There is a deep reservoir of talent in this great city! In order to remain a world-class city, we must invest in talent from an education and leadership perspective. Locally and nationally, we are not fully equipping our youth with the skills and tools to be successful. Just 14% of Chicago Public Schools freshman will graduate with a college degree by the age of 25 per the University of Chicago Consortium of Chicago School Research. There also remains a lack of diversity in the workforce at all levels and in every industry. We must continue to invest in building a diverse pipeline of talent if we are to remain a vibrant, thriving and competitive city.
About Chicago Scholars
Chicago Scholars is transforming the leadership landscape of our city by resolving the fundamental barriers to success for academically driven, first generation college students from under-resourced communities. Through college counseling, mentoring, and by providing a supportive community to our Scholars through each phase of our program: College Access (Launch), College Persistence (Lift) and College to Careers (Lead), we ensure that they realize their full potential as students and leaders.
88% of Chicago Scholars graduate college within 6 years. Per the University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research, only 49% of their peers earn a degree within 6 years. Upon graduation, our Scholars move into leadership positions across Chicago, helping to drive the economic future of their communities and our thriving city.
Chicago Scholars is at a particularly exciting and critical juncture. Due to the success of our program, we have recently received support to expand our impact to serve 675 incoming students and a total student body of 4,500 by FY19.
We seek new members to the Dream Team who can help realize our vision for the future and who exemplify our core values, which do lead our work.
• Mission Driven: We must be relentlessly focused on our Scholars and their potential for success.
• Belief: We demonstrate a strong belief in our Scholars, our city and the potential that exists
• Excellence: We are intentionally in pursuit of quality inputs and outputs programmatically and operationally. Feedback collection is a critical part of a continuous improvement process in pursuit of that excellence. This also includes the demonstration of leadership, honesty, integrity, respect and equity.
• Data Driven / Results Oriented: We will use data to inform our program. We will have clear outcomes and response. We will use our data to demonstrate credibility and effectiveness as a high quality organization.
• Collaboration: We will collaborate internally among teams as well as externally within Chicago. Programmatically, we also recognize that we are just one part of a support system for our Scholars and we must collaborate with those organizations to support our Scholars.
• Innovation: We will always think about how to do things differently and more effectively. We will be thoughtful about how to use resources and technology to achieve growth and efficiency. We will focus on learning, questioning and forward thinking.
- Please click 'Apply' to submit your application which should include a resume and cover letter no later than Friday, July 7th,
- Chicago Scholars sees college education as a means to an end with the end game being leadership. In your cover letter, please describe the importance of college to career transitional support for underresourced and/or first generation college graduates.
- All candidates MUST be available for a first round group interview on Thursday, July 13th
Reports to: Vice President of Programs
The Director of College to Careers is primarily responsible for resource and partnership development to provide leadership and career development resources for Chicago Scholars. This person will also lead all strategy, planning and logistics for career programming and events and the Chicago Scholars alumni network to support our vision of creating a vibrant Chicago powered by diverse leaders from every neighborhood. This role is primarily non-student facing.
Scholar Career and Leadership Development Resources: provide a portfolio of career exploration, leadership development, training, placement and mentoring resources and opportunities to ensure Scholars are career ready.
Create the vision and direction for the overall career and leadership development strategy focused on supporting Scholars college to career transition.
o In collaboration with the Director of Corporate Giving, identify, build and manage a portfolio of career partners.
o Develop a broad external network and profile to identify new opportunities for partnerships supporting our Scholar’s College to Career transition.
o Create targeted career exploration events and programs to expose Scholars to potential career options.
o Integrate the Chicago Scholars Leadership Development Curriculum into the portfolio of career and leadership development resources offered to Scholars.
o Develop and deliver career readiness training and supports to Scholars and the College Success team.
o Design, coordinate, oversee, and manage the recruitment for the annual career exploration and career fair to ensure Scholars receive career exploration, leadership development, college to career transition planning and placement support.
o Manage the planning, logistics, and coordination of all career related events for all Scholars, including Chicago Scholars Day and annual Scholar Holiday party.
o Oversee the Career Mentoring program, including:
- Mentor recruitment and placement;
- Career mentoring curriculum implementation and support of career mentors;
- Liaise with College Success team to address mentor/mentee relationships.
o Oversee and advertise the Chicago Scholars job board which includes: internships, full/part time roles, and experiential learning opportunities; including tracking hiring seasons and management of Scholar placements;
o Oversee the communication and marketing of resources & supportive services (i.e programs and events) to Scholars across all channels; coordinate across all Scholar teams.
o Coordinate with the College Access and Success teams to align career training & leadership development opportunities to meet Scholar needs.
