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McAuliffe Center Program Facilitator (part-time)

Framingham State University
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not specified
Posted Date
Aug 17, 2023

Company Description:

Framingham State University was founded in 1839 for a singular purpose - meeting a public need to promote the public good. At our founding as the nation's first public normal school, that need was for comprehensively educated public school teachers who would, in turn, promote an educated citizenry. FSU continues to offer exceptional teacher education programs and, while we are proud of our roots as a teachers' college, we have grown far beyond them. Public need continues to evolve and FSU right along with it. Our students and alumni are making waves in the fashion industry, designing nutrition plans for professional athletes, writing for major media and news organizations, and working for Fortune 500 companies right here in Framingham. FSU is unapologetically a public institution offering accessible, affordable educational opportunities that integrate an academically challenging liberal arts education with workforce preparation programs, in a highly personalized teaching environment. Our programs have expanded but our purpose and commitment to public education for the public good remain steadfast.

At FSU, we are deeply committed to inclusive excellence and strive to promote a culture of antiracism, encouraging a challenging yet collaborative learning environment, and providing culturally relevant education. FSU is designated as an emerging Hispanic-Serving Institution by the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities and also belongs to the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Inclusive Excellence community, providing national leadership in science education and exploring strategies that will lead to more inclusive science education. We are honored that our commitment earned FSU six Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Awards from INSIGHT Into Diversity. We encourage applications from those who share our commitment to promoting a diverse, welcoming, and inclusive community.

FSU currently enrolls about 3,000 undergraduate and 1,000 graduate and professional students, offers 39 undergraduate majors, and enrolls 41% BIPOC students in our undergraduate programs. Ideally situated between Boston and Worcester, FSU and the surrounding area are steeped in history, achievement, and innovation and provide access to urban hotspots, verdant landscapes, natural and cultural amenities, and diverse communities.

Our founding motto, LIVE TO THE TRUTH, was said at the end of each class by beloved first principal, Cyrus Peirce, who sought to discover and teach "truth in theory and principle...truth in spirit and motive...truth in manner and form...truth intellectual and truth moral." Early leaders found this motto "speaks of sincerity of spirit...of intensity of effort, of resolution to succeed, of joy in achievement." LIVE TO THE TRUTH aptly reflects our past and our pledge for the future as it continues to guide our institution in practice and endeavor. If you share in this quest for truth and a commitment to living it fully, make the next chapter of your career the best chapter at Framingham State University.

Learn more about our career opportunities at


The Christa McAuliffe Center is a vibrant educational facility established in 1986 to honor the legacy of the first teacher in space, FSU alumna Christa McAuliffe '70. Today, the Center functions as a hub for much of Framingham State's informal STEM education and outreach serving students and educators across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and beyond. Since 1994, the Center has been serving between 10,000 and 12,000 K-16 students every year.

The Center hosts the only Challenger Learning Center (CLC) in Massachusetts, a digital planetarium, and an exhibit hall. The national Challenger Center and its global network of Challenger Learning Centers use space-themed simulated learning and role-playing strategies to help students bring their classroom studies to life and cultivate skills needed for future success, such as problem solving, critical thinking, communication, and teamwork.

In 2023, the McAuliffe Center underwent major renovations designed to establish the Center as a unique STEM hub in Massachusetts and to continue Christa McAuliffe's legacy.

In alignment with NASA's Strategy for STEM Engagement, the Center strives to attract diverse groups of students and spark their interest in STEM through learning experiences connected to NASA's space and earth science missions.

Job Description:


The Program Facilitator will help facilitate many of the McAuliffe Center's in-person STEM education programs, including: simulation of space missions in the Challenger Learning Center, (the main responsibility), family engagement days, and other outreach events.

Challenger Learning Centers around the globe fly students on a variety of simulated space missions. All missions are aligned with the most current national standards and can be accompanied by lessons and activities back in the classroom. Innovative technology allows for mission adaptations based on the needs and educational levels of the group visiting the Center.

When visiting our Challenger Learning Center, students are transported to a cutting-edge Mission Control room and a high-tech Space Station. Whether their mission is flying to the Moon, intercepting a comet, visiting Mars, or studying the Earth from the International Space Station, students see classroom lessons brought to life in the engaging, dynamic simulated learning environment.

Surrounded by technology, each student plays a unique role in the mission as the team completes assignments, manipulates hands-on labs, and copes with simulated emergencies. Teamwork is crucial. If one member fails to complete a job, the entire mission can be put at risk. This differentiated approach allows for a truly personalized learning experience where students apply critical, scientific knowledge to real-world scenarios.

