Vice President for University Advancement

February 2023 | Worcester, MA
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About Assumption University

Assumption University is a comprehensive, Catholic liberal arts institution sponsored by the Augustinians of the Assumption. We awaken in students a sense of wonder, discovery, and purpose, forming graduates known for their intellectual seriousness, thoughtful citizenship, and devotion to the common good. Our curricular and co-curricular programs provide students with an education that shapes their souls, forms them intellectually, and prepares them for meaningful careers. Enlivened by the Catholic affirmation of the harmony of faith and reason and by the pursuit of the truth in the company of friends, an Assumption education transforms the minds and hearts of students.

– Assumption University Mission Statement

building with a glass front in amongst trees in fallLocated in Worcester, Massachusetts, Assumption University enrolls 2,200 undergraduate and graduate students. In addition to its main campus in Worcester, the University has a second campus in Rome, Italy with an engaging and popular study abroad program.

The city of Worcester is a robust, vibrant city that “combines the warmth of a small town with the convenience of a thriving city.” Recognized time and again with the All-America City Award, Worcester combines the opportunities and cultural amenities of a big city with the allure of an accessible and easily navigable college town. Home to 8 universities and 35,000 university students, the second largest city in New England offers late-night diners, clubs, museums, concert venues, two professional sports teams, ethnic restaurants, and theatres in Worcester’s vibrant downtown.

In addition:

  • There are 53 parks, including the largest urban nature sanctuary in New England and the Olmstead-designed Elm Park.
  • The Worcester Art Museum consists of 36 galleries and 38,000 objects from around the world, spanning eight millennia.
  • The Hanover Theater for the Performing Arts features a wide variety of first-rate performances including an annual Broadway series and concerts by leading artists.
  • Those interested in winter sports can access 27 ski trails at nearby Wachusett Mountain.
  • With an admirable mix of old and new residences, Worcester offers housing options and an overall cost of living that are more scaled to a mid-size city.
  • In addition to the strong higher education presence, there is a robust and thriving hospital and health-care industry, as well as a rising biotech industry that has helped to fuel the renaissance of the area.

Committed to intellectual excellence, thoughtful citizenship, and devotion to the common good, students engage in curricular and co-curricular opportunities that prepare them for lives of meaning and purpose. The education received at Assumption challenges students to embrace the compliment of faith and reason in the search for truth in a world of ambiguity. Assumption University is a diverse community that welcomes different points of view and embraces all who share its mission.

Notable Recognition and Achievements

  • S. News & World Report:
    • 2020 Best Colleges rankings: Assumption was ranked among the top colleges and universities in the North region; a top Best Value School; a top college for Best Undergraduate Teaching.
    • Best Regional University“: U.S. News & World Report again named Assumption a “Best Regional Universities” in its 2022 Best Colleges guide, ranking the College in the top quarter of approximately 200 regional universities in the north that offer bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
    • “Top Performer”: Finally, U.S. News & World Report recognized Assumption as a top performer on social mobility, the organization’s recognition for an institution’s ability and commitment to serve low-income students.
  • “Best 387 Colleges”: The Princeton Review named Assumption to its 2022 “Best 387 Colleges” list in recognition of the College’s strong academic programs and faculty commitment to student success.
  • Best Colleges for Your Money“: Money Magazine named Assumption College to its 2021 “Best Colleges for Your Money” list, ranking Assumption in the top half of colleges and universities.
  • The Wall Street Journal/ Times Higher Education ranked Assumption in the top 1/2 of colleges in the country and in the top half of colleges in the Northeast.
  • “Best Nursing School”: Nursing Schools Almanac named Assumption’s Froelich School of Nursing to its 2020 list of the best nursing schools in the United States.
  • Assumption University competes in the Northeast-10 Conference—considered the top NCAA Division II athletic conference in the country for its balance of academic and athletic excellence.

three assumption university studentsAssumption College officially became Assumption University in 2020 – a landmark moment in the institution’s 117-year history. Assumption University now supports five schools, including the D’Amour College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Grenon School of Business, the Froelich School of Nursing, the School of Health Professions, and the School of Graduate Studies. Students now can explore enhanced academic courses of study with expanded graduate degree programs, the addition of a campus in Rome, Italy, and the significant broadening of academic programs such as cybersecurity, neuroscience, and nursing.

Philanthropy has played a significant role in this growth and will continue to be a priority for the University’s future.

For more information about Assumption University, please visit https://www.assumption.edu/

About Philanthropy at Assumption University

Assumption University is breaking fundraising records. The University celebrated the completion of a highly successful $35M Light the Way campaign in 2022 that raised more than $50M, exceeding the goal by 44%. This campaign success has enabled Assumption to make significant investments in four strategic priority areas for the University:

three assumption university students sitting on stairsAssumption receives support from loyal alumni, friends, local foundations, current parents, and parents of alumni who remain grateful for an educational experience that includes encouragement for a life after graduation of thoughtful citizenship and compassionate service that is an integral part of the Assumption mission. Typically, the annual fund goal is surpassed each year, and this past year, a total of 4,452 alumni, parents, friends, faculty, and staff made gifts to the University.

For the Light the Way campaign, the annual fund goal was surpassed by 44%. Every class since 1950 participated in the campaign, and there were also donations from classes earlier than 1950 and current students. The campaign was the largest in the University’s history, and alumni donated 75% of the total raised.

The new Vice President will be charged with stewarding existing donors and building a robust pipeline of new supporters to create a philanthropic environment in alignment with the vision and momentum established by President Weiner.

About the Position

assumption university professor teaching a class of studentsThe University seeks an experienced, innovative, mission-driven, and strategic professional with an established fundraising track record to lead the University’s Advancement Program. The Vice President for University Advancement is a senior-level administrator reporting directly to the President and is an active participant on the President’s leadership team.

