Java Expert & Academic Manager

Dallas, Texas
Are you a skilled Java professional, and do you want to help underserved people in your community gain in-demand Java skills?  

Merit America is looking for a talented, entrepreneurial, mission-driven Java Expert & Academic Manager to help lead our academic program in the Dallas metro area, with the goal of helping thousands of underserved Americans advance their careers. More than two in three Dallas adults 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;
3) Serving Americans without college degrees through our programs

After successfully growing our program in the Washington D.C. area, we are launching a Dallas site with a Learning Track to prepare working adults to become Junior Java Developers. We are looking for a talented Java expert to help oversee our learners’ Java skill development. The Java Expert & Academic Manager will be critical in driving learners’ career transformations, making a lasting impact on their lives.

Role Responsibilities

    • Learners will be taking online Java lessons from a leading training provider, but will also need hands-on practice, direct support and mentorship - that’s where you come in. The Java Expert & Academic Manager’s responsibilities are as follows:
    • Manage learners’ Java skill-development and ensure their job-readiness, including:
    • Attending learners’ “squad sessions” to provide immediate and thoughtful guidance to learners as they work through group coding assignments/projects
    • Reviewing learners’ completed Java assignments/projects and providing thoughtful feedback
    • Hosting virtual and in-person office hours for learners to attend when they have questions, while they work through lessons or assignments/projects
    • Monitoring the learners’ online portal to answer Java-related questions learners have as they work through lessons or assignments/projectsConducting mock technical interviews with learners
    • Offering mentorship and guidance to learners about Java-related careers based on your professional experiences
    • Building trusting relationships with learners, and identifying and supporting learners when they face challenges
    • Build Merit America’s network and competencies, including:
    • Recruiting volunteer professional mentors with Java experience to be an additional resource for learners as they develop their Java skills and prepare to enter Java Developer roles
    • Collaborating with Associate Site Director on local employer partnerships to ensure strong job outcomes for learners
    • Shape future Java academic programming, including:
    • Providing expertise on how to best train for Java skills and which Java skills are differentially critical in today's workforce
    • Providing feedback and insights into what learners' experiences were like learning Java skills

    • We don’t want to utilize a Java expert to deliver hours-long lessons about Java concepts - a video can do that. We want our Java Expert & Academic Manager to be directly interacting with learners and providing the nuanced guidance and support they need.

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. The skills needed for success in this role include:
    • Content Expertise - Java skills: Strong Java skills and knowledge, including: Object and classes, inheritance, overloading/overriding, exceptions, strings, type information, interfaces, collections, Java Spring, generics, etc.
    • Content Expertise - Related technical skills: Strong skills and knowledge of Java-related concepts such as SQL, Agile development, 12 Factor Design, Cloud, and Microservices
    • Social-Impact Mindset: Desire to work directly with underserved populations and meaningfully improve their lives
    • Deep Empathy: Outstanding ability to understand, empathize, and build relationships with others, including people with diverse backgrounds and interests
    • Communication: Strong interpersonal and communication skills
    • Operational Excellence: Ability to manage your own schedule and balance multiple demands, with demonstrated success working in fast-paced environments and solving problems creatively
    • Entrepreneurial Drive: Resourcefulness, agility, and comfort working in ambiguous, quickly­ changing environments, including eagerness to wear multiple hats as needed and to help shape our start-up’s future
    • Lifelong learning: Commitment to lifelong learning and ongoing personal and professional development


    • Full-time starting March 2019
    • This could potentially be a part-time or part-time & remote role - please find the part-time role description here and the part-time & remote role description here
    • Competitive nonprofit salary
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.