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Human Capital Services

Research Program Manager (Associate Director II)

Apply now Department: 3670085535 Poly Research & Engagement
Job no: 503558
Work type: Staff Full Time (Unclassified)
Location: Salina, Kansas
Categories: Aviation / UAT, Executive / Director / Management, Research / Scientific / Grants, Engineering

About This Role:

K-State Polytechnic is hiring a motivated Research Project Manager (Associate Director II) with experience leading multiple research projects and activities, from authoring/collaborating on research proposals through the life cycle of research effort. This includes planning, organizing, controlling and deploying key milestones, deliverables and resources such as funding and business development from conception through conclusion according to research goals. The successful candidate will be responsible for supervising a research team, serving on an interdisciplinary team of researchers and representing K-State Polytechnic as the senior engineering lead and UAS research subject matter expert.

This position may work some nights and weekends for department and Polytechnic Campus events. Minimum requirements include a bachelor's degree in engineering or other technical field, five or more years of relevant experience and experience in supervising a team of researchers.

Why Join Us:

The AARC laboratory has an international reputation for excellence in UAS research and flight operations training. AARC’s first major program initiative is the implementation of the Division of UAS Operations. The Division of UAS Operations is being created to focus on working with the Kansas National Guard and others on UAS mission planning, operator training and developing processes and procedures for integrating UAS operations within controlled air space. More information on the UAS Program can be found at http://polytechnic.k-state.edu/aviation/uas/

Duties and Responsibilities:


  • Manage all facets of multiple research projects, from authoring/collaborating on research proposals through life cycle of research effort.
  • Plan, organize, control and deploy key milestones, deliverables and resources from conception through conclusion, according to research goals.
  • Manage execution of research pertaining to the development and/or deployment of applications using UAS technology consistent with the Polytechnic vision.
  • Develop and manage all UAS budgets, including an annual operating budget, to ensure financial success of organization.
  • Provide guidance to optimize laboratory workspace and processes.
  • Responsible for recruiting and staffing of research employees (both staff and student workers) to expand UAS capacity and capabilities commensurate with research opportunities.
  • Provide oversight of UAS research employees to ensure a commitment to technical and ethical excellence.


  • Serve on interdisciplinary team of researchers and lead research efforts to include providing technical expertise and direction to UAS staff and student workers.
  • Senior technical representative of research staff; subject matter expert and strong technical team lead, collaborating with interdisciplinary team, both internal and external to the UAS organization to ensure success of research activities.
  • Supervise UAS Research team and promote career development of subordinate staff 


  • KSU technical representative at industry trade conferences and conventions with an objective of promoting business development and continuing to develop international recognition by presenting results of research efforts.
  • Seek research opportunities consistent with Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus’ and UAS Executive Director’s goals and objectives.

We Support Diversity and Inclusion:

Kansas State University embraces diversity and promotes inclusion in every sector of the institution. The university actively seeks individuals whose commitments and contributions will advance the University's dedication to the Principles of Community.

What You’ll Need to Succeed:

Minimum Requirements:

  • Bachelor's degree in engineering or other technical field
  • Five or more years of relevant experience
  • Experience in supervising a team of researchers, preferably on an interdisciplinary team

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Total of seven years of experience in engineering and/or research, preferably related to the aviation industry
  • Five years of project management experience
  • Master's Degree in Engineering, Aviation, Management, or a related field
  • Principal Investigator (PI) experience
  • UAS flight operations experience
  • Program management experience
  • Ability to quickly learn/keep pace in rapidly growing industry
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Substantial experience writing proposals and technical reports

Other Requirements:

  • United States Citizenship as required by Technology Control Plan and Export Control Plan
  • Must be able to travel
  • Knowledge of ITAR and EAR (export controls)
  • Ability to work from engineering prints, schematics and parts list

How to Apply:

Please submit the following documents along with a complete application through http://careers.k-state.edu/cw/en-us/job/503558:

  1. Cover letter that describes your qualifications
  2. Resume/ CV
  3. Contact information of three current, professional references (titles, email addresses, phone numbers)

Please Note: If selected to continue with the selection process, a technical writing sample may be required.

Screening of Applications Begins:

Immediately and continues until position is filled.

Salary Range/ Pay Rate:

$67,456 - $121,420

Please note: the minimum salary for this position is $67,456. Actual salary will be determined based on the candidate's experience, education, internal equity and departmental funding. Salary offers are typically made between the minimum and midpoint of the salary range. The range indicated includes both the typical hiring range and potential future progression.

Equal Employment Opportunity:

Kansas State University is an Equal Opportunity Employer of individuals with disabilities and protected veterans and actively seeks diversity among its employees.

Background Screening Statement:

In connection with your application for employment, Kansas State University will procure a Background Screen on you as part of the process of considering your candidacy as an employee.

Advertised: Central Standard Time
Applications close:

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