Director of College Access

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Published 24 days ago

The Organization

At Thrive Scholars, our goal is to see talented BIPOC students from economically disadvantaged communities develop economic mobility and financial security, and become the diverse corporate, civic, and academic leaders our country so desperately needs.

 Our comprehensive, data-driven, high-touch program model focuses on the key inflection points that can be the difference between just graduating from any college, and graduating from a top college with the grades, degree, career skills, and network needed to thrive in any career. Over our six-year program, Scholars benefit from admissions and intensive academic preparation before college and a comprehensive set of academic, personal, social-emotional, financial, and career supports throughout college.


The Program

The two primary components of our High School program are the Summer Academy and college counseling.

  • Summer Academy is a 6-week rigorous academic preparation program that gives students 210+ hours of instruction in college-level writing and math taught by college professors, to ensure that Scholars have the preparation they need to excel academically in selective college settings. Our Summer Academy for rising high school seniors typically takes place at Amherst College, where Summer Academy 2022 will take place from mid-June to early August.
  • Throughout Summer Academy and during their senior year of high school, Thrive Scholars provides group-based and individual college counseling programming to students, ensuring that students are competitive applicants at selective colleges where they receive low-loan or no-loan financial aid.


The Position

In the last three years, Thrive Scholars has focused on expanding nationally; reaching more high-achieving underrepresented students, tripling the number of Scholars we serve; and deepening our program impact. As a result, to support the increased number of Scholars, the College Access team has grown from 2 staff members to 9 staff members in the last year.  We are seeking an experienced, dynamic, and strategic leader to manage our College Access program to support the organization through this significant growth. The next Director must have knowledge of the selective college admission and financial aid process; experience working with academically high-performing students; and a deep understanding of the experiences of BIPOC, economically disadvantaged, and first-generation college student populations. They must also be an adept manager with the ability to build and lead a growing team. 

This position will report to the Managing Director of High School Programs and can be remote, with preference for it being based in Boston, MA or Los Angeles, CA. Post-COVID, some travel to the other site will be required. The Director will be responsible for providing on-site leadership at Summer Academy and is expected to be on-site at Amherst College during a minimum of 4 weeks within the six-week program.  


Key responsibilities

  • College Access Program Leadership (80%):
  • The Director will be responsible for the leadership of all aspects of the Thrive Scholars College Access program
  • Management and Team Leadership: The Director will lead the College Access team of 8 College Access Managers to support an incoming cohort of 300 students. The Director will be responsible for hiring, management, coaching and talent to ensure that the team is equipped to reach ambitious goals.
  • Program Design: The Director is responsible for continuing to build and refine the structure and design of Thrive’s college counseling support, ongoing workshops, curriculum and digital programming, and key events, including an annual college fair.
  • Campus Relationships: The Director will also be responsible for cultivating relationships with college admission representatives, and advocating on behalf of Scholars in the college selection process when necessary.
  • Program Evaluation and Data: The Director will ensure attainment of program goals and engage in ongoing program evaluation and redesign; gather and report on qualitative and quantitative data.

  • Summer Academy Program Leadership (10%): In concert with the Director of Summer Academy, manage the planning and execution of the enrichment pillar of the summer program on the campus of Amherst College. This will include collaboration with a Summer Academy Site Director and a Faculty Liaison, and leading on select campus logistics, Scholar arrangements, and enrichment programming. 


  • Cross-Program Support (10%) Support cross-departmental and organization-wide events and initiatives, including student recruitment and selection, and collaboration with fellow Program Directors and other organizational leaders.



  • Five or more years of professional experience required
  • Minimum of three years of experience in college admissions, financial aid, or college counseling, with a focus on selective colleges
  • Minimum of three years of experience managing a team of professional staff
  • Expertise in the selective college admission and financial aid process, particularly as it relates to first generation BIPOC students from economically disadvantaged communities
  • A passion for working with a racially, culturally, and socially diverse community of academically talented high school students
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills, with the ability to lead presentations and workshops
  • Highly skilled relationship-builder, who is able to build trusting relationships with colleagues, high school students, guidance counselors, and college admissions professionals
  • Goal-oriented, motivated by impact and results
  • An entrepreneurial attitude and focus on continuous improvement and innovation
  • Ability to leverage technology to provide remote support to, and maintain strong rapport with, students across the country
  • Excellent people management skills, and ability to coach and develop a team towards ambitious goals
  • Excellent workflow management skills and the ability to evaluate outcomes and make data-informed decisions



Along with the specific qualifications and experiences noted above, the ideal candidate for this position will be expected to demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Strategic Collaboration: Understands how and when to work with others to drive strong results. Able to balance attention to both results and relationships. 
  • Performance Management: Assesses progress towards goals, giving meaningful feedback and supporting the creation of effective strategies.
  • Talent Development: Plans and supports the development of individuals’ skills and abilities so that they can effectively fulfill current responsibilities and prepare for future career opportunities.
  • Emotional Intelligence: Recognizes and manages personal actions in ways that consider context and the needs, experiences, and feelings of others.
  • Fostering Thrive Community: Contributes to a work environment that embraces organizational values and works effectively across identities.



Thrive Scholars offers a competitive compensation and benefits package including high-quality health and dental insurance, four weeks of paid vacation, generous professional development funding, and access to an employer-matched retirement plan. This is a full-time exempt position.


Salary Range: $80,000 – $90,000


COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement

Thrive has instituted a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all employees, including remote staff. Individuals selected for job opportunities must be fully vaccinated and up to date, per CDC guidelines, and will be required to provide proof of vaccination status in advance of your hire date.

If you are unable to be vaccinated for medical reasons or sincerely-held religious beliefs, Thrive will consider requests for reasonable accommodations consistent with our policy. Accommodation requests cannot be guaranteed, Thrive will consider requests where we are able to provide such accommodations without undue hardship to the organization pursuant to applicable law. Any such accommodation must be approved in advance of signing an offer letter.

Thrive Scholars provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, national origin, sexual orientation, age, disability, or veteran status. Knowing its importance to the success of our work, Thrive Scholars is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and we aspire to build a diverse staff team and community. We strongly encourage people of all backgrounds to apply.

For more information, please visit

The Organization

At Thrive Scholars, our goal is to see talented BIPOC students from economically disadvantaged communities develop economic mobility and financial security, and become the diverse corporate, civic, and academic…

Details at a Glance

  • Time Commitment
    Full Time Schedule
USD $80,000 - USD $90,000
/ year


Work may be performed anywhere in United States
Associated Location
606 S Olive St, Los Angeles, CA 90014, USA
Suite 2150

How to Apply

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