Careers at UMass Amherst

Associate Director of Venture Development - IALS (Hybrid Opportunity)

Apply now Job no: 518208
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Institute Applied Life Science
Union: PSU
Categories: Laboratory & Research, Research, Program Administration/Management

About UMass Amherst 

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region. 


Job Summary 

Reporting to the Director of IALS, the Associate Director of Venture Development for the Institute for Applied Life Sciences (IALS) manages and facilitates IALS Venture Development operations and collaborations within IALS, within the University innovation ecosystem, and with external parties including venture mentors, alumni, experts, investors, and representatives of industry organizations, companies, and federal agencies. 


Essential Functions 

  • Manages the operational planning and implementation for established IALS Venture Development programs and resources including (1) the Business Innovation Fellows program, (2) Startup Law, Intellectual Property Law, and Mentor Office Hours, (3) Startup Know-How educational speakers and training workshops and (4) the IALS Venture Development web presence. 
  • Oversees the week-to-week development of specific pre-startups and startups as assigned by the Director of IALS, including supervision of small Business Innovation Fellows teams and their work (market assessments and landscapes, competitive analyses, financial modeling, identification of funding sources, draft pitch decks and backgrounders).   
  • Serves as a navigator and knowledgeable resource for IALS Venture Development pre-startups and startups. Recommends, connects and arranges services for faculty and student founders to advance their early-stage ventures. Communicates key concepts with respect to startup development including milestones, differentiation strategy, and the importance of unmet customer needs. 
  • Works with the Director, IALS and other members of the IALS Leadership team to manage the Business Innovation Fellows (up to 25 MBA Fellows and 2 undergraduates). 
  • Works with the Director, IALS and other members of the IALS Leadership team to design, develop, and implement new programs. 
  • Works with the Director, IALS, and other members of the IALS Leadership team to build awareness of and interest in pre-startups and startups through news stories, web content, social media, and events directed towards key campus and external audiences. 
  • Works with the Director, IALS and other members of the IALS Leadership team to cultivate faculty, postdoctoral fellows and graduate student interest in the creation of applied science and technology startups based on campus research. 
  • Represent IALS Venture Development to operationalize collaborations with other venture development organizations and resources within and beyond the University. 
  • Works with the Director, IALS other members of the IALS Leadership team to define objectives and strategic goals in order to build and contribute to a translational research culture at the University by developing, implementing, and aggregating metrics of success, helping to create and administer new programs, and helping to identify key alignment areas between IALS strategic goals and the campus strategic plan.  
  • Collects, maintains and analyzes statistics to (1) measure the impact of IALS Venture Development, (2) inform ongoing improvement, and (3) inform the develop of new programs and resources.  

Other Functions 

  • Participates in IALS Venture Development collaboration in the Manning IALS Seed Grants program. Works with the Manning IALS Program Manager and the IALS Director of Finance and Operations to support the Manning IALS Seed Grant process. 
  • Collaborates with IALS Director and others on the IALS Leadership team on strategic relationship management efforts with the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, MassBio, and MassVentures and other organizations within the innovation ecosystem 
  • Perform other related duties as assigned.  

Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure) 

  • Bachelor's Degree and five (5) plus years of experience in a startup, research and development, venture accelerator or similar environment, or related experience or any combination of education and relevant experience totaling ten (10) years or more.  
  • Exceptional oral and written communication skills.  
  • Demonstrates the ability to manage multiple projects and priorities simultaneously. 
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook, Power Point, OneDrive, MS Teams) and Adobe Acrobat, including advanced knowledge of Microsoft Excel.  
  • Familiar with the use of Google Drive and G-Suite applications (Docs, Sheets, Slides, Forms, Calendar) to facilitate collaborations.  
  • Ability to work accurately with many forms of data and generate relevant reports when necessary. Demonstrated attention to detail.  
  • Excellent problem-solving skills and judgment.  
  • Ability to communicate and coordinate with other University departments (including stakeholders at all levels, and especially faculty and students) effectively.  
  • Exceptional organizational and analytical skills.        
  • Familiarity with concepts of entrepreneurship, innovation, economic development, and university startups. 

Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure) 

  • MBA, advanced degree in a STEM discipline, or JD is preferred. 
  • Familiarity with the University, regional, Massachusetts, and U.S. innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems. 
  • Familiarity with basic aspects of life science areas.  
  • Familiarity with basic aspects of intellectual property. 
  • Familiarity with dilutive and non-dilutive funding vehicles relevant to university startups. 
  • Experience in commercialization / venture development based on university research.  

Physical Demands/Working Conditions 

  • Typical office environment.


Additional Details

For more information please visit the following website: IALS Venture Development Operations.


Work Schedule 

  • 37.5 hours/week, Monday through Friday. 
  • Occasionally required to participate in early morning, evening, and/or weekend meetings or events. 
  • This position has the opportunity for a hybrid work schedule, which is defined by the University as an arrangement where an employee’s work is regularly performed at a location other than the campus workspace for a portion of the week, subject to the business needs of the department. As this position falls within the Professional Staff Union, it is subject to the terms and conditions of the Professional Staff Union collective bargaining agreement. 


Salary Information 

Level 29


Special Instructions to Applicants 

Along with the application, please submit a resume, cover letter and contact information for three (3) professional references. The search will remain open until filled.  

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action. 

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