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Executive Director of Tennessee Grow Your Own Center, UT System Office of Academic Affairs and ...

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville, TN

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Job Details

Executive Director of Tennessee Grow Your Own Center, UT System Office of Academic Affairs and Student Success (2-yr Grant-Funded Position)
Market Range 16

About the UT System

The University of Tennessee is comprised of campuses at Knoxville, Chattanooga, Martin, and Pulaski; the Health Science Center at Memphis; the Space Institute at Tullahoma; and the statewide Institute of Agriculture and Institute for Public Service.

The UT System has a presence in each of Tennessee’s 95 counties. Through the combined force of education, research and outreach, the University serves students, business and industry, schools, governments, organizations, and citizens statewide.

The University of Tennessee System, through its multiple campuses and institutes, serves the people of Tennessee and beyond through the discovery, communication, and application of knowledge. The System is committed to providing undergraduate, graduate, and professional education programs in a diverse learning environment that prepares students to be leaders in a global society. The UT System’s delivery of education, discovery, outreach, and public service contributes to the economic, social, and environmental well-being of all Tennesseans.

The Opportunity

The University of Tennessee (UT) System seeks a highly qualified K-12 leader to serve as executive director of the state’s Grow Your Own Teacher Apprenticeship Initiative. The Tennessee Department of Education (TDOE) recently selected the UT System as its lead teacher apprenticeship program partner. Tennessee is the first state in the nation approved by the U.S. Department of Labor to create permanent teaching apprenticeship programs. TDOE has awarded the University of Tennessee a $20M grant to serve as the nation’s model and selected UT for its leading educator preparation programs, presence in all 95 counties, culture of innovation, and commitment to helping the state address grand challenges. The UT System has four undergraduate institutions (UT Knoxville, UT Chattanooga, UT Martin, and UT Southern) that offer Educator Preparation Programs (EPPs) across Tennessee’s three grand divisions, East, Middle, and West, as well as in urban and rural communities. The executive director will report directly to the Vice President of Academic Affairs and Student Success in consultation with the Senior Director of the Grow Your Own initiative.  

The ideal candidate will be an experienced K-12 educator, administrator, or leader with a passion for supporting teachers and a desire to improve public education in Tennessee. The executive director will fill a complex role that requires excellent communication skills, enthusiasm for leading an innovative new program, the ability to manage multiple project components across the state, and a willingness to engage, collaborate with, and support numerous stakeholder groups. Applicants are encouraged to review all position requirements before applying. Salary is based on a combination of professional experience and qualifications at Market Range 16. The position is grant-funded for two years with the possibility of extension depending on available funding and job performance during the appointment period. 

Position responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

Program Management: The executive director will:

    design, develop, and execute a successful program in collaboration with campus project leads, systemwide steering committee, TDOE, reporting staff, vendors, and other key stakeholders;oversee all aspects of project components from inception to completion, ensuring the project remains on schedule;develop and maintain effective relationships with Local Education Agencies (LEAs), TDOE, UT System leadership, statewide EPPs, state and national partners, and other relationships to enhance the reach and success of the program;manage day-to-day aspects of the program and its ongoing evaluation;assume responsibility for the accuracy and quality of all published materials and web content; and (6) develop guidelines and procedures as needed to ensure the successful execution of the project.
Evaluation, Reporting, and Communication: The executive director will:

    identify metrics/key performance indicators and develop an assessment plan for the program;regularly review metrics and feedback to evaluate the project’s progress and success;recommend necessary modifications or future interventions;serve as the public face of the initiative;provide updates and presentations to leadership or other stakeholders as needed;act as the primary liaison between campus project teams, LEAs, statewide EPPs, and UT System staff to communicate project deadlines, progress and needs; andcommunicate clearly to all team members associated with the project concerning goals, scheduling, and resource allocation.  
Budget Maintenance: The executive director will:

    work collaboratively with campus- and system-level budget directors to ensure adherence to budget-related timelines, proper reporting, and allocation of funding on the appropriate schedule;identify and recommend needed adjustments to the budget; anddemonstrate flexibility in necessary changes to ensure the success of the project.
The Executive Director of Tennessee Grow Your Own Center will support a culture of engagement and belonging by treating others with dignity and respect at all times, and by exhibiting conduct that reflects a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. The successful candidate is expected to contribute in measurable ways to the systemwide mission and fully embrace the systemwide Be One UT Values.

