Director, Alumni Network

Position Location: San Diego, CA

Mission

It is Reality Changers vision is to create universal access to college, one community at a time by preparing youth to become first-generation college graduates and agents of change in their communities. We aim to scale our programs so that we can provide today’s youth with the academic support, financial assistance, and leadership training to become tomorrow’s college graduates. We invite YOU to join us in this journey so together we can succeed!

Position Overview

The Reality Changers Alumni Network aims to create lifelong relationships between Reality Changers (RC) and its 3,000+ program graduates by offering college and career guidance counseling, access to resources via college partnerships, and continued professional engagement.

The Director of the Alumni Network is responsible for developing, implementing, and leading a comprehensive strategy across key programmatic areas toward the goal of increasing the college and career success of Reality Changers’ program graduates. These programmatic areas include:

  1. Direct Services (e.g. college and career guidance counseling, financial aid assistance)
  2. College Partnerships (e.g. steward universities where program alumni attend school)
  3. Alumni Engagement (e.g. communications, events, alumni leadership, fundraising)

The ideal candidate is an entrepreneurial, strategic, and versatile professional with demonstrated experience in higher education, nonprofit, and/or student success programs. In particular, this means someone who deeply understands the wide variety of challenges faced by first generation college students and is capable of mobilizing program graduates to engage with both in-house and on-campus opportunities.

In addition, the Director will work with the senior team to ensure alignment of programs with the mission, vision, and goals of Reality Changers; this includes enhancing data-driven decision-making, collaborating on alumni outreach and fundraising communications, and oversight of future alumni-led initiatives.

The Director will report to the Vice President of Community Impact and Partnerships and engage with the CEO & President and Board of Directors to achieve and expand goals. The position sits on the organization’s leadership team.

Goals / Measures of Success

  • Implement and oversee programs, curricula, and student opportunities that result in improved alumni outcomes–especially college transfer and college graduation rates
  • Serve at least 250 students annually through direct advising sessions (based on a team of three).
  • Demonstrate a 25% increase in the number of unduplicated program graduates served annually through tailored programs, activities, and events
  • Continue building the Advisory Council and an annual alumni conference (virtual or in-person)
  • Increase organizational capacity to track program graduate data and to share programmatic impact on both an internal and external basis
  • Develop key strategic benchmarks and programming that is aligned to strategic priorities
  • Manage, coach, and support two direct reports in order for them to achieve their goals

Responsibilities

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  1. Lead and enhance Alumni Network strategy and programs
  • Develop the strategic direction of all alumni programs as one of the key leaders of the organization— manage program services, operations, annual budget, and alumni fundraising
  • Work in collaboration with the leadership team in to achieve goals, priorities, benchmarks, and timelines represented in 5-year strategic plan
  • Stay current on the research/dialogue regarding first generation college students, college access and persistence, etc. and use this knowledge to inform Reality Changers’ services to alumni (both in the short and long-term)
  • Be “the face” of the Alumni Network to external stakeholders; regularly attend/represent Reality Changers at university and community colleges and in other key meetings and events.
  • Oversee and evaluate all alumni advising and mentorship programs to ensure they meet intended outcomes
  • Oversee and guide program curriculum development to ensure effectiveness of content and materials delivered to student
  • Lead new initiatives based on alumni feedback, research, and/or other needs
  1. Sustain and strengthen alumni partnership opportunities with schools and universities:
  • Oversee the College Ambassador Program, a university-based counseling service by which college advisors/counselors are dedicated to RC alumni enrolled at those particular higher education institutions.
  • Oversee and execute the communication process of university partners signing MOUs and/or professional service agreements, ensuring agreements are accurate, complete, and up-to-date.
  • Oversee the implementation and coordination of major program offerings and initiatives including: Alumni Big/Lil Mentorship Program, RC Real Talk Workshop Series, Winter Reunion for Alumni Network, Alumni Care Packages, Career Exploration, and other programs as assigned by VP.
  • Steward relationships with university and college partners, alumni-focused donors, and other supporters that result in increased student opportunities and/or funding.
  • Help students identify and utilize academic support services available through campus or local resources.
  • Oversee data submissions to university and college admissions and student services departments regarding alumni student information
  • Collaborate with VP of Community Impact and Partnerships to develop new partnerships, particularly with local community colleges to assist students transitioning into four-year universities
  1. Increase student and alumni engagement with the Alumni Network:
  • Establish and build relationships with a wide range of alumni—locally, regionally, and nationally; maintain regular communication with alumni through various channels
  • Implement and lead new alumni conference by 2023; tailor design to facilitate college and career exposure, professional development, alumni networking and engagement
  • Develop and launch an inaugural Alumni Advisory Council (also called “Alumni Board”) that will support the strategic initiatives of the organization, enhance alumni outreach and engagement, and provide a formal channel for alumni leadership and professional development
  • Oversee financial award distribution to graduates and inform future opportunities for scholarship and in- kind disbursement to program graduates
  • Oversee Alumni Network communications and analyze how program graduates engage with promoted alumni benefits, upcoming events, volunteer opportunities, fundraising opportunities, and other ways to stay engaged with Reality Changers
  • Be available for students during designated office hours and seasonal high-demand times (May and November)
  • Periodically survey alumni to solicit feedback and to identify the changing needs of the students and potential risk factors to success
  1. Team management and operations
  • Define annual success goals for the Alumni Network team, and regularly track progress against selected metrics; motivate each direct report to execute and evaluate program goals through clear expectation setting, collaboration, and accountability
  • Coach and develop staff to build their own expertise grounded in best practices e.g. college persistence, college and grad application advising, etc.
  • Ensure accurate and complete alumni database records; partner with operations staff to uphold processes that result in data completeness, quality, and timeliness
  • Collaborate with VPs to ensure staff operate in compliance with organizational policies and internal procedures as well as fiscal/grantor requirements
  • Collaborate with VPs to ensure that staff have tools, training, and support needed to perform duties
  • Regularly meet with 8-12th grade teams to ensure alignment of programming and to identify alumni needs prior to graduation, particularly in regards to seniors
  • Recruit, hire, train and develop future Alumni Network staff
  • Perform other duties as needed

