Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Communications Officer, Schools, Education & Youth Engagement

The Discovery Center recently completed a two-year refresh project and our team is redefining how we do our work as it relates to diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility. Our programs and exhibits continue to showcase and amplify new and unheard voices as we tie local issues to our global priorities. We work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation regional offices and program staff as well as new local partners to collaborate on programs and in-gallery experiences.

Our guiding belief is that all individuals have the capacity to create positive change and contribute to improving lives. To that end, our overarching objectives are:

  • Provide opportunities for individuals to experience a progression of engagement from awareness to action.
  • Maximize awareness building opportunities through diverse experiences and programs that educate, inspire, and motivate audiences.
  • Ensure high quality engagement experiences across all channels – physical and virtual to educate, inspire and motivate audiences.
  • Our target audience, although not exclusively is middle school, high school and young adults.

Leadership & Culture

Our culture shapes our choices about what we do and how we do it. We believe that energized people, working well together, fueled by great leadership in an inclusive environment can do extraordinary things. We expect foundation employees to intentionally and consistently embody our four agreements; show respect, offer trust, be transparent, and create energy.

Position Summary

The Communications Officer, Schools, Education & Youth Engagement develops, manages and implements a cohesive group of education and youth programs that link middle and high schools and community audiences with the work of the foundation; encouraging youth to be leaders for positive change. This position reports to a Senior Communications Officer for Interpretation and Engagement. You will be responsible for coordinating a range of education programs, specifically geared for youth and young adult audiences. This includes a broad spectrum of middle school, high school and young adults related activities that include overseeing; educator and youth organization outreach to bring youth to the Discovery Center, planning and implementing tours (including Skype tour), training other staff with new tour content, planning educator workshops and events, overseeing a Youth Ambassador High School Interns Program, developing and implementing youth summer workshops, and adding feedback and content suggestions for changing exhibits.

You will collaborate with staff across the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to advocate for young people and to provide a welcoming, comfortable and inspiring environment for youth to visit independently, with peers, and with family members.

Core Responsibilities

In partnership with the Sr Interpretation & Engagement and Sr Visitor Services & Engagement Officers, you will be responsible for our youth and educator programs. This will involve researching, developing and implementing a creative slate of programs that encourage active dialogue, self-expression and leadership aimed to create future change makers. This will include:

  • Develop strategy and content for youth tours, school and education programs and tour interpretation.
  • Develop, implement an evaluate tours and interdisciplinary activities and programs for middle, high school and college age audiences with a goal of creating sustainable, high quality educational programming.
  • Provide interpretive guidance and contributes to text panels and didactics.
  • Assists in training and mentoring students, volunteers and interns to lead successful exhibition-based tours.
  • Lead tours and floor shifts while assisting with other interpretive programs as needed.
  • Oversee the Youth Ambassador High School Interns Program and the associated Teen Action Fair.
  • Develop and implement strategy for outreach and engagement of schools, youth organizations, civic agencies to visit the Discovery Center, and Skype in the Classroom opportunities.
  • Build relationships with primarily public middle and high schools in King and Pierce counties aimed to increase attendance and create engagement opportunities for youth focused on taking action in their communities and creating career pathways.
  • Work with curator(s) to develop interpretive materials and resources that break down key messages and content that compliment exhibit content and school curriculums, while remaining relevant to middle school and high school youth.
  • Creates and tracks budgets and documentation of tour plans, content and evaluation reports.
  • Develop online, social media and website supplementary educational resources and activities to support exhibits and tour content.
  • Establishes and maintains relationships with informal and formal learning environments such as; schools, youth organizations, museums, science centers, zoos, visitor centers, philanthropic and civic partners.

Position reports to the Senior Communications Officer for Interpretation & Visitor Engagement.

Core Knowledge & Skills

  • Strong facilitation skills and experience in conflict resolution strategies.
  • Knowledge of current education theories, informal learning theory, positive youth development and trends in formal and informal educational settings; object-based teaching methods and/or visitor research for museum activities.
  • Experience creating sequential learning experiences, creating lesson plans and online resources.
  • Commitment to interdisciplinary teaching, collaboration and a contextual, cross-disciplinary practice.
  • Commitment to diversity equity and inclusion.
  • Ability to network, identify and cultivate program partners and resources in the community and with schools.
  • Excellent research, writing, oral communication, interpersonal skills and ability to work with people of a wide variety of ages, abilities and backgrounds.
  • Ability to manage large groups in a positive and professional manner.
  • Ability to travel to school and community locations will be required.
  • Strong project management skills with an ability to manage numerous projects simultaneously with strong organizational skills and attention to detail needed.
  • Creative thinker and problem-solver.
  • Must be reliable and dependable to attend sessions and work flexible hours (weekends and/or evenings required).
  • Knowledge in Microsoft Office Suite.

Education & Experience

  • Minimum of seven years’ experience working with youth in a classroom, youth development or leadership organization or cultural institution’s education or youth program with emphasis on K-12 students.
  • Bachelor’s degree in education, museum education and/or youth development related field.
  • Must be able to legally work in the country where this position is located without visa sponsorship.

As part of our standard hiring process for new employees, employment with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will be contingent upon successful completion of a background check.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is dedicated to the belief that all lives have equal value. We’re committed to creating a workplace where employees thrive both personally and professionally. We also believe our employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve—in race, gender, age, cultures and beliefs—and we support this diversity through all of our employment practices.

All applicants and employees who are drawn to serve the mission of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will enjoy equality of opportunity and fair treatment without regard to:

* Race
* Color
* Age
* Religion
* Pregnancy
* Sex
* Sexual Orientation
* Disability
* Gender Identity
* Gender Expression
* National Origin
* Genetic Information
* Veteran Status
* Marital Status
* Prior Protected Activity