The Director of Advancement position assists the school’s president in carrying out the implementation of enrollment management and fundraising activities for Mater Christi; a private Catholic school sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, serving students in preschool through grade eight.
The Director of Advancement reports directly to the president and works closely with the Advancement sub-committee of the Board of Trustees. Specific responsibilities of this position include planning, guiding, and evaluating the advancement efforts of the school with regard to marketing, public relations, communications, enrollment management, fundraising, event planning, grant writing, and alumni relations. Enrollment management and fundraiser are essential to the overall success of the school, and therefore it is imperative that the person in this role be dedicated to providing the support needed by the president to grow enrollment, as well as increase philanthropic giving.
Essential Job Functions
Support and uphold the philosophy of Catholic education and the school’s Mercy identity.
Plan the overall advancement program in keeping with school needs, the strategic plan and budget objectives regarding enrollment management and fundraising.
Collaborate with the president, faculty and staff, committees of the board of trustees, committee chairs, and volunteers.
Ensure effective work practices in database management, tracking prospective students, managing enrollment process of returning and new students, gift recording, and donor acknowledgement.
Communicate effectively with all school stakeholders and keeps them informed of upcoming enrollment and fundraising activities, as well as good news stories about Mater Christi School.
Specific duties and responsibilities include:
Work in cooperation with the President and board committees to develop an overall marketing communications plan for Mater Christi School.
Maintain brand consistency and graphic identity with a strong eye for visual design in the development of marketing materials.
Create and manage engaging communications pieces consistent with Mater Christi’s brand, such as direct mail, annual reports, advertising, etc. to attract attention and generate interest in the school.
Manage communications projects that utilize third-party graphic designers, photographers, and video producers for design, marketing, PR, and creative support services as time and budget allow.
Edit a range of written programmatic and fundraising materials with a high attention to detail to ensure clarity, conciseness, and effectiveness.
Plan and implement a comprehensive admission program including admission events, student visits, and orientations for prospective/new families
Conduct priority registration for current families
Prepare admission material and maintain admission section of the website
Create comprehensive tracking system for managing contact and communications with prospective families
Work in collaboration with school officer personnel to review and process new student applications.
Organize ongoing communications with preschools, daycares, and faith communities to raise awareness and interest in Mater Christi School.
Management of Communications Plans and Platforms
Develop and implement communications and public relations initiatives to support a variety of efforts: raising awareness and interest in Mater Christi School, student recruitment, fundraising, and the overall Mater Christi brand.
Identify, evaluate, and execute opportunities that increase Mater Christi’s visibility among key audiences.
Develop, grow and manage Mater Christi’s digital communications strategy including the website, social media, and email campaigns.
Identifying Funding Sources
Research potential funders for specific educational initiatives;
Develop a strategic fundraising strategy incorporating targeted funders and timelines, building relationships with funders, and preparing fundraising materials.
Facilitate the development of relationships with funders through presentations, personal meetings, and regular communications
Identify and cultivate relationships with foundations and philanthropists that provide grants that match the school’s strategic initiatives
Proposal & Award Management Assistance
Establish timelines and work distribution for the successful development of specific funding proposals or other materials to present to specific funders;
Assist in drafting or overseeing the development of draft funding proposals;
Actively assist/oversee budget development for fundraising proposals as appropriate;
Track funding awards and report timelines;
Oversee and coordinate timely and effective fund reporting as necessary or requested;
Assist in the oversight of timely production for all deliverables tied to deliverables-based funding;
Donor Cultivation, Outreach, and Individual Donor Development
Build ongoing relationships with donors and align annual giving with institutional goals
Assist with the design and development of a donor page on the school’s website;
Maintain a contact database for identifying, cultivating, and soliciting major and prospective donors; Maintains records on current and prospective donors
Coordinate print and web materials regarding fundraising
Lead the production of special letters, gift acknowledgments, and other communications with donors
Assume lead role with Annual Fund, Spring Benefit, and other fundraising events
Organize various other events to help promote Mater Christi School among parents, donors, and alumni
Technology: Extensive computer skills, including intermediate or higher level proficiency with Microsoft Office (Excel, PowerPoint, and Word) and experience working with electronic donor tracking systems/databases.
Accountability: Takes initiative; a team player and meets deadlines. Extremely detail oriented and organized, with the strong ability to successfully multi-task as necessary or requested. Creative problem solver and exhibits flexibility as needed. Ability to lead multiple long- and short-term projects simultaneously, meeting all related deadlines with the ability to plan, prioritize, coordinate, and manage own work. Proven ability to work unsupervised and make decisions and solve problems independently, effectively, and creatively.
Communication: Poised and professional speaker; demonstrates excellent writing and grammar skills; writes in a clear and concise manner; exhibits effective listening, questioning and interpersonal skills.
Integrity and Trust: Commitment to professional ethics in working with highly confidential, sensitive information.
Interpersonal Skills: Is able to interact with a wide constituency of people and is able to work alongside others. Comfortable with ambiguity and ability to respond adeptly to rapidly changing priorities and ability to work well under pressure.
Leadership: Ability to lead, collaborate and motivate others in a respectful manner.
Education: Bachelor's degree in marketing, communications, business, education or liberal arts field
Experience: A minimum of 3 years of demonstrated success in advancement initiatives is required. Preferred experience includes successfully recruiting new students as well as securing major financial support for educational projects. Demonstrated success in working as a member of a team and developing effective working relationships with Board members, staff, volunteers, the general public, and donors is a plus. Qualified candidates must be detail-oriented with superior writing and creative marketing skills, as well as have exceptional organizational, interpersonal, and project management skills.
Mater Christi is a private Catholic school sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Northeast Community, serving students in pre-school through grade eight. We are committed to providing a quality, values-centered education in the Catholic tradition that prepares students for the complexities of our diverse world. For more information, visit the Mater Christi School website at www.mcschool.org.