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EEC 19-001

Dear Colleague Letter: Employment Opportunity for Engineering Education Program Director in the Division of Engineering Education and Centers (EEC), Directorate of Engineering (ENG) (Open Until Filled)

This document has been archived.

February 28, 2019

Dear Colleagues:

The Division of Engineering Education and Centers (EEC) in the Directorate for Engineering at the National Science Foundation is seeking a Program Director for the Engineering Education program through an Intergovernmental Personnel Assignment (IPA) Act assignment. The initial assignment will be made for one year, and it may be extended for three additional years by mutual agreement. Formal consideration of interested applicants will begin February 28, 2019 and will continue until a selection is made. The selected applicant is expected to start in late May or early June of 2019.

NSF Program Directors bear the primary responsibility for carrying out the Foundation's overall mission to support innovative and merit-evaluated activities in fundamental research and education that contribute to the nation's technological strength, security and welfare. This responsibility requires knowledge in the appropriate disciplines, as well as: a commitment to high standards; a considerable breadth of interest; receptivity to new ideas; a strong sense of fairness; good judgment; and, a high degree of personal integrity.

The Engineering Education Program supports the Professional Formation of Engineers through its funding portfolio. The Professional Formation of Engineers (PFE) refers to the formal and informal processes and value systems by which people become engineers. It also includes the ethical responsibility of practicing engineers to sustain and grow the profession in order to improve the quality of life for all.

EEC supports research in engineering education by awarding grants through four major funding programs:

  • Research in the Formation of Engineers - focuses on achieving systemic improvements by supporting research to: advance holistic engineering formation; diversify pathways to and through engineering; explore citizen engineering, credentialing, and expertise; develop engineering-specific theories of how engineers are formed; and understand how change in engineering formation processes travels, translates, transfers, diffuses, and/or scales.
  • Research Initiation in Engineering Formation - seeks to support research in PFE and increase the community of investigators conducting PFE research by providing funding to support engineering faculty to develop expertise in engineering education research.
  • Revolutionizing Engineering Departments - convenes teams comprising a department head or chair, an engineering education researcher, and a social scientist with expertise in department cultures to drive long-term systemic change at the department level as part of both the agency-wide IUSE initiative (Improving Undergraduate STEM Education) and the PFE initiative in engineering.
  • Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) - recognizes exceptional junior faculty in the area of engineering education research and practice.

The Engineering Education Program also supports workshops, Early-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) and supplements. The EEC Engineering Education Program Director is also active in other cross-agency programs (e.g., Cyberlearning for Future Technologies and Cultivating Cultures of Ethical STEM).

Those wishing to apply for this position are referred to the EEC Divisional web page,, for a description of the Division.

Intergovernmental Personnel Assignment (IPA) Act: Individuals eligible for an IPA assignment with a Federal agency include employees of State and local government agencies or institutions of higher education, Indian tribal governments, and other eligible organizations in instances where such assignments would be of mutual benefit to the organizations involved. The individual remains an employee of the home institution and NSF provides the negotiated funding toward the assignee's salary and benefits. Initial IPA assignments are made for a one-year period and may be extended by mutual agreement.

For additional information on Intergovernmental Personnel Act assignments at NSF, please visit

Candidates must have a Ph.D. in an engineering discipline, including engineering education, plus after award of the degree, six or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience in engineering.

Demonstrated achievements in classroom teaching and student advising are important attributes for the successful applicant. Knowledge of the general scientific and engineering community and strong skills in written and oral communication are also desirable. In addition, knowledge of research in engineering education or related discipline-based education, leadership experience in engineering education (departmental, college, university, societies, journals, etc.) are desired. The appointee is expected to function effectively as part of a team, contributing to and coordinating with offices throughout NSF and with other Federal and state government agencies and private sector organizations.

Applications will be accepted from U.S. Citizens. Recent changes in Federal Appropriations Law require Non-Citizens to meet certain eligibility criteria to be considered. Therefore, Non-Citizens must certify eligibility by signing and attaching this Citizenship Affidavit to their application. This also applies to individuals considered for Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) assignments to NSF. Non-citizens who do not provide the affidavit at the time of application will not be considered eligible.

Individuals interested in applying for this Program Director position should send: 1) a current CV, 2) statement of interest, 3) Citizen affidavit, as applicable, 4) and the names and contact information of three references to or:

Division of Engineering Education and Centers,
Suite 585 National Science Foundation
2415 Eisenhower Avenue, Office E14318
National Science Foundation
Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: 703-292-8380
Attn: Dr. Don Millard, Deputy Division Director

Although paper applications will be accepted at the above address, it is preferred that they be received electronically.

NSF is an Equal Opportunity Employer Committed to Employing a Highly Qualified Staff that Reflects the Diversity of Our Nation.