08 Nov 2022 Eastern Standard Time

Job no: 494500
Position type: EAP – Executive, Administrative, Professional
Location: Grand Rapids
Categories: Center for Scholarly & Creative Excellence

Job Overview

The Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy seeks to understand, strengthen, and advance philanthropy in order to create strong, inclusive communities. The Center is seeking two Research Associates to join an interdisciplinary team of social science and information technology professionals. Both openings are for full-time (40 hours per week) positions with the center’s Community Data and Research Lab (CDRL), located at our offices on the Pew Campus at GVSU, with the opportunity for flexible work arrangements according to the GVSU remote work policy.

As a Research Associate, you will work on quantitative and qualitative research and evaluation projects and will produce a variety of written content for foundation and nonprofit clients.

The Research Associate works collaboratively with research managers, data analysts, and web developers at the lab as well as staff across the Johnson Center. In addition, the Research Associate supports the CDRL team in building relationships with current and potential clients, as well as assisting with project management, client communications, and preparing material for reports, workshops, presentations, and conferences. Key to the position is maintaining the highest standards of research quality and ethics, as well as the ability to manage a small portfolio of project assignments. 

The Research Associate will regularly meet one-on-one with an assigned CDRL Research Manager who will work closely with you and support you regarding research, client engagement, project management, and analysis/writing. On-the-job training and professional development opportunities will be available. 


  1. Design and implement research projects in collaboration with other team members
  2. Conduct qualitative research (interviews, focus groups) and analyze both qualitative and quantitative data
  3. Write reports for a variety of audiences (e.g., presentations, executive summaries, long form reports) for dissemination via various platforms
  4. Performs other duties as required/assigned by manager


  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Demonstrated interest in studying some aspect of philanthropy (nonprofits, foundations, donors, or organizations that support one of those three audiences)
  • Demonstrated interest in applied research and/or community work
  • Ability to read, summarize, and synthesize large quantities of information
  • Strong oral and written communication skills
  • Strong cultural competence, collaboration, and interpersonal skills
  • Prior experience with electronic research methods (e.g., online journals and reports)
  • Demonstrated experience with Microsoft Word and Excel
  • Ability to work effectively as part of multiple teams


  • Any four-year degree or more in a field related to philanthropy; justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion studies; evaluation; or policy research
  • Demonstrated understanding and knowledge of both foundations and nonprofits
  • One to three years’ prior experience working in or with the philanthropic sector
  • Some prior experience in applied research and/or community work
  • Experience collecting data through interviews, focus groups, and open-ended survey responses; analyzing that data; and summarizing the results for both general and technical audiences
  • Experience with advanced data collection and analysis software (e.g., SAS, SPSS, Tableau, Qualtrics)

WORKING CONDITIONS:  Office environment, with flexible work arrangements according to the GVSU remote work policy. Some travel may be required, mostly day trips to attend meetings/presentations within West Michigan.

SALARY:   The salary for this position is $45,000-$55,000 depending on experience. The Research Associate position is eligible for the GVSU AP benefits package including paid vacation and sick time, health insurance, and retirement plans. For more information on benefits, please visit 

CAMPUS: The Johnson Center is located on the Pew Campus of Grand Valley State University in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan. We are housed in the Bicycle Factory (BIK 200), which is close to Winter and Secchia Halls and the Seidman College of Business.

HOW TO APPLY: Please include a cover letter and resume. The online application will allow you to attach these documents electronically. On the application, you will be required to provide names, phone numbers, and e-mail address for three professional references. Applicants selected for interviews may be required to submit official transcripts prior to the interview. If you need assistance, call Human Resources at 616-331-2215.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Consideration of applications will begin November 22, and the posting may be closed at any time at the discretion of the University.

Grand Valley State University has a COVID-19 Vaccine policy that requires all faculty, staff and students to be vaccinated. New hires will be expected to adhere to the policy unless they are eligible for allowable exemptions or postponement. We will require proper documentation upon hire. Up-to-date information can be found on our Lakers Together website.

Grand Valley State University does not discriminate against students, faculty or staff in any of its employment practices or in its educational programs or activities. Grand Valley State University is guided by values for inclusiveness and community which are integral to our mission to educate students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies, and to enrich the community through excellent teaching, active scholarship, and public service. The University is an affirmative action, equal opportunity institution. It encourages diversity and provides equal opportunity in education, employment, all of its programs, and the use of its facilities. Members of the University community, including candidates for employment or admissions, and visitors or guests, have the right to be free from acts of harassment and discrimination, which are prohibited if they discriminate or harass on the basis of age, color, disability, familial status, height, marital status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, veteran or active duty military status or weight. In addition, Grand Valley is required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 to ensure that none of its education programs and activities discriminate on the basis of sex/gender. Sex includes sex stereotypes, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, and pregnancy or parenting status. The Office for Title IX and Institutional Equity serves as a resource for the GVSU community and assists individuals who may have been impacted by discrimination or harassment in connecting with resources, imposes measures that protect or support access to programs and activities, and oversees the university’s grievance process for allegations of discrimination and harassment. Inquiries regarding the application of Title IX may be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, 4015 Zumberge Hall,, (616) 331-9530.

The University will provide reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities. See TDD Callers: Call Michigan Relay Center at 711 (in State) or 1-800-833-7833 (out of State)

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. Must have the physical stamina to work long hours and/or more than 5 days per week. The requirements listed are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The information contained in this job description is for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act as amended by the ADA Amendment Act (2008), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and other applicable federal and state laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. GVSU will provide reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities upon request.

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