Sr. Program Associate (Technical Assistance Coaching and Support Systems)

Job Type

Full Time




Details: The salary range, duties and responsibilities of this position meet the requirements of Section 13 (a) (1) of the Fair Labor Standards Act and therefore qualifies as an "exempt" position.




United States


TITLE: Senior Program Associate                                  

SUPERVISOR: Senior Manager - TACSS


The David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality, a division of the Forum for Youth Investment, is currently seeking a Senior Program Associate to provide training, technical assistance and improvement planning services to Michigan’s 21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) grantees and site supervisors. The Senior Program Associate will bring superior knowledge of positive youth development practices, afterschool program models, and experience providing data-driven planning services in the education or human services fields, and leverage this knowledge to support continuous improvement efforts in Out-of-School Time (OST) settings.The Senior Program Associate will coach 21st CCLC grantee directors, site supervisors and direct service staff, develop close, collaborative working relationships in order to support aligned development and execution of multi-year program quality improvement initiatives.

Organization & Background

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the Forum for Youth Investment is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan “action tank” committed to changing the odds that all children and youth are ready for college, work and life. It provides ideas, services and networks that leaders need in order to make more intentional decisions that are good for young people. The Forum helps leaders increase their capacity to more effectively make the case for and manage the collaborative efforts that are needed to change the odds for youth; improve the alignment and appropriateness of child and youth policy agendas and investments; and strengthen programs’ and practitioners’ capacity to create environments in which youth thrive, across all the systems and settings where young people spend time.

In 2008, the Forum created the David P. Weikart Center for Youth Program Quality to build the capacity of public and private agencies to implement quality improvement and performance systems that simultaneously foster professional learning and whole-child development with the purpose of improving social-sector outcomes. The Weikart Center’s research-based core products and services are currently used in over 4,700 out-of-school time settings nationally and form the basis for quality improvement systems in over 135 publicly and privately funded systems. The Weikart Center empowers education and human service leaders to adapt, implement, and scale best-in-class, research-validated, quality-improvement systems to advance child and youth development.

The Forum is a thriving organization with a budget of over $10 million, a staff of 48 and headquarters in Washington DC. This position is based in Ypsilanti, Michigan, at the headquarters of the Weikart Center. The Center has an annual budget of over $4 million and a staff of 24. While the Forum overall is funded by a mix of foundations and corporations with a growing fee-for-service contract base, the Weikart Center’s budget is funded predominantly (80+%) by fee-for-service contracts. For more information, please visit

Position Responsibilities

A.   Support development and implementation of multi-year quality improvement plans for a cohort of 21st Century grantees and funded afterschool program sites. Essential tasks include:

·     Supporting growth in leadership capacity for teams of 21st Century grantee directors, site managers and local evaluators through trust-based relationships, demonstrated content expertise and productive facilitation skills.

·     Developing strong working relationships with leadership teams to surface organizational strengths and weaknesses, develop performance and improvement goals and scaffold behaviors necessary for successful action.

·     Collecting, compiling, and interpreting organizational performance data to identify program improvement and professional development priorities.

·     Co-developing improvement goals and co-writing a multi-year quality improvement plan aligned with state accountability requirements and local improvement goals.

·     Delivering and/or coordinating deployment of training and technical assistance services to support enactment of quality improvement plan.

·     Monitoring and reporting on performance changes.

B.   Collaborate with the Senior Program Manager-MDE, TACSS Team and staff at the Michigan Department of Education to develop just-in-time training, technical assistance and quality advising protocols for 21st CCLC grantees that can be delivered through a variety of channels, including on-site visits, live trainings, webinars, and telephone/email consultations. 

C.   Manage communications and coordinate activities with the Program Manager and TACSS Team to maximize the impact of the consulting relationship, customize quality improvement plans for the local environment, and assure the fit of training and technical assistance services for the 21st CCLC client base. 

D.   Serve as a program management and positive youth development content expert; be familiar with and model best practices ranging from strength-based program improvement planning and 21st CCLC compliance protocols to the High/Scope participatory learning methods.

E.   Work with the project team to manage and maintain project task sets and activity logs to ensure that all work is delivered effectively and efficiently and that all program files, records and computer data are complete and secure.

F.   Other duties as assigned.

Performance/Character Requirements

The successful applicant will be a highly motivated, organized, and client-focused person with strong knowledge of youth development best practices and direct experience with out-of-school-time programming. The ideal candidate will also have experience providing data-driven planning and technical assistance services in the human services or education fields and be an effective trainer and communicator. Initiative, intellectual curiosity, creativity, reliability, flexibility, discretion, thoroughness, accuracy and a commitment to the Center’s mission are critical. Applicants will require a valid driver’s license and reliable transportation, and will be eligible for mileage reimbursement for in-state travel within assigned region, which is approximately 60% time.



Experience as a teacher, youth worker, or OST program manager and a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant discipline such as Education, Youth Development, Public Administration or other child-related fields are required. In addition, the successful candidate should:

·        Possess working knowledge of child, adolescent and adult development theory and experience programming for diverse populations and learning styles.

·        Have a strong track record of delivering training and technical assistance, including data-driven planning content, to teachers, youth workers, OST program managers and/or related human service audiences.

·        Have experience supporting organizational and program improvement efforts in school-day or OST settings

·        Have experience collecting quantitative and/or qualitative data.

·        Be familiar with and/or have experience implementing one or more OST management competencies.

·        Be familiar with a variety of technologies, including the advanced features of Outlook, Excel, Word, and PowerPoint, as well as marketing and communication products such as Constant Contact, GoToMeeting and social networking applications.

·        Exhibit excellent verbal and written communications skills.

Experience with the High/Scope participatory learning approach and observational research tools, including the Youth Program Quality Assessment, is strongly preferred. Experience administering 21st CCLC grants, including developing and managing budgets and programs, is also desirable. 

Working Environment

Flexibility is required to adapt to the dynamic work environment of a small non-profit research and consulting organization that has national clients and exposure. The climate is informal but mission-driven. Excellence is valued in every position. The Senior Program Associate is based out of the Weikart Center’s Ypsilanti, MI office, but may also be field-based in the field.

Position & Compensation

The salary range, duties and responsibilities of this position meet the requirements of Section 13 (a) (1) of the Fair Labor Standards Act and therefore qualifies as an "exempt" position.


The Forum for Youth Investment is committed to creating a diverse work environment and is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer and drug-free workplace, and to comply with ADA regulations as applicable. All applicants are considered for all positions without regard to race, religion, color, sex, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, age, national origin, ancestry, physical/mental disability, severe/morbid obesity, medical condition, military/veteran status, genetic information, marital status, ethnicity, alienage or any other protected classification, in accordance with applicable federal, state, and local laws. We encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply.


Medical, Dental, Vision, Disability, FSA, Life, Retirement package, etc.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

2-year degree

How To Apply

Please send resume and cover letter with salary requirements to: Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. If your application is selected for an interview, you will be contacted directly. No telephone calls or inquiry emails, please.

We encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply. If you are a qualified candidate with a disability, please email us at if you require a reasonable accommodation to complete your application.