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Position Detail - Technical Specialist & Design Mentor

Technical Specialist & Design Mentor

Apply now Job no: 493770
Work type: Staff Full-time
Location: South Hadley, MA
Categories: Lab Technician/ Technician


Position Type: Staff Full-time

Hours per week: 37.5   

Weeks per year: 52

Work Schedule: flexible, 9am - 5pm default 

Department Summary & Job Purpose:

Fimbel Maker & Innovation Lab is an 8,000-square-foot space for making and collaboration that serves the entire community of Mount Holyoke College. Fimbel Lab supports academic and personal projects and welcomes novice users who may need to become more familiar with the tools in the space. The Technical Specialist and Design Mentor collaboratively runs the day-to-day activities of the Makerspace and helps to foster an inclusive climate and learning environment. The Technical Specialist is one of four technical positions within Fimbel Lab and reports to the Faculty Director.

The Technical Specialist is expected to have expertise with at least a few of the tools in Fimbel Lab and must be able to develop working knowledge in a range of fabrication skills quickly. A primary component of the job will be to mentor highly varied interdisciplinary projects, which requires flexibility and broad knowledge of how to make a wide range of products using many different materials. The Technical Specialist will collaboratively develop workshops for both classes and co-curricular activities, which requires comfort with pedagogical considerations. Additionally, the technical specialist helps to manage and mentor the team of student workers in the space.


Core Job Duties and Responsibilities: 

  • Train, assist, and supervise students, faculty, and staff on the technical design of projects and use of equipment 
  • Supervise a collection of independent study students or assist teaching a course 
  • Support coursework and workshops, developing new activities as needed 
  • Prepare and run workshops 
  • Train and supervise student workers 
  • Perform administrative and maintenance tasks (budget management, reporting, etc.) 
  • Perform and oversee troubleshooting, maintenance, and repairs 
  • Design and build projects that improve the functionality of the space 
  • Create a positive and welcoming environment for users of all backgrounds and skill levels 


  • Demonstrated experience (3-5+ years) and abilities in relevant technical areas, whether through an advanced degree or extensive practice. The successful applicant should have experience working with various skill levels and diverse backgrounds. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated excellence in mentoring a wide range of technical projects one-on-one and in a classroom setting. For candidates with significantly more experience, a higher-level appointment may be considered.


  • At least 3-5 years of experience performing relevant technical work
  • Ability to foster an inclusive learning environment
  • Excellent time management and project management skills
  • Can adapt to rapidly changing environments and demands
  • Ability to anticipate upcoming needs
  • Ability to communicate and collaborate effectively with a diverse community of faculty, staff, and students.
  • Flexibility and curiosity to maintain a thriving makerspace environment as techniques and tools change over time
  • Self-directed and able to work independently
  • Creative problem-solving skills

Preferred Qualifications:

  • CAD, CAM and 2D and 3D design software
  • Rapid Prototyping (e.g., Laser cutter, 3D printer)
  • Metal and woodworking
  • Digital and analog electronics
  • Fabrics and textiles
  • Experience with lesson planning or curriculum development
  • Experience teaching in a classroom setting and one-on-one
  • Experience maintaining a workspace

Physical Demands: 

  • Must be able to navigate the lab environment, use existing equipment, and perform the common physical tasks involved with the tools in the space.

Working Conditions: 

  • Fimbel Maker & Innovation Lab is a laboratory environment with some mechanical, electrical, chemical, and auditory hazards.

Background Checks:

At Mount Holyoke College, we prioritize the safety and well-being of our community members. To ensure this, we require all new hires, affiliates, and others to undergo comprehensive background checks before joining our institution. Our Office of Human Resources manages and conducts these checks, including screenings for CORI, SORI, credit history, and driver credentials. Additionally, the Five College Office of Compliance and Risk Management works to coordinate and facilitate these checks in accordance with our policies.

Special Instructions for Applicants

Apply online; application materials must include:

  1. A cover letter summarizing interests and qualifications
  2. A complete resume or curriculum vitae (CV)
  3. A portfolio of five projects showcasing your skills (as a single pdf)
  4. Contact information for three professional references

Review of applications will begin November 1.  Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

Mount Holyoke College is a college that prioritizes gender diversity and welcomes students of all genders. The college is devoted to ensuring that all its employees and students have equal access to opportunities in education and employment. As per state and federal law, Mount Holyoke College does not discriminate against individuals based on their race, ethnicity, color, genetic information, sex, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy, gender identity or expression, ancestry, veteran or military status, or any other legally protected status. Furthermore, the college does not discriminate based on gender when selecting students for its graduate program.

Mount Holyoke College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 

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