Community Development Fellow

Housing & Community Development
Part-Time Temporary (up to 19 hours/week)
Salary Range: $25/Hour

The City of Chelsea, through its Department of Housing and Community Development, is seeking candidates for the position of Community Development Fellow.

DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES (Full description follows).

The selected candidate will support a nascent anti-displacement community planning initiative, funded through the MassHousing Neighborhood HUB Program, anchored by the Shurtleff-Bellingham Neighborhood. Bordering the downtown and bordered by the Silver Line and Chelsea Greenway, the Shurtleff/Bellingham neighborhood encompasses dense multifamily housing stock, a multicultural population, and a network of parks, pedestrian infrastructure, and community amenities. Upward market pressures, the paucity of adequate tenancy preservation policies, the absence of affordable housing, and public policy that is inimical to increasing housing stability afflict countless households in Chelsea.

In the Shurtleff/Bellingham Neighborhood, displacement is precipitously growing, compounded by the existing MBTA Silver Line and planned extension to Everett, Somerville, and Cambridge. Uprooting families, while generationally impacting the health and wellbeing of residents, the patterns of displacement unevenly affect the most vulnerable residents. The City anticipates that the extension of the Silver Line will accelerate displacement and gentrification. As such, the Department is concentrating efforts in the neighborhood to preserve affordably priced housing opportunities, increase affordable housing production, address substandard housing conditions, and deploy social infrastructure that promotes long term stability and community wellness. Through these efforts, the Department seeks to develop local, interdisciplinary strategies to proactively identify and preserve naturally occurring affordable housing, as well as to develop responsive strategies to support the preservation of stable tenancies through direct engagement and equitable access to housing resources.

The Community Development Fellow will directly support the execution of Phase 1 of this community planning initiative, primarily consisting of data collection, spatial analysis, real estate market analyses, and community planning work. Duties may include, but are not limited to:

  • Conduct research, including data collection, processing, and analysis, spatial analysis, and GIS mapping, utilizing publicly available sources of data, and prepare reports, dashboards, and visualizations, such as infographics, maps, and charts;
  • Conduct research on real estate market activity and develop a tool to automate data collection, processing, and visualization;
  • Assist with the development of site suitability assessments to identify priority locations for affordable housing acquisition, development, and rehabilitation;
  • Support the establishment of a series of metrics to enable the tracking of displacement, household mobility, and socioeconomic conditions at the neighborhood scale over time;
  • In consultation with the City’s Communications and Community Engagement Manager, assist with culturally competent civic engagement campaigns by preparing materials, supporting meeting logistics, assisting with focus groups, and augmenting staff;
  • Alongside Department staff, attend meetings and collaborate respectfully and inclusively with stakeholders and community partners on various project components, soliciting and integrating partner insight, as directed by the Department;
  • Assist with the design and implementation of community development initiatives that address racial and economic disparities;
The Community Development Fellow will gain an understanding of the full range of urban community and economic development and housing programs offered by the City, as well as tools, techniques, and strategies employed.

  • Current student pursuing a degree in Public Policy, GIS, Data Science, Urban Planning, or a related field. Graduate students are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Interest in urban planning, urban policy, civic engagement, and economic development;
  • Prior academic and/or professional experience with urban or regional planning theory, tools, and techniques preferred, but not required;
  • Commitment to supporting the City's anti-displacement and community development goals and carrying out work in a sensitive, respectful, and culturally competent manner;
  • Willingness to travel locally in Chelsea and work occasional evenings or weekends for work-related events, including public meetings and events;
  • Ability to effectively communicate with the public, one-on-one, and in interdisciplinary groups;
  • Ability to present project updates and information in a variety of formats, accessible to multiple audiences;
  • Ability to work well with individuals and groups from diverse backgrounds;
  • Demonstrated proficiency in ArcGIS, Excel, Word, and related Google drive applications. Proficiency with Adobe Creative Suite (Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign) preferred to design and edit marketing materials.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of SQL, R, Python, & the employment of spatial data science principles;
  • Demonstrated proficiency with data collection tools and systems, as well as GIS for spatial analysis, mapping, and visualization;
  • Bilingual (English and Spanish) preferred

Standard office environment. This position is based in Chelsea City Hall with the possibility of some remote work. Fluorescent lighting and air conditioning. Moderate noise level. Occasionally, tasks may be performed in outdoor settings, such as the central business district and residential neighborhoods.

The Department intends to hire the Fellow for a period commencing in late Spring and ending when school resumes in September, with the opportunity to extend, depending upon budget availability.

Please send a City of Chelsea application and resume to the Human Resources Dept., City of Chelsea, 500 Broadway, Room 301, Chelsea, MA 02150 or email

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The City of Chelsea is an Equal Opportunity Employer