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Osprey nest at the field station.

Imagine living and working at the UMass Boston Nantucket Field Station!

As you no doubt have heard is recent weeks, Nantucket lost one of its most knowledgeable and beloved biological souls to brighter horizons and will lose another in September. 

Dr. Sarah Oktay former director of the UMass Boston Nantucket Field Station left in February to take a job in Colorado and Andrew McKenna-Foster, the Maria Mitchell Association's director of Natural Science, is leaving to go back to school in September. This leaves two big holes in their respective organizations that both UMass Boston and Maria Mitchell are now working to fill with the right people. 

Both are now advertising for these positions and so I thought I'd help a bit by re-posting their ads on Nantucket Chronicle in separate posts. Today's is UMass Boston's search for a new field station director:


Managing Director, Nantucket Field Station

Category: Professional Non-Faculty [RSS feed of all Jobs]     [Subscribe to Job Alerts]      
Department: School for the Environment
Locations: Boston, MA
Posted: Mar 16, '16 
Type: Professional
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Job Description:

The Managing Director is responsible for all aspects of the operation and development of the Nantucket Field Station (NFS) (, which operates within the School for the Environment (SFE).  The NFS is located on the island of Nantucket, 50 km south of Cape Cod. The incumbent is responsible for 107+ acres of ground, 10 buildings including a newly renovated wet laboratory facility, field and laboratory research equipment, computational and internet systems, vehicles, and maintenance equipment; and will administer use applications for researchers, students and educators, and provide support services and some supervision of about 300 participants in K-12 and adult public education programs ,and over 200 research and University class users per year including up to 30 or more at one time, in support of the University and Campus mission.

The NFS is remote from Campus and Campus support services such as: planning and construction, maintenance, security, health and safety, hiring, purchasing, accounting, development, natural resources management, and transportation. The incumbent must be able to independently manage or provide each of these services in accordance with Campus and University procedures and policies and in coordination with the NFS Advisory Committee, SFE Dean, and Campus departments as needed.  The incumbent also must address many smaller unforeseen and related tasks in the context of overall NFS direction and management.

Review and approve new applications to use the Nantucket Field Station (NFS), using the Campus Events Management System (R25); consider availability of NFS resources and permits required; make housing, classroom and laboratory assignments and provide orientation for new users; notify lessor (Nantucket Conservation Foundation [NCF]) of new research projects; maintain records of NFS use and prepare billing forms; develop and maintain computerized database of NFS use and oversee preparation of annual use reports; maintain NFS records, files, and library;
Develop new users through promotion of the NFS for research, education, and outreach; assess, develop, and implement ways to increase NFS visibility;
Make expenditures as necessary and keep appropriate records; manage University credit card purchases and low-value purchase orders; specify all equipment supply purchases; provide financial and technical information for SFE Campus Office on a regular basis; represent the NFS in correspondence with Campus and University personnel;
Protect integrity of on-site research by maintaining security of buildings and property perimeter; maintain signs and perimeter integrity; train users and staff as to safe and reasonable procedures for contacting trespassers; maintain relations with Campus Police, Nantucket Police, Nantucket Fire, Cottage Hospital, Nantucket Town leadership and local/state agencies, and US Fish and Wildlife Service;
Responsible for 107+ acres of grounds in collaboration with NCF, 4 on-station buildings, and 6 mid-island housing units; plan for and execute operations in extreme weather including heavy snow removal and extreme cold; participate in Campus emergency response, closure, etc. meetings and activities;
Oversee the safety and appropriate use of vehicles and equipment including trucks, passenger vehicles, boats, tractors, trailers, and field equipment with difficult winter driving issues including snow, ice and off-road use; coordinate the purchase of and training of users on all equipment and power tools; supervise maintenance, as necessary and feasible, on equipment, structures, vehicles, utilities, grounds, and scientific equipment;
Prepare, maintain, and be designated as the person of first responsibility in emergency plans; establish regulations, train staff and users, and inspect facilities as to acceptable safety practices including backcountry winter travel; maintain fire suppression facilities, work with local agencies on emergency responses and respond to emergencies;
Oversee preservation, conservation, and management of the NFS's natural resources; supervise development of NFS; databases including research data, monitoring data, publication data, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS);
Conduct annual public outreach events such as lectures and open houses and lead NFS's Grace Grossman K-12 education program and help facilitate other K-12 and adult public education programs; conduct tours for school groups, conservation groups, and University guests;
Prepare Massachusetts Environmental Quality Act compliance documents and work as needed with Campus in submittals; prepare annual CLERY reports and coordinate with Campus offices in submittals;
Perform of duties as assigned.


