High School Program Assistant

Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics (BEAM), a project of the Art of Problem Solving Foundation, is seeking a High School Program Assistant. You'll be part of a close-knit team helping exceptional young people to achieve their full potential. The High School Program Assistant will be part of launching a new weekly program that continues the BEAM experience for our older alumni, helping them continue to do extracurricular mathematics, learn important life skills, and sustain their community of friends.

About the Program

Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics (BEAM) helps underserved New York City students with talent in math enter a realistic pathway towards becoming scientists, mathematicians, engineers, and programmers.

BEAM's current programs provide comprehensive support from the summer after 6th grade through to high school graduation. We offer summer programs following 6th and 7th grade as well as year-round support and guidance for older students to apply to other opportunities (high school, summer programs, and eventually colleges). In addition to our academic content, bringing students into an intellectual community is a key part of our mission and all of our work is designed around that goal.

In 2017, BEAM is launching several new initiatives to strengthen the opportunities for our students:

  • Weekly enrichment classes for underserved elementary students, who might later apply to BEAM's programs for older students.
  • Monthly challenge problems mailed home to underserved students across NYC to give motivated students easy access to extracurricular math.
  • More intensive year-round follow up with BEAM high school students to strengthen their connection to BEAM, mathematics, and our program.

We are excited to be expanding the work of our organization, and we hope that you will be excited about joining us!

Your Role

We are a small organization with a startup mentality.  We all take on a variety of different tasks in order to make the program run, and everyone both contributes to program administration and does direct work with students. Any list of responsibilities will necessarily be incomplete (and evolve over time), but your responsibilities will likely include:

  • Running events for students every week, including:
    • arranging logistics,
    • communicating with students and families, and
    • preparing and teaching many of the sessions.
  • Organizing and helping to lead a week-long summer day program.
  • Supporting individual students with their work and coordinating volunteers.
  • Supporting our other work in the BEAM office.

A major part of the role is leading the weekly sessions for students, aided by other office staff or part-time teachers. These sessions will primarily be based around life skills (such as writing essays or emails, making phone calls, etc.); student projects (such as applications to other programs); and accessible areas of mathematics. Students will be able to choose between a more basic mathematics course (including interesting contest problems, puzzles, and explorations that will be engaging, promote reasoning, and help students reflect on school mathematics) or a more advanced course (based around solving difficult/bigger problems, like those used for admission to top math programs). You will likely teach one of these courses while outside faculty will teach the other course.

While we are especially seeking someone to run this year-round program, we will customize other responsibilities to your particular skill set.  As a part of our office staff, you will also have the opportunity to work with our younger students, assist with admissions, or help out the program in other ways, depending on your time availability.

Qualifications

Above all, we're looking for people who make things happen and who do it well, who love working with kids, who work well independently, and who are devoted to the work that we do. It is much more important to us that we hire someone with the right approach than someone with a particular background.

That said, we expect that anyone who is ready for this role will have:

  • Experience working with middle or high school students,
  • Experience with sophisticated mathematical reasoning,
  • Organization and the ability to develop a project on their own,
  • Strong communication skills (including verbal and written),
  • Strong computer fluency,
  • The ability to motivate kids to aspire to more, and
  • A real dedication to helping each of our students.

Significant pluses may include:

  • Experience with underserved students.
  • Experience with enrichment activities such as math circles or math contests.
  • Fluency in Arabic, Mandarin, Spanish, or another language commonly spoken  in New York City.
  • More advanced mathematical training. 

We're especially looking for someone who can help students focus on excelling beyond a "typical" school curriculum, and who will inspire them to strive for more.

Salary, Benefits, and Other Details

Salary will be between $40,000 and $50,000 per year, depending on experience and qualifications. The Art of Problem Solving provides a number of benefits, including health, dental, and vision; pre-tax commuter benefits; and discounted health club membership.

We provide 8 paid holidays and an additional 15 days of paid time off (which includes both vacation and sick days; we do not distinguish between the two). Paid time off will increase by one day for each year worked for your first five years of employment.

One unique aspect of our organization is our highly-flexible work policies. Time off is very flexible and it is easy to work from home so long as you are keeping up with your responsibilities. Many of us shift our work times (doing work on evenings or weekends) to gain the flexibility to adjust our work hours during the day to take extra time for appointments or errands. However, please be aware that this position will require some weekend work (likely Saturday afternoons) based on the timing of your sessions with students.

As an organization, we are dedicated to the growth of our staff members. We will pay for training to supplement your skills when appropriate, and we encourage all of our staff to learn from each other. (We are, after all, an education organization!)

In general, we are all very dedicated but also very relaxed, and we care deeply that the work environment is pleasant for everyone.

The start date is flexible, but a good target might be between June 1 and July 1. This will allow you to get to know our summer programming (and see where your students started their journey with BEAM), while also giving you time to prepare curriculum and set up logistics for the next year.

Application Process

To apply, please e-mail us a cover letter and resumé. We would also appreciate it if you can include an example of a favorite math problem appropriate for high school students. You are welcome to simply link us to an online resource. (Please don't spend significant time preparing this. We only want a sense of your mathematical taste!)

We believe in the importance of demonstrated ability and work samples. Approximately 3-4 applicants will be chosen for the second stage, where we will ask you to complete sample projects to show us your work. From there, some applicants will proceed to an interview which will be the final step of the hiring process. We work hard to recognize the time you put into the process and we won't load you down with any useless bureaucracy.

We will accept applications on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Finally

We believe strongly in communication and collaboration. In the spirit of that collaborative atmosphere, we strongly encourage you to ask questions about the position!

We're very excited that you're interested in the program. Thank you for applying to BEAM.

Sincerely,
The Entire Staff at BEAM