Pre-Award Manager

The SPARC Pre-award Manager is critical for the SPARC team in support of current and future sponsored programs growth.

Under the direction of the SPARC Director, the Pre-Award Manager oversees all the pre-award activities for the SPARC office and is empowered to act independently in making decisions and authorizing actions such as but not limited to, supervision and management of the SPARC Pre-Award Team; assisting the Pre-Award Team and Principle Investigators with project proposals, budget analysis and review, and submission; confirmation of compliance with the University and Sponsor guidelines and requirements; holds delegated authority to evaluate and endorse proposals and provides assurance and representations of proposals on behalf of the University; coordinating pre-award management issues, questions, and procedures with other university offices; and resolving a multitude of other complex or higher-level issues.

The Pre-Award Manager will serve as a liaison among Principal Investigators, university administrative units, sponsors, and departments/deans, and the SPARC team. The role of the Pre-Award Manager is critical in interpreting both agency and university requirements and best policies/practices to the departments and providing support to obtain newly available information on proposal volume, budget development information, updates to cost principles, changes to sponsor requirements, and other sponsored programs related information.

Minimum Education and Experience Requirements

A relevant master’s degree and three years’ relevant experience is required; OR for candidates demonstrating comparable independent research productivity or professional-level background in sponsored research administration, a relevant bachelor’s degree and 5 or more years of relevant experience will be considered in lieu of a master’s degree on an exceptional basis.

A key success factor for this role is being current with respect to federal and state regulations (including but not limited to Uniform Guidance, FARs and DFARs, and North Carolina state procurement regulations), as well as the ability to train others on the application of these regulations.

Working knowledge of best practices in budgeting and forecasting to analyze financial transactions associated with sponsored activities.

Ability to communicate effectively and clearly, both verbally and in writing. The skill to communicate complex regulations in an easily understandable, customer friendly manner is vital and necessary to establish and maintain effective working relationships with departmental personnel, university personnel, governmental officials, sponsors, and the general public.

Ability to initiate, install, and evaluate administrative programs and procedures with direct reports, within the Research, Innovation, and Commercialization Office, and within the university.

Ability to problem solve and exercise judgement to make decisions independently based on analysis and interpretation of policy and procedural guidelines to resolve potential issues. exercise judgment, discretion, and initiative in interpretation of a wide range of administrative policies and procedures.

Must be highly organized and flexible while self-managing workload.

Ability to comprehend and interpret state, federal, and sponsoring agencies rules, regulations, policies, and laws regarding sponsored projects.

Must be detail-oriented and able to concentrate on complex issues over an extended period.

Contact Information

UNC Wilmington



622 MacMillan Avenue

Wilmington, North Carolina 28403


Background Information



  • College/University
  • Research Administrator/Manager

Authorized to work in the US


Target Job Information

  • Full Time