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Job Details

Requisition Number 18-0051
Post Date 4/11/2018
Title Systems Engineering Student Assistant
City Tucson
State AZ

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

The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), headquartered in Tucson, AZ on the University of Arizona campus, is soliciting applications for a Systems Engineering Student Assistant for the summer of 2018 to support the Project Systems Engineering (PSE) and Project Management Office (PMO) groups in transitioning to a new Risk and Opportunity Management tool. The LSST project currently uses a custom-built risk management tool consisting of an SQL database, web-based interface, and python code for conducting Monte Carlo analyses. The project has a desire to move a commercially-available tool or set of tools that are more user-friendly and maintainable. The Systems Engineering Student Assistant will help in transitioning the project from the legacy tool to a selected commercial tool (or set of tools), selected based on a trade study comparing tools against project requirements and use cases.

The student assistant will also support the PSE team with other systems engineering tasks, as assigned.

Essential Functions:

  • Configure the newly selected Risk & Opportunity Management tool(s) to the needs of the LSST project. This includes modifying fields, data structures, reports, and other aspects of the tool as directed.
  • Transfer LSST risk and opportunity entries, along with their history, from the legacy tool to the new tool.
  • Assist in the customization of the new tool’s Monte Carlo analysis capabilities to the needs of the LSST project.
  • Assist in the generation of queries and mechanisms to auto generate needed data for monthly reports.

** Note that LSST staff will provide mentorship and guidance on these activities **

Other Functions:

  • Assist the PSE team with Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) tasks in the MagicDraw tool, as directed.

Required Education/Experience/Skills/Abilities:

  • Normally enrolled as college graduate or undergraduate student in relevant field of study
  • Familiarity with SQL, HTML, PHP, and Python
  • Must be well organized and have effective verbal and written communication skills.
  • Ability to pay attention to details.
  • Ability to work well in a team environment and to commit to achieving high quality results.

Preferred Education/Experience/Skills/Abilities:

  • Familiarity with the standard Project Management/Systems Engineering risk management process as defined by the Project Management Institute (PMI) or International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE).
  • An understanding of traditional systems engineering processes (as defined by– INCOSE)
  • Knowledge of Model Based Systems Engineering as demonstrated by course work and/or experience.
  • Experience with the Systems Modeling Language (SysML) and/or the Unified Modeling Language (UML) is desirable.
  • An interest in systems engineering, computer science, astronomy, or optics

Please list 3 professional references in your application. Please attach a letter of interest and CV/resume (PDF Files preferred) to your application. Please name any attachments with the following format: 18-0051LastnameDocname. Application documents that are not uploaded as part of the application may be sent to

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.

Preference granted to qualified Native Americans living on or near the Tohono O'odham reservation.

  • Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities.
  • Please view Equal Employment Opportunity Posters provided by OFCCP here.
  • The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor's legal duty to furnish information. 41 CFR 60-1.35(c)
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