Program Officer, Membership and University Relations

Job Type

Full Time


Details: This is a full-time, at-will position on an open-ended term, subject to program priorities, exemplary performance and availability of funds. The position offers a salary comparable to similar positions at peer organizations in the human rights/NGO field.




c/o New York University
411 Lafayette Street
New York
United States



Scholars at Risk (SAR) is an international network of higher education institutions dedicated to protecting scholars and promoting higher education values worldwide. By arranging temporary academic positions at member universities, Scholars at Risk offers safety to scholars facing grave threats, enabling them to continue their important work. Scholars at Risk also provides advisory services for scholars and hosts, campaigns for scholars who are imprisoned or silenced in their home countries, monitoring of attacks on higher education communities worldwide, and leadership in deploying new tools and strategies for promoting academic freedom and improving respect for university values everywhere. Information at


Scholars at Risk is seeking a highly-organized, proactive and detail- oriented individual to join the Scholars at Risk team as a Program Officer for Membership and University Relations, with a particular focus on North America. The Program Officer plays a key role within the SAR membership team, which works to build, maintain and engage a global network of higher education institutions dedicated to protecting scholars and promoting academic freedom. The position requires timely and professional communication, including with members, partners, clients, SAR and NYU staff, and the public. The Program Officer will be encouraged to handle increasing responsibility for these and other activities as appropriate. The position reports primarily to SAR’s Senior Program Officer for Membership and University Relations. 


  • Provide research and program support to all aspects of the membership life cycle of the global SAR network with a particular focus on North America: researching, identifying and recruiting prospective institutional members, cultivating and maintaining relationships with current members, increasing engagement of current members in SAR-related activities (including protection, advocacy and research & learning/ trainings), and encouraging their continued involvement in SAR from year to year.
  • Research, design and implement regionally targeted outreach efforts to grow the SAR network, including the development of new SAR sections and partner networks in North America.
  • Identify and research opportunities to develop new outreach or program initiatives aimed at engaging members in SAR-related activities.
  • Represent SAR at conferences, events and meetings, and assist in planning member and prospective member events and meetings as needed.
  • Research and implement strategies to increase the visibility of the SAR network work through social media, press outreach, e-blasts, mailings, website updates, and additional related tools.
  • Respond to queries from prospective, new and current members, with a particular focus on North America, handle invoicing, new member processing, maintaining and improving member materials, maintaining contact and database records.
  • Contribute to the development of appropriate tracking systems to generate membership-related reports, statistics and numbers as needed.
  • Assist with mailings/digests to members, prospective members and others as required.


  •  Exceptional research, writing and editorial skills
  • Minimum of 3 years related work experience desirable
  • Graduate degree in related field desirable
  • Strong attention to detail, and strong organizational and multi-tasking abilities
  • Experience in project management
  • Strong presentation skills
  • Demonstrated commitment to human rights and/or international education
  • Previous membership/communications experience desirable
  • InDesign experience is desirable 


Scholars at Risk in an independent not-for-profit corporation hosted at New York University (NYU). SAR staff are NYU employees seconded to SAR. As seconded NYU employees, staff are eligible for NYU employee benefits, including generous vacation leave and holidays; medical, dental, vision and life insurance options; and retirement benefits (all subject to terms established by NYU as described at 

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

PLEASE APPLY IMMEDIATELY (no phone calls or email inquiries, please) by emailing in a single document: (1) a letter of interest, (2) resume, (3) list of references or letters of reference, and (4) a brief, unedited writing sample. Please use "Program Officer, Membership - [Your last name]" as the subject of your email. Applications accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Submit to SAR/NYU is an equal opportunity employer. SAR/NYU does not discriminate due to race, color, creed, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender and/or gender identity or expression, marital or parental status, national origin, ethnicity, citizenship status, veteran or military status, age, disability, unemployment status or any other legally protected basis, and to the extent permitted by law. Qualified candidates of diverse ethnic and racial backgrounds are encouraged to apply. (Regrettably, SAR is not able to sponsor work-eligible visas for these positions.)