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Project Coordinator for Science Festival Alliance and Cambridge Science Festival

As a member of the MIT Museum’s Engagement Department, the Project Coordinator will play a key role within our Experimental Practice and Cambridge Science Festival work groups. This position is responsible for the coordination and implementation of projects at both the national and local levels. It is anticipated that 50% of the effort of this position will support and coordinate national projects within our Experimental Practice group, beginning with the Science Festival Alliance and Science Events Summit. Approximately 50% of the effort of this position will support and coordinate the local production of the Cambridge Science Festival (CSF) working with our CSF team. Frequent weekend and evening work required; national and infrequent international travel also required. This position is not eligible for a regular hybrid or remote work schedule.

Working with the Experimental Practice team: The initial focus of the position’s national involvement is coordination of the Science Festival Alliance. Since 2009 the Alliance’s network has grown to include 75-member science festivals across the United States and Canada, with members ranging widely in scale, scope, and capacity. This position is expected to attend to much of the Alliance’s day-to-day operations, with an emphasis on strong collegial relationships with both members and regional/national collaborators. This position is responsible for the processes and systems that support a vibrant network, including a dynamic website, active online communications, and visually striking reports and professional presentations. The Experimental Practice team also produces the Science Events Summit as a flagship annual meeting, and this position will be deeply involved in producing at least one similar in-person convening annually. This position will help to set the strategic direction and growth of the Science Festival Alliance as its membership returns to in-person festival celebrations and open up new ways of connecting science and community in the years to come.

Working with the Cambridge Science Festival team: The position’s work with national networks will be informed by direct involvement in selected public initiatives of the MIT Museum’s Engagement Department, including the Cambridge Science Festival. The Cambridge Science Festival launched in 2007 as a 10-day annual festival that includes 250+ events at the intersection of art and science. The Project Coordinator will assist the Festival Producer in the overall preparation and execution of the Festival. Reporting to the Producer, this position will be a key member of the Festival’s leadership team in support of events programmed throughout the run-up and execution of the 10-day Festival. The Coordinator will support the management and administration of presenters, artists and key stakeholders. This position will include scheduling, communication and promotion between the Festival and multiple venues, community partners and city offices.

The successful candidate for this position will have project coordination experience, strong communication skills (including the ability to listen carefully to collaborators), and a passion for in-person public events and festivals. This is a grant funded, two-year Term position, with the possibility of renewal depending on funding.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities (Essential Functions)

This Project Coordinator position will:

  • Advance healthy relationships between communities and science by assisting with the conceptualization, development and implementation of projects that support both national professional networks related to the work of the MIT Museum, and public-facing initiatives and events in and around the MIT Museum, including the Cambridge Science Festival.
  • Support multiple projects concurrently, including the development and maintenance of project timelines, scheduling and tracking project progress, and documenting coordinated relationship building.
  • Build positive working relationships with a wide range of professionals, taking the initiative to carry out carefully considered spoken, written, in-person, and online correspondence, and acting as a representative of both the MIT Museum and a variety of funded projects.
  • Develop and implement mechanisms and ongoing processes, maintain project databases, to sustain our many relationships with professionals, collaborating organizations, and national stakeholders.
  • Coordinate and participate in online communications, including maintaining and creating thoughtful content for project websites, newsletters, and social media oriented toward professional audiences. Work directly with contracted designers and web developers.
  • Coordinate public communications needs and efforts with MITM Marketing colleagues.
  • Provide planning, coordination and management of multiple Cambridge Science Festival events & venues for produced to engage different target audiences.
  • Facilitate the Call to Entry for the Cambridge Science Festival and lead targeted volunteer outreach and community engagement efforts.
  • Plan and support in-person professional appearances related to assigned projects, including conference sessions and networking events, and at least one annual conference produced by the Experimental Practice team.
  • Assist in the development of longer-term strategies for the Science Festival Alliance, Cambridge Science Festival, and other Engagement Department initiatives.
  • Assist in organizing payments to collaborators and contractors in coordination with MIT’s centralized financial operations.
  • Some national and occasional international travel is required, as is involvement in both professional and public events on some weekends and evenings.
  • Participate in other Museum activity as assigned, as well as other duties as needed or required, including work performed at lower levels when necessary.

Supervision Received

Reports to both the Manager of Experimental Practice, and the Producer of Festivals and Events.

Supervision Exercised

No direct reports.

Qualifications & Skills

MINIMUM REQUIRED EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE:

  • Minimum of a Bachelor’s degree and 3 years of experience in directly relevant experience. Equivalent amount of experience in coordination of public events, community organizing, or science engagement will be considered in lieu of a Bachelor's degree.
  • Must demonstrate strong collaboration, meeting facilitation, and project management skills. Excellent organizational and problem-solving skills with attention to details. Demonstrated ability to manage multiple projects while meeting deadlines.
  • Project and budget management skills with an ability to plan, prioritize, implement project activity and budget tracking systems, and meet deadlines in an agile environment
  • Experience working on complex projects that involve many inputs and outcomes with multiple collaborators, including community-based partners.
  • Experience in the production of professional meetings and workshops, as well as in-person and on-line public events. Demonstrated ability to attend to the details that make in-person meetings and events effective and memorable.
  • Familiarity with the overlapping professional fields of informal STEM education, public engagement with science, and science communication; and/or familiarity with community engagement.
  • Must be able to thoughtfully engage with professionals at various levels, and work with confidential information and issues using discretion and judgment.
  • Excellent written, spoken, communication and organizational skills, and strong interpersonal and networking abilities are required.
  • Demonstrated commitment to advancing issues related to diversity, equity, access, and inclusion.
  • Demonstrated initiative, flexibility, openness to change and accountability. Works within a team environment, providing support to and collaboration with colleagues.
  • Fluency in Mac operating system & applications including MS Office Suite, database management, and a working knowledge of social media platforms.
  • Valid driver’s license and comfort driving small cargo van.
  • Ability to move 40-pound objects between locations and to continually traverse festival venues or other event sites over an 8-hour workday.

PREFERRED EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE:

  • Experience in the production of festivals and events of varying scales.
  • Experience in program development or event production at the intersection of art and science and/or STEAM-focused programs.
  • Experience with institutions of higher education in the form of graduate study, collaboration, or work experiences.
  • Experience developing long-term social media and communication campaigns.
  • Previous involvement in relevant projects that either have a national scope, or involve deep community engagement.
  • Experience with content management systems (CMS) and customer relation management systems (CRM databases).


To apply, visit the MIT Human Resources Site.