All McAuliffe Center programs cover a wide range of science content complemented by opportunities to practice teamwork, problem-solving, and strategic-thinking challenges. All programs contain accurate and relevant STEM principles or concepts in a way that both educates and inspires further interest in STEM learning.

The Program Facilitator is mainly responsible for the facilitation of mission simulations in the Challenger Learning Center for students in grades 5 to 9.

  • The Program Facilitator is a person who is comfortable with science content and is eager to learn more.
  • The Program Facilitator is confident in using education technology for the facilitation of a wide range of learning experiences.
  • The Program Facilitator is interested in researching and implementing effective ways to creatively engage students through the use of role-play and dynamic presentation styles.
  • The Program Facilitator is a strong team player, organized, and committed to meet the needs of diverse learners who visit the Center.
  • A good planner, the Program Facilitator is able to quickly adapt to changes in the daily program or schedule of activities.
  • The Program Facilitator is available to occasionally work evenings and weekends.
  • The Program Facilitator is accountable for ensuring that affirmative action, equal opportunity, and diversity are integrally tied to all actions and decisions within areas of responsibility.
  • Individuals who are bilingual (Portuguese and Spanish) are strongly encouraged to apply.


Assistant Director




  • Facilitate programs in the Challenger Learning Center for middle and high school students
  • Facilitate additional hands-on programs for elementary school students and up
  • Set up, clean up, and maintain education program environments
  • Monitor program materials and make updates when appropriate
  • Contribute, via reviews and feedback, to the creation of new education programs

Example of work schedule and expectations:

  • 2 days per week (12 hours) as a Flight Director in the Challenger Learning Center, 8:30 am - 2:00 pm
  • 6 hours per week assisting other duties and out-of-school time programming. These other programs are to be implemented during occasional evenings, weekends, and school vacation weeks. They include:
    • CLC programs for Scouts troops during evening and weekend visits
    • Special activities for Massachusetts STEM Week (third week of October) and the McAuliffe Center's annual science festival in the spring
    • Stargazing events
    • Professional development webinars


This position is part-time, 18 hours a week, and in-person. A uniform will be provided for use in all Challenger Learning Center programs.

Schedule must be flexible in order to accommodate the scheduling needs of all groups we serve. Occasional work on evenings and weekends is required.



  • Associates or Bachelor's Degree or an equivalent combination of academic and professional experience
  • Relevant coursework in science at the college level or equivalent experience in a science learning context
  • Demonstrated experience working in a combination of informal science education, outreach, youth development, and formal education
  • Demonstrated ability to learn and adapt to new software and digital technologies and troubleshoot
  • Demonstrated commitment to a high standard of inclusive educational practice
  • Demonstrated ability to adapt to the needs of a diverse range of audiences representing a wide range of ages, backgrounds, and abilities
  • Demonstrated ability to take initiative in the work environment, work successfully both as part of a team and independently


  • Candidates who are bilingual in English and Spanish or English and Portuguese are strongly encouraged to apply

Additional Information:

This is a part-time non-benefited, contract position, not to exceed 18 hours per week. The scheduled hours are flexible. The pay rate is $22/hour to $24/hour.

Framingham State University conducts criminal history and sexual offender record checks on recommended finalists prior to final employment for all positions.

Framingham State University is an equal opportunity employer.

Members of underrepresented or minoritized groups, women, veterans, persons with disabilities, and all persons committed to equity, diversity, and inclusive excellence are strongly encouraged to apply.

Application Instructions:

Candidates must apply online by submitting:

  • Cover Letter,
  • Resume/CV,
  • Equity and Inclusion Statement*,
  • Names and contact information for three (3) professional references (references are not contacted automatically upon submission of application)

*The Equity and Inclusion Statement is an opportunity for candidates to discuss professional skills, experience and/or willingness to engage in activities that would enhance the university's efforts to promote a diverse, equitable, and inclusive community. Equity and inclusion statements will be considered as part of a transparent and comprehensive review of candidate application materials.

For best consideration, please submit application materials by September 8, 2023. The review of applications may continue beyond that date and until the position is filled, at the discretion of the search committee.

Framingham State University only accepts application materials through our online application system. We are unable to accept application materials through mail, email, fax, or hand delivery. If you experience technical issues with the online application process, please submit a helpdesk ticket.

Framingham State University understands that persons with specific disabilities may need assistance with the job application process and/or with the interview process. For confidential assistance, please contact the Human Resources Office at 508-626-4530 or


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