Job Details

University of Pennsylvania
  • Position Number: 5325325
  • Location: Philadelphia, PA
  • Position Type: Business - Marketing and Sales

Associate Vice Dean for Advancement, Penn Arts and Sciences

University Overview

The University of Pennsylvania, the largest private employer in Philadelphia, is a world-renowned leader in education, research, and innovation. This historic, Ivy League school consistently ranks among the top 10 universities in the annual U.S. News & World Report survey. Penn has 12 highly-regarded schools that provide opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and continuing education, all influenced by Penn's distinctive interdisciplinary approach to scholarship and learning. As an employer Penn has been ranked nationally on many occasions with the most recent award from Forbes who named Penn one of America's Best Large Employers in 2023.

Penn offers a unique working environment within the city of Philadelphia. The University is situated on a beautiful urban campus, with easy access to a range of educational, cultural, and recreational activities. With its historical significance and landmarks, lively cultural offerings, and wide variety of atmospheres, Philadelphia is the perfect place to call home for work and play.

The University offers a competitive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits, a wealth of health and wellness programs and resources, and much more.

Posted Job Title
Associate Vice Dean for Advancement, Penn Arts and Sciences

Job Profile Title

Job Description Summary
Reporting to the Vice Dean for Advancement, the Associate Vice Dean (AVD) for Penn Arts & Sciences will serve as a member of the senior leadership team for the School's Advancement Office and provide leadership for the Penn Arts & Sciences major gifts and parents programs, corporate and foundation relations, planned giving, and alumni engagement initiatives in support of the School of Arts and Sciences. The AVD will manage and provide strategic guidance to a team of ten professional and administrative staff. Leading by example, the AVD will maintain a portfolio of principal and major gift prospects.

The AVD will work closely with other school- and centrally-based colleagues, including Principal Gifts, Major Gifts, Gift Planning, Alumni Relations, Annual Fund, Corporate & Foundation Relations, and Donor Relations and Stewardship to execute a comprehensive fundraising and engagement strategy for the School. The successful candidate will be an inspiring leader and an effective advocate for the value of the liberal arts with all constituents.

Job Description

Penn's School of Arts and Sciences' Office of Advancement is committed to the advancement, promotion and support of the strategic agenda of the School through fundraising and public relations efforts. The Advancement office strives to enhance the quality, reputation and financial strength of the School by securing critical resources to support existing and new initiatives and by building a full appreciation of SAS faculty, students, and initiatives through a broad range of media and programs.

  • Work with the Vice Dean, Dean, Vice President, and other senior leadership to establish strategic direction for the School's advancement efforts, develop comprehensive annual plans, and set aspirational goals for direct reports.
  • Coordinate closely with central staff in the University's Development and Alumni Relations (DAR) division with respect to the prospect planning process across the University. Collaborate with colleagues across Penn to identify and explore ways to enhance individual gift fundraising efforts at SAS and beyond.
  • Provide leadership for the ongoing execution of the School of Arts & Sciences strategic fundraising efforts; clearly articulate the School's fundraising priorities internally and externally; and work closely with the Vice Dean, SAS, and central staff to develop strategies, approaches, and programs to ensure the success of fundraising and alumni engagement goals.
  • Provide strategic oversight and direction for the School's parents, planned giving, corporate and foundation relations, and alumni engagement programs. Develop a strong sense of teamwork, and an environment of mentoring and support.
  • Lead, in coordination with the Vice Dean and Central and School colleagues, the planning and preparation for the upcoming university campaign and initiatives built from the University strategic framework, In Principle and Practice.
  • Build strong personal and professional relationships with the entire SAS community, including alumni, faculty, staff, and volunteers. Proactively work to understand and maintain an in-depth knowledge of SAS programs, key faculty, research, notable alumni, and student initiatives; serve as a resource, advocate, and spokesperson for the SAS Advancement Office and programs.
  • Represent SAS and the Advancement Office on University-wide committees as needed.
  • Support the Vice Dean in her work with the SAS Board of Advisors and develop personal working relationships with members and other senior volunteers.
  • Serve as strategic lead working closely with the Dean of the College in growing and managing the College of Arts & Sciences External Advisory Board.
  • Serve as the delegate for the Vice Dean as needed with the 36 staff in the Advancement Office, the broader development community at Penn, and with academic and volunteer leaders as needed.
  • Manage major gifts, corporate and foundation relations and alumni engagement staff as well as an administrative assistant. Develop and implement performance metrics and assessment tools for the Advancement Office both individually and overall; devise and implement strategies to provide professional development for staff and to encourage their highest level of performance.
  • Personally cultivate, solicit, and steward a select portfolio of high-level donors and prospects. Achieve personal annual fundraising goals.
  • Develop strategies to increase gift revenue, maintain and strengthen relationships with key volunteers, enhance volunteer engagement, and ensure that volunteer resources and tools are robust and effective. Lead efforts to identify and cultivate new donors and volunteers.
  • Identify priorities for events, development communications and donor relations.


