Job Opening: UNCF K-12 Research Fellow – Washington, DC

Job Summary

The UNCF Advocacy Team is seeking an actively enrolled graduate student or recent Ph.D./Master’s graduate to join our team as a 9-month paid K-12 Research Fellow/Post-Doc. This individual will assist the Director of K-12 Research and the Advocacy Team in various research and messaging projects. The team is expanding our portfolio of projects with exciting opportunities to impact students, parents and communities and we welcome candidates with a passion for making a difference in the K-12 education sector.

This is an ideal position for an insightful self-starter with strong analytical and writing skills and knowledge of the K-12 education sector (especially related to issues of race, equity and inclusion). The successful candidate will have knowledge of and experience with gathering and synthesizing data from publicly available data sources, survey analysis, excel in writing literature reviews, research reports, and analyzing data. Successful candidates will also provide insight and recommendations for disseminating research findings to various academic and non-academic audiences. There are also opportunities for co-authorship and professional development.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Ability to work 21 hours/week
  • Available during UNCF business hours
  • Interpret and present quantitative and qualitative information; advise on results and findings
  • Contribute to development of Advocacy reports and publications associated with K-12 education issues
  • Assist in the development of K-12 advocacy campaigns which may include, contacting external partners, researching educational best practices in various cities and creating summaries of findings.
  • Synthesize data for analytic infographics, one pagers, PowerPoints and websites.
  • Provide support for research dissemination events, like conferences and panels.
  • Assist in the development of conference proposals and planning.
  • Assist in creation of talking points to assist in speaking engagements and/or presentations.
  • Gather pertinent research to help in dissemination of research for social media.
  • Analyze data from various sources to contribute to K-12 publications, one pagers, websites, PowerPoint presentations, infographics, blog posts, speaking engagements, and presentations.

Required Qualifications


  • Actively enrolled graduate student (Master’s or Ph.D.) or recent graduate in one of the following preferred disciplines: education, public policy/administration, political science, psychometrics, statistics, data science, or other social science field. Students/recent graduates in other fields are also welcome to apply if the candidates has a strong knowledge base/experience of K-12 education.
  • Training and experience in conducting quantitative research
  • Strong knowledge and/or experience in K-12 education, especially as it relates to issues of equity and students of color
  • Ability to engage data, analysis and projects from an equity-centered lens.
  • Strong writing abilities and experience writing literature reviews
  • Strong knowledge and use of quantitative statistical software such as: STATA, SPSS, or R
  • Strong ability and experience creating, managing, and cleaning databases
  • Ability to work effectively in a collaborative, multi-disciplinary, client-oriented setting
  • Passion for problem solving, data analysis, and ability to surface key trends from data
  • Completed some coursework in research methodology
  • Understanding and comfort with issues of race, equity, and inclusion
  • Writes clearly and informatively, edits work for spelling and grammar, varies writing style to meet audience needs, presents numerical data effectively


  • Prioritizes and plans work activities, uses time efficiently, sets goals and objectives, develops realistic action plans, ability to manage multiple projects, follows through on commitments.
  • Demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness, looks for ways to improve and promote quality, applies feedback to improve performance, monitors own work to ensure quality
  • Adapts to change in the work environment, able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events
  • Ability to collaborate effectively with internal and external partners
  • Is consistent at work and on time, ensures work responsibilities are covered when absent
  • Follows instructions, responds to management direction, takes responsibility for own actions
  • Displays original thinking and creativity, meets challenges with resourcefulness, generates suggestions for improving work, develops innovative approaches and ideas

Preferred Qualifications

  • Training and experience in conducting qualitative research
  • Knowledge of qualitative software, such as NVIVO, ATLAS.ti, etc.
  • Knowledge and experience with PowerPoint
  • Experience in survey design and management
  • Ability to distill and interpret complex research findings for non-academic audiences

Apply by emailing your resume or CV to:

About UNCF

UNCF’s mission is to build a robust and nationally-recognized pipeline of under-represented students who, because of UNCF support, become highly-qualified college graduates and to ensure that our network of member institutions is a respected model of best practice in moving students to and through college. UNCF’s North Star is to increase the total annual number of African American college graduates by focusing on activities that ensure more students are college-ready, enroll in college and persist to graduation. This is done through a three-pillar strategy. Positioning member institutions as a viable college option for students and investing in institutional capacity to improve student outcomes; creating transformational support programs to ensure students are enrolling and persisting through college 3 completion; building awareness of educational attainment and cultivating college-going behaviors within the African American community.