Project Assistant

University of Newcastle

Salary: £25,285 to £25,948 with progression to £27,396 per annum

Newcastle University is a great place to work, with excellent benefits . We have a generous holiday package; plus the opportunity to buy more, great pension schemes and a number of health and wellbeing initiatives to support you.

Closing Date: 29 May 2023

The Role

We are looking for a highly motivated individual with proven ability in project or research administration.

You will work as part of the Adult SMA REACH project team at the John Walton Muscular Dystrophy Research Centre within the Translational and Clinical Research Institute in the Faculty of Medical Sciences to provide a comprehensive project and professional support service to a multi-centre natural history study in Spinal Muscular Atrophy.

This is a varied and exciting role with extensive opportunities for external collaborations with academics, clinicians and researchers and industry stakeholders. The post holder will have the opportunity to build on existing experience of project working and clinical research.

You should be an excellent communicator, experienced in electronic communication with a proven ability to use initiative and plan/monitor workload effectively.

This is a full time position, fixed term until 31 May 2025

The post will be based at the John Walton Muscular Dystrophy Research Centre (JWMDRC) at Newcastle University.

Informal enquires to Sonia Segovia [email protected]

For further information please see

Key Accountabilities

  • Act as first point of contact for the Adult SMA Reach studies, dealing directly with email and telephone enquiries from academics, patients, healthcare professionals and industry stakeholders directing enquiries to appropriate team members to ensure queries are handled efficiently
  • Co-ordinate Adult SMA Reach project reporting documentation from internal and external parties
  • Support the development of project resources including training materials
  • Support Data Entry for the SMA Adult Reach Project
  • Support the travel and accommodation arrangements tor training and project working  processing of expense forms
  • Collate information for the Project newsletter and maintain the SMA Reach MS-Teams pages and relevant sections of the project website
  • Support the dissemination of Adult SMA reach study results to include registrations at conferences, abstract and journal submissions and poster printing. This will also include internal awareness raising of study impact
  • Support the organisation of internal and external meetings (national and international), workshops, conference calls and patient days. This includes maintenance of contact lists, contacting delegates, preparing and circulating agendas and associated documentation, taking minutes and ensuring follow up actions are carried out
  • Organisation travel, accommodation and registration for local, national and international meetings
  • As required, provide support for other JWMDRC events including international conferences and patient events
  • Document project spending and create purchase requisitions for project-related costs with a particular focus on travel and expenses for study team
  • Provide comprehensive administrative support including formatting documents, dealing with email and telephone enquiries, managing diaries and devising and maintaining administrative systems
  • Organise, maintain and continuously review office procedures to ensure support to the project team is maintained effectively. This will include ensuring an efficient and accessible filing system is in place meeting study audit requirements, and maintaining databases.  Support the maintenance of project and study files to be GCP compliant
  • Order, ship and track office supplies, specialist equipment and consumables for internal and external use ensuring a smooth day to day working environment
  • As required work with other members of the clinical trial team to support the set up and management of other SMA and JWMDRC project activities

The Person (Essential)

Knowledge, Skills and Experience 

  • Previous experience in a relevant role
  • Advanced user of Microsoft Office
  • Excellent administrative skills, including experience of setting up filing systems, preparing for meetings, managing diaries and the ability to develop and implement new systems and procedures.
  • Ability to handle project-related finances including travel booking, purchase requisitions
  • Experience of international or multistakeholder project working
  • Experience of working in a university/NHS environment

Attributes and Behaviour

  • Ability to prioritise workload, to use initiative and work under pressure, working independently whenever possible but being aware when to refer decisions upwards or ask for further advice.
  • Decide when appointments can be made and implement changes to reorganise priorities. Make decisions regarding travel plans including international travel.
  • Have good working relations across the University and with external collaborators. Be able to communicate, both orally and in writing effectively at all levels across the team, the institute, and the project as a whole internationally. 
  • Deal appropriately with confidential information.
  • Act with sensitivity in dealing with external collaborators, which may include people who have rare diseases, their careers and the public, and funders and sponsors of rare disease policy and research, as well as academics from partner organisations.
  • Develop and maintain strong working links with the international project partners to enable them to meet their project commitments. 
  • Occasional work outside core working hours may be required to assist with project related events. Occasional international travel may be required


  • Grades A-C in English Language and Mathematics GCSE (or equivalent) or vocational qualifications
  • Very good level of literacy and numeracy    

Newcastle University is a global University where everyone is treated with dignity and respect.  As a University of Sanctuary, we aim to provide a welcoming place of safety for all, offering opportunities to people fleeing violence and persecution.

We are committed to being a fully inclusive university which actively recruits, supports and retains colleagues from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all of our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from individuals who can complement our existing teams, we believe that success is built on having teams whose backgrounds and experiences reflect the diversity of our university and student population.

At Newcastle University we hold a silver Athena Swan award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality.  We also hold a Race Equality Charter Bronze award in recognition of our work towards tackling race inequality in higher education REC.

In addition, we are a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe. 

Requisition ID: 25502

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