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Systems Synthesis Advisor

Carnegie Mellon University
District of Columbia, United States
Salary Not Specified
Posted Date
Aug 30, 2022

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Business & Management, Other Business & Management, Administrative, Business & Administrative Affairs, Other Business & Administrative Affairs, Technology Administration/Other, Student Affairs, Academic Advising & Academic Support Services, Admissions, Enrollment, Retention & Registrar
Employment Type
Full Time
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Systems Synthesis Projects are a culminating experience for students in the Master of Science in Public Policy and Management (MSPPM), Washington DC program at Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College. These projects, conducted in lieu of a thesis, provide students with hands-on experiences that parallel the activities and issues they will encounter in the workplace. Working with a client organization, diverse groups of students spend seven months (Oct – May) addressing an issue of importance to the client.

Under the guidance of a systems synthesis advisor, the students identify the issue, gather and analyze data, and prepare findings and recommendations for the client. It also allows students to integrate the skills learned from their coursework at Heinz--including economics, statistics, management science, financial analysis, organizational management, policy analysis, database management, oral and written communication skills and others—as they tackle important policy and management problems. The project provides students with “real-world” experience in teamwork, analysis, project management and client relations.

General role of project advisors:

As an advisor you are tasked with providing guidance, but not control of the project. The project team, consisting of 4-6 master’s students, will lead the direction of the project. The project advisor’s role consists of providing guidance to the project team in the following ways: assisting the team with effective teamwork and project management strategies, providing feedback and guidance on project direction and deliverables (i.e. presentations to an advisory committee, final report, and poster board), and assigning a grade to each student.

Timeline for Project:

Students are enrolled in Systems Planning during the Fall Semester October 24– Dec 16, 2022, and in Systems Synthesis during the Spring semester from Jan 9 – May 5, 2023. Advisors must be available to meet with students weekly on Fridays during the workday (approximately 1-3 hours, attend all formal presentations with the client/advisory board, provide feedback and coaching to student, and respond in a timely manner to student inquiries via email or phone at other times during the week. The majority of these meetings should be in person, although some meetings can take place virtually if needed.

You should demonstrate:
  • Effective, engaging, and compelling culturally responsive communication, with the capacity to guide students and engage with clients as needed.
  • Innovation, integrity, and expertise in consulting and/or project management.
  • A strong sense of collaboration and enthusiasm for guiding a student-led team and providing feedback at multiple points in the project
  • A strong grasp of the challenges within a consulting project including the ability to help scope projects.
  • Master’s or PhD degree in relevant fields preferred
  • Experience in engagement with students
  • Experience working with client-based projects
  • Demonstrated success in similar positions with positive references.
Application Instructions Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

Carnegie Mellon University shall abide by the requirements of 41 CFR §§ 60-1.4(a), 60-300.5(a) and 60-741.5(a). These regulations prohibit discrimination against qualified individuals based on their status as protected veterans or individuals with disabilities, and prohibit discrimination against all individuals based on their race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. Moreover, these regulations require that covered prime contractors and subcontractors take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment individuals without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, protected veteran status or disability.

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