Program Director, AdviseMI, Michigan College Access Network

About the Michigan College Access Network:

Since our founding a decade ago, Michigan College Access Network has known that college changes everything—and perhaps even more critical to our mission is the belief that college is for everyone. 

We do what it takes to provide students in Michigan with a brighter long-term future, through college access and postsecondary certificate and degree attainment: doing the research, talking to agents of change, connecting resources, being a changemaker.

Why? By encouraging Michigan residents to earn postsecondary certificates and degrees, we not only help them earn more and promote their well-being—we also strengthen Michigan's talent pool, retain and attract businesses to the state and stimulate Michigan's economy in the process.

Through college access, we are also able to promote equity in our state. We work to ensure that every student in Michigan has the opportunity to attend college—especially low-income students, first-generation college-going students and students of color.

We are proud to put forth a strategic plan that works to ensure that each and every student across Michigan has access to the knowledge, tools, and support to make college a reality.

Vision and Values

College is postsecondary education
We use the term college to refer to attainment of education beyond high school, including postsecondary certificates and academic degrees.

College is a necessity
Postsecondary attainment dramatically increases an individual’s economic independence in a knowledge-based economy.

College is for everyone
We work toward changing the systems that perpetuate inequities in postsecondary attainment.

College is a public good
Postsecondary attainment is critical to a just and equitable society, strong economy, thriving democracy, and healthy communities.

Position Summary

The Program Director of AdviseMI will be responsible for oversight of the AdviseMI AmeriCorps program at the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN). Under the supervision of the Director of Service Strategy, the Program Director will implement, evaluate, and strengthen the program. The Program Director is responsible for oversight of the program, staff, partner high school relationships, and partner college/university relationships. 

The AdviseMI program embeds well-trained, dedicated, near-peer college advisers in high schools that serve significant numbers of low-income and first generation college-going students. The goal of the program is to increase the number of high school students who enter and complete postsecondary education. The advisers are recent college graduates from partner colleges. After an intensive 4-week training, advisers serve in high schools around the state to help students navigate the complex college exploration process, take college admissions tests, apply to colleges that are a good match/fit, complete the FAFSA, secure financial aid, and matriculate to college. These game-changing advisers serve as experts, mentors, champions, and guides to the students they serve. They also play a transformative role in the buildings in which they are placed by helping to foster a college-going culture, in partnership with school staff.  For more information, visit AdviseMI operates hand-in-hand with the Michigan State University College Advising Corps (MSUCAC).

The ideal candidate is self-motivated, technically-capable, detail-oriented and has the ability to prioritize multiple tasks in a fast-paced, innovative environment. Having a tolerance for ambiguity and an adventuresome outlook will help ensure success within MCAN’s work and culture. A strong commitment and understanding of the role of college access in addressing racism and equity is essential. An understanding of the federal AmeriCorps program will be helpful as well.

This position is currently grant funded.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities

