Associate Director for Community Engagement

Position Summary

The Associate Director for Community Engagement is responsible for leading the Gephardt
Institute’s vision and strategy for fostering robust, impactful, and mutually beneficial community engagement in the St. Louis region
among Washington University undergraduate and graduate/professional students.

This position uplifts Washington
University’s St. Louis Commitment, a university strategic planning priority to be Washington University in St. Louis, for St. Louis,
and with St. Louis. The specific focus of this position is student learning and engagement as a vital component of the university’s
comprehensive St. Louis Commitment. The Gephardt Institute envisions that Washington University students will embrace St. Louis as a vital
part of their education, learn from and collaborate with community partners, and apply their talents to affect positive change in St. Louis.
The Associate Director will lead this strategic priority with a keen focus on the institute’s goals to educate all students for
lifelong engaged citizenship, catalyze partnerships that respond to community needs and priorities, and infuse civic engagement throughout
the Washington University student experience.

This position serves as lead educator on the theory and practice of ethical
community engagement among undergraduate and graduate/professional students, and across academic and co-curricular initiatives, through:
Development and oversight of curriculum and engagement strategies centered on community knowledge; partnership facilitation among St. Louis
civic and community organizations, Washington University students, and Washington University faculty/staff educators; and leadership of St.
Louis summer fellowship programs.

The Associate Director applies the institute’s theory of change, data-informed
strategies, and leading practices in community engagement with attention to initiatives that foster both student learning and community

This position requires a strong commitment to diversity, inclusion, equity, and access. This position also requires a
strong commitment to non-partisanship and to engagement of all Washington University students regardless of their political positions.

Primary Duties & Responsibilities

Leads strategy, curriculum, partnership development, and program
development to foster students’ learning and engagement with the St. Louis community, with attention to knowledge and skills for
ethical engagement. – 50%. 

  • Responsibilities, which are supported by two full-time coordinators, graduate fellows, and
    undergraduate interns.
  • Identifies, cultivates, and sustains strong and trusting relationships with civic/community organizations
    and other strategic partners in the St. Louis region; serve as a key point of contact for civic/community organizations and initiatives
    seeking to engage and partner with students to advance organizational priorities and student learning.
  • Facilitates mutually
    beneficial connections and partnerships with St. Louis civic/community organizations and initiatives, with a focus on building sustainable
    systems, procedures, and communications. These partnerships may be with student-facing programs, individual students, and/or faculty
    teaching civic and community engaged courses.
  • Designs curricula, training, immersive experiences, and other educational/engagement
    programs, with a focus on replicable and scalable initiatives. Drives educational content that uplifts community voices; multiple
    perspectives and narratives; the assets, opportunities, challenges, and complexity of the St. Louis region; Gephardt Institute values; and a
    broad range of strategies and industries that contribute to the progress and vitality of the St. Louis region.
  • Supervises staff
    responsible for new student programs and communications; tailored outreach strategies; events, workshops, presentations, and consultations;
    prospective student/family engagement; and the student to alumni transition.
  • Manages the Civic Engagement Fund grants program to
    cultivate and support impactful community partnerships.
  • Fosters collaboration, coordination, communication, capacity building, and
    shared curricula for St. Louis engagement efforts among student-facing departments, faculty teaching Civic and Community Engaged Courses,
    and academic community engagement hubs.
  • Writes and regularly reviews Memoranda of Understanding to confirm and document community
    partnership agreements.

Oversees St. Louis fellowship programs, with a focus on strategic growth and measurable impact on
community priorities and student learning – 25%. 

  • Supervises a full-time program manager responsible for leading the
    design, curriculum, implementation, evaluation, and scaling of a signature St. Louis fellowship program to cultivate students as civic
    leaders and contribute substantially to regional progress. This signature program will integrate and build on the successes of the current
    Goldman Fellows Program, Beuerlein Fellows Program, and Arts as Civic Engagement. 
  • Facilitates mutually beneficial and
    sustained partnerships to support substantial student internships with nonprofits, government, civic organizations, social enterprise,
    business, or related industries that are pursuing civic change efforts.
  • Collaborates with university partners to integrate students
    with strategic initiatives of the St. Louis Commitment through internships and educational opportunities.
  • Ensures that the
    program’s educational content is aligned across the institute, as described in the section above.
  • Supervises professional and
    student staff responsible for managing programs, facilitating cohort-based student learning, and facilitating strong and trusting
    partnerships with civic/community organizations and initiatives.
  • Supports fundraising and stewardship efforts, including proposal
    writing, donor and prospective donor engagement, reporting, and development of external communication pieces (video, website, external
    collateral, etc.).
  • Oversees documentation of the program that can serve as a replicable model for other colleges/universities and
    for civic/community organizations nationally.

Collaborates and maintains alignment with university efforts associated with the
St. Louis Commitment, including current and future community engagement leaders and hubs. – 10%

  • Identifies and advances
    emergent strategies to integrate student learning and engagement with the St. Louis Commitment and for the Gephardt Institute to contribute
    to the realization of the Commitment. This may include, but is not limited to, leading or supporting expansion of community engagement
    resources and development of a strategy to serve university staff.
  • Coordinates with Gephardt Institute and university colleagues to
    regularly review and modify, and consistently implement, risk management policies and procedures associated with student community

Serves on the Gephardt Institute’s senior leadership team to strategize across all institute functions.
– 15%. 

  • Collaborates with the Associate Director for Civic Engagement, Associate Director for Faculty and Academic
    Engagement, and Associate Director / Chief of Staff to develop and implement integrated student engagement curricula and strategies. This
    includes strong attention to engaging and educating students with marginalized identities, students from low-income backgrounds, and
    students underrepresented in Gephardt Institute programs.
  • Coordinates the institute’s Community Advisory Council, which
    informs the institute’s community engagement plans and strategy.
  • Cultivates and sustains key relationships and partnerships
    with university units including Student Affairs; academic departments and schools; interdisciplinary centers and institutes; Academy for
    Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; Campus Y; Government & Community Relations; General Counsel; Advancement; and University Marketing and
  • Represents the institute at external and internal meetings, committees, special events, and other functions as
    assigned by the Director. 
  • Contributes to initiatives, meetings, and events of the Gephardt Institute, including donor
    cultivation and stewardship, developing strategy and vision for initiatives, planning processes, grant/proposal applications, and special
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Working Conditions

  • Ability to travel to on-
    and off-campus locations for meetings and events.
  • Night and weekend work often required.


Please attach a cover letter with your application.


  • Master’s degree in Social Work, Public Policy, Public Administration, Urban Studies/Planning,
    Non-Profit Management, Education, or a related field.
  • Previous experience in civic/community engagement work and/or work in an
    educational setting, with progressive management and leadership responsibility.
  • Twelve or more years of experience that includes
    both civic/community engagement work and work with undergraduate and graduate students, with progressive management and leadership
  • Substantive knowledge of St. Louis civic/community organizations and initiatives, stakeholders, history, and the
    regional landscape.
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a non-partisan environment. Commitment to maintaining a non-partisan and
    inclusive approach to all educational, programming, outreach, and communication strategies.
  • Substantive experience with multiple
    forms of community engagement, such as community development, non-profit leadership, social services, immersive experiences, community
    organizing, international service, K-12 education, philanthropy, etc.
  • Demonstrated experience and expertise in forming and
    sustaining mutually beneficial community partnerships.
  • Demonstrated experience and track record of success in translating visions
    into plans, scaling programs, and developing and continuously improving systems and procedures.
  • Professional experience in a
    college/university office or youth-serving organization addressing civic engagement, community engagement, and/or community outreach.
  • Substantive knowledge and passion for civic engagement, community engagement, civic learning, community development, community
    partnerships, social change, and/or related areas.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience with curriculum development, program
    development, partnership development, proposal writing, program design and implementation, and evaluation, with special emphasis on
    diversity, equity, inclusion, and access. 
  • Teaching, training, and/or intergroup dialogue facilitation experience with
    adolescents, college students, and/or recent college graduates.
  • Substantive experience supervising professional staff, managing
    others, and/or leading teams.
  • Exceptional curriculum development, program design, and teaching/training skills to facilitate deep
    learning and engagement within a highly diverse, intellectual, and passionate student body.
  • Exceptional writing and editing skills
    with strong attention to both detail and nuance.
  • Strong supervision and relationship management skills, with capacity to lead or
    guide others; function collaboratively in a team-based environment; dialogue across difference; and handle challenging internal and external
    dilemmas or support others through them.
  • Excellent organizational, analytical, problem-solving, project management, and event
    planning skills. Strong time management, attention to detail, ability to manage multiple priorities, and ability to forecast and plan work
    across teams, while maintaining a landscape view of priorities, values, and vision.
  • Demonstrated sensitivity, knowledge, and skills
    for working with issues of power, privilege, identity, racial equity, and cultural humility; and for equipping students, faculty, and staff
    for responsible engagement with marginalized communities and complex civic issues.
  • Commitment to the Gephardt Institute’s
    values of Inquiry, Empathy, Collaboration, Integrity, Equity, and Action.
  • Energy, vision, initiative, creativity, empathy,
    humility, tolerance for ambiguity, ability to embrace and navigate change, sound judgment, diplomacy, tact, and sense of humor.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with ability to collaborate and build relationships with a racially, culturally, and socioeconomically
    diverse and broad range of stakeholders, including students, faculty, staff, alumni, community partners, civic leaders, donors, prospective
    donors, and executive-level administrators and external advisors.
  • Enthusiasm and ability to work in and provide leadership for a
    dynamic environment with multiple functions, audiences, and priorities.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead from a middle management
  • Ability and willingness to work frequent evening and weekend hours in service to students, community partners, and the
    institute’s mission.
  • Ability to travel to off-site locations for meetings, events, and other community engagement

Required Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree in related field and five years of professional
experience or master’s degree in related field and three years of professional experience.

EEO/AA Statement
Washington University is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to an individual’s sex, race, color, religion, age, disability status, protected veteran status, national or ethnic origin, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation. Women, minorities, protected veterans and the disabled are strongly encouraged to apply.

Diversity Statement
Washington University is dedicated to building a diverse community of individuals who are committed to contributing to an inclusive environment – fostering respect for all and welcoming individuals from diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives. Individuals with a commitment to these values are encouraged to apply.

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