Director of Pre-Award & Proposal Development Services

University of Minnesota Medical School



  • BA or BS with at least 12 years of experience, including at least 5 years of experience supervising/managing a team of staff.
  • At least 5 years of direct pre-award experience in a higher education setting.
  • Experience working with National Institutes of Health grants.
  • Project management leadership experience.
  • Experience developing or expanding programs, processes, or systems, such as training or professional development for staff, pre-award management, or other experience developing and expanding programs, processes, or systems.
  • Experience developing strong collaborative working relationships with multiple diverse stakeholder groups.


  • MA, MS, or other advanced degree.
  • Pre-award experience, specifically in a health science setting.
  • Formal facilitation training and experience

About the Job 

Job Code: 9345PE - G & C Dir 1 - Pre-award Admin


The Director for Pre-Award and Proposal Development Services provides strategic leadership for pre-award staff across the Medical School, establishes school-wide objectives and develops corresponding guidance, and leads a large-grant proposal support team within the Dean’s Office.  The Director reports to the Vice Dean for Research and functions with a high degree of autonomy, within and outside of the Medical School, to create an efficient and effective model for ensuring faculty have access to consistent and quality pre-award and grant development services.

Primary Responsibilities:

Strategic Leadership for Pre-Award Services (35%):

  • Lead school-wide pre-award activities and initiatives to ensure consistent support for all faculty submitting grant proposals, training and development opportunities for all pre-award staff, and consistent and efficient processes, tools and resources for all involved in the pre-award and grant proposal development activities within the Medical School. Refine processes, tools, and resources to promote efficiency and effectiveness and to enhance staff and faculty satisfaction.
  • Provide strategic direction for the Medical School pre-award staff who are distributed organizationally across the school. Establish and communicate priorities.  Ensure organizational alignment, resources and timelines to deliver consistent, high-quality support to all faculty submitting grant proposals.  Identify and develop operational and programmatic metrics.

Dynamic Staffing, Training, and Professional Development Model (30%):

  • Collaborate with Medical School department leadership to develop, implement, and sustain a dynamic staffing model for pre-award support across the Medical School.  Ensure ongoing training and professional development opportunities are available, evolve and are utilized by pre-award and grant development staff across the school.
  • Hire and guide the onboarding of new employees, both university hires and through contracts for professional services; provide daily work direction for direct reports and supervise work to ensure timely and quality deliverables; coach and develop staff.
  • Hire a team of pre-award staff, appointed in the Dean’s Office, available for deployment across the school. Develop and implement the program to support the deployment of the staff as needed to Medical School departments.
  • Establish an environment for pre-award staff across the Medical School that is motivating and engaging, and that provides employees with opportunities for skill acquisition, training, career ladders, and professional development.

Proposal Development Services (20%):

  • Develop and implement a team to support the development of large grant proposals for select Medical School faculty proposing center or large/complex grant proposal (e.g. NIH U and P grants), including a request/review process for proposals, customization of support per investigator/proposal needs, and appropriate metrics, including ROI for proposals supported.

General Leadership Responsibilities (15%):

  • Establish and maintain strong working relationships with pre-award/research managers/directors throughout the Medical School and across the institution, as well as Sponsored Project Administration (SPA), Medical School department leadership, and Veteran’s Affairs research leaders.
  • Establish and manage an advisory committee designed to inform Medical School pre-award/grant support guidance, tools and services.
  • Represent the Medical School on cross-collegiate and cross-unit committees and participate in University-level pre-award work.
  • Manage the team administration, budget, and human resource needs.

About the Medical School

Founded in 1888, the University of Minnesota Medical School educates students and graduate physicians, provides patient care, and performs biomedical and clinical research.  The Medical School has over 3,700 faculty in 27 departments and 12 school-wide research centers and institutes.  We receive approximately $280 million in sponsored awards annually and are ranked 28th in the nation based on our National Institutes of Health funding.  Our community of pre-award staff, who are distributed within departments across the school, directly supports this work and is critical for achieving our vision to be a Top 20 Medical School.

To learn more about the exciting work being done at the Med School please visit our website:

About the U of M

The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (UMTC)

The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (UMTC), is among the largest public research universities in the country, offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional students a multitude of opportunities for study and research.  Located at the heart of one of the nation's most vibrant, diverse metropolitan communities, students on the campuses in Minneapolis and St. Paul benefit from extensive partnerships with world-renowned health centers, international corporations, government agencies, and arts, nonprofit, and public service organizations.

The University of Minnesota offers a comprehensive benefits package including:

  • Competitive wages, paid holidays, vacation and sick leave
  • Low cost medical, dental, and pharmacy plans
  • Health care and dependent daycare flexible spending accounts
  • Excellent retirement plans with employer match
  • Disability and employer paid life insurance
  • Wellbeing program with reduced insurance premiums
  • Tuition reimbursement opportunities covering 75%-100% of eligible tuition
  • Student loan forgiveness opportunity
  • Opportunities for growth and promotion
  • Employee Assistance Program

For more information regarding benefits, please see the University’s Benefits Summary.

Contact Information

University of Minnesota





Background Information

4-Year Degree


  • Non-Profit
  • College/University
  • Grants and Contracts

Authorized to work in the US


Target Job Information


  • Full Time