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Program Director for Pre-Columbian Studies

Position Title: Program Director for Pre-Columbian Studies

Supervisor:     Director

Department:   Pre-Columbian Studies

Grade:             60, exempt

Term:               Full-time, 35 hours per week. Term position (Initial term of three years)



Dumbarton Oaks is a leading research center in Pre-Columbian Studies, with a library that is a point of reference for the field, joined to world-renowned museum collections. The Program Director is a key contributor to Dumbarton Oaks’ mission to support residential fellows and scholars, promote advanced research in our fields of study, and advocate for the humanities. Candidates should have a distinguished record of scholarly achievement, as well as significant experience in program management and academic administration, and a desire to contribute to a wide array of programs and activities in a collaborative environment.

Reporting to the Director, the Program Director oversees and coordinates all programming related to Pre-Columbian Studies at Dumbarton Oaks, including the residential fellowship program, scholarly visitors, scholarly events, and committee meetings. This is a term position with an initial term of three years.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • The Program Director provides guidance and support to fellows and other award holders through attendance of research reports and organization of scholarly activities and events. The Program Director also plays an important role in connecting award holders to other scholars and professionals within and outside the institution to enhance their research and professional development.
  • Supervises the Program Coordinator in Pre-Columbian Studies to ensure all aspects of the program are handled professionally and efficiently. Monitors and evaluates performance.
  • Supports the fellowship selection process and coordinates other award cycles in collaboration with the Manager of Academic Programs and the Executive Director. Works with the Manager of Academic Programs to ensure that information about our awards is distributed as broadly as possible. Produces reports and assists with program evaluation.
  • Introduces Pre-Columbian Fellows’ research reports and hosts other speakers of the program. Proposes field trips in D.C. as appropriate and collaborates with Communications and Publications to explain the Fellows’ research to scholarly and non-scholarly audiences.
  • In consultation with the Director and the advisory committee of Senior Fellows, proposes speakers for public lectures and other scholarly events.
  • Oversees all aspects of the organization of Pre-Columbian events such as symposia, colloquia, and Oversees planning and budget, and collaborates with Events and Academic Programs to ensure that events are welcoming and vibrant opportunities for scholarly exchange and the advancement of the field.
  • As approved by the Director, represents Dumbarton Oaks at scholarly conferences and meetings. Supports the vitality of the field through regular communication with societies, listservs, and academic programs in Pre-Columbian Studies and closely related fields.
  • Supports the annual meetings of the Director with the Committee of Senior Fellows, supervises the Program Coordinator to ensure professional planning and preparation of agenda items, minutes, and ancillary materials.
  • Collaborates with the Library, Museum, and Publications on projects related to the enhancement of Pre-Columbian and related resources at Dumbarton Oaks, and the promotion of our collections.
  • Collaborates with the Director’s Office and other scholarly departments to develop and implement a full roster of vibrant interdepartmental programs and events, including summer internships, and collaborations with other institutions.
  • Develops and manages the annual program budget.
  • Other duties and projects as assigned.

Supervisory Responsibilities

Supervises the Program Coordinator for Pre-Columbian Studies.


Basic qualifications:

  • PhD in Pre-Columbian Studies or related field, with peer-reviewed publications and lecturing experience.
  • Minimum of ten years’ experience in an academic setting, including administrative duties.

 Additional qualifications:

  • Excellent command of Spanish.
  • Broad knowledge of various aspects of the humanities outside own specialization.
  • Exceptional maturity, judgment, professionalism, and discretion in handling confidential and sensitive situations and matters.
  • Proven ability to represent the institution professionally, to interact diplomatically, and to work with a wide range of internal and external constituents.

To Apply

Accepting applications until October 15, 2018. Please forward résumé and cover letter detailing relevant qualifications by clicking the link below.

Dumbarton Oaks is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE).