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The Director for UW Alumni Tours oversees the strategy, execution and evaluation of the UW Alumni Association’s alumni and friends travel program, a program designed to engage diverse audiences of UW alumni, retirees, and friends in profound, meaningful, and inclusive ways. This position reports to the Senior Director for Engagement Strategy and is responsible for building and strengthening affinity and engagement with the University of Washington through an integrated approach.
The Director has direct operational oversight for the financial, administrative, and personnel activities of the UW Alumni Tours program, supervises a team of full and part-time professional exempt and classified staff, exercises independent budget authority, and is responsible for overall program assessment and evaluation.
This position is responsible for extensive internal and external campus and community engagement, communications, and collaboration, including UWAA/ASE, University Advancement, and UW stakeholders, UWAA and UWRA members, donors, retirees, past travelers, and the general public. The Director develops and maintains professional, emotionally intelligent, and kind relationships with broad constituencies that advance the UW’s public mission. The Director demonstrates a high degree of executive resilience and has excellent interpersonal and organizational communications.
This position activates ASE/UWAA’s commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) and contributes to advancing understanding and actions that are actively anti-racist. It is responsible for developing and supporting inclusive, equity-focused programs and services with historically underrepresented or marginalized UW audiences in support of the institution’s public mission.
Program Development and Strategy
•Develop short- and long-term strategic plan for UW Alumni Tours as part of a comprehensive approach to engagement. •Identify opportunities to position UW Alumni Tours within the broader landscape of engagement with UW, and collaborate with campus and community partners to capitalize on those opportunities. •Refine the value proposition for the UW Alumni Tours program. Identify drivers to increase trial, loyalty, and brand ambassadorship, and work with a cross-functional team and partners across UW to bring the value proposition to life. •Develop a culture of stewardship among past travelers with the goal of encouraging continued and deepening engagement with UW beyond their travel experience. •Integrate and advance DEIB and anti-racism goals and objectives into program strategy and implementation, including audience engagement and retention, program and content co-creation, and community-centric assessment and evaluation. •Educate ASE leadership and team members on trends within the travel industry. Anticipate these trends and ensure that the UW Alumni Tours program is structured to capitalize on them. •Identify and capitalize on opportunities for growth within the travel program in alignment with the organization’s mission and values. •Build, maintain, and strengthen professional relationships with colleagues across the travel industry, including tour operators, travel program staff at peer institutions, and peers within the affinity-based travel sector. •Collaborate with other revenue generating departments within ASE to seek ways to grow revenue, share best practices, and improve customer experience.
Program Administration and Team Management
•Select, plan and oversee the execution of 30-50 tours annually, including the selection of tour hosts. •Negotiate contracts with tour operators, insurance vendors, and other entities related to the travel program. •Establish annual revenue targets and operating budgets within a comprehensive and integrated organizational budgeting process. •Manage UW Alumni Tours budgets with delegated discretionary authority. •Develop and maintain risk management plan for UW Alumni Tours in alignment with industry best practices. •In collaboration with marketing and communications colleagues, develop a comprehensive and responsive marketing strategy for UW Alumni Tours. •Travel domestically and internationally on an annual basis for the purposes of tour hosting, research, planning, marketing, and public relations. •Lead and manage a team of team of part- and full-time professional exempt and classified staff, including recruitment, onboarding, training, general supervision of work, professional development and performance assessment. •Effectively manage UW Alumni Tours team workflow and workload to ensure responsive customer service, smooth operations in the face of unexpected disruptions, and capacity for future program growth. •Foster an inclusive and productive team environment that embraces dynamic in-person, remote, and hybrid work environments.
Other duties as assigned
Effective communications: Expresses oneself clearly and empathetically in interactions with others and prioritizes an accessible and transparent style in all forms of communication, i.e., verbal and written, one-on-one and group, etc. Interpersonal Awareness: Builds and maintains positive and productive relationships and actively contributes as a member of working teams to achieve results. Professional Credibility: Takes responsibility for meeting goals, objectives, obligations, and solving problems while representing the mission, vision and values of the organization. Critical Thinking: Obtains, analyzes and evaluates information effectively in the face of ambiguity. Makes appropriate decisions based on relevant information and experience. Ethics and Trust: Models and upholds the values of candor, openness, inclusiveness and honesty despite internal and external pressures. Acts consistently with Washington State ethical guidelines and organizational core values and beliefs. Valuing Diversity & Inclusiveness: Respects, values and contributes to the UW’s commitment to inclusiveness and diversity.
People Builder: Committed to developing others to become leaders. Driving Results: Effectively communicates objectives and guides direct reports and team members to make decisions and achieve goals. Organizational Planning: Develops and manages comprehensive team goals and measures team progress while balancing short-term and long-term priorities that are consistent with the organization’s mission, priorities and goals. Managing Conflict: Recognizes and addresses conflicts and disagreements in a safe and respectful environment, manages conflicts collaboratively, and builds consensus with the best interests of the organization in mind.
Bachelor's degree and five years of experience in travel industry management or related field.
Equivalent education/experience will substitute for all minimum qualifications except when there are legal requirements, such as a license/certification/registration.
•Experience managing a business unit with P&L responsibility, including financial goal setting and business plan development. •Knowledge of or experience working in affinity-based group travel. •Experience and established philosophy of supervision and management of staff and volunteers including plans for training, retention, professional development, successful communication, and expectation setting. •Ability to work independently, problem solve, take initiative, set priorities and handle multiple projects efficiently and effectively. Demonstrated creativity, organizational ability, and strong attention to detail. Ability to make decisions in ambiguous situations, exercise good judgment based on information and analysis in a fast-paced, dynamic, deadline-driven environment in an organized and professional manner. •Proficiency using PC computers and prevailing office management technology; familiarity and comfort with industry-standard CRM and/or other broad-based engagement software and tools. Demonstrated computer skills, including proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for correspondence, special reports, spreadsheets, databases, forms, etc.
•Knowledge and experience in public higher education, alumni or constituent relations, development and/or marketing and communications.
Reasonable accommodations are available in order to meet these conditions of employment. •Ability to work evening and weekend hours, as necessary, on short or limited notice. •Access to reliable transportation for local travel and willingness to travel when necessary. •Ability to travel in and out-of-state up to 5 times per year for events and meetings. •Ability to obtain passport and travel internationally on an annual basis. •Ability to lift 20 pounds regularly and up to 40 pounds occasionally for event setup and tear down. •During Events (from setup to tear down) or on Event days: oAbility to work continuously 4+ hours for events oAbility to work greater than a 10 hour day
Application Process: The application process for UW positions may include completion of a variety of online assessments to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process. These assessments may include Work Authorization, Cover Letter and/or others. Any assessments that you need to complete will appear on your screen as soon as you select “Apply to this position”. Once you begin an assessment, it must be completed at that time; if you do not complete the assessment you will be prompted to do so the next time you access your “My Jobs” page. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your "My Jobs" page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until all required assessments have been completed.
Founded in 1861, the University of Washington is one of the oldest public institutions in the west coast and one of the preeminent research universities in the world. The University of Washington is a multi-campus university comprised of three different campuses: Seattle, Tacoma, and Bothell. The Seattle campus is made up of sixteen schools and colleges that serve students ranging from an undergraduate level to a doctoral level. The university is home to world-class libraries, arts, music, drama, and sports, as well as the highest quality medical care in Washington State and a world-class academic medical center. The teaching and research of the University’s many professional schools provide undergraduate and graduate students the education necessary toward achieving an excellence that will serve the state, the region, and the nation. As part of a large and diverse community, the University of Washington serves more students than any other institution in the Northwest.