This position may be assigned formal on-call duties in accordance with Article 18.3 of the contract between the University and the Professional Staff Union.  Assignment of on-call will be detailed using the "On-Call Assignment (Professional Staff) Form." 

Master's Degree in Biology, Environmental Science, Natural Sciences or a closely related field, PhD preferred, and a minimum of five-seven (5-7) years of experience with field research is required.  Experience with operations at a remote field station, including supervising staff, handling fiscal and personnel needs and interacting with the public and state agencies, preferred.  Experience facilitating K-12 and adult public outreach and education programs preferred.  Experience developing, maintaining and regulating computer systems and peripherals, including LAN and wireless internet access preferred.  Demonstrated success in fundraising from private donors preferred and demonstrated skill in developing successful proposals for extramural support preferred.  Incumbent must work outdoors in sometimes extreme weather conditions and in isolation.  Incumbent must have and maintain throughout duration of employment in this position a valid driver's license.  The incumbent will reside and must be present at the Nantucket Field Station (NFS), except for brief intervals on NFS business, or on authorized days off and vacation periods.  This includes being on call outside of normal business hours.  Travel is required to UMass Boston and university offices in Boston several times per year. 

Knowledge of and demonstrated experience in conservation and management and resource monitoring;
Knowledge of and demonstrated experience in project management;
Knowledge of and experience facilitating university level research and supporting University classes at a field station;
Knowledge of and experience with management plan preparation and state/federal regulatory compliance;
Knowledge of software applications, including office software and database management;
Demonstrated ability to effectively interact with individuals from various social, cultural, economic and educational backgrounds;
Demonstrated ability to supervise and facilitate infrastructure and facilities maintenance and improvement projects;
Demonstrated ability to repair and maintain equipment (e.g., laboratory, IT and mechanical);
Ability to effectively and efficiently work in a team capacity with a broad range of staff to accomplish departmental and program goals;
Ability to work under pressure and under timeframes;
Ability to handle multiple projects at the same time;
Ability to prepare written reports, correspondence and recommendations;
Ability to supervise staff; 
Ability to carry up to 50 pounds;
Ability to perform maintenance and grounds keeping tasks;
Ability to use power tools and equipment and operate passenger vehicles and trucks;
Demonstrated organizational ability and strong attention to detail;
Willingness to assume responsibility readily and make decisions, and work effectively with minimal direction;
Excellent oral and written communication skills;
Strong  interpersonal skills, including the capacity to work cooperatively with a wide range of individuals;
Self-sufficiency with strong problem-solving skills;
Strong organizational skills, with the ability to work concurrently on a variety of tasks;
Strong commitment to customer service. 

Additional Information:

The University of Massachusetts Boston provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information. In addition to federal law requirements, the University of Massachusetts Boston complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the university operates. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment. Among the procedures which may be used to select personnel to fill vacant positions are review of work experience, reference checks, and interviews. All appointments and promotions will be effective on a Sunday.

Application Instructions:

Please apply online with your resume, cover letter, and list of three professional work references.

Professional Union. Benefited.
Full time. Grade 34.
Salary commensurate with skills and experience. 
Unrestricted funding.

Review of candidates will begin following the application closing date.

Closing date for applications: April 19, 2016.