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A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and should be attached as the first page of your resume. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position.

Job Summary

The University of Michigan’s College of Engineering Transportation Research Institute is seeking a qualified Executive Assistant to provide administrative support to the Director of UMTRI.  Founded in 1965, UMTRI is dedicated to achieving safe and sustainable transportation for a global society.  With a multimillion-dollar research program, broad faculty expertise, and multiple collaborators, UMTRI is committed to interdisciplinary research that will ultimately increase driving safety and further transportation systems knowledge.


Candidates for this position must have knowledge, skills, abilities, and experience needed to provide highly responsible and effective administrative support in a research leadership setting.  Key skills include accuracy and attention to detail, the ability to problem-solve, excellent planning skills, consistent and effective follow-through on all matters, high-quality writing skills, excellent customer service and diplomacy and the ability to handle sensitive matters in a discreet manner. The successful candidate will be working in a fast-paced environment with ever-changing priorities and must be adaptable, able to work under pressure to meet deadlines, and able to develop relationships with faculty and staff from within the institute and across the college as needed to support a collaborative environment.  Responsibilities include the following areas:

Director Administrative Support (50%)

  • Provide secretarial and administrative support of a highly responsible, sensitive and confidential nature to the Director and Business Administrator.
  • Manage calendar for the UMTRI Director, arrange meetings, schedule appointments, and conference calls using discretion and judgment to ensure effective use of time.
  • Answer telephone, fax, or mail inquiries for the Director exercising considerable judgment and discretion in providing information to students, faculty/staff, advisory board members, and the general public and directing matters to appropriate persons for action or follow-up.
  • Represent the UMTRI Director, as requested, in communication with UM schools and colleges, external entities, students, and others.
  • Initiate confidential written correspondence (email and formal letters) requiring interpretation and application of departmental, college, and University policies and procedures and maintain departmental files for the Director.
  • Establish and maintain appropriate files and filing systems, ensuring accuracy, completeness, and availability of office records, files, resource data and various reports.
  • Maintain extensive tickler file system to ensure that deadlines are met and that issues needing further action by the director are made available at the appropriate time.
  • Assist in the preparation of annual, periodic, and ad hoc reports as needed.
  • Assist in reconciliation, management, and monitoring of purchasing card for the position and UMTRI Director and other expenses utilizing the University financial management system (Concur).
  • Process travel and expense reports for the UMTRI Director in accordance with UM policy.
  • Serve as HR backup for immigration matters for faculty and visitors.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Meeting and Committee Support: (30%)

  • Schedule and organize complex one-time and recurring activities such as meetings, travel, conferences, hosting, speaking engagements and presentations, and respective department/regional campus activities for the Director.
  • Provide administrative support to select committees, groups, and initiatives including but not limited to:
    • UMTRI Executive Committee
    • UMTRI Advisory Committee
    • UMTRI External Advisory Board
  • Prepare agendas, meeting minutes and distribute correspondence associated with assigned meetings. Follow up on necessary tasks and/or directives generated from meetings.
  • Manage and monitor all small and large scale meeting logistics including planning, timeline management, invitations, accommodations, transportation, facilities and room reservations, catering, signage, audio/visual (AV) arrangements, displays, special needs requirements, printing and event communication. Prepare materials needed for Director at least a day in advance to ensure proper preparation for meetings.

Research Faculty Recruiting: (10%)

  • Assist in managing faculty recruiting process. Prepare documents for faculty searches and recruitment; place advertisements, gather information and prepare reports and correspondence in an accurate and timely manner. Serve  as a departmental contact for faculty candidates, make travel arrangements, make reservations for meals, make lodging reservations and transportation to and from the airport, escort candidate to and from interview appointments as needed and secure room reservations, set up job talks, and process travel reimbursements.  Prepare accurate and timely appointment dossiers for submission to the college.  Assist selected candidates with a move to Ann Arbor.
  • Administrative support for faculty recruitment including taking meeting minutes, letter preparation, maintain a database of applicants, schedule job talk seminars and interview meetings with College and Institute representatives, oversee all associated travel reimbursements, place advertisements, and prepare reports.

Casebooks/Awards/Annual Reviews: (10%)

  • Manage the process for research faculty promotions & reviews and research faculty leaves, including sabbaticals.
  • Manage the timely submission of accurate tenure and promotion dossiers to the college.  Assist with distribution and collection of review documents.  Coordinate preparation and distribution of confidential tenure/promotion and recruitment materials within the department.  Assist with solicitation and collection of letters from outside reviewers.  Compile biographical sketches of outside reviewers.  Coordinate with other departments as required for joint appointments.
  • Prepare promotion/tenure and faculty reappointment casebooks and provide administrative support to relevant committees including sending out request letters, thank you letters, a database for tracking recommendation letters, typing committee evaluations, etc., preparing for electronic transmittal to CoE.
  • Manage faculty annual review (FAR) process assuring compliance and timeliness of process.  Access faculty evaluations for preparing files for UMTRI Director for faculty evaluations.

Required Qualifications*

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Minimum 5 years of progressively responsible administrative support and customer service experience preferably at the University of Michigan and preferably with faculty administration.
  • Demonstrated ability to initiate projects and carry them through to completion as well as the flexibility to change focus and priorities quickly.
  • Prior experience dealing with the variety of people with demonstrated sensitivity; ability to listen and deal warmly and empathetically with a wide range of people and respond to their questions and needs.
  • Demonstrated ability in exercising professionalism and handling highly confidential and sensitive information with a demonstrated ability to use sound judgment and diplomacy.
  • Highly proficient with technology including Google Docs, Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint), Gmail, and Adobe Acrobat.
  • Exceptionally interpersonal skills along with professional verbal and written communication skills to explain complex issues, problem solves, and produce original documents of high quality.
  • Professional level computer skills which are transferable to university systems.
  • Ability to work independently and think conceptually, with a keen attention to detail and superior organizational skills.
  • Knowledge of various university and school policies and ability to interpret and implement.
  • Ability to manage projects and tasks with minimal direction.

Desired Qualifications*

  • Previous experience working in a higher education research setting.
  • Proven ability to work with a variety of constituents (administrators, staff, faculty, students, and the broader Ann Arbor community).
  • Capacity to anticipate needs and be proactive.
  • Experience supporting senior management and working as a member of an administrative team

Work Schedule

M-F 8:00 – 5:00 pm with some flexibility needed for events occurring outside this normal range, including occasional weekends.

Additional Information

NOTE: A higher salary may be considered for an exceptionally qualified candidate.

Mission Statement

Michigan Engineering’s vision is to be the world’s preeminent college of engineering serving the common good. This global outlook, leadership focus and service commitment permeate our culture. Our vision is supported by a mission and values that, together, provide the framework for all that we do.  Information about our vision, mission and values can be found at: .

The University of Michigan has a storied legacy of commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). The Michigan Engineering  component of the University’s comprehensive, five-year, DEI strategic plan—along with updates on our programs and resources dedicated to ensuring a welcoming, fair and inclusive environment—can be found at:

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days.  This job may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.