Skip to main content

This job has expired

Assistant Dean of Development, College of Engineering

Northeastern University
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not specified
Date posted
Feb 14, 2024

View more

Position Type
Faculty Positions, Business & Management, Management
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

Assistant Dean of Development, College of Engineering

About the Opportunity

Under the leadership of Dean Gregory Abowd, Northeastern's College of Engineering has refreshed its strategic plan and re-established its mission of producing transformative engineers - both students and faculty - with global impact. Over the next five years, the College will focus on inspiring transformative thinking through an elevated undergraduate experience, delivering high quality educational products and leveraging the University's global network to create access to lifelong learning opportunities, and becoming a destination of choice for research. These goals, along with the University's current comprehensive campaign, present numerous opportunities to engage both current and new supporters.

Reporting to the Senior Associate Vice President of Development, Rob Silk, and working in close partnership with Dean Abowd, the ADD will serve as the chief development officer for one of Northeastern University's most prominent schools. In this role, they will balance the management of their own portfolio of individual donors (alumni, friends, parents) with the management and leadership of a team of six development professionals.

Northeastern will task the ADD with holistically examining the College's past and current fundraising structure and success before charting an ambitious roadmap for the future, designing a fundraising strategy reflective of COE's philanthropic capacity; collaborating with advancement colleagues and the COE development team to advance the fundraising program; centering moves management and creating meaningful donor experiences; and providing the motivation and leadership necessary to empower the team in achieving new goals.

A member of the Dean's cabinet, the ADD will partner closely with Dean Abowd and staff him as a principal fundraising resource while offering recommendations into university-wide development plans and how the strategic priorities of COE can be leveraged to engage top prospects for Northeastern University. Opportunities exist for both blended and interdisciplinary gifts in partnership with colleagues in central development including those in corporate and foundation relations, family philanthropy, gift planning, and leadership giving, and those across Northeastern's network of campuses.

In making the case for support, the ADD will translate research and technical subject matters in ways that personally compel a variety of audiences and stakeholders. The ADD will be expected to leverage the depth of CEO programming, collaborating closely with world-renowned faculty across the Bioengineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Mechanical and Industrial Engineering departments. Interdisciplinary programming and research as well as generating support for Underrepresented Minority students are areas of continued focus for the College of Engineering, in addition to professorships, scholarships, graduate fellowships particularly at the Ph.D. level, and creating unique research and instructional space such as next generation makerspace.

The ideal candidate is expected to have 10+ years of progressive fundraising experience, preferably within higher education, and at least three years managing fundraisers. The demonstrated ability to plan, execute and close 6- and 7-figure gifts is essential, as is a track record of success in identifying new donors. Experience raising gifts from alumni of professional schools (Business, Law, Engineering) is helpful.

They will have excellent organizational and interpersonal skills, with the charisma and intellectual curiosity to partner with a Dean and faculty members working on cutting-edge engineering

programs and research. The candidate will be an engaged and energetic fundraiser who relishes the cultivating, soliciting, and stewardship of donors. They will be a natural relationship builder who takes a solutions-focused approach to development and believes there are no dead-ends, only other roads to pursue. They will be a natural leader with the presence, interpersonal skills, and energy to build relationships at all levels in service to Northeastern University; a true team player who has collaborative instincts, an inclination to integrate efforts, and the tolerance for ambiguity and uncertainty in a complex, interdisciplinary environment.


  • Work closely with the Dean and the Senior Associate Vice President of Development (SAVP) to create and deliver a strategic, multi-faceted development plan for the College, one that translates academic priorities into development opportunities and enables the college to meet annual fund-raising goals.
  • Make strategic use of the Dean's time and efforts to advance key relationships and gift discussions.
  • Ensure the development of fundraising strategies for all College major gift prospects and oversee the collective execution of these strategies.
  • Ensure that the priorities of the College are aligned with the objectives of the University, particularly as it relates to campaign goals and desired outcomes.
  • Champion innovation, excellence, and expansive thinking when considering fundraising opportunities across the institution.
  • Inspire, mentor, and evaluate a team of six development professionals (four gift officers, two development associates), striving towards ideal outcomes of best-in-class major gift cultivation and solicitation.
  • Support the team in strategic and tactical pipeline building activities including prospect management, prospect development, discovery, and qualification.
  • Provide an inclusive and psychologically safe work environment that establishes belonging among all community constituents including volunteers and staff regardless of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, marital status, age, veteran status, or disability.
  • Oversee the annual operating budget for the development office; ensure efficient use of office resources and the completion of timely reports associated with this fiduciary responsibility.

  • Manage a select portfolio of 80 major and principal gift prospects ($100K-$5M).
  • Travel locally and nationally to identify, qualify, cultivate, solicit, and steward prospects and donors.
  • Uplift the philanthropic capacity of all constituencies, identifying areas for growth, and developing strategies to meaningfully involve staff, volunteers, and donors at all levels.
  • Develop a meaningful donor engagement strategy designed to improve donor retention.
  • Establish meaningful and collaborative working relationships with central Advancement colleagues to enhance the role and outreach of the College in University fundraising, serve multi-disciplinary initiatives and ensure standards of professional conduct.
  • Provide and analyze data and information for the Dean and SAVP to maximize development opportunities and to track progress towards goals.
  • Maintain records of activities and engagements in SalesForce.

  • 10+ years progressive experience, preferably in higher education, with exposure to the sciences, technology, and/or engineering-related subjects.
  • 3+ years of management experience leading teams of frontline fundraisers.
  • Demonstrated ability to plan strategically to carry out the vision, goals, and fundraising aspirations of the College and the University.
  • Proven success in fundraising at the major and/or principal gifts level (six- and seven-figure gifts).
  • A supportive and accessible management style, the ability to lead and motivate a diverse staff and to encourage change and growth in both people and programs, and a strong commitment to personal and professional development.
  • Evidence of entrepreneurial approaches in engaging prospects and developing a prospect pipeline.
  • Experience evaluating the strengths of existing philanthropic programs and identifying opportunities for improvement. Evidence of elevating development programs to higher performance levels across all metrics.
  • Demonstrated ability to work closely with high-level decision makers and other top-level volunteers.
  • The interpersonal skills necessary for building relationships with external (donors, prospects, volunteers) and internal (deans, faculty, advancement colleagues, staff) constituents.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Highly collaborative in approach.
  • Able and willing to travel domestically to develop and maintain relationships with prospects and donors.
  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent work experience required.

Position Type


Additional Information

Northeastern University considers factors such as candidate work experience, education and skills when extending an offer.

Northeastern has a comprehensive benefits package for benefit eligible employees. This includes medical, vision, dental, paid time off, tuition assistance, wellness & life, retirement- as well as commuting & transportation. Visit for more information.

Northeastern University is an equal opportunity employer, seeking to recruit and support a broadly diverse community of faculty and staff. Northeastern values and celebrates diversity in all its forms and strives to foster an inclusive culture built on respect that affirms inter-group relations and builds cohesion.

All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, disability status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.

To learn more about Northeastern University's commitment and support of diversity and inclusion, please see

To apply, visit


Get job alerts

Create a job alert and receive personalized job recommendations straight to your inbox.

Create alert