General Engineer (Program Director)

Division: Engineering Education and Centers (ENG/EEC)
Directorate: Engineering (ENG)
Job Type:
Appointment Type:
Temporary / Rotator
Pay Grade/Scale:
This job is open to the public

Application Timeline

Date Posted:
Closing date: Open until filled
Formal consideration of interested applicants will begin and will continue until a selection is made.

Position Summary

The Division of Engineering Education and Centers (EEC) in the Directorate for Engineering is seeking a Program Director for the Engineering Education program through a temporary ("rotator") appointment.

NSF Program Directors bear the primary responsibility for carrying out the Foundation's overall mission to support innovative and merit-evaluated activities in fundamental research and education that contribute to the nation's technological strength, security and welfare. This responsibility requires knowledge in the appropriate disciplines along with a commitment to high standards, a considerable breadth of interest and receptivity to new ideas, a strong sense of fairness, good judgment, and a high degree of personal integrity.

Position Description

The Engineering Education Program supports the Professional Formation of Engineers (PFE) initiative through its funding portfolio. PFE refers to the formal and informal processes and the value systems by which people become engineers. It includes the ethical responsibility of practicing engineers to sustain and grow the profession, in order to improve the quality of life for all. The engineering profession must be responsive to national priorities, grand challenges, and dynamic workforce needs; therefore, it must be equally open and accessible to all.

EEC supports research in engineering education by awarding grants through four major funding programs:

  • Research in the Formation of Engineers - focuses on achieving systemic improvements by supporting research to: advance holistic engineering formation; study how new tools and technologies can enable and enhance the education and development of engineers; diversify pathways to and through engineering; develop engineering-specific theories of how engineers are formed; explore citizen engineering, credentialing, and expertise; and understand how change in engineering formation processes travels, translates, transfers, diffuses, and/or scales.
  • Research Initiation in Engineering Formation - seeks to support research in PFE and increase the community of investigators conducting PFE research by providing funding to support engineering faculty to develop expertise in engineering education research.
  • Revolutionizing Engineering Departments (RED) - convenes teams comprising a department head or chair, an engineering education researcher, and a social scientist with expertise in department cultures to drive long-term systemic change at the department level as part of both the agency-wide IUSE initiative (Improving Undergraduate STEM Education) and the PFE initiative in engineering.
  • Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) - recognizes exceptional junior faculty in the area of engineering education research and practice. 

The Engineering Education Program also supports workshops, planning grants, Early-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) and supplements. Additionally, the EEC Engineering Education Program Director is active in cross-agency programs such as Cyberlearning for Future Technologies (CLFT) and Cultivating Cultures of Ethical STEM (CCE-STEM).

Persons wishing to apply for this position are referred to the EEC Divisional web page,, for a description of the Division.

The position recruited under this announcement will be filled under the following appointment option(s):

Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) Assignment: Individuals eligible for an IPA assignment with a Federal agency include employees of State and local government agencies or institutions of higher education, Indian tribal governments, and other eligible organizations in instances where such assignments would be of mutual benefit to the organizations involved. Initial assignments under IPA provisions may be made for a period up to two years, with a possible extension for up to an additional two-year period. The individual remains an employee of the home institution and NSF provides the negotiated funding toward the assignee's salary and benefits. Initial IPA assignments are made for a one-year period and may be extended by mutual agreement. 

It is NSF policy that NSF personnel employed at or IPAs detailed to NSF are not permitted to participate in foreign government talent recruitment programs.  Failure to comply with this NSF policy could result in disciplinary action up to and including removal from Federal Service or termination of an IPA assignment and referral to the Office of Inspector General.

Applications will be accepted from U.S. Citizens. Recent changes in Federal Appropriations Law require Non-Citizens to meet certain eligibility criteria to be considered. Therefore, Non-Citizens must certify eligibility by signing and attaching this Citizenship Affidavit to their application. This also applies to individuals considered for IPA assignments to NSF. Non-citizens who do not provide the affidavit at the time of application will not be considered eligible.

Candidates must have a Ph.D. in an Engineering field plus after award of the Ph.D., six or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience pertinent to the position.

The appointee is expected to have knowledge of research in engineering education (or in related discipline-based education) and leadership experience in engineering education (departmental, college, university, societies, journals, etc.) is required. Demonstrated achievements in classroom teaching and student advising are important attributes for the successful applicant. Knowledge of the general scientific and engineering community and strong skills in written and oral communication are also desirable. The appointee is expected to function effectively as part of a team, contributing to and coordinating with offices throughout NSF and with other Federal and state government agencies and private sector organizations.

Individuals interested in applying for this Program Director position should send: 1) a current CV, 2) a statement of interest, and 3) the contact information for three references electronically to:

Dr. Don Lewis Millard

Deputy Division Director, ENG/EEC


Apply by Email