Swarthmore College — Director, Swarthmore Fund Leadership Programs

Swarthmore College is a highly selective liberal arts college located in the suburbs of Philadelphia, whose mission combines academic rigor with social responsibility. Swarthmore has a strong institutional commitment to inclusive excellence and nondiscrimination in its educational program and employment practices and encourages candidates who will further advance the goal of fostering a diverse and inclusive community. As one of the nation’s finest institutions of higher learning, Swarthmore College is global in outlook and draws students from around the nation and world. The 425‐acre campus is a designated arboretum, complete with gardens, rolling lawns, a creek, wooded hills, and hiking trails in the Crum Woods.

Who We Are:

We are a team of talented relationship builders with the shared mission of connecting, engaging, and supporting our Swarthmore College alumni, donors, and families.

We are committed to the following:

  • Creating opportunities in everything we do that connect Swarthmore alumni, students, and the wider Swarthmore community;
  • Developing programs valued by our alumni, families, and students who will become our future alumni;
  • Building enduring and mutually beneficial relationships that inspire conversational, experiential, volunteer, and philanthropic engagement;
  • Taking risks and championing new and creative ideas; and
  • Strengthening the College’s reputation and advancing its mission.

The Opportunity:

The Director, Swarthmore Fund Leadership Programs, provides direction, management, and hands-on work in developing and growing Swarthmore’s annual fund leadership programs. A builder, strategist, and effective manager, the Director applies their experience in annual fundraising and volunteer management to engage and develop volunteers and solicit leadership gifts for the College’s current use, unrestricted purposes. In addition, they bring effective tools, practices, and approaches to the thriving academic culture of this liberal arts undergraduate community. Finally, the Director is responsible for expanding the impact of the Alumni and Family Programs department by increasing leadership gifts to and participation in The Swarthmore Fund, increasing reunion volunteer participation and implementing best practices.

Swarthmore values intentional community building by creating spaces for dialogue that foster intellectual curiosity and meaningful connections. The Alumni and Family Programs team contributes to this ethos and the educational mission of the College by engaging alumni, parents, and friends in the life of the College. To this end, the Director will collaborate with the Director of Alumni and Family Communities to connect leadership volunteers with the appropriate campus programs and departments.

In partnership with Individual Giving leadership and reporting to the Assistant Vice President (AVP), Alumni and Family Programs, the Director will anticipate constituent needs, use insights to craft responsive offerings, and shape the organizational capacity and shared expectations necessary to deliver positive and meaningful connections consistently. In collaboration with the Individual Giving team, the Senior Director of Marketing and Donor Relations and the Director of Alumni and Family Communities, the Director of Swarthmore Fund Leadership Programs will establish common pathways for volunteers to fully access all of the opportunities available across Advancement to contribute, participate, and lead. As the manager of three people, the Director will demonstrate the capacity and self-awareness to translate their genuine care for colleagues’ success into professional relationships that activate the team’s creativity, growth, and individual performance.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Provide leadership to prioritize and support the shared goals of families, alumni, and the College within an integrated Advancement framework.
  • Oversee and effect the implementation of volunteer-led reunion and class-based leadership giving programs that activate and maximize giving to The Swarthmore Fund.
  • Ensure the effective management of all class-based fundraising programs and reunion committees.
  • Enable volunteer-led fundraising through resonant and relational programming.
  • Communicate the vital role of philanthropy and volunteerism at Swarthmore College. Contribute to the development and implementation of institutional messages for broad-based constituencies.
  • In strategic collaboration with the Alumni and Family Communities team and the Advancement Events team, recruit, staff, and engage class fundraising committees in their 50th Reunion cycle and other major class committees, as needed.
  • Utilizing data and prospect analytics, develop, recruit, staff, and engage a Leadership Giving Committee to council fundraising and class committees.
  • Manage an individual portfolio and engage virtually and via travel for volunteer recruitment, engagement, and training; committee meetings; cultivation; solicitation; and stewardship of gifts less than $100K to the Swarthmore Fund.
  • Collaborate with the Marketing and Donor Relations team, College Communications, and volunteers in creating digital and print communication initiatives.
  • Oversee and manage the budget for the department.
  • Hire, coach, manage and motivate a team dedicated to TSF leadership programs.
  • Serve on the Advancement Leadership Committee.
  • Collaborate with other members of the Advancement Leadership Committee, under the direction of the AVP, Alumni and Family
  • Programs, to improve the effectiveness of the Advancement division.

Who You Are:

  • Demonstrated ability to strategize, implement, and build Leadership Giving Programs,  implement coordinated volunteer activities, successfully raise leadership level annual fund gifts, along with a talent for motivating a team and volunteers.
  • Demonstrated commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion; culturally competent in issues such as racial, cultural, religious, sexual, and gender identity.
  • Flexibility and initiative, as well as the ability to work independently, combined with the skills for thriving in a team environment.
  • High professional and ethical standards for handling confidential information.
  • Ability to organize and complete multiple tasks simultaneously with close attention to detail and prioritization to meet deadlines.
  • Excellent written, oral, and interpersonal skills; personal solicitation experience is valued.
  • Excellent technical skills, including knowledge of database research and maintenance and staying ahead of changing technology, and recommending solutions to meet the department’s needs.
  • Demonstrated ability to build effective and collaborative relationships with various constituents, including students and volunteers of all ages.
  • Ability to be a self-starter and simultaneously work independently and in a team environment on several projects.

What You Bring:


  • Bachelor’s degree.
  • A minimum of eight (8) years working in institutional advancement or equivalent professional experience.
  • Must be able to travel and work evenings and weekends as needed.


  • Advanced degree.
  • Experience working in a college or university setting, especially in a comprehensive fund-raising campaign environment.
  • A sense of humor and a deep appreciation for private liberal arts education.
  • Successful supervisory experience focused on setting priorities, managing, and motivating a diverse team.
  • Superior written and oral communication skills, including imaginative and persuasive writing and articulating the value of higher education.
  • Ability to authentically engage and inspire others as a representative of the Advancement Office.

What You Will Get:

You’ll work at one of the world’s most renowned liberal arts Colleges, with incredible benefits, a stunning 420-acre campus, and a collaborative work environment. And you will join a team of passionate, creative, and supportive people who work hard and have fun supporting the College community.

Review the Swarthmore Benefits Guidebook; we offer benefit plans starting at $0 per month! Upon benefit eligibility, the College contributes 10% of an employee’s salary to their retirement account. Employees are 100% vested in their accounts on the date participation begins.

For more information and to apply, please visit: https://careers.swarthmore.edu/cw/en-us/job/495082/director-swarthmore-fund-leadership-programs

For full consideration, submit applications including a resume and cover letter by February 27, 2023. We want to hear from you if you are excited about this role!

Swarthmore College actively seeks and welcomes applications from candidates with exceptional qualifications, particularly those with demonstrable commitments to a more inclusive society and world. Swarthmore College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.