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Physics Faculty Assistant
Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts
Date Posted 02/16/2022
Employment Type
Application Deadline Open until filled


Faculty of Arts and Sciences


Job Summary

Reporting to a number of faculty members and the Associate Director of Administration, this position performs a wide range of complex and confidential administrative duties in support of teaching and research in the Department of Physics. Keeps faculty attuned to the demands of the day at hand and the weeks ahead and advises faculty and their research groups on Department and University policies and procedures. Ideal candidates will be able to orient a range of clients to Harvard University with warmth and positivity navigating lab and non-lab groups with ease.

Job-Specific Responsibilities

Calendar/Speaker Series/Websites/Travel

Schedules meetings and seminars, maintains detailed calendars, and keeps faculty and group websites up to date. Makes complex travel and housing arrangements for faculty and scholarly visitors and processes expense reports. This individual will be a key liaison in supporting robust speaker seminar series (virtual and/or in-person) within the Department of Physics, including designing and promoting event collateral, arranging for catering, and making conference/virtual room reservations as needed, in addition to all aspects of domestic and international travel and housing arrangements for faculty, group members, and incoming visitors.

Reporting: Letters of Recommendation & Grant Support

Composes and edits correspondence, prepares letters of recommendation, course materials,and scientific articles which may involve scientific terminology and mathematical technical typing and desktop publishing script languages in programs like LaTex and Mathematica. Invests the time in becoming proficient in such tools and others as identified. Prepares and formats grant proposals and technical reports, working closely with the assigned grants manager owning the non-financial end of pre- and post-award grant submissions and reporting, including CVs, collaborator lists, publication lists, and narrative statements.

Appointments & Liaison Work

Partners with Physics faculty and a variety of administrative coordinators on the appointment process for postdoctoral, graduate, and undergraduate appointments. As the primary point of contact for each faculty cluster, serves as lead liaison connecting faculty and students to resources, systems, and trainings.


Helps assign desk/office/workspace for visiting scholars and postdoctoral researchers. Maintains office equipment, coffee and office supplies, and paper and electronic files. Orders supplies and organizes files.


Processes expense reports and reimbursements, reconciles corporate card and Pcard payments. Plays key role in ensuring that all group members - both theory and lab groups - have the training they need on all tools in order to utilize current methods for purchasing lab/non-lab materials. Redirects and/or resolves billing problems and accounting errors internally and with outside vendors. Performs related duties as required.

Basic Qualifications

Three or more years of administrative experience in an academic, or research environment or laboratory or other complex office environment.

Additional Qualifications and Skills

College degree strongly preferred or an equivalent of education plus relevant business experience with strong customer service skills and communication skills -- both verbal and written.

Previous experience in academia, research lab setting or health care environment will be highly valued as will in-depth experience working with faculty, staff, and assistants.

Proven ability to prioritize and deliver quality results in a high-volume office. The candidate should have excellent computer skills, including knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite and Google Suite, as well as website management and graphics software experience.

Ability to prioritize and accomplish tasks with minimal supervision, creatively solve problems with excellent organizational skills and attention to detail.

Good judgment under pressure, while negotiating competing and often time-sensitive priorities from multiple constituents in a varied and sometimes demanding office environment.

Excel at meeting deadlines and following through on projects. Ideal candidates will be high performing professionals with a can-do attitude and team spirit-they will be self-starters who enjoy providing administrative support to dynamic and complex groups of faculty, students, and staff.

Must be flexible, enthusiastic, open to and energized by change. Finalists may be asked to submit a writing sample.

Working Conditions

The University requires all Harvard community members to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and remain up to date with COVID-19 vaccine boosters, as detailed in Harvard’s Vaccine & Booster Requirements . Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement, exemptions, and verification of vaccination status may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage: http://www.harvard.edu/coronavirus/covid-19-vaccine-information/ . 

Additional Information

Please submit a cover letter when applying for this position. Knowledge of Physics is not necessary to be considered for this position.

FAS and the Department of Physics is committed to cultivating not only the diversity of our faculty, staff, and students but also indeveloping an inclusive culture  that is vibrant, engaging and encouraging of innovation as wellas intellectual debate. We believe creating and maintaining an inclusive workplace allowsemployees from all backgrounds and walks of life to achieve their fullest potential. We alsobelieve an inclusive culture is one that accepts, values and views as strength the difference weall bring to the workplace.

All formal written offers will be made by FAS Human Resources.

Job Function

General Administration


USA - MA - Cambridge

Job Code

403036 Secretary III, Technical


55 - Hvd Union Cler & Tech Workers

Pre-Employment Screening

Credit, Criminal, Identity


35 hours per week

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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