Required Education & Qualifications:
The successful candidate will have a a Master's degree in Education with at least 5 years of experience in public K-12 education as a classroom teacher or administrator. The candidate must have knowledge of and be able to draw on experience in K-12 education in Tennessee and be informed about the Grow Your Own initiative. Must be able to show past experience and demonstrate skill in developing and overseeing large and complex budgets. The candidate must have the ability to lead a diverse and dispersed team with numerous stakeholder groups and must demonstrate experience building successful partnerships and leading collaborative efforts. The executive director must be skilled at using a variety of online collaboration tools (e.g., Zoom, SharePoint, Teams) and possess strong skills in written communication, listening, and public speaking. 

Preferred Qualifications
The preferred candidate will have a doctoral degree and ten years of experience with increasing levels of responsibility in the field of education at the federal, state, or local level, higher education, or related field; at least one year of classroom experience at the K-12 level; and demonstrated ability to develop and manage a large budget and familiarity with grant-funded initiatives and operations.  The candidate will have knowledge of grant-funded initiatives and reporting requirements, student success challenges and needs, as well as the structure of and key organizations involved in Tennessee public education. The ideal candidate will be able to draw on prior experience supporting the growth and development of teachers, educators, and K-12 administrators (in addition to student success).

Application Process
For full consideration applications should be accompanied by a letter of interest, resume and three references. Review of applications will begin immediately.      

The position is grant-funded for two years with the possibility of extension depending on available funding and job performance during the appointment period. Compensation for the position will be competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience withing the market range. 

The University offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits and much more. Additionally, Tennessee residents do not pay a state income tax. For more information on the University of Tennessee’s benefits, visit

Job: Executive/Administrative
Primary Location: US-Tennessee-knoxville
Organization: Academic Affairs
Schedule: Full-time
Job Posting: Jul 14, 2022, 12:34:46 PM


Working at The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Founded in 1794, the University of Tennessee is one of the nation’s oldest and most storied public universities. Based in Knoxville, Tennessee’s flagship land-grant institution includes the statewide Institute of Agriculture and the Space Institute in Tullahoma. The university embodies excellence in teaching, discovery, scholarship, research, creative activity, outreach, and engagement. Known as the Volunteers, we lead with a spirit of selflessness, empathy, and courage, and strive to be champions for diversity, equity, and inclusion

UT Knoxville is a Research 1 university with 11 academic colleges and more than 900 programs of study. With an enrollment of more than 30,000 students, our academic programs are repeatedly ranked top in their class. The university co-manages Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the country’s most prominent national lab, driving innovation in advanced manufacturing and materials, national security, and more. We are closely connected with our communities through outreach and extension efforts across Tennessee and through partnerships with non-profits, corporations, and industries—regionally, nationally, and around the globe.

The city of Knoxville is nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. The modern, thriving community is surrounded by gorgeous lakes and hundreds of miles of walking, hiking, and biking trails. Situated along the banks of the Tennessee River, our beautiful features an eclectic music scene, internationally recognized festivals, unique restaurants, and a robust offering of diverse cultural activities. Knoxville is located within a day’s drive of Atlanta, Nashville, Asheville, Charlotte, Louisville, Cincinnati, Memphis, Chicago, and Washington D.C.

Knoxville and the surrounding counties have a population of more than 850,000 people. The region houses many leading corporations and organizations, including Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Pilot/Flying J, the Tennessee Valley Authority, and Regal Cinemas, along with HGTV, Food Network, and other networks owned by Discovery Inc.

As a member of the UT family, you will be surrounded by top-notch faculty, staff, and students from around the world. You will be part of a diverse campus community that is passionate about changing the world and cheering for the Vols on game day.

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