Director, Innovative Programs

Catalyst @ Penn GSE, University of Pennsylvania - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - Full time

The Director, Innovative Programs will have primary responsibility to identify and incubate new programs in Catalyst. This effort will include working across diverse stakeholders and establishing business relationships with a variety of organizations. This individual will be fundamental in helping Catalyst grow to another level with a clear focus on helping the Executive Director build a strong portfolio of effective programs along with a cadre of strategic partners, sponsors, and collaborators with whom to expand our influence and impact.


Work with the Executive Director and others to identify, incubate, roll out and grow new programs in areas that meet Catalyst’s strategic priorities and maintain GSE as an innovation leader

Build stakeholder engagement across diverse constituents in support of these initiatives, both internal to GSE and Penn and external. Understand the needs of these partners and design solutions to address them

Establish strong partnerships with a variety of aligned organizations, sponsorships to support the work, collaborative agreements to build capacity to implement the work broadly and drive thought leadership

Manage the portfolio of current and future certificate programs and ensure they are positioned to be institutionalized

Develop familiarity with areas of expertise in faculty research to match with needs of clients

Analyze and report on the successful completion of short and long-term goals through measured returns and outcomes for these programs


A bachelor’s degree and 5-7 years relevant experience required or equivalent combination of education and experience. Master’s degree strongly preferred.

Track record of developing education innovations on time and budget that meet/exceed expected outcomes

Passion for and experience in identifying new business ideas and partnerships in education environments 

Excellent organizational skills, with emphasis on priorities and goal setting

Superior communication and presentation skills with ability to communicate information clearly and concisely with senior executives and faculty

Skills to understand and propose products and solutions by focusing on client requirements

Team player with capabilities to manage diverse stakeholder priorities toward consensus

High energy, results orientation and creativity

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Higher Ed Head Of Innovation

Experience Level

Senior Level

Catalyst @ Penn GSE, University of Pennsylvania

Catalyst @ Penn GSE connects people and ideas across diverse constituencies and combines education, business, and technology to develop innovative ways to address persistent and emerging problems in education and create opportunity for all learners.

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