The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) is
seeking a Director, Economic Development and Community Engagement
to oversee the Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities
Designation (IEP) program and serve as the primary point of contact
for the Commission on Economic and Community Engagement (CECE). The
Director may also design and implement funded projects within the
Office of Economic Development and Community Engagement that
support the priorities of CECE and work with other APLU offices
across APLU to contribute to the association’s work on advancing
institutional transformation, student success, policy development,
and advocacy agendas. This full-time position is based in
Washington, DC. Employees are working remotely from locations
within DC, MD, VA through April 1, 2022 due to COVID-19. Employees
of APLU must reside in DC, MD, or VA. For more information consult
APLU is a research, policy, and advocacy organization dedicated
to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities in
the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. With a membership of 244 public
research universities, land-grant institutions, state university
systems, and affiliated organizations, APLU's agenda is built on
the three pillars of increasing degree completion and academic
success, advancing scientific research, and expanding
engagement. Annually, member campuses enroll 5.0 million
undergraduates and 1.3 million graduate students, award 1.3 million
degrees, employ 1.3 million faculty and staff, and conduct $49.2
billion in university-based research.
The Office of Economic Development and Community Engagement
(OEDCE) was established to lead and coordinate the association’s
pillar of “expanding economic and community engagement.” To this
end, it supports university efforts that promote innovation and
technology-driven economic development, talent and workforce
development, and place development through public service,
outreach, and community engagement. The office helps universities
develop and share effective practices in these three realms of
engagement frequently focusing on how institutions partner with
entrepreneurs, small businesses, major corporations, community
organizations, state and local government, national associations,
and economic development organizations. OEDCE also helps senior
university leaders, their staff and partners imagine and then
realize a shared vision for healthier and more engaged citizens,
thriving economies and other outcomes that lead to a better
tomorrow. In addition, the office convenes the association’s
Commission on Economic and Community Engagement (CECE) which bring
together senior decision makers at universities who are responsible
the institutions’ work in economic engagement. CECE serves as a
premier national forum for economic and community engagement
APLU’s IEP Universities Designation Program
offers higher education institutions a robust national
platform and process for better knowing, measuring, and
telling the impact of colleges and universities through economic
engagement. Economic engagement refers to the broad range of
efforts universities undertake with their public-private partners
to support talent and workforce
development, innovation and entrepreneurship,
and through place development via public
service, community engagement, Cooperative Extension, and outreach.
To earn the IEP designation, institutions complete a
rigorous self-study and stakeholder engagement study to
identify their strengths and areas of needed improvement throughout
their campus economic engagement enterprise. Campuses share and
learn from one another throughout the process in a national
learning community. Designees engage in APLU projects,
advocacy, and communication efforts around university-based
economic and community engagement. To
date, 66 institutions have earned the designation
and 30+ institutions are currently pursuing the designation.
For more information, please consult www.aplu.org/IEP.
The position’s primary duties and responsibilities include, but
are not limited to, the following:
IEP - 60%
- Lead the day-to-day activities of the IEP designation and
awards program including developing continuous improvement projects
and activities, conducting research on best practices, and coaching
IEP startup and designees ensuring that it meets it stated goals
and objectives on time and on budget.
- Collaborate with the Vice President to develop and implement an
annual workplan and to obtain external funding to support the aims
of the program.
- Communicate regularly with key stakeholders at
- Develop and facilitate webinars, meetings, and other events
that support the learning, research, communication, and advocacy
objectives of the IEP community of practice.
- Write blog posts, newsletters, white papers, and other
materials to communicate the impact of the IEP designee activities
to important external audiences.
CECE – 40%
- Work with the Vice President to develop and implement an annual
workplan for the Commission on Economic and Community Engagement
- Work with the Vice President and CECE leadership to build
agendas and facilitate CECE in-person and virtual meetings and
activities, including CECE activities at the APLU annual meeting
and the CECE summer meeting.
- Work with the Vice President to identify external funding to
support CECE program priorities. Responsible for implementing
programs as assigned ensuring they are completed on scope, on time
and on budget.
- Communicate regularly with CECE members to support and promote
their engagement in CECE activities.
- Deploy communication strategies, including white papers,
op-eds, and other products, to document, share, and promote the
work of CECE members.
- Support an inclusive climate in the Office of EDCE and
- Participate in other activities that support the work of the
Office of EDCE.
- Master’s degree in public policy, planning, economics, or a
related degree from an accredited university.
- A minimum of 6 years working at a university, nonprofit, or
government agency on community engagement and economic development
with a focus on the role of universities in regional economic and
- An analytical orientation with strong data analysis and
- Experience identifying and pursuing external funding to support
- Strong project management skills to meet goals and objectives
on time, on scope, and on budget.
- Experience planning meetings and events, including agenda
development, logistical oversight and budget management. Excellent
session design and facilitation skills
- Excellent strategic planning, organizational, and interpersonal
- Demonstrated ability to work independently, establish
priorities and exercise sound judgment in response to complex and
- Ability to work in a dynamic environment with a diverse,
cross-functional team and to establish effective and inclusive
working relationships with employees at all levels of the
- Excellent presentation and written communication skills.
- Facility with project and team management platforms such as
- Strong commitment diversity, equity, and inclusion, and to
advancing the work of the Office and APLU.
- Ability to travel as necessary.
Please send a letter of interest and resume to APLU’s Human
Resources Department at email@example.com with the subject line:
Director EDCE. Applications will be reviewed as
received. Priority will be given to applications received by
December 1, 2021. APLU is committed to a diverse,
equitable, and inclusive work environment, and supports staff with
a generous benefits package.
APLU is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer and is
committed to recruiting, employing, training, compensating and
promoting staff regardless of race, color, religion, gender, gender
identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin,
genetics, disability, age, or military service.