Research and Technical Assistance Associate-Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education

Aug 15, 2018

Unit:  Mental Health

Classification:  Full-time, exempt

Starting Salary:  Up to $80,000 annually

Position Available:  Grant funding for this position is anticipated by September 1, 2018. 

For 65 years, the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) has been the leading higher education agency serving states, students, and institutions throughout and beyond the American West. WICHE is one of four regional U.S. interstate compacts, with a diverse portfolio of programs and priorities that: help students pursue higher education affordably and conveniently, accelerate regionwide sharing of ideas and resources, provide expert research and policy guidance, and prepare higher education stakeholders for a changing landscape. Based in Boulder, Colo., WICHE is funded by the legislatures of its 16 member states and territories—who reap strong returns on investment from WICHE programs—and by grantmakers and others who share our desire to overcome the education and workforce challenges of tomorrow.

The mission of the WICHE Mental Health program is twofold:  to assist states in improving systems of care for mental health consumers and their families; and to advance the preparation of a qualified mental health workforce in the West.  The program collaborates with states to meet the challenges of changing environments through regional research and evaluation, policy analysis, program development, technical assistance, and information sharing.

Under the supervision of the Vice President or designated manager, the Behavioral Health Research & Technical Assistance Associate is responsible for the coordination and execution of research and technical assistance projects as assigned.  The employee is responsible for planning, administration, and delivery of projects including preparing budgets, work schedules, and identifying other resources required to support successful project completion.  For projects assigned as Principle Investigator/Lead, the employee is responsible for the developing and managing related activities in a manner to ensure they are delivered on time and on budget.  The position requires considerable independent work, travel across the WICHE region and elsewhere in the United States.

Technical Assistance and Consultation
Plans, conducts, and facilitates meetings and seminars for training or work group facilitation. Plans, assigns, reviews, and coordinates a complex array of technical assistance efforts, sometimes requiring astute political and organizational judgments, a high degree of responsiveness to constituents, and a mature sense of organization priorities and concerns.

Research, Writing and Information Dissemination
Leads or assists with research, system analysis, and program evaluation projects. Conducts a wide range of research and writing tasks often involving sophisticated analysis, in-depth evaluation, and interpretation of political, policy, technical, and scientific nuances. Engages in qualitative and quantitative evaluation of programs and work units. Assists the Mental Health Unit in anticipating emerging issues and interprets unusual policy developments and assesses their importance to the states and legislatures. Prepares, reviews, edits, and critiques the substance and quality of research and writing assignments of projects conducted by the mental health unit.

Plans, coordinates, and manages work across multiple projects, activities and functions within the unit; Establishes project specific plans and priorities, assists in developing project budget, monitors project resources, and assigns staff/consultants to carry out project activities as required; and ensures that all standards, deadlines, and contract specifications are met related to projects assigned.



  • A terminal degree (masters or doctorate) in a behavioral health, public policy or related field is required.
  • Demonstrated research skills and the ability to prepare complex written reports.
  • Knowledge of public behavioral health systems.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills.
  • Expertise in small and large group technical assistance, and group process.
  • Meeting planning skills and the ability to establish and maintain effective, cooperative and cordial working relationships internally and externally.
  • Ability to work effectively and independently with minimal supervision.
  • Self-directed and highly organized, with demonstrated analytical skills, and the ability to efficiently handle multiple priorities and tasks under tight timeframes.
  • Competence in the use of personal computers, the internet, and email.
  • Working skill in statistical methods and system commonly used in health analytics.


  • Published professional writing relating to behavioral health policy and/or practice.
  • Clinical and policy experience and knowledge of public behavioral health service delivery, finance and administration.
  • Knowledge of public mental health systems in the WICHE region and beyond.
  • Knowledge of academic and health system accreditation process, and the ability to support entities seeking accreditation, especially in the area of APA Psychology Internships.
  • Advanced skills in statistical methods and system commonly used in health analytics.

Organizational Responsibility: Reports to the Vice President or otherwise designated management staff.

Travel: The Behavioral Health Research & Technical Assistance Associate is expected to travel approximately 30-50% of the time.  Because of the vast area of the WICHE region, 2-4 overnight trips per month are routine.

Benefits:  WICHE offers a competitive benefits package which includes medical, dental, life, and disability insurance; flexible spending accounts; 403(b) retirement plan; and vacation, sick, holiday, and personal leave time.

WICHE is committed to an inclusive environment that brings together individuals of diverse backgrounds and perspectives and encourages applications from diverse candidates.

Category: Jobs


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