Vice President for University Advancement

Pennsylvania, United States
Salary Not specified
Sep 18, 2020
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

Gwynedd Mercy University seeks an experienced and creative fundraising professional to join the leadership team of President Deanne H. D’Emilio as the next Vice President for University Advancement (VPUA). This is an exciting opportunity to help guide and implement the university strategic vision and launch the next capital campaign to build upon the university’s rich history of excellence. A visionary with knowledge of trends and innovations in fundraising within higher education, a strong record of leadership and demonstrated outcomes from executing campaigns is preferred.

Reporting directly to the President, the VPUA is the chief advancement officer for the university, is a member of the President’s Executive Council and serves as the liaison to the University Advancement and Alumni Engagement Board Committee. As the chief fundraising professional, the VPUA currently has oversight of Alumni Relations, Annual Fund, Donor Stewardship, Advancement Operations, Development, and Foundation and Government Relations. The university recently completed a bridge campaign after the last capital campaign.

Gwynedd Mercy University is a private, Catholic institution with a strong foundation in the liberal arts founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1948. More than 2400 students are served currently by four schools: Arts and Sciences; Business and Education; The Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions; and Graduate and Professional Studies. There are more than 40 undergraduate and graduate programs offered in a variety of formats.  Gwynedd Mercy University is in the top 6% nationally for 10 year earnings according to Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce and 95% of graduates were employed or in graduate school within 6 months of graduation (based on survey respondents).

The university recently doubled its size by acquiring an adjacent 154-acre parcel currently named the East Campus. The VPUA will have the opportunity to work with the President and Board of Trustees in developing this property as part of a Facilities Master Planning process and the next Capital Campaign. The university now occupies 314 beautiful acres located in suburban Philadelphia with two satellite locations in Bensalem and Center City.

Minimum Qualifications: The successful candidate is expected to have thorough familiarity with the philosophy and responsibilities of an independent institution of higher education in the Catholic/Mercy tradition. An earned Master’s degree in an appropriate discipline from an accredited institution. At least 5 years senior level Advancement/fundraising experience in higher education highly preferred.

The following qualifications provide additional expectations of the search:

  • Ability to work collaboratively and build partnerships with diverse internal and external stakeholders, including local and state elected officials and lobbyists


  • Open and transparent communication skills both internally and externally to potential donors and supporters


  • Provides leadership and mentoring to staff


  • Oversight for compliance with applicable federal and state regulations and laws


  • Experience working with university personnel in a system of shared governance and mutual respect


  • Experience with cultivating and closing major gifts



  • Experience in and oversight for Alumni Relations, Annual Fund, Major and Planned Giving


  • Experience in planning and executing a successful Capital Campaign


  • Experience with stewardship of donor funds


  • Ability to work with Finance and Accounting personnel in ensuring that donor funds are properly accounted for


  • Experience with the writing, prioritizing, accounting and management of grant funds


  • Excellent analytical and problem solving skills, including the ability to identify, consult and resolve issues that impact institutional needs and priorities


  • Collaborative and innovative approach to working on a team


  • Knowledge of the Philadelphia area and philanthropic community