Director of Neighborhood Schools Program

Job description

Hyde Park Campus

7068010 Neighborhood Schools

About the Unit
The Office of Civic Engagement (OCE) serves as both a champion and steward of University civic engagement activities, providing leadership, coordination, and support, as needed. OCE was created in 2008 to incorporate the Office of Community Affairs and the functions of local and state government relations, while simultaneously expanding the University's intellectual, economic, and cultural engagement with the city of Chicago. In 2012, the University's Office of Federal Relations shifted under the OCE umbrella, and the Civic Knowledge Project and the University Community Service Center were added in 2016. In 2017, OCE was restructured into OCE & External Affairs with the addition of Corporate Relations, Business Diversity, and Commercial Real Estate Operations. Today, OCE is focused on expanding the University's impact and influence across the full geographic spectrum of University, Neighborhood, City, Region, Nation, and Globe. OCE leads the institution's efforts in our community engagement and neighborhood impact, facilitates research and education-related connections, and leads a number of urban initiatives and programs that advance the priorities of the institution. The office works closely with internal and external stakeholders on a range of quality of life initiatives, including public education, community development, workforce development, arts and culture, public safety, employer-assisted housing, civic partnerships, and research and educational collaborations, and supports the efforts of the University to advance our leadership in innovation and entrepreneurship both locally and globally. A key program in the Office of Civic Engagement is the Neighborhood Schools Program (NSP), which was founded in 1976. From the beginning, the mission has been to engage the community in impactful ways, mostly by facilitating partnerships between University of Chicago students and our local schools to help them strengthen their ability to meet the needs of schoolchildren on the South Side. University of Chicago students gain valuable skills through their NSP placements while enriching their own understanding of how the urban education system functions. In the course of their work with our partner sites, they become integral members of the community in the schools and classrooms, and they serve as near-peer mentors and role models for younger students. Since 2010, 350-500 University students worked or volunteered in the community through NSP annually. In the past five years, NSP has developed new programming partnerships to strengthen the program's capacity to support university student innovation as well as to bring new resources into the neighborhood around early childhood education and STEAM partnerships.

Job Information

Job Summary:

Director of the Neighborhood Schools Program will be responsible for the operations of the Neighborhood Schools Program, which partners with local schools and nonprofits to place University of Chicago students in roles that add to the capacity of their mission of supporting public school education and youth development. The Director is also responsible for ensuring NSP supports the development of the University students as as they gain exposure to the education and nonprofit sector professions.

This position will report to the Executive Director for Student Civic Engagement Initiatives, in the Office of Civic Engagement, and serve as a key member of the Student Civic Engagement team, which helps to coordinate the development and stewardship of the OCE approach to Student Civic Engagement programming across campus. The Director of the Neighborhood Schools Program will also work closely with the broader Office of Civic Engagement team to connect education focused student civic engagement to broader community engagement aims at the neighborhood level.

The role will have three direct reports: an assistant director for student engagement, an operations manager, and a transportation coordinator. In addition, there are two grant-funded program-specific direct-reports through partnerships with GEARUP and Jumpstart.


  • Serve as primary manager of partnerships with a number of local schools and education-related community organizations Build key relationships with the local school district, local school partners, organizations, and universities engaged in similar work.
  • Build on-campus partnership, programming, and events to support the student development of the University of Chicago student participants in alignment with NSP efforts.
  • Create infrastructure and capacity for expanding and sustaining programs and resources including seeking, identifying, and securing external grants, contracts, and partnerships as well as strengthening institutional support for the program is a key responsibility.
  • Strengthen alumni connections to steward the Neighborhood Schools Program and increase alumni engagement
  • Develop and implement strategies to link local schools to other University resources and monitor program implementation to ensure strong results for all stakeholders.
  • Increase awareness of the University's work in education outreach locally and nationally.
  • Create metrics that track and evaluate the University's contribution to local schools.
  • Partner with external constituents to ensure that NSP expectations are clearly defined.
  • Manage and supervise a program and administrative staff team.
  • Work closely with the OCE team on budget planning, fundraising, proposal development and program design and implementation.
  • Identify and implement opportunities for program innovation, including increasing the level of student-led programming.

  • Ability to successfully interact (i.e., engaging personality that instills trust and credibility) with a broad range of stakeholders: Principals, Teachers, University Students, Faculty and Staff.
  • Knowledge of South Side communities.
  • Excellent communication (listening and speaking), diplomacy, discretion, and presentation skills.
  • Ability to lead and work in a team environment.
  • Ability to work collaboratively in a fluid organizational environment.
  • Ability to work independently with a high degree of initiative.
  • Ability to interact with senior-level administration and faculty on complex issues.
  • Ability to maintain calm and courteous demeanor and to work productively despite heavy workload, competing priorities, complex problems, and tight deadlines required.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite, (Excel, Word, and PowerPoint) and Google Docs required.
  • Proficiency in Social Media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) required.

Additional Requirements

Education, Experience or Certifications:

  • Bachelor's degree required
  • Master's degree preferred

  • A minimum of 8 years of previous administrative experience (or equivalent) required.
  • 5 or more years of Education, Student Advising, or Youth Development experience required.
  • Experience working in a university setting strongly preferred.
  • 5 or more years working on University partnerships with Schools/Community Agencies preferred.
  • Experience developing grant proposals and program reports strongly preferred.

Required Documents:
  • Resume
  • Cover Letter
  • Reference list

NOTE: When applying, all required documents MUST be uploaded under the Resume/CV section of the application

Benefit Eligibility

Pay Frequency

Pay Range
Depends on Qualifications

Scheduled Weekly Hours


Job is Exempt?

Drug Test Required?

Does this position require incumbent to operate a vehicle on the job?

Health Screen Required?

Posting Date

Remove from Posting On or Before

Posting Statement:

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information please see the University's Notice of Nondiscrimination.

Staff Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773-702-5800 or submit a request via Applicant Inquiry Form.

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Full time

About Us
The University of Chicago is an urban research university that has driven new ways of thinking since 1890. Our commitment to free and open inquiry draws inspired scholars to our global campuses, where ideas are born that challenge and change the world.

We empower individuals to challenge conventional thinking in pursuit of original ideas. Students in the College develop critical, analytic, and writing skills in our rigorous, interdisciplinary core curriculum. Through graduate programs, students test their ideas with UChicago scholars, and become the next generation of leaders in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.

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Job No:
Posted: 8/10/2018
Application Due: 8/18/2018
Work Type: