Science Writer II- #0002389

Employer
The Space Telescope Science Institute
Location
Baltimore, Maryland (US)
Salary
Salary based on experience
Closing date
Sep 24, 2021

Job Details

Are you ready to inspire the next generation of astronomy enthusiasts?

The Space Telescope Science Institute is seeking a Science Writer II to join its team of science communication professionals in the Office of Public Outreach. Founded in 1981, the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) serves as science operations center for NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, science operations center and mission control for the soon-to-launch James Webb Space Telescope, and science operations center for the future Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope. STScI’s offices are located in Baltimore, Maryland. STScI offers a flexible and welcoming workspace for all. (Click here to learn more about our culture.)

The primary responsibility of the Office of Public Outreach (OPO) is communicating the scientific contributions of Hubble, Webb, and Roman to the public and astronomy community. Examples of STScI’s outreach products can be found at: https://hubblesite.org, https://webbtelescope.org, https://viewspace.org, and https://www.stsci.edu.

The engaging and inspiring science images and stories produced by STScI have made Hubble the household name it is today.

Your Role & Responsibilities

As a science writer in OPO, you would collaborate with in-house designers, developers, educators, scientists, media specialists, and other writers to create a wide variety of astronomy-related materials for the public. On any given day, you could be conducting background research; interviewing subject-matter experts; crafting engaging stories; developing clear, accurate, and professional text; providing thoughtful and constructive feedback to others; preparing materials for print or online publication; or coming up with the next great idea for engaging the public, explaining a complex topic, or expanding and diversifying our audience.

Responsibilities of OPO science writers include:

  • Writing across a variety of formats, including press releases, long-form articles, web pages, video scripts, image captions, presentations, and social media posts
  • Reviewing, editing, copy editing, and proofreading materials for audience appropriateness, accuracy, clarity, grammar, punctuation, and style
  • Conducting image research and working with designers to develop accurate and audience-appropriate graphics
  • Working iteratively with a project team, revising based on feedback from the team and from external stakeholders
  • Conceptualizing new products and developing strategies for conveying scientific information to different audiences

Qualifications

We are looking for candidates who have the ability to “translate” complex topics for a wide range of audiences and are dedicated to communicating science creatively, accurately, and effectively. Prior experience writing about astronomy is not required. However, a drive and ability to learn and build quickly on existing knowledge and skills is essential. Candidates must be flexible and able to work well both independently and in teams with a diverse array of skills, experiences, working styles, preferences, and opinions.

Requirements

  • Demonstrated ability in non-fiction writing, with the ability to communicate complex information to a variety of audiences
  • Excellent editing and proofreading skills, with thorough understanding of English language, grammar, punctuation, and spelling
  • Science literacy and interest in astronomy
  • Outstanding communication and collaboration skills, including the ability to contribute as part of a team and build consensus by actively listening, and giving and receiving constructive feedback
  • Excellent customer service skills, including the ability to adhere to established standards and practices, meet deadlines, proactively communicate progress of projects, and maintain an archive of work
  • Working knowledge of standard tools such as MS Word, and the ability to learn and use new productivity tools

Desirable, but not required

  • Professional experience in science writing
  • Background in physical science
  • Experience communicating science to traditionally underserved audiences

Education and Experience

Bachelor’s degree and 3-5 years of related experience (preferably in science, STEM education, journalism, or a related field) OR an equivalent combination of education and experience.

This role is a full-time position with a two-year term. You will be immediately eligible for our generous benefits package and option for renewal. The starting position and salary are commensurate with education and experience. This position can support a hybrid work schedule between teleworking and on-site presence. 

TO APPLY: Share your experience by uploading a resume and completing an online application. Applications received by September 17th will receive full consideration. 

Direct link: Science Writer II

Explore all career opportunities through our website at www.stsci.edu/opportunities.

COVID Working Protocols: https://outerspace.stsci.edu/display/CWP

STScI embraces the diversity of our staff as a strategic priority in creating a first-rate community. We reflect this deep dedication in strongly encouraging women, ethnic minorities, veterans, and disabled individuals to apply for these opportunities. (Click here to learn more about how we foster Diversity & Inclusion.) Veterans, disabled individuals, or wounded warriors needing assistance with the employment process can contact us at careers@stsci.edu. EOE/AA/M/F/D/V

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: www.aura-astronomy.org/diversity.asp.

As a recipient of U.S. Government funding, AURA is considered a government contractor and is subject to Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action regulations. As an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, AURA and all of the centers, do not discriminate based on race, sex, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity/gender identity expression, lawful political affiliations, veteran status, disability, and/or any other legally protected status under applicable federal, state, and local equal opportunity laws. The statements below as well as the requests for self-identification are required pursuant to these regulations. We encourage your participation in meeting these federal reporting requirements that are included for protection and to assist us in our record-keeping and reporting. Your responses are kept strictly confidential.

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