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The Tech Challenge Program Director [The Tech Museum of Innovation]

Posted by Phillippa Pitts on September 20, 1973 in job announcements |

The Tech Museum of Innovation

 

ABOUT THE TECH CHALLENGE:

The Tech Challenge is an annual team design challenge for students in grades 5-12 that introduces and reinforces the science and engineering design process with a hands-on project geared to solving a real-world problem. Designed to inspire the next generation of Silicon Valley innovators, The Tech Challenge provides months of team learning in science, technology, engineering and math, culminating in event day. Students involved also learn social and written skills as they work together as a team and are required to keep a journal of their process. Additionally, The Tech Challenge Junior allows K-4 graders to prepare for the larger challenge by participating in a Language Arts and team project that leads to the program science and technology fair.

 

POSITION OVERVIEW:

 

The focus of this position is to partner with The Tech Challenge Technical Engineer and deliver on all the components of a successful program—working with a volunteer team to solidify the competition challenge itself and the educational outcomes, ensuring sponsors are happy, involved and well represented, ensuring team registration, participation and demographic goals are met and, with the help of many cross-department members, running successfully smooth information clinics, trials and event days. This position is full time, exempt and reports to the Vice President of Education.

 

THE IDEAL CANDIDATE:

 

This position requires the skills to communicate the museum’s mission and the goals of the Signature Program to sponsors, educators, staff, volunteers and potential participants to generate excitement and understanding, meet attendance targets and meet budgetary goals. Additionally, this position must be able to wear many hats as the seasonality of The Tech Challenge process.

RESPONSIBILITIES INCLUDE (BUT NOT LIMITED TO):

ESTABLISHING THE CHALLENGE ITSELF

  • Set up meetings with and manage a team of enthusiastic, tenured volunteers (including museum Board members and former museum staff) to establish the details and parameters of the design challenge itself.
  • Manage the above team through critical deadlines including those for marketing materials, online registration and event planning.
  • Partner with The Tech Challenge Technical Engineer on the build out of the rig itself, ensuring it can be easily replicated, utilizing materials that most students have access to and meets the standards set for the design challenge.
  • Establish educational outcomes for the participants and links to school standards (Common Core, Next Generation Science Standards).
  • Communicate challenge parameters to all museum staff and volunteers to create a team of evangelists with solid understanding of the design solution goals.

MANAGING THE PROCESS OF PARTICPANT ENROLLMENT

  • Establish an updated, easy-to-use website for registration, signing up for workshops, information clinics, trials and training as well as a library of challenge information for all audiences.
  • Create and implement a recruitment plan to meet the attendance goals and targeted demographics.
  • By managing coordinator, ensure that every team that registers is followed up upon bi-monthly to ensure they are preparing for the event and to answer any questions or solve any problems that arise.
  • Share registration statistics weekly with the museum’s Leadership Team and, as directed, monthly with the Board of Directors and sponsors.
  • Work with Marketing on collateral materials, website design, email blasts and other strategies to meet participant enrollment goals.
  • By direct involvement, utilizing the coordinator and in partnership with the Director of Educational Programs and Outreach, establish outreach speaking engagements, meetings and other public-facing opportunities to raise awareness and increase participation.
  • Send bi-monthly email updates to every registered team to keep channels of communication open and ensuring a low no-show rate at event day.
  • Using school field trip rosters, contact and reach out to schools that have visited or will visit to recruit teams.
  • Engage key museum staff when appropriate to help speak to the importance of the Signature Program to critical stakeholders.
  • Give presentations at staff and Board meetings on the progress of enrollment and involvement of teams, including status of demographics.
  • Through partnership with the Technical Engineer, ensure rigs are given to school partners and two outside areas (Livermore and one other).
  • Work with Volunteer Services Department to ensure proper volunteers for all events and coordinate of corporate volunteers.
  • Partner with the Development team to ensure that sponsors are communicated with, involved and are well represented on the website, collateral materials, signage and at the event.

MANAGING THE EVENT DETAILS

  • Establish an updated, easy-to-use website for registration, signing up for workshops, information clinics, trials and training as well as a library of challenge information for all audiences.
  • Through partnership with the Technical Engineer, establish and implement an event timeline that matches the annual budget and organizes information clinics, adviser trainings, workshops, test trials and event days.
  • Acquire knowledge and understanding of museum policies and content so that the Signature Program is woven within the other museum offerings.
  • Keep on top of event day planning, details and deadlines—medals, shirts, awards, scripts, A/V, room set-up, signage, food, etc.
  • Work with the challenge volunteer team to ensure communication is tight.
  • Support the Development Team by conducting evaluations pre-event, during and post-event, tracking metrics, preparing summaries of accomplishments, supporting proposal development and assisting with writing grant reports and sponsor materials.
  • Work with cross-department internal team to ensure all event day flow is properly managed and executed.
  • Give monthly budget updates to manager.
  • Work with Marketing and Development on the script for event days for emcees and the President and the appropriate inclusion of sponsor representatives.
  • Assign duties and train staff and volunteers as to their role during event days.
  • Partner with the Technical Engineer on the movement of rigs for test trials and event days.
  • Assist the Technical Engineer on the preparation of the challenge to be an interactive exhibit on the floor of the museum post-event.

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QUALIFICATIONS:

 

  • College degree in education, management, public administration or related experience.
  • Strong proved interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate passionately about the Signature Program and the museum’s mission.
  • Prior successful event planning or program planning experience in events that serve thousands of stakeholders.
  • Ability to work with cross-departmental teams and volunteers to stay on task, execute deliverables and meet deadlines.
  • Outgoing personality with the ability to communicate to diverse audiences—students of all ages, Board members, staff, volunteers, sponsors, etc.
  • Strong organizational skills and the ability to keep the “big picture” goal in mind even when dealing with day-to-day details.
  • Proven ability to manage large budgets.
  • Excellent writing skills that require little or no editing.
  • Excellent computer skills with the ability to take talking points and presentations “on the road.”
  • Belief in The Tech’s Mission and its education pedagogy.
  • Experience with California education system—working with teachers, administrators, after school program providers and other community education organizations is helpful.
  • Valid California driver’s license and excellent driving record.
  • Flexible schedule that allows working on weekends and evenings as program events require.

Send cover letter, resume and salary history to jobs@thetech.org

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