Careers at Virginia Tech

Economic Development Specialist

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Work type: Administrative & Professional
Senior management: Vice Pres-Outreach & Intrntl Affrs
Department: Economic Development
Location: Abingdon, Virginia, Arlington, Virginia, Blacksburg, Virginia, Hampton, Virginia, Newport News, Virginia
Categories: Research / Scientific, Program/Project Management

Job Description

The specialist will develop and conduct applied research and technical assistance projects and participate in the collaborative design and implementation of projects with a special focus in the Hampton Roads area. This position, reporting to the director of the Center for Economic and Community Engagement (CECE) is a restricted calendar year, administrative and professional faculty appointment.
Responsibilities include:
Design and implement projects addressing economic and community development needs across Virginia on subjects such as research commercialization, manufacturing extension, distributed research centers, strategic innovation partnerships, asset-based development, entrepreneurship, and strategic planning. This requires the senior specialist to undertake the following:
Conduct diverse forms of research and analysis such as economic impact and feasibility studies, market analysis, cluster studies, strategic planning, and program design and evaluation with emphasis on economically distressed areas in Virginia.
Prepare reports and deliver public presentations to project clients and other stakeholder's derived from that research.
Write and submit sponsored project proposals, including scope of work, budget development, and secure funding from national, state, and local sources to support up a substantial portion of salary and fringe for this position.
Develop contacts with current and potential clients across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors through regular travel around the state, active participation in professional associations, and other marketing activities of the unit.
Build strong relationships with academic departments at the university, including faculty as partners in projects.
Participate in internal evaluations and conduct impact assessments of past projects.
Participate in recruiting, selecting, and managing graduate assistants and undergraduate interns.

Required Qualifications

Experience with applied research or technical assistance projects in a collaborative, interdisciplinary setting.
Experience with research and practice grounded in economic concepts and their application.
Possess exemplary communication and analytical skills. Demonstrate capacity as a highly organized, creative, entrepreneurial self-starter, capable of contributing to a team. Advanced degree in planning, public administration, business, economics or a related field.
Willingness to undertake extensive travel, primarily within the state of Virginia.

Preferred Qualifications

An understanding of and interest in contributing to the scholarship of economic development.
Possess experience with grant writing for federal funding agencies. Demonstrate the ability to build collaborative teams across organizations.


Appointment Type


Salary Information

Commensurate with experience, up to budget maximum of $61,000

Review Date


Additional Information

The successful candidate will be required to have a criminal conviction check.

This position could sit in multiple locations, including Abingdon, Arlington, Blacksburg, Hampton Roads, and Newport News.


About Virginia Tech

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech pushes the boundaries of knowledge by taking a hands-on, transdisciplinary approach to preparing scholars to be leaders and problem-solvers. A comprehensive land-grant institution that enhances the quality of life in Virginia and throughout the world, Virginia Tech is an inclusive community dedicated to knowledge, discovery, and creativity. The university offers more than 280 majors to a diverse enrollment of more than 36,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in eight undergraduate colleges, a school of medicine, a veterinary medicine college, Graduate School, and Honors College. The university has a significant presence across Virginia, including the Innovation Campus in Northern Virginia; the Health Sciences and Technology Campus in Roanoke; sites in Newport News and Richmond; and numerous Extension offices and research centers. A leading global research institution, Virginia Tech conducts more than $500 million in research annually.

Virginia Tech does not discriminate against employees, students, or applicants on the basis of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, or military status, or otherwise discriminate against employees or applicants who inquire about, discuss, or disclose their compensation or the compensation of other employees or applicants, or on any other basis protected by law.

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact John Provo at during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to the event.

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