The new Vice President will bring bold thinking that inspires constituents, an authentic commitment to the mission, and genuine enthusiasm for identifying and engaging new supporters for the University. They will create a sustainable fundraising program to significantly increase philanthropic support at all giving levels through engagement with key stakeholders, collaboration with internal and external community members, and a focus on engagement opportunities that will support the priorities identified in the recently approved Strategic Plan, Ever Ancient, Ever New: Refounding Assumption. The Vice President for University Advancement will carry forward the vision embodied in the Strategic Plan by inspiring and motivating alumni, parents, friends, corporate sponsors, foundations, and community members to invest in the future of the University.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

St. John Paul II wrote: “Man’s creation by God ‘in his own image’ confers upon every human person an eminent dignity; it also postulates the fundamental equality of all human beings.” Assumption University recognizes the essential contribution of a diverse community of students, staff, and faculty. Accordingly, Assumption University commits itself to maintaining a welcoming environment for all people and to comply with all state and federal laws prohibiting discrimination in employment and its educational programs on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, disability, age, marital or parental status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information or family medical history, military or veteran status, immigration status, or other legally protected status. Assumption intends this list to be inclusive, not exclusive.

Assumption University rejects and condemns all forms of harassment, discrimination, and disrespect. It has developed procedures to respond to incidents of harassment whatever the basis or circumstance. Assumption University has designated its Associate Vice President for Human Resources/CHRO to coordinate its efforts to comply with and carry out its responsibilities to prevent discrimination in accordance with state and federal laws, including Title VI, Section 504 and the ADA. Any applicant for admission or employment, and all students, staff and faculty members are welcome to raise any questions regarding this notice with the Office of Human Resources:

Assumption University, Office for Human Resources
Associate Vice President for Human Resources and CHRO
500 Salisbury Street – Alumni Hall – 109
Worcester, MA 01609
Phone: 508-767-7599

Key Responsibilities

exterior of a white stone building at assumption universityThe Vice President for University Advancement is responsible for providing leadership and building a development program reflective of Assumption’s new status as a University. The Vice President will provide day-to-day management of a department that includes major gifts and planned giving, development, alumni relations, and advancement services, and will bring best practices to the role to help ensure that the University has a best-in-class Advancement team that will identify, engage, and inspire donors at all levels.

This senior leader will set ambitious, clear, and achievable goals, and inspire the staff to meet and exceed expectations. Active in the University and surrounding community, the Vice President personally participates in the identification, solicitation, and stewardship of major gifts.

Fundraising

  • Oversee all Advancement activities to meet and exceed annual and campaign goals and increase alumni participation rates
  • Provide guidance and creative ideas around volunteer leadership, especially as it relates to strategies for broadening the base of support and engaging new prospects
  • Partner with the University President and Board of Trustees to effectively engage donors and prospects
  • Personally manage a targeted portfolio of prominent donors and prospects
  • Represent the University through personal interactions and group functions with alumni, parents, and friends while promoting an institutional culture of philanthropy
  • Ensure the effective, useful, and thoughtful building of technology, systems, processes, and measurements to monitor, project, and guide fundraising results and activity
  • Evaluate advancement program areas to be sure that industry standards and best practices are met; institute change as needed.

Leadership

  • Play a key leadership role as a member of the University Cabinet
  • Engage in the school-wide activities and be a visible and energized member of the Assumption community
  • Lead and inspire the Advancement team of 10, with 4 direct reports
  • Develop a system of metrics and strategies for measuring progress toward goals and evaluating overall performance
  • Direct and evaluate all donor stewardship activities to ensure donors are appropriately recognized and informed of their philanthropic impact
  • Coach each team to build effective strategies, achieve team and individual goals, engage donors, develop best practices, and strengthen the pipeline of future donors
  • Applicants must be willing to contribute actively to the mission of the University.

Key Qualifications

  • assumption university bell towerSeasoned professional with direct fundraising leadership experience in an equivalent role, preferably in higher education, within a complex fundraising structure
  • Superior leadership and communication skills
  • Demonstrated commitment to the value of Catholic higher education, the liberal arts, and the opportunities the mission provides for fundraising and the cultivation of donors
  • Demonstrated experience managing staff and multiple responsibilities and projects with a collegial, team-building approach
  • A thorough understanding of best practices strategies in advancement services and fundraising, with demonstrated success with annual funds, major gifts, alumni relations, estate and planned gifts, and corporate and foundation fundraising
  • Experience collaborating with Deans in developing fundraising goals and initiatives in support of the priorities of each school at the University
  • professor observing assumption university students workingExperience collaborating with the Athletic Department and staff in raising funds to support the athletic program and facility improvements
  • An understanding of the importance of technology for fundraising and leveraging social media in the engagement of alumni to support the University
  • A record of identifying new donor prospects, cultivating the alumni base, and increasing the alumni participation rate, especially among younger alumni
  • An in-depth understanding of budgets and financial records associated with a comprehensive advancement program
  • The ability and confidence to develop and cultivate relationships with established and prospective donors, including the solicitation of 7-figure gifts
  • A demonstrated track-record in planning and executing successful fundraising activities and campaign management, including goal setting, implementation of strategies, and identification of new donors
  • The willingness and ability to travel as needed
  • Master’s degree preferred

Salary commensurate with experience, starting at $175,000+ including robust benefits, generous paid time off, and relocation assistance.

An Equal Opportunity Employer, Assumption favors diversity, ecumenically welcomes all who share its goals, and strongly encourages applications and expressions of interest from all underrepresented groups.

It is the policy of the University that all employees be vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19.

Please email your cover letter and resume in confidence to: assumption@developmentguild.com

Tracy Marshall


Senior Vice President, Principal

Development Guild DDI

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