Program Manager

Job ID
Location : Location
US-MA-Woods Hole

Job Summary

The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Applied Ocean Physics and Engineering (AOPE) Department plans to hire a Program Manager to work within the Oceanographic Systems Lab (OSL). This is a regular, full-time, exempt position, and is eligible for benefits.


The successful candidate will be part of the REMUS group and will be responsible for tracking, organization and coordination throughout program/project lifecycles.  This will include customer interaction and strategy input, project proposals, project planning, financial and technical monitoring and reporting, as well as day-to-day coordination of engineering staff.  OSL is a fast-paced, dynamic lab with science and military funding sponsors.  The work is varied and rewarding as the result of our team effort is used to collect data for understanding and protecting the world. Our lab is small enough to function as a family but big enough to draw larger projects that are challenging and exciting. We have an enviable worldwide reputation for innovation, rapid development, and world class operations centered around the REMUS family of vehicles. We solve hard problems.


The primary responsibility of the Program Manager is to ensure OSL commitments are met in detail.  This will require providing a broad range of support to the OSL REMUS team and our customers.  The ideal candidate has Program Management experience, exhibits exceptional attention to detail, can manage/coordinate multiple tasks/projects, and maintains superior organizational skills.  Successful applicants will have the ability to function as a team member while taking initiative and ownership of assigned duties and projects.

Essential Functions

  • Assembles Principal Investigator (PI) input on budget and schedule for proposals.  Checks for completeness.  May take the role of PI on some projects.
  • Conducts proposal reviews and works with admin to finalize and submit proposals.
  • Establishes and updates milestone schedules for projects to allow for development, implementation, test, and regression test to meet delivery dates with fully functioning equipment.  Works with Program Administrator to prepare and conduct kick-off meetings.
  • Communicates with the Customer to provide project status, resolve issues, and set expectations.
  • Manages the activities of the OSL team including person-loading and deconfliction across and between projects.
  • Establishes and improves processes within the OSL Support team to ensure cost, schedule, and scope commitments are met.  As necessary, identifies and defines solutions for problem areas to discuss with Director, Engineering Manager, and Customers.
  • Conducts periodic status meetings for larger projects.  Keeps minutes and action items to improve efficiency and collaboration within the team.  Arranges project reviews and gate reviews.
  • Prepares input for technical deliverables – e.g. test reports, design documentation, production reports, and project reviews.  Provides input technical portion of monthly status reports. 
  • Mentors Administrators and Project Managers to prepare for succession.  Evaluates candidates for various positions within OSL.
  • Advanced or Expert level user of MS Office applications on PC platform.   Will be required to develop a working knowledge of WHOI systems: Financial Status Reports (FSRs), WHOI Grants, Streamlyne, Breago, etc.
  • May perform other duties deemed necessary by the supervisor.


  • As deemed necessary by supervisor

Education & Experience

  • Bachelors Degree in engineering is required.
  • Minimum five years Program Management or Engineering Program Management experience.
  • Unmanned Underwater Vehicle design/test/build experience, preferably with REMUS UUVs.
  • Significant experience with budget preparation, contract management, and proposal preparation is required.
  • Record of successful management of completed projects.
  • Demonstrated interpersonal, written and organizational skills, particularly related to working with customers.
  • Works well with people in a demanding environment.
  • Advanced in Microsoft Word, Excel is required. 
  • Must have proven ability to exercise discretion, good judgment, and take initiative.  Attention to detail is critical.

Special Requirements

  • Must be a U.S Citizen.
  • Secret or higher US Security Clearance is desirable

WHOI has a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy in effect, where you must register your full vaccination status (vaccination plus booster) in order to begin employment. The registration process is confidential and entails submitting your official vaccination records or requesting to engage in the interactive exemption process for either a medical or religious reason.


Physical Requirements

Physical duties for this position include but are not limited to, ability to lift less than 25 lbs independently, 2 times per day; carry 10-25 lbs, 2 times per day. Visual abilities to include near, far, peripheral, depth perception, and ability to distinguish basic colors. Hearing requirements include the ability to hear and respond to instructions, communicate effectively in loud areas (pier/dock, warehouse). Other physical tasks include occasional prolonged standing/walking; use of hands for basic /fine grasping and manipulation, repetitive motion, reaching above and below the shoulders, pushing, pulling, kneeling, bending, twisting, and stooping. Other occupational requirements include talking, traveling, working around others, and with others. Will be exposed to dust or other irritants and electrical/mechanical/power equipment hazards. Physical duties are subject to change.

Sea Duty

May work at least 8 hours per day and, at times in excess of 12 hours per day, 7 days per week. Sleep and work hours can deviate from those on land. May be expected to work on watch schedule (such as 8 hours on and 8 hours off or 12 hours on and 8 hours off) for all or part of a cruise or to work as hours are needed to accomplish the planned work. May need to travel during holidays and for long distances to and from foreign ports. May experience rudimentary living and working conditions, with shared and basic living quarters and laboratories. May experience bad or extreme weather conditions, including heavy seas, winter weather or hot, tropical weather. Work on deck may occur in both hot and cold conditions around the clock. Sea conditions will lead to active ship motion. Should be able to climb steep and vertical ladders and able to enter and exit compartments through hatches, doors, and sills. Should be able to carry heavy gear and participate in the loading and unloading of the ship as well as in the activities on deck and in the labs during the cruise. Shipboard environment may include: confined areas, shared sleeping quarters (berths) and bathroom facilities, small and basic berthing, fixed meal times and basic menus. Modest levels of heating, cooling, ventilation, and illumination, limited or no email and internet access and limited off-duty and recreational facilities (library, lounge, movies). May be exposed to potential allergens and irritants, including paint fumes. May experience constant and intermittent loud noises, and slippery and uneven surfaces.


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