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Requisition Number 17-0145
Post Date 7/20/2017
Title EPO Coordinator
City La Serena

The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. (AURA) operates several observatory centers (including the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, the National Solar Observatory, Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) and the Gemini Observatory) in the United States and Chile under cooperative agreements with the National Science Foundation.

We are looking for a Chile EPO Coordinator to help develop our Education and Public Outreach (EPO) program for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) in Chile.

About us: LSST is an exciting new telescope currently under construction in Chile on Cerro Pachón near La Serena. The 8-meter telescope will observe the entire available sky every few nights over ten years of operation, starting in 2022. The resulting LSST imagery and videos showing time-lapses of our night sky over a decade will inherently change the way humans view the universe and enable a huge range of scientific discovery, from the origins of our solar system to unraveling the mysterious contents of our universe like dark matter and dark energy.

The project’s extensive Education and Public Outreach (EPO) program will uniquely combine the imagery and technical capabilities of LSST in several ways. We will host a public web portal to explore images and exciting events from the nightly alert stream. We will offer authentic research experiences in formal classroom settings using online science notebooks, which will also be available to the general public through the portal. There will be Citizen Science projects using LSST data, some taking advantage of the fact that LSST will be the major ground-based resource for the discovery of potentially hazardous asteroids. LSST EPO will also provide visualizations for use by museums, science centers, and planetariums around the world. All materials, activities, and web presence delivered by LSST EPO will be available in both English and Spanish, enabling a larger population, especially our Chilean partners, to approach science in their native language.

About you:

As our official LSST EPO representative in Chile, you will play a critical role in developing educational and other web-based materials in Spanish that are uniquely suited to the needs of Chilean educators, informal science education facilities, and the general public. You will be responsible for coordinating local activities, building strategic partnerships, assisting with program design, and leading beta testing of EPO products during construction.

This position reports to the Head of EPO at the LSST Project Office in Tucson, Arizona and collaborates closely with LSST offices in La Serena and Cerro Pachón. This full-time position can be based in either La Serena, Chile (preferred) or Santiago, Chile (with frequent travel to La Serena).

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Assist leadership team in the creation, development and implementation of education and outreach materials.
  • Collaborate with other AURA outreach and education groups in Chile, such as NOAO and Gemini Observatory.
  • Act as the primary point of contact for Chilean partnerships, such as the Museo Interactivo Mirador (MIM), Planetario de Santiago, and CONICYT.
  • Develop education partnerships with local schools and community groups.
  • During iterative cycles of development and evaluation, you will assist as needed with user experience assessments, beta testing, focus groups, and training.
  • Coordinate and assist with visits by multimedia crews to Cerro Pachón (LSST construction site), special events, or tours as requested by AURA or LSST. This may include providing transportation or escorting visitors at the construction site and staying in the summit dormitory facility for up to a week at a time.
  • Translate English materials into Spanish and provide English/Spanish interpretation services as needed during in-person or remote meetings.

Basic Qualifications:

  1. Fluent in written and oral Spanish and English.
  2. Exceptional leadership: passion, integrity, positive attitude, work in teams and self-directed.
  3. Demonstrated ability to successfully act as a liaison with community partners.
  4. Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  5. Ability to travel domestically and internationally (including the United States at least once a year).
  6. Have a valid Chilean driver’s license and be willing and able to occasionally transport personnel and visitors.
  7. Proficient in basic computer tasks, including word processing and presentation software.
  8. Access to reliable high-speed Internet and ability to communicate with individuals remotely using a variety of technologies, including: email, phone calls, instant messaging, video conferencing.

Preferred Qualifications:

  1. College degree in astronomy, education, or other related field and/or 2 years applicable work experience.
  2. Experience coordinating meetings and/or events.
  3. Familiarity with large, dynamic construction sites, including proper safety.
  4. Teaching experience or experience working with educators or youth in a formal or informal education settings.
  5. Passion for astronomy, outreach, and/or citizen science.

Please submit a cover letter and CV/ resume (PDF format preferred) in both English and Spanish with your application.

The position will remain open until filled, but applications received by September 1, 2017 will be given priority.

AURA, as a leader in the astronomical community, is committed to diversity and inclusion. AURA develops and supports programs that advance our organizational commitment to diversity, broaden participation, and encourage the advancement of diversity throughout the astronomical scientific workforce. Learn more at

As a recipient of U.S. Government funding, AURA is considered a government contractor and is subject to Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action regulations. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA does not discriminate based on race, sex, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/gender identity expression, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws. The statements below as well as the requests for self-identification are required pursuant to these regulations. We encourage your participation in meeting these federal reporting requirements which are included for protection and to assist us in our recordkeeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.

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