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Education Programs Manager
Category: Manager

Descanso Gardens
La CaƱada Flintridge, California

Posted: Friday, August 16, 2013

Education Programs Manager 

Status: Exempt
Reports to: Executive Director
Descanso Gardens seeks an Education Programs Manager responsible for developing and managing comprehensive short and long term educational plans as well as creating and maintaining educational programs that reflect Descanso Gardens’ mission and meets the needs of the diverse audiences we serve.
Reporting to the Executive Director, the Education Programs Manager is responsible for the development, administration and management of education programs offered by Descanso Gardens including but not limited to school field trips and group tours, learning resources provided on site and online, programs open to the public and outreach to schools and educational organizations. The Education Programs Manager is responsible for all aspects of the Education Department, which includes growing successful programs already in place and in creating new programs to expand our mission in a variety of areas.
Current Education programs include docent-guided and self-guided tours; the Harvest Garden program, a free horticulture program for students with special developmental needs; summer camp; and, classes designed for all ages. Rounding out the educational opportunities offered to our members and visitors are many interesting and mission-based educational activities including Little Owls Reading Nest, Toddler Treks and Acorn Bear, Get Dirty, seasonal Story Walks, Discovery Carts, bird walks, horticulture and healthy living classes and all programming for festivals, seasonal events and the Sturt Haaga Gallery.
An area of importance to Descanso Gardens is the Volunteer program. Working closely with the HR & Volunteer Manager and the volunteers themselves, the Education Programs Manager will put strategies in place that maximize the volunteer experience and grow the program to its full potential.
  • Work with Executive Director and senior staff to set the vision and goals for the department.
  • Participate as a key member of the senior management team.
  • Lead, direct, and supervise the day-to-day operations of the Education Programs department.
  • Develop and implement curriculum-based education programs.
  • Develop and implement public programs for children and families, including festivals, workshops, performances, educational offerings related to the Sturt Haaga Gallery shows and readings.
  • Work with staff to develop and implement an outreach plan to grow new and repeat attendance to education programs.
  • Plan, develop, implement and evaluate partnerships with school teachers, school administrators, and staff at partner community organizations.
  • Market programs to K-12, teacher audiences, undergraduate, post-graduate, and other institutions to promote programs and drive diverse audiences to Descanso Gardens. This includes but is not limited to submitting articles and programming content for the membership newsletter, websites, social media, etc.
  • Work closely with the Volunteer Manager to grow the volunteer base and to maximize the volunteer program, overall recruiting, training and supervising of volunteers.
  • Continue to build upon volunteer interactions with Garden visitors to create memorable visitor experiences.
  • Ongoing evaluation of all programs to include feedback on visitor experience and attendance.
  • Negotiate and manage contracts with artists and consultants.
  • Oversee the efforts of any consultants hired to develop educational or public programs.
  • Work with Chief Operating Officer to prepare, track, evaluate, and report on all education programming grants.
  • Work with Director of Finance & Administration to develop and manage all departmental budgets.
  • Work with the Membership and Visitor Services Manager with regard to all tours and programming affecting the visiting public.
  • Work with the Gift Store and Sturt Haaga Gallery Manager to develop educational programs related to Gallery shows.
  • Manage and direct education program staff to ensure optimal program creation and delivery.
  • Other duties as assigned.
Computer (with MS Office), telephone, calculator, photocopier, fax, credit card machine, projecting equipment, sound system, Smart Board, and other office equipment, as appropriate.
This position requires flexibility to work in an office and an active outdoor environment which includes public interaction, some noise and various other distractions throughout the Gardens. Must be able to walk long distances and access various areas of the Gardens including areas not accessible by paved roads or dirt trails. Some lifting up to 20 pounds required, but not routinely. It also requires the ability to walk, kneel, bend, stoop, sit, crouch, drive (an electric cart), and climb step ladders.
  • BA degree required, preferably in a related field (education, museum education, etc.)
  • 3 – 5 years of experience and a track record in development, implementation, and evaluation of education programs in an educational or cultural setting.
  • Working knowledge of informal learning theory and practice, museum visitor studies, history, botany or ornamental horticulture.
  • Well-developed interpersonal skills including the ability to work with colleagues, trustees, volunteers, and community leaders.
  • Demonstrated experience working collaboratively with diverse groups, working with a multicultural workforce, and a sensitivity to and appreciation for cultural differences.
  • Effective oral communications skills with the ability to interact with employees at all levels of the organization as well as with external contacts.
  • Experience writing curriculum.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage and coordinate a team.
  • Personnel management, which includes, but is not limited to hiring procedures, employee development, performance management, coaching and mentoring.
  • Self-starter with strong organizational skills who can work independently as well as collaboratively with staff and external constituents.
  • Knowledge of CA schools, as well as experience working with CA learning standards (Common Core).
  • Solid political agility to work through organizational issues.
  • Strong ability to be creative, think critically, define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions or solutions.
  • Knowledge of and commitment to customer service principles, techniques, systems, and standards.
  • Strong computer skills, preferably MS Office Suite; experience working with Smart Boards, preferred.
  • Flexibility to change and a well-developed ability to perform under various levels of stress, imposed by frequent deadlines and peak workloads, essential.
  • Other critical attributes include a high degree of warmth and a well-developed sense of humor. It is essential that the candidate have the flexibility and philosophical orientation to function effectively with staff, team members, students, teachers, parents, visitors and volunteers.
Compensation: Depending on qualifications and experience.
To apply:
Interested parties may apply by submitting a letter of interest, resume and salary history and requirements to with EPM0813 in the subject line. Only those meeting the minimum requirements and submitting all required information will be contacted for further inquiry. We will accept resumes until the position is filled. No phone calls, please.
Descanso Gardens Guild Inc. acknowledges that equal opportunity for all persons is a fundamental human value. Each employee will be considered on the basis of individual ability and merit, without regard to race, color, age, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, sex, or marital status.

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