Tohono Chul seeks a team-oriented, energetic and enthusiastic Director of Education who will thrive in a fast-paced environment and who is well-suited to working collaboratively with a small staff. The Director of Education has direct responsibility and oversight for the delivery of educational programs which reflect Tohono Chul’s overall goal of connecting nature, art and culture in the Sonoran Desert region as well as interpretation of the site itself and the visitor experience. In addition, the Director of Education supervises the Interpretive Programs Manager and Volunteer Services Coordinator in Education and the Curator and Assistant Curator of Exhibitions in Exhibits, as well as assisting other department directors and the Executive Director as requested. Responsible for the quality and appropriateness of Tohono Chul’s public programming, the Director of Education develops and maintains relationships with other museums, botanical gardens and community organizations, interacts directly and indirectly with members and guests on a regular basis and plays a key role in ensuring an exceptional visitor experience. The Director’s duties involve leadership, planning, administration and supervision.
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job, the employee regularly spends long hours sitting and using office equipment and computers. The employee frequently is required to walk; climb or balance; stoop, kneel, or crouch; and talk and hear. During special events the employee may be required to spend hours on their feet. The ability to use fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, control or feel objects. The employee must frequently lift and/or move up to 10 pounds and occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds, anything greater should be done with assistance.
Conceptualize, plan, coordinate and implement a schedule of educational programming for adults (lectures/classes/workshops/travel) that provides members and guests with meaningful and enriching connections to the nature, art and culture of the Sonoran Desert region.
Develop interpretive signage and related materials that tell the story of the Sonoran Desert and Tohono Chul, to include research, writing and participation in design and production.
Provide direction and support for Education Department initiatives for other programs such as teacher/school/family programs, tours and docent programs and offsite initiatives which are mainly the purview of the Interpretive Programs Manager.
Also, with Interpretive Programs Manager, seek opportunities to partner with cultural and community organizations (ACT One, Pima County Libraries, etc.) to
provide access, expand and diversify Tohono Chul’s audience, extend its reach and advance its mission and interests particularly to underserved communities.
Supervise and collaborate with the Exhibits Department in its design and installation of changing art and cultural displays, provision of complimentary educational programming (artist/gallery talks, workshops, studio tours) and maintenance of cultural collections.
Special Events Partnering with other departments, plan and execute annual special events by coordinating and scheduling such activities as food vendors, musicians, craftspeople and artists.
Assist and support General Services department on projects as needed, such as plant labels and database.
Marketing With Marketing, assist and support implementation of marketing efforts for museum programming and events, providing content for website and newsletters, consulting on wayfinding signage and other projects.
Collaborate with Education staff in the research/writing of training and interpretive materials for volunteers, docents and teachers.
Assist in the training of staff and volunteers; participate in the annual docent training program and periodically teach specialty classes/workshops.
Keep current on best practices in the museum and museum teaching fields; pursue the use of new technology such as virtual learning using available web-based programs.
Prepare an annual department budget and monitor same. Assist in the preparation of annual reports and participate in museum-wide and departmental strategic planning.
As a member of the Senior Management Team, represent the Education/Exhibits Department in organization-wide strategic planning, budget preparation and the development of policy and procedures.
Research and writing of grants both department- and organization-wide in coordination with Philanthropy and other departments.
As a member of the Collections Committee, participate in periodic review of the collections policy and the state of the Collection; as required assist in the assessment of potential additions to the Collection or need for de-
accessioning/sales of non-accessioned items.
Track annual Education event attendance and provide it to Marketing for reporting purposes. Conduct periodic event evaluations and manage visitor surveys with Marketing and other departments, to include collecting data and providing summaries. Respond to guest issues as applicable.
The above description reflects the general responsibilities considered necessary to describe the principle function of the job identified and shall not be construed as a detailed description of all the work requirements that may be inherent in the position.
• Comprehensive knowledge of the principles and best practices of botanical gardens, museums and informal education
• Considerable skill in planning, organizing and implementing learner-centered and diversified educational programming and related activities
• Experience and/or understanding of exhibit design and installation
• Strong organizational skills including time/project management and budget development
• Excellent communication skills, both written and oral
• Considerable skill and knowledge of research methods and natural history of the Sonoran Desert
• Demonstrated success in grant writing
• Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work well and collaborate effectively with a range of audiences including staff, volunteers, educators, members, donors, and the general public
• Flexible and adaptable to changing demands and priorities
• Ability to work evenings and weekends as required
• Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite
• A Bachelor’s degree (Master’s preferred) in the social or physical sciences, museum studies or related field
• Knowledge of environmental education, interpretive strategies and informal education
• Demonstrated knowledge and experience in the natural sciences
• Five or more years professional leadership experience in a museum setting
• Proven success in program development and implementation