Executive Director, Jacobs Institute for Innovation in Education

Job description

The School of Leadership and Education Sciences (SOLES) seeks an entrepreneurial leader to direct its renowned Jacobs Institute for Innovation in Education (JI). SOLES houses nationally accredited academic programs, institutes, and centers. Its vision is to be a vibrant and diverse community for innovation, cultivating academic excellence, and developing socially responsible global learners. The School’s academic departments offer 10 degree programs to over 1,000 undergraduate and graduate students. It has 12 centers and institutes that connect students and faculty across departmental, school, and university boundaries.

The Jacobs Institute for Innovation in Education (JI) is dedicated to leveraging educational innovation and technology to redesign learning and close opportunity gaps in a changing world. JI seeks an Executive Director (ED) who is an innovative and nationally recognized leader in the field of educational innovation, technology and equity. The ED will be the external face of JI, creating and strengthening partnerships with leaders in local, regional, and national educational innovation and technology communities, as well as with school districts, nonprofit organizations, business and industry, and policy makers. The ED should have a strong record of success in seeking and receiving government and foundation grants, a proven ability to secure contracts with public and private entities, and demonstrated success in securing philanthropic funding from individuals, corporations, and foundations.

The internal facing duties of the ED include leading a team of research associates, leadership and professional learning specialists, and administrative staff; ensuring successful delivery of high quality research and professional learning; interfacing with faculty and administrators from across SOLES and the university; and designing and leading initiatives that align with the strategic priorities of the institute, SOLES, and USD. The ED will oversee JI’s budget and ensure long-term financial sustainability. The ED reports directly to the Dean of SOLES.

Key Responsibilities

  • Facilitate the development and implementation of a plan for JI’s growth and ongoing fiscal sustainability. This should be comprised of diversified funding streams, including national and regional public and private grants, corporate and individual gifts, and service contracts with school districts and private entities.
  • Work collaboratively with SOLES and USD moves management team in development activities.
  • Develop community stakeholder relationships in order to market JI services, attract funding, and increase the institute’s profile locally and nationally.
  • Cultivate and manage relationships with donors and foundation representatives, locally and nationally, including the named donors for the institute, Irwin and Joan Jacobs.

National/International Thought Leader on Educational Innovation and Technology

  • Position JI as a thought leader in educational innovation and technology, and pedagogical improvement by publishing and speaking to external audiences.
  • Represent JI in educational innovation and technology industry-group conferences, professional associations, and other public venues.
  • Advance, cultivate, and encourage conversations with national and local educational thought leaders, particularly related to pedagogical design and improved learning outcomes for students through the use of emerging classroom technologies.


  • Identify and develop opportunities for collaboration with SOLES and USD faculty.
  • Support the team in the development and implementation of all research and professional learning initiatives and contracts and ensure high quality deliverables to clients.
  • Oversee Institutional Review Board submissions for all JI projects involving human subjects.
  • Work with the Assistant Dean for Finance and Administration in SOLES to develop JI’s annual forecast, manage funding, and ensure financial sustainability.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree required, doctoral degree strongly preferred.
  • Demonstrated strong commitment to diversity, inclusion, and social justice.
  • Demonstrated track record of funding and stewarding education and/or innovation programs through large-scale grants from national foundations, government grants, and individuals.
  • Demonstrated success in leading local and national educational innovation and technology initiatives.
  • Broad awareness of the issues and challenges confronting K-12 education and experience with the challenges of introducing educational innovation and technology practices.
  • Demonstrated success in cultivating business relationships, educational partnerships, and executing contracts with schools and school systems.
  • Active engagement with networks in the educational innovation and technology sector, including relationships with thought leaders, foundation heads, policy makers, and/or key researchers.
  • Excellent leadership, management, interpersonal, and communication skills.
  • Broad awareness of the issues and challenges confronting K-12 education, particularly related to educational inequities, and experience with the challenges of introducing educational technologies and innovative educational practices.
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively with a wide range of audiences, including practitioners, academics, researchers, funders, policy makers, and thought leaders.
  • Experience managing and developing staff.

Anticipated Start Date
The Executive Director will be expected to take on full-time responsibilities for leadership of the Jacobs Institute by August 1, 2018. Appointment is renewable at the discretion of the University and dependent upon continued funding of center projects.

Qualified candidates should submit a cover letter and CV through this link www.sandiego.edu/jobs (Job#: IRC28118). Review of applications will begin June 30, 2018 and continue until the position is filled. The University of San Diego is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity and inclusion and is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the campus community.

Electronic inquiries may be addressed to:
Dean, School of Leadership and Education Sciences
[email protected]




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Job No:
Posted: 5/17/2018
Application Due: 7/16/2018
Work Type: