South Carolina’s NSF, DOE, USDA, and NASA EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) programs are competitive, merit-based undertakings designed to leverage federal and state investments to build research capacity, advance new technologies, develop infrastructure, and train the future STEM workforce at a time of increasing global competitiveness and economic challenge. Over the past four years, EPSCoR programs have been directly responsible for an annual average of almost $38M in funding to South Carolina’s institutions of higher learning supporting research and workforce development. As examples, South Carolina is home to a current $20M NSF EPSCoR RII Track-1 award with participation from three comprehensive research universities and 10 public and private predominantly undergraduate institutions including two HBCUs, as well as two active NSF EPSCoR RII Track-2 awards, a DOE EPSCoR Implementation award, and three NASA EPSCoR awards.


The South Carolina EPSCoR State Committee seeks to identify a new full-time State Director to lead our EPSCoR programs. Following a rich history of distinction in the SC EPSCoR State Office, we recognize the opportunity to benefit from progressive leadership and creative concepts while maintaining the research excellence and collaborative spirit that has characterized our past success. This State Director will report jointly to the South Carolina EPSCoR State Committee and the Executive Director of the South Carolina Research Authority (SCRA). The SC ESPCoR State Office is located at the SCRA Innovation Center in Columbia, SC. Currently, the Office includes two full-time staff: a Programs Manager and a Financial Manager.


  1. Develop, implement, and oversee comprehensive and integrated research strategies and programs for the SC EPSCoR State Office. This encompasses STEM education and workforce development at the K-12, technical college, undergraduate, and graduate level statewide, as well as broadening institutional and organizational participation. Both involve a high degree of internal and external networking.
  1. Serve as Secretary to the EPSCoR State Committee Chair, and work as a liaison with the SC EPSCoR State Committee team to help ensure the successful development, coordination, implementation, management, and oversight of all SC EPSCoR programs, sub-projects, seed funding opportunities, and general activities, including compliance with the State Science and Technology Plan.
  1. In coordination with established offices at the research-intensive institution that serves as the EPSCoR fiscal agent, provide pre- and post-award research administration and programmatic oversight for all EPSCoR.
  1. Administer concurrent programs; develop and prepare competitive grant applications; compile and submit annual reports; prepare and manage program budgets and budget justifications; approve expenditures and maintain fiscal oversight of programs; ensure compliance with contract and state, federal, and university regulatory guidelines; track project cost-sharing; and process modifications and prepare subawards pursuant to institutional guidelines.
  1. Develop a working knowledge of federal regulations, guidelines, and institutional budget requirements to ensure compliance with regulatory guidelines.
  1. Organize review panels; prepare proposals for review; oversee and coordinate requests for proposals (RFPs) statewide; assist faculty in project reporting requirements; and maintain appropriate participant databases.
  1. Coordinate meetings for the SC EPSCoR State Committee, Executive Steering Committee, and other technical advisory committees serving the needs of individual grants and programs.
  1. Work collaboratively with SC institutions of higher education to effectively administer project funds.
  1. Enhance visibility of the SC EPSCoR education and outreach network through participation in national EPSCoR activities and the national EPSCoR Project Administrators group meeting, and ensure a current and informative portfolio of information flow from the SC EPSCoR State Office to all stakeholders (e.g., website, press releases, regular announcements, updates via LISTSERVs, etc.).
  1. Oversee the daily operations of the SC EPSCoR State Office, including staff recruitment, supervision, and professional development.
  1. Coordinate and assist in the implementation of the annual statewide conference, technical assistance workshops, faculty mentoring events, peer-review opportunities, and other special events to educate and improve research competitiveness of faculty and other stakeholders statewide in relation to EPSCoR and related funding mechanisms.


Ph.D. in a STEM-related field. Demonstrated proficiency with managing grants and contracts administration, budgetary oversight, federal submissions policies, human resource management, working with a wide variety of stakeholders, and broad-scale program implementation is required. Experience managing and leading an EPSCoR (or similar-scale, multi-million dollar) program is advantageous.

Competitive applicants will have an extensive knowledge of federal granting agencies and understand EPSCoR’s mission and activities; a proven ability in report preparation including excellent computer skills; the ability to work both independently and as a team member; program management experience in a higher education setting including reviewing, analyzing, and evaluating activities for efficiency and effectiveness; the capacity to multi-task and prioritize including an ability to work within deadlines; and excellent oral and written communication skills.

This is a full-time position requiring leadership in engaging multiple research-intensive institutions (e.g., University of South Carolina, Clemson University and the Medical University of South Carolina) and a diverse array of public and private undergraduate institutions and technical colleges including seven HBCUs. An effective State Director will be able to maintain confidentiality, tolerate frequent interruptions, focus on detailed work, exhibit familiarity and comfort with assessment and evaluation metrics, apply analytical problem-solving skills, and work within strict deadlines. Regular travel is required, both within South Carolina and related to participation in national EPSCoR Meetings, meetings with officials of NSF and other grant agencies, and engagement of Congressional representation.


The Search Committee invites nominations, applications (letter of interest, comprehensive curriculum vitae, and the names and contact information of at least five references) to be submitted to the search firm assisting SCRA. Confidential review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the appointment is made.

Please contact Parker Executive Search for additional information and to submit materials for consideration.

Porsha Williams, Vice President
Jacob Anderson, Principal
Parker Executive Search
Five Concourse Parkway, Suite 2875
Atlanta, GA 30328
(770) 804-1996 x 109

SCRA is an equal opportunity employer of minorities, females, protected veterans, and Individuals with disabilities. We recruit, employ, train, compensate and promote without regard to race, religion, creed, color, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, veteran status or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state or local law.

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