent computer proficiency and experience with spreadsheets and databases (Access experience a plus)
  • An understanding of the liberal arts college environment.
  • Ability to maintain a high level of confidentiality when working with sensitive information  
  • Ability to work on a team, coordinating closely with other team members.



  • Candidates with three or more years of progressively responsible experience working in a sponsored programs office are highly desirable.
  • Knowledge of priorities, procedures, and the policies of key funding agencies such as the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Health Resources and Services Administration, U.S. Department of Education, and the National Endowment for the Humanities are also an asset.


CERTIFICATIONS & LICENSES: Ability to take Certified Research Administrator exam within 3 years.


PHYSICAL DEMANDS: While performing this role, the employee will be regularly required to sit, walk, and stand; talk and hear, both in person and by telephone; and use hands repetitively to operate standard office equipment; and occasionally required to lift up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this position include close vision, distance vision, and the ability to adjust focus. 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.


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