The Colorado River Alliance (the Alliance) is a not-for-profit organization that champions the long-term vitality of the Texas Colorado River through education and engagement. (More info at www.ColoradoRiver.org.) We are seeking a Program Coordinator to manage one of the Alliance’s signature education initiatives, the Mobile River Program. Launched in 2015 and featuring the award-winning Texas Colorado River Rolling Exhibit (a.k.a., the Mobile River), this program’s primary audience is Austin Independent School District 7th graders and educators. In addition, this water-science-center-on-wheels visits community events and, on occasional one- and two-week trips, middle schools across the state within the Texas Colorado River’s watershed. The program was developed to help students, including at-risk and underserved students, learn vital concepts such as water conservation, aquatic science, the uses of water, and healthy river ecosystems. Our goal is to inspire the next generation of water scientists and leaders. The Mobile River was developed and operates in partnership with the City of Austin’s water utility, Austin Water, and the Austin Independent School District. A short video about this program is available here.
The Program Coordinator’s principal duties focus on (1) coordinating with school personnel and managing a robust school-visit program for 5,500 7th-grade students annually, along with visits to about 10 community events per year; (2) training and coaching 7th-grade teachers daily on using the Mobile River’s curriculum units, classroom models, and instructional materials; and (3) managing the operating systems of a mobile science center, including electrical and computer systems, fuel and HVAC systems, technology-based exhibit functions, and trailer set-up and close-down.
- Manage day-to-day operations of the Alliance’s Mobile River program including planning and execution of school-campus visits during the school year and deployment to public events.
- Provide on-site support to Mobile River school-campus and event visits including exhibit deployment; teacher training and orientation; exhibit supervision and curatorship; data collection; and assistance in teaching classroom curriculum.
- Maintain professional correspondence with school teachers and administrators for training sessions, program marketing, school-visit scheduling, program updates, and more.
- Conduct program evaluations, collect educator feedback and student test data, and communicate results and recommendations to managers, program partners, and other stakeholders.
- Develop and maintain relationships with community organizations and school districts to propel Mobile River programming and teacher utilization of Mobile River and associated teaching curriculum.
- Establish and maintain collaborative relationships with Alliance employees and volunteers, transportation crews, community organizations and schools, and public-event coordinators.
- Drive the strategic growth of bilingual programming to support Spanish-speaking visitors.
- Maintain all program files, databases, and teaching materials. Conduct inventory, maintain supply levels, and restock as necessary.
- Provide basic support and coordinate maintenance for the deployment and operation of this trailer-based educational exhibit system, including trailer slide-outs, wheelchair lift, generator and HVAC checks, computer systems, and fueling.
- Make occasional presentations to community groups, such as attendees at education conferences.
- Manage up to 6 volunteers and interns per programming season (fall, summer, spring), including training, professional and educational development, and active daily coaching.
- Co-coordinate and implement volunteer and intern recruitment, training, and management with the Alliance’s Program Director, including seasonal Volunteer Open Houses and volunteer-appreciation events.
General Alliance Responsibilities
- Work with Alliance staff on major events and projects as needed, such as Alliance fundraising events, Barstow Speaker Series luncheons, and the annual Lake Travis Cleanup.
- Assist with the Alliance’s social media presence by posting on various platforms, multiple times each week.
- Represent the Alliance to the public and help spread its message and mission.
- Take on non-traditional office tasks as needed, such as running errands for events and participating in outdoor recreational programs, etc.
- Maintain a basic familiarity with current water issues and trends affecting the Texas Colorado River.
- Fully bilingual in Spanish and English.
- Bachelor’s degree, plus a minimum of one year’s experience of teaching school or managing in-school programs. Preference for more than one year’s teaching experience and specific background in public middle-school work.
- Must be highly motivated, energetic, deadline-oriented, and able to handle multiple priorities on a daily basis.
- Must enjoy working with children and community members.
- Must have a basic background in environmental science, aquatic science, or a relevant STEM discipline.
- Excellent interpersonal skills as well as verbal and written communication skills.
- Comfortable working closely and continuously with a variety of people on a day-to-day basis.
- Strong computer literacy (Word, Excel, basic website content administration such as WordPress).
- Must enjoy making public presentations and discussing water science and issues with a wide diversity of visitors.
- Favorable results of all necessary background checks.
- Position includes regular lifting of objects up to 40 lbs. and daily outdoor work.
The Program Coordinator reports to the Program Director and works collaboratively with Alliance staff and volunteers.
This staff person functions with a high degree of independence and must take daily initiative in structuring and implementing the Mobile River Program’s school and community-event programming. The Program Coordinator travels 4–6 weeks per year, working inside an air-conditioned/heated mobile education facility, attending public events, and working at approximately 20 school campuses in Austin and across the Texas Colorado River basin annually. Daily travel regularly includes transporting education equipment in a personal vehicle. The Program Coordinator is asked to work with and maintain mobile-facility support systems like generators and batteries. The Program Coordinator works and transports gear in a variety of weather conditions, including heat and rain.
Salary $40,000. Expected Start Date: No later than January 1st, 2018. Excellent benefits include paid health, dental, and vision insurance; generous PTO program; retirement contributions; mileage reimbursements; a flexible work environment; and an office on Lady Bird Lake.
The Colorado River Alliance is committed to providing a non-discriminatory employment environment for its employees. As an Equal Opportunity Employer, we do not discriminate on the basis of age, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity or national origin, socioeconomic class, or physical impairments.
Applications, including a letter of interest, a resume, and three references, will be accepted online only. Please follow this link to apply: https://coloradoriveralliance.formstack.com/forms/programcoordinator_application
Applications will be reviewed as they are received, and this position is open until filled.