Program Success Manager & Career Coach

Washington, District of Columbia
D.C. Metro Area Site
Merit America is looking for a talented Program Success Manager & Career Coach to help deliver and ensure the success of our Washington D.C. program, with the goal of helping thousands of underserved Americans advance their careers. Many adults in the DMV area do not have Bachelor’s degrees and many are working in low-wage jobs, at a time when employers are struggling to find skilled talent. With your help, Merit America will close this skills gap at scale.

Merit America is a new non-profit program focused on building a large-scale pathway from low-wage work into upwardly-mobile careers. We do this by:
1. Partnering with employers;
2. Operating learning programs aligned to employer needs, which combine online learning + in-person wraparound support; and
3. Serving Americans without college degrees through our programs.

We are looking for a talented career services professional to help our learners - and our site - succeed.

The Program Success Manager & Career Coach will primary focus on:
1. Learner recruitment support prior to program launch;
2. Deep professional coaching of learners throughout the program; and
3. Alumni engagement support post-program.

This role is charged with planning, organizing, and implementing key program activities. As such, the Success Manager holds a variety of responsibilities related to directly coaching learners - a major driver of our program success - as well as managing critical operational duties. Reporting to the Associate Site Director, the Program Success Manager will also identify and analyze opportunities and challenges affecting our learners, and will serve as the point person to curate and share information on learners’ behalf.

This is an incredible role for someone who wants to make a meaningful and direct impact on the life of underserved members of your community. Here’s what one of our learners from our Washington D.C. cohort said about their coach:

“My coach has helped me to learn so much more about myself. I feel that my coach is helping me grow and showing me through her success that I can succeed. She always has an answer to my questions or a resource to help me figure it out. If she doesn't, she'll go the extra mile to find one.”

Key Responsibilities:

    • This role presents a significant growth opportunity to help build our program and local team, taking on increasing responsibility as the site grows from dozens to hundreds of learners, and thousands thereafter. Your key responsibilities will be:

    • Recruitment of Learners (20%):
    • Engaging with potential learners at community events while representing Merit America
    • Liaising with prospective learners as they go through the admissions process
    • Providing prospective learners with critical program information
    • Visiting local schools, community centers, healthcare organizations, and education/career fairs
    • Supporting the Associate Site Director in meeting enrollment goals

    • Coaching and Learner Support (60%):
    • Meeting with learners 1-on-1 to understand their goals and help them reach them
    • Meeting with learners in small groups (squads) to teach professional skills and facilitate peer learning
    • Monitoring learners’ progress in online courses through an online portal and proactively reaching out to offer support when learners are struggling
    • Maintaining wide knowledge of community resources available to learners and referring learners to appropriate resources·
    • Arranging learner workshops, training programs, activities, field trips and guest speakers for learners to support their career development·
    • Assisting new learners in their adjustment to learner life to improve their chances for success in the program·
    • Supporting the Associate Site Director in meeting learner retention goals

    • Career Services and Job Placement Management (20%):
    • Identifying which learners are best fit for roles with major national employer partners
    • Searching for relevant jobs in the area to supplement employer partnership opportunities
    • Providing career advising to learners and alumni regarding the job-search process, interviewing, resume writing, cover-letter writing, and email writing, and all other facets of career-related activities
    • Supporting the Associate Site Director in meeting career placement goals

    • Building Merit America (throughout):
      As we are a start-up nonprofit program, we are looking for individuals to provide honest and thoughtful feedback to help shape and grow our program. We want to build the best education-to-employment program in the country and we have the ambitious goal of reaching 50,000+ learners annually in the next five years. As such, your responsibilities will also include:
    • Documenting and sharing insights regarding learners’ progress and challenges
    • Participating in focus groups and brainstorming sessions
    • Identifying specific opportunities to strengthen the program and organization overall

Preferred Qualifications:

    • At Merit America, we believe that if you can excel in the job, you should get the job - so we hire for skills, instead of specific experience or education requirements. That said, experience and education related to the skills outlined below is preferred:
    • Relationship-Building: Strong interpersonal and communication skills, and ability to form trust-based relationships with learners and other stakeholders
    • Content Expertise: Strong knowledge of professional skills such as resume & cover letter writing, interviewing, communicating professionally, etc.; including interest and experience with career coaching, tutoring, education, counseling, youth development, non-profits, or other mission-driven work
    • Deep Empathy: Outstanding ability to understand and empathize with others, including people with diverse backgrounds and interests, and a commitment to improving the lives of underserved Americans
    • Operational Excellence: Exceptional operational and organizational skills, and ability to manage your own schedule and balance multiple demands, with demonstrated success working in fast-paced environments and solving problems creatively
    • Lifelong Learning: Commitment to lifelong learning and ongoing personal and professional development
    • Entrepreneurial Drive: Able to step up and run autonomously in ambiguous, quickly changing environments, including eagerness to help shape our start-up’s future


    • Timing: Fall 2019
    • Compensation: Competitive salary, with performance-based bonus opportunities; Comprehensive Benefits Package

One More Thing:

    • Diversity is integral to our success and we are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We believe in workplaces that are fully inclusive, and include underrepresented individuals in terms of race, gender and/or socio-economic status, and any other characteristics protected by applicable law. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented groups to apply.