Bachelor's degree and at least 10 years of progressively responsible development including at least five years of supervisory experience is required. Experience in an academic setting is strongly preferred, as is work in a campaign environment. Essential skills include:
  • Strong record of success soliciting major and principal gifts ($5 million and above) from individual donors and directing alumni engagement.
  • Excellent management skills; the ability to set objectives and performance standards, provide constructive feedback, and achieve established program goals. Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Ability to work effectively in a large, complex institutional setting and develop and sustain productive and effective relationships with donors, faculty, colleagues, and departmental senior management.
  • Intellectual curiosity and commitment to the goals of a liberal arts education essential as is the ability to articulate the case for support;

Other important skills/attributes include:
  • comfort with ambiguity and change;
  • demonstrated tact, sensitivity, maturity, and good judgment; and
  • proven record of professionalism, entrepreneurialism, organizational, and creativity.

Must be willing to travel and work evenings and weekends as needed; valid driver's license required.

The University of Pennsylvania has partnered with Talent Citizen to assist in this recruitment. After applying through Workday, please contact President Tracy D. Welsh, Managing Associate Rachel K. Partin, and Associate Jose Cisneros to share your resume and cover letter via email at:

Job Location - City, State
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Department / School
School of Arts and Sciences

Pay Range
$177,778.00 - $266,000.00 Annual Rate
Salary offers are made based on the candidate's qualifications, experience, skills, and education as they directly relate to the requirements of the position, as well as internal and market factors and grade profile.

Affirmative Action Statement
Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class.

Special Requirements
Background check required after a conditional job offer is made. Consideration of the background check will be tailored to the requirements of the job.

University Benefits
  • Health, Life, and Flexible Spending Accounts: Penn offers comprehensive medical, prescription, behavioral health, dental, vision, and life insurance benefits to protect you and your family's health and welfare. You can also use flexible spending accounts to pay for eligible health care and dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Tuition: Take advantage of Penn's exceptional tuition benefits. You, your spouse, and your dependent children can get tuition assistance here at Penn. Your dependent children are also eligible for tuition assistance at other institutions.
  • Retirement: Penn offers generous retirement plans to help you save for your future. Penn's Basic, Matching, and Supplemental retirement plans allow you to save for retirement on a pre-tax or Roth basis. Choose from a wide variety of investment options through TIAA and Vanguard.
  • Time Away from Work: Penn provides you with a substantial amount of time away from work during the course of the year. This allows you to relax, take vacations, attend to personal affairs, recover from illness or injury, spend time with family-whatever your personal needs may be.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: In partnership with Genworth Financial, Penn offers faculty and staff (and your eligible family members) long-term care insurance to help you cover some of the costs of long-term care services received at home, in the community or in a nursing facility. If you apply when you're newly hired, you won't have to provide proof of good health or be subject to underwriting requirements. Eligible family members must always provide proof of good health and are subject to underwriting.
  • Wellness and Work-life Resources: Penn is committed to supporting our faculty and staff as they balance the competing demands of work and personal life. That's why we offer a wide variety of programs and resources to help you care for your health, your family, and your work-life balance.
  • Professional and Personal Development: Penn provides an array of resources to help you advance yourself personally and professionally.
  • University Resources: As a member of the Penn community, you have access to a wide range of University resources as well as cultural and recreational activities. Take advantage of the University's libraries and athletic facilities, or visit our arboretum and art galleries. There's always something going on at Penn, whether it's a new exhibit at the Penn Museum, the latest music or theater presentation at the Annenberg Center, or the Penn Relays at Franklin Field to name just a few examples. As a member of the Penn community, you're right in the middle of the excitement-and you and your family can enjoy many of these activities for free.
  • Discounts and Special Services: From arts and entertainment to transportation and mortgages, you'll find great deals for University faculty and staff. Not only do Penn arts and cultural centers and museums offer free and discounted admission and memberships to faculty and staff. You can also enjoy substantial savings on other goods and services such as new cars from Ford and General Motors, cellular phone service plans, movie tickets, and admission to theme parks.
  • Flexible Work Hours: Flexible work options offer creative approaches for completing work while promoting balance between work and personal commitments. These approaches involve use of non-traditional work hours, locations, and/or job structures.
  • Penn Home Ownership Services: Penn offers a forgivable loan for eligible employees interested in buying a home or currently residing in West Philadelphia, which can be used for closing costs or home improvements.
  • Adoption Assistance: Penn will reimburse eligible employees on qualified expenses in connection with the legal adoption of an eligible child, such as travel or court fees, for up to two adoptions in your household.

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