Senior Program Assistant: JSD Sahel

United States Institute of Peace (USIP)
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Jun 05

Position description

If you have a passion for making the world a better place and want to have a front row seat to the world stage, USIP is the place for you

We are a nonpartisan institute chartered by Congress to tackle the world’s toughest problems.  Working in conflict zones around the world, our staff advise and support the military, government officials and community leaders – to promote knowledge and practices that prevent, mitigate and resolve violent conflict.  To learn more about USIP programs and job openings go to  The Institute is headquartered in Washington DC with staff working in 22 different countries, at any given time up to 20% of the staff could be deployed working in the field.


Provides overall support to the operations and program management of the Justice and Security Dialogue project focused on the Sahel and Maghreb regions. He or she provides day-to-day programmatic, financial and operational support for the JSD program and team; coordinates procurement, finance, budget and event planning activities, while overseeing travel support.


Program and Administrative Support:

  • Maintains correspondence and working relationships with internal USIP staff members and external consultants, contractors and partners, in English and French, in order to advance programmatic objectives.
  • Assists JSD program staff in operationalizing and implementing all planned project activities.
  • Assists in setting up programmatic and administrative procedures where needed, and establishing or revising filing systems, tools, logbooks, and distribution lists.
  • Provides translation support, proof-reading and editing in French.
  • Conducts program-related research, writing and translation, as needed.
  • Schedules program meetings and participates in project activities as needed.
  • Maintains up to date program databases, files, and contacts.

Procurement, Finance, Budget and Overseeing Travel Support:   

  • Is responsible for contract management and contract execution; including drafting the initial contract proposal language, completing the USIP contract template, entering requisitions or ratifications, invoice and expense processing, and monitoring payments for contractor services against deliverables.
  • Assists in generating financial guidelines for program staff and in delivering trainings on finance and procurement topics, as needed.
  • Reviews financial reporting from external partners and contractors against deliverables, including collecting, reviewing and approving financial supporting documents (receipts) for accuracy and compliance.
  • Maintains up to date versions of existing financial tools and templates within the JSD Financial Monitoring Toolbox.
  • Helps reconcile the program budget by inputting transactions correctly, obligating funds, processing travel vouchers and reimbursements, and tracking the budget using financial software such as the FMS, PxQ and Concur applications
  • Oversees administrative travel processes for domestic and international travel, including travel authorizations, advances, cash requests, vouchers and reimbursements.

Event Planning:  

  • Coordinates all logistical arrangements for program events at HQ and overseas, including reserving venues, developing invitations, monitoring RSVPs, ordering food and supplies, arranging room set-up, distribution of cash per diems, and serving as the main point-of-contact for attendees.
  • As needed, coordinates overseas regional events by working closely with the Regional Events Contractor, and monitoring the implementation of related contracts, vendors and activities.
  • Develops promotional, logistical and informational descriptions of events for internal USIP staff members and external guests.
  • Assists in managing participants’ lists and related protocol.
  • Oversees domestic and international travel and overnight accommodations for event participants.   

Performs Other Duties as Assigned. 


  • Bachelor’s degree (Masters preferred) in international relations, political science, public policy, economics or a related field required.
  • Two (2) or more years related program support or administrative experience to become familiar with general personnel practices, accounting and budgeting principles, and coordination of program activities required.
  • Excellent writing and communication skills.
  • Working proficiency in French is required.
  • Familiarity with accounting and budget backstopping and demonstrated attention to detail required.
  • Strong skills in the Microsoft Office Suite, particularly MS Word, MS Outlook, and MS Excel is required. Strong computer skills in financial systems is preferred.
  • Strong time management skills with the ability to prioritize work and meet deadlines.
  • Experience organizing conferences and meetings overseas and overseeing international travel arrangements preferred.

Application instructions

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