Phoenix Collegiate Academy, Director of Alumni Support (2017-2018) (Phoenix, AZ)
Date published: 8-Aug-2017
The Director of Alumni Support is the “CEO” of ensuring our alumni matriculate to college, persist in earning their college degree and become leaders in their community.
What We Believe
We believe that all children, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, or socio-economics, are capable of learning at high levels. We believe that demographics do not determine destiny. We believe high expectations, strong foundational skills, and excellent teaching will change lives.
We are committed to ensuring that our students gain the tools to be admitted to, and excel at top colleges and universities. We will achieve this goal by:
- Pushing students to higher expectations and achievement.
- Increasing our learning time.
- Providing a seamless path from Kindergarten to college entry.
- Recruiting and Training the best teachers.
Phoenix Collegiate Academy was conceived to address the severe academic underperformance and low college matriculation rates of the student populations of the South Mountain area. We envisioned a free, public school alternative where all students would be held to the highest academic and behavioral expectations and college would become a realistic goal.
The school received its first charter from the Arizona State Charter Board in January of 2009. We opened our doors to sixth grade students in July of 2009 driven by a clear mission: to prepare students to succeed in college and be leaders in our community. In 2012 we began serving High School students and opened a new High School building in 2013. In 2015, we began to serve grades K-12 and opened a new Elementary building in 2016.
Phoenix Collegiate Academy is committed to the academic success of our students. Our rigorous curriculum, high quality instructors, and focus on character building led to 84% of our first graduating class being accepted into a 4-year college or university. Of these students, 95% have enrolled at a post-secondary institution and persisted through their first year; far exceeding national, state, and local averages. Even so, we aren’t satisfied.
Our commitment to our students doesn’t end when they leave our classrooms. We are endeavoring not only to prepare our students to succeed in college, but also to support them while they attend. Our job doesn’t end until each of our students graduates with a college degree. To this end, in 2016, in partnership with Columbia University, we commissioned the Seamless Path to College Strategic Plan & Handbook. This handbook outlined the ambitious goals of seeing at least seventy-seven PCA graduates a bachelor’s degree by 2026.
The Director of Alumni Support is focused on developing and implementing a comprehensive strategy to ensure all PCA alumni are benefiting from strong and strategic college counseling, college persistence support promoting college completion, and career readiness programming.
More specifically, this position will support efforts to ensure that college persistence and completion goals are being met or exceeded by our alumni and that career readiness programming supports relevant experiences for both college-going and non-college going through career exposure and experiences. This will be accomplished through activities such as:
- Regular electronic and in-person check-ins with alumni.
- Annual assistance to students and families in filing the FAFSA and all other financial aid documents.
- Support in resume writing as well as searches for jobs and internships.
- The development of a mentoring program.
- Providing networking opportunities through PCA’s community partners.
- Developing a wide range of periodic academic and financial aid advising and workshops.
The Director of Alumni Support will provide consistent leadership, coaching, management, support and feedback. Ultimate accountability over the program’s success in meeting college completion and career readiness goals lies with this person.
The ideal candidate for this position has a background in college access and/or college counseling, K-12 classroom teaching and management, and experience working in higher education (student services and success). This individual must possess strategic planning skills and the ability to analyze data to make data-driven decisions. This individual must also possess outstanding written and verbal communication skills. S/he must have a proven record of driving results. Finally, s/he must have a demonstrated interest in serving low-income students and must be committed to doing whatever it takes to support our students to and through college.
Specific responsibilities include:
- Developing and implementing a comprehensive strategy to ensure all PCA alumni are benefiting from strong and strategic college counseling, college persistence support promoting college completion, and career readiness programming
- Set annual goals focused on college persistence/completion and career readiness.
- Set and successfully manage the alumni support program’s annual budget
- Support PCA’s Development director on grant and funding proposals, as needed.
- Ensure that data on goal progress and impact is collected and delivered in a successful and timely manner
- Work with school leaders, teachers, and parents to teach process and pathways to college match, persistence, and careers.
- Proven written and verbal communication skills
- The ability to develop deep and trusting relationships with PCA students and alumni.
- An undeniable spirit of entrepreneurship
- Excellent organizational and planning skills
- Excellent interpersonal skills; ability to work with a wide-range of people including teachers, parents, students, administration teams, higher education administration, and funders
- Ability to work on both daily workflows and broad strategy
- Strong command of high school readiness, college admissions, and college readiness
- Respect and sensitivity for cultural differences
- A passion for education and a dedication to the mission, beliefs, and the values of PCA
- An orientation to results Education and Experience:
- Bachelor’s degree required.
- Previous experience working with high school or college students is highly preferred.
- Being bilingual (Spanish) is preferred.
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