Partner Relationships for Scholar Supports: cultivate relationships with individuals, organizations and institutions who can support, mentor, and hire Scholars.
o Identify professional organizations, individuals, and corporations able to provide career support with resume reviews, informational interviews, networking and other supports, as identified.
o Develop and sustain relationships with individuals, CBO’s, graduate schools, and corporate partners to provide mentoring, internship, education and full-time employment opportunities for Scholars
- Alumni Development: sustain and grow the Chicago Scholar Alumni program
o Provide programming and resources to support the needs of our growing alumni network.
o Engage with alumni to increase their connection to Chicago Scholars and willingness to reinvest their time, talent, or treasure in Chicago Scholars.
o Oversee Alumni Leadership Council, including recruitment and bi-monthly meeting facilitation to grow and support the Chicago Scholars Alumni network.
In addition to managing a team, this position will also require occasional work on nights and weekends for Scholar events and programming, and the facilitation of Scholar events and workshops.
Attend and support mandatory all staff events: the UnTied Gala, College Choice Celebration, New Student Orientation, All Scholar Retreat, First Look, the Onsite Admissions Forum, New Student Interview nights, and our Quarterly Staff Retreats.
Attend and support mandatory all Program team events: Chicago Scholars Day and Scholar Holiday Party.
Experience: 10-15 total experience, with 7-10 years of relevant experience including at least five years of managing a team of direct reports. 3-5 years of proven record of success securing and managing corporate support and/or partnerships.
o Exceptional verbal, written and interpersonal skills and ability to engage a broad spectrum of audiences and consistently demonstrate respect, concern, and responsiveness.
o Ability to speak in public and engage all stakeholders (students, parents, mentors, volunteers, college representatives).
o Demonstrated ability to cultivate and sustain relationships with diverse audiences (educational level, socio-economic circumstance).
o Ability to manage projects, organize and compile complex tasks, and prioritize multiple assignments to meet deadlines and objectives.
o Ability to remain flexible and adapt to changing needs and priorities.
o Advanced proficiency with technology and standard office applications and ability to learn and master other computer technology/software programs as needed.
o Ability to think strategically and innovatively to support organizational growth and change.
o Demonstrated ability to interpret data for decision making and program/process evaluation; ability to make recommendations for continuous improvement using data driven approach.
o Demonstrated management skills, including the ability to manage change and generate a culture of continuous improvement.
o Ability to manage a team and a budget to achieve defined goals and demonstrate a commitment to use resources effectively.
o Ability to handle sensitive and confidential information with discretion.
The Chicago Landscape
There is a deep reservoir of talent in this great city! In order to remain a world-class city, we must invest in talent from an education and leadership perspective. Locally and nationally, we are not fully equipping our youth with the skills and tools to be successful. Just 8% of Chicago Public School students will graduate with a college degree by the age of 25. There ...also remains a lack of diversity in the workforce at all levels and in every industry. We must continue to invest in building a diverse pipeline of talent if we are to remain a thriving and competitive city.
About Chicago Scholars
The mission of the Chicago Scholars Foundation (Chicago Scholars) is to provide talented, academically ambitious, and underserved high school students access and success through college and beyond.
We provide Chicago’s young future leaders with the support they need to achieve their dreams through mentorship, college admission support, and access to leadership and career programming. Our program targets high need, first-generation students from every single neighborhood and every high school. We nurture their talent through an innovative five-year college success program plus a two-year leadership development program. We work to ensure that our academically ambitious Scholars are not only investing in their own career growth and success but also enhancing Chicago’s competitive position in the global economy for years to come. We are extremely proud that the support provided by our program is allowing our Scholars to persist and graduate at a rate of almost 90% (compared to just 8% of CPS peers).
Our Future – Growth
Chicago Scholars is at a particularly exciting and critical juncture. Due to the success of our program, we have recently received support to expand our impact from serving 300 new students each year to 1000 new students, over the next five years.