Investigative Research Fellow, New Commonwealth Fund


Department: Programs 

Reports To: President, New Commonwealth Racial Equity and Social Justice Fund

FLSA Classification: Exempt      FTE: .5 to 1

Supervises: None

Position Budgeted: $35 - $45 hourly

Position Summary:

The Investigative Research Fellow will design and lead an analysis that tracks the key inflection points for the classroom to prison pipeline for the most marginalized racial groups of children. Specifically, this investigation will focus on a continuum of experiences for young people as they move through systems and experiences including: a) involvement in the DCF system; b) experiencing housing instability; c) navigating parental or caregiver loss (including incarceration); and d) seeking emancipation as an adolescent. The analysis should answer “What are the specific inflection points where an intervention would interrupt this cycle and articulate the type of investment that New Commonwealth Racial Equity and Social Justice Fund (NCF) can foster, contribute to, influence and impact directly?”  

Reporting to the President, the fellow will be part of a collaborative, diverse, curious, and adaptable team that wants to dismantle systemic racism. We ask tough questions to help inspire and drive change. In addition to the analysis outlined above, the person in this role will provide relevant and collated data on the landscape of our work including, but not limited to, top policy impact areas, best practices, and local/national statistics that will help focus our strategies to dismantle systemic racism. The Investigative Research Fellow will act as a thought partner for NCF leaders while also ensuring collaborative partnership with other key stakeholders engaged in connected research.

This is a 1-year position, with the possibility of extension.   

Essential Functions:

  • Lead Research Projects: 
    • In collaboration with the NCF President, determine the appropriate focus for research projects, both long term and short term, to help inform strategy and identify levers that will have the greatest impact on ending systemic racism. Specifically, the initial work will focus on housing instability for youth in alignment with our Pillars of Economic Empowerment and Youth Education, Empowerment, & Civic Engagement;   
    • Develop strategy and vision for each project and drive work from inception to completion; and
    • Apply critical curiosity to lens of the research and the use of data.
  • Partner Collaboration: 
    • Connect and collaborate authentically in community settings with a lens towards deepening our ability to focus on their priority needs;
    • Partner with relevant stakeholders to access and inform their research so as not to duplicate efforts; and
    • Streamline communication between key research partners and the NCF leadership.
  • Presentation Creation: 
    • Prepare project findings presentations in multiple formats depending on the audience. 
  • Support the President in key projects including but not limited to: 
    • Time-sensitive data collation; and 
    • Presentation of key research findings.

Other Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Individuals assigned to this position may perform other duties as assigned.


Preparation, Knowledge, Previous Experience:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent experience;
  • At least two years of relevant work research experience (including internships and summer positions); and
  • Strong research, writing, proofreading and editing skills.

Skills, Abilities, Competencies:

  • Belief in the mission and importance of the efforts of the New Commonwealth Racial Equity and Social Justice Fund;
  • Strong conceptual outlook skills and the ability to produce original ideas;
  • High-level creative thinking and the confidence to use it;
  • Understand that proximity matters and is comfortable working with a diverse group of individuals to meet project objectives within established timelines; 
  • Self-starter who is independently motivated;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills;
  • Excellent proven organization skills, and attention to detail; 
  • Problem-solving attitude;
  • Strong interpersonal and collaborative skills;
  • Strong computer skills utilizing relevant research platforms, and Microsoft Office products including Access, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook and Excel;
  • Demonstrated ability to handle multiple tasks, organize and manage projects with multiple components, and implement complex activities; 
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively move from strategy to details in a seamless way; and
  • Ability to work independently and efficiently in a fast-paced and evolving environment.

Working Conditions & Physical Demands:

  • Ability to sit and/or stand at workstation for long periods of time;
  • Ability to use a computer monitor and keyboard for long periods of time;
  • Ability to work remotely and on-site as required; and
  • Ability to travel across the state to meet with key partners.


The content is intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by persons assigned to this job.  It is not intended to constitute an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required.

External and internal applicants, as well as position incumbents, who are or become disabled as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act or applicable state law, must be able to perform the essential functions of the job (including those listed above) either with or without reasonable accommodation.  Reasonable accommodation, if any, will be determined by management in consultation with the employee on a case-by-case basis.

This job description is intended to be general and may be revised from time to time.  At management’s discretion, the employee may be assigned different or additional duties from time to time.