The Program Director performs a wide range of duties including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Supervise all future and current program staff. This consists of 3 program supervisors who support the 56 members and their respective high school placements. The Program Director will also jointly oversee and provide guidance to a Strategy Manager for the Service Strategy Department, who supports multiple programs.
  • Plan and deliver high quality and effective pre- and in-service training to all advisers, in partnership with MSUCAC. Assess training to ensure continuous improvement and just-in-time training when necessary. Seek and contract with external training partners where appropriate.
  • Plan and deliver all training for campus-based site supervisors required for AdviseMI partner schools.
  • Establish and manage sustaining relationships with partner colleges and universities.  Work closely with campuses regarding recruitment, training, and program updates, and oversee the process for memoranda of uderstandings.
  • Oversee AdviseMI program budget. Work with MCAN to track funds and ensure their proper use. Help create, manage and report on program budgets.
  • Oversee AdviseMI grant funding, including managing grant budgets, assuring deliverables, maintaining protocols, completing and submitting financial and narrative reports, coordinating funder visits, and being responsive to inquiries from grant agencies. 
  • Serve as the AmeriCorps Program Director with the Michigan Community Service Commission, participate in all required activities as such; ensure compliance, follow protocols and establish/adjust systems to be responsive to the federal and state requirements that may change over time. Work closely with Michigan State University College Advising Corps as partners in our AmeriCorps grant program.
  • Collect, analyze and manage appropriate data to measure program impact, including overseeing data collection systems. Make programmatic changes to increase impact accordingly. Regularly report outcomes internally at MCAN and externally to partners, host sites, funders and the public.
  • Work with staff to ensure a robust recruitment process for high-quality advisers who reflect the communities they will be serving and meet the requirements to serve as an AmeriCorps member.
  • Work with the Community Mobilization Department to manage the grantmaking process for applicant high schools to the AdviseMI Program including updating the request for proposals, facilitating the review process, outreaching to potential applicants, notifying applicants of the review process results and managing high school memoranda of understandings.
  • Actively engage and participate in MCAN staff meetings, being a contributing member of MCAN’s and the Service Strategy Department’s planning, evaluation, continuous improvement, and sustainability.  This includes identifying needs and gaps in program and organizational effectiveness and using initiative and creative problem-solving to propose solutions. Work across the organization to coordinate, collaborate and amplify all work.
  • Serve as a contributing member of the MCAN team and provide leadership in increasing postsecondary access and success on behalf of the organization and in support of the strategic plan. This includes finding ways to build an anti-racist internal and external culture.
  • Work with and support Local College Access Networks, Promise Zones, and other partner organizations to seek alignment with AdviseMI activities. 
  • Employ Targeted Universalism to move the needle on MCAN’s college access dashboard metrics.
  • Speak widely across the state and country at meetings and conferences to raise the profile of the program and the organization while providing advice and learnings to others seeking to support our or alike missions.
  • Perform other duties as needed to advance the mission of the Michigan College Access Network.

Education, Job Knowledge and Experience Requirements

The ideal candidate should:

  • Have experience considering the impacts of college access and success on multiple communities, including communities of color, and those with low socioeconomic status.
  • Have experience incorporating the perspectives of multiple communities, including communities of color, in the consideration of impacts and outcomes of a decision-making process.
  • Prioritize work, multi-task, work independently with minimal supervision, and accurately perform duties in a fast-paced environment.
  • Have ability to solve problems, pay attention to detail, and follow through on tasks assigned through completion.
  • Work efficiently and adhere to established deadlines.
  • Possess strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work effectively as part of a team.
  • Have a passion for working in the nonprofit and education sector – especially for postsecondary attainment.
  • Have strong written communication skills that demonstrate professional composition, proper grammar, clarity, and reflect the tone of the Michigan College Access Network.
  • Show professionalism through confidence, competence and communication.
  • Have extensive knowledge of Microsoft Office Products and Gmail as well as knowledge of basic office and communication equipment and software.

The ideal candidate must:

  • Have a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field.
  • Have a strong and demonstrated commitment to equity.
  • Have a valid in-state driver license for local travel.

Priority will be given to candidates with:

  • A Master’s degree in a relevant field.
  • Experience with leading AmeriCorps programs.
  • Prior service as an AmeriCorps member, in any stream of service, or as a college adviser.
  • Experience working with high schools and/or higher education institutions.
Salary & Benefits: 

$60,000 - $65,000

This position is full-time and is eligible for MCAN’s full benefits package including generous health, dental, vision, life, and disability insurance, retirement benefits, significant paid time off, paid holidays, and a fun work environment. 

How To Apply: 

To apply, please submit résumé , cover letter and a list of 3 professional references to

We encourage you to apply by December 5, 2020.

Hiring Organization: 
Michigan College Access Network
Program Director, AdviseMI
City and State: 
Lansing MI
Hiring Deadline: 

MCAN believes that diversity and inclusion among our teammates is critical to our success and we seek to recruit, develop, and retain the most talented people from a diverse candidate pool.  MCAN is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages people from all backgrounds to apply.  MCAN is also an Employer of National Service.

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