Senior Grants and Contracts Analyst

The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. (AURA)
Baltimore, Maryland; Arizona, Washington, DC
Jan 27, 2023
Mar 03, 2023
Analyst, Business, Finance
Full Time

Support Astronomy! Come join and be part of the team at AURA’s Central Administrative Services (CAS) group supporting critical operations for astronomical research funded primarily through the National Science Foundation (NSF).  AURA receives NASA support via FAR-based contracts.  AURA’s Centers enable the next decade of astronomical discoveries through world-class facilities (terrestrial and space-based observatories) and science. The Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. (AURA) is a charitable, nonprofit organization that operates astronomical observatories and furthers access to scientific data and research.


CAS seeks a Senior Grants & Contracts Analyst to provide dedicated professional sponsored-awards management with specific responsibility for pre-award and post-award functions in a primarily grant and cooperative agreement environment with some FAR-governed efforts. Works independently on a variety of grants/contracts that range from simple to highly complex. The primary goal of this position is to ensure timely, effective and efficient functioning of sponsored funding.




HYBRID Work – Aura supports in-person and remote work. This position can  be based in Baltimore, MD, Washington, DC, or Tucson, AZ. Relocation assistance provided.


Key duties include, but may not be limited to, reviewing departmental proposal preparation efforts, proposal preparation, submission, budget development, award account maintenance and oversight, support to billing/invoicing, reporting, compliance, and closeout.


Essential Functions:


Understand and utilize institutional policies for pre-award grant process and sponsor guidelines. Review all sponsored project proposals for prior to them being forwarded to the Sponsored Programs and Grants manager or Contracts Officer for signature. Review involves accuracy, content, adherence to all relevant guidelines. Reviews budget for completeness and accuracy before submitting request to set up project in Deltek’s Costpoint. Verifies that funds awarded are setup properly in accordance with AURA guidelines, funding agency guidelines, including personnel costs, merit adjustments, supplies, materials, services, etc. Responsible for the timely preparation of non-Center proposal budgets for Principle Investigator Review. Provide instruction, preparation assistance and support related to grant application procedures. Serve as liaison between CAS, Centers and funding agencies. Monitors grants and contracts expenditures on a monthly basis to ensure labor costs are matched appropriately within budget requirements. Report spending anomalies. Reviews billing associated with grants and contracts on a monthly basis to ensure accuracy of spending allowability. Required Education/Experience/Skills/Abilities:


Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management, Business Administration, Finance, or related field. Minimum of 5 years’ experience in substantive contract administration in federally funded environment (federal assistance environment preferred) to include experience in complex contract and grant functions such as: proposal preparation, proposal compliance, award negotiations, contract/grant administration, and closeout with government agencies. Knowledge of Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (2 CFR 200), Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), and other applicable regulations covering contract and grant administration, closeout procedures and requirements, and proposal preparation and review. Must possess the ability to anticipate and resolve complex problems, exercise sound judgment, and plan, organize, and prioritize multiple demands efficiently and effectively. Ability to analyze, interpret and evaluate requests for proposals and contractual agreements. Excellent customer service skills to both internal and external customers. Excellent written and oral communication skills. Demonstrated ability to meet deadlines and multi-task. Preferred Experience


Experience working directly with NSF grant/cooperative agreement funding and regulations Experience with Research Infrastructure regulations Experience working with Deltek Costpoint AURA offers a mix-model workspace (in-office & remote) and stimulating environments for all.


We also offer an excellent benefits package and competitive salary. Highlights:


Health Benefits – Start first on the month following hire Retirement Options: 401(a) Money Purchase Pension Plan / 10% Employer Contribution 403(b) / Your own retirement contribution Paid Time Off: Vacation / Accrual of up to 24 days per/yr. Paid Sick Leave / 8 hour per/mo. Holiday Time / 10 days per/yr. And much more so please explore:


Our benefits at: All career opportunities through our website at: AURA, as a leader in the astronomical community, is committed to diversity and inclusion. AURA develops and supports programs that advance our organizational commitment to diversity, broaden participation, and encourage the advancement of diversity throughout the astronomical scientific workforce. Learn more at


Applicants are asked to submit a resume by 2/24/23 to receive full consideration. The position will remain open until it has been filled. 


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Veterans, disabled individuals, or wounded warriors needing assistance with the employment process should request assistance at  #LIHYBRID