Education & Experience

  • Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited four-year college or university is required. A master’s in a relevant field such as education or student services is preferred.
  • 3+ years of progressive experience in managing alumni relations and external affairs, with demonstrated accomplishment in fostering high engagement with first generation college students and young professionals is required.
  • Experience with planning and executing major events is required.
  • Team management/supervisory experience is required.
  • Demonstrated experience in student academic advising is required; strong familiarity with DACA, financial aid applications, and 2 to 4-yr college transfer requirements is highly preferred.
  • A valid driver’s license or reliable transportation to and from Reality Changers’ locations and related events.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, including proven success in presenting ideas and concepts effectively and persuasively.
  • Knowledge and proficiency in Microsoft Office, G Suite, email systems, and social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn). Experience with Salesforce is a plus.
  • Ability to relate well, engage, and motivate various types of people, especially students of different backgrounds and cultures.
  • Exceptional organization skills and dedication to detail, with experience managing multiple deadlines with an outcomesoriented approach.
  • Entrepreneurial approach; demonstrates a growth mindset and ability to take a concept from ideation to execution.
  • Must be highly adaptive, versatile, and responsible, even when confronted with ambiguity.
  • Willingness to take initiative and do what is necessary to complete the job.

Additional Expectations

  • Represent Reality Changers in a positive manner in all public and private settings.
  • Provide positive encouragement to students in all public and private settings.
  • Instill a sense of empowerment in alumni to uphold Reality Changers’ expectations of them and to serve as role models for current students in the program.
  • Exemplify commitment to Reality Changers’ mission and values.

Travel & Hours

  • Occasional travel will be expected.
  • Frequent weekend and evening work will be expected.

Work Environment

This job operates in a professional office environment. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, and filing cabinets. Due to COVID-19, Reality Changers employees are currently operating in a hybrid model–working in-person from the office and remotely from home.

Physical Requirements

This job requires the ability to sit, use hands and arms to perform repetitive motions. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, and the ability to adjust focus. It requires moderate dexterity, application of basic skills (calculator, keyboard, hand-eye coordination, etc.) and the ability to bend or stand as necessary.

Position Range

This position is full-time, exempt, with a salary range of $74,000 – $78,000 annually. Salary is commensurate with experience. Benefits for this position include a 403(b) plan, medical, dental and vision coverage, flexible spending accounts, life insurance, paid holidays and vacation.

To Apply

To apply, please submit the following to jobs@realitychangers.org by July 20, 2022:

  • A thoughtful cover letter outlining your interest in the position and how your qualifications align with the above requirements and Reality Changers’ focus and mission
  • Current resume

Interested candidates are encouraged to apply as early as possible as interviews will be scheduled on a rolling basis. Anticipated start date is August 15, 2022.

Reality Changers serves first generation youth from low-income backgrounds and from groups who are traditionally underrepresented on college campuses—such as Black, Latinx, Indigenous, LGBT+, Immigrant and/or Undocumented communities. Because we believe that these communities must be centered in the work we do, we strongly encourage applications from people with these identities and/or backgrounds.

Reality Changers is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law.

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