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Administrative Assistant, Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC), VP Research

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Job ID: 12885

Updated: June 26, 2017

Location: Main Campus

Position Overview

The Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) Office within the VP Research invites applications for an Administrative Assistant. This Full-time Fixed Term position is for approximately 4 years (based on length of grant funding), with the possibility of extension.

The Administrative Assistant interacts with a diverse population of faculty, staff, government, industry and general public. This full-time position normally works Monday to Friday, 35 hours per week, 8:30 am - 4:30 pm with occasional variances in start and end time, depending on project or meeting requirements.  This position reports to the Manager of the Canada Excellence Research Chair in Materials Engineering for Unconventional Oil Reservoirs.

High volume and variety of work demands, much of which are driven by internally and externally imposed deadlines and requirements, can be expected. The nature of the work often includes multiple simultaneous deadlines with in some cases fast turn-around times.  Moderate to high stress and pressure throughout the year, particularly during peak periods, may be encountered.  Clear knowledge of university-wide policies and practices and the complexities of the University's organizational structure are required.


Position Description

Summary of Key Responsibilities (job functions include but are not limited to):

Administrative Support to CERC Program

  • Work independently on specific projects and assignments; identify and respond to priorities of the CERC office; ensure the CERC's project objectives are met within set deadlines
  • Assist with all aspects of scheduling and organizing meetings, workshops, seminars, delegations / tours, and special events including: room bookings, ordering food, organizing setup of com/media equipment if required, preparation of room including audio-visual system, assembling meeting packages and workshop instructional materials
  • Logistics coordination of large visiting groups from other institutions and organizations and being able to respond quickly and efficiently to last minute scheduling changes
  • Responsible for the preparation and compiling of researcher profiles for handout resources, briefing materials and posters
  • Liaise with other service units (i.e., printing services, materials management, IT support services) ensuring needs of CERC team and collaborative research colleagues are being met
  • Responsible for tasks assigned under various special projects and initiatives, and works closely with CERC Manager as these short-term initiatives arise such as contracts
  • Maintain effective filing and records system including both paper and electronic formats, for the CERC, adhering to university policy in the storage and retention of information
  • Ensure that all expense entries, travel claims, requisitions, purchase order requisitions and P-card reconciliations are properly completed then forwarded to the CERC Manager for approval
  • Respond quickly and efficiently to last minute scheduling changes including room bookings and logistics
  • Strong skills using social media, navigating the internet and web communications required
  • Prepare and develop status reports, correspondence and other documentation with accuracy and thoroughness; provides timely and accurate information and updates; communicates progression to CERC Manager and administrative team
  • Professionally handle large volume of emails including meeting requests (via telephone, e-mail and in- person) with great sensitivity, tact and professionalism
  • Assist in the monitoring of student stipends at each semester beginning
  • Work with CERC Manager to ensure the reporting requirements are met: progress reports, forms, legal agreements, correspondence completed and submitted on time
  • Develop and maintain positive working relationships with University contacts and external stakeholders

Office Administration

  • Provide back-up administrative support as required during CERC colleague's absences and vacations (project coordinator, receptionist)
  • Work strategically with others in the CERC team to coordinate and plan schedules to ensure successful alignment with priorities
  • Demonstrate initiative and flexibility in developing and changing processes, policies and practices when needed.  This role depends on diplomacy, foresight and sound judgment.
  • Resolve problems in a successful and timely manner
  • Maintain up-to-date databases and email distribution list(s)
  • Work collaboratively with RTA, SCM, Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, Office of the Dean in the Schulich School of Engineering and the VPR office
  • Conduct onboarding for all new hires to the CERC office
  • Responsible for package shipping and tracking

Qualifications / Requirements:

  • 3-5 years Administrative Assistant experience is required for this position
  • Post-secondary environment experience would be an asset
  • University degree or diploma in business management or related fields is an asset
  • Advanced skills in all Microsoft Office programs (Excel and Powerpoint), Visio, Adobe Creative Suite, Design, AutoCAD, AutoCAD Raster, Dupal, Outlook email, Internet Explorer and have an interest and capacity to learn other software applications
  • A highly organized, detailed-oriented individual, able to manage their own time, set priorities and meet commitments and timelines
  • Experience with PeopleSoft, other University systems, such as eProcurement, UClass filing and MaRRs or relational databases would be an asset
  • Clear knowledge of the University of Calgary policies, procedures and the complexities of the University's organizational structure is an asset
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Handle confidential information in a professional manner and with integrity
  • Tasks, such as completion of reports, contracts and forms, require close attention to accuracy, detail and consistent follow-up
  • Take pro-active steps to resolve complex problems
  • Able to convey information clearly and concisely as well as seek information efficiently
  • Able to demonstrate professionalism, discretion, courtesy and respect in all interactions
  • Proven ability to work on several projects simultaneously and under tight schedules
  • Ability to work autonomously and adapt to multiple competing priorities is expected
  • Strong knowledge of archival protocols for adhering to university policy in the storage and retention of information is an asset
  • Experience in logistics for large groups of individuals locally, nationally and internationally
  • Impact of error is high as the incumbent must ensure that day-to-day work is completed accurately and information provided to others is correct at the university and external levels
  • Successfully work in a team-oriented environment
  • Exercise judgment within established guidelines
  • Able to work in an environment that is complex, changing and, at times stressful

Application Deadline:  May 31, 2017

We would like to thank all applicants in advance for submitting their resumes. Please note, only those candidates chosen to continue on through the selection process will be contacted.


Additional Information

This position is part of the AUPE bargaining unit, and falls under the Operational Administrative Job Family, Phase II.

To find out more about management and staff opportunities at the University of Calgary and all we have to offer, view our Management and Staff Careers website


About the University of Calgary

The University of Calgary is Canada’s leading next-generation university – a living, growing and youthful institution that embraces change and opportunity with a can-do attitude. Located in the nation’s most enterprising city, the university is making tremendous progress on its Eyes High journey to be recognized as one of Canada’s top five research universities, grounded in innovative learning and teaching and fully integrated with the community it both serves and leads. The University of Calgary inspires and supports discovery, creativity and innovation across all disciplines. For more information, visit

The University of Calgary recognizes that a diverse staff/faculty benefits and enriches the work, learning and research experiences of the entire campus and greater community. We are committed to removing barriers that have been historically encountered by some people in our society. We strive to recruit individuals who will further enhance our diversity and will support their professional success while they are here. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply, however preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada.


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