• 529 Outreach and Program Specialist

    Posted: 05/29/2022

    Apply HERE
     

    Position Summary:

    Looking for an articulate communications and operations go-getter, who is a fun, creative, and goal-oriented team player to join our growing 529 plan team as an Outreach and Program Specialist. Hybrid/remote work arrangements will be considered, although this position requires regular availability for in-person client meetings and outreach events. Therefore, the candidate must be willing to live in the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

     

     

    Duties:

     

    Operations: Develop proficiency in account services procedures and policies. Working with the operations team, contribute to process improvements, efficiencies, and product enhancements. Interpret, communicate, and promote program services to participants. Assist new and continuing 529 plan account holders and beneficiaries with inquiries, account maintenance, contributions, distributions, and other issues. Evaluate and respond to inquiries as appropriate. Answer phone calls and emails, and assist walk-in customers. Serve as a resource for business process improvement, project management, technical training, participant requests, operational issues, and marketing and promotion. Troubleshoot operational challenges. Research and respond to account questions, disputes, or errors. Consult and advise management on client account problem resolution and legal issues. Utilize databases, forms, and tables to assist program participants, create reports to track and communicate program metrics and event outcomes, and help with budget projections. Utilize Excel and Access or other CRM tools to monitor and manage daily, weekly, monthly, and annual data files.
    Marketing & Outreach: Serve as a coordinator for business development, sponsorships, and outreach. Coordinate external partnerships with businesses and non-profits, and identify and pursue marketing and outreach opportunities. Evaluate and recommend partnerships that enrich and elevate cultural and geographic diversity in the programs. Assist with special projects in alignment with marketing campaigns. Represent the department in-person and virtually at local outreach and marketing events such as chambers of commerce, state fairs, scholarship receptions, and business meetings, including periodic weekend and evening events. Plan, develop, conduct, evaluate, manage and deliver seminars, training, business meetings, and outreach events. Coordinate office staff resources for event coverage when needed. Identify and engage in outreach opportunities to help grow plan participation in various ethnic groups and rural regions. Participate in conferences and due diligence meetings with program partners, vendors, and contractors to review and address investment, marketing, and operations performance and activities. Generate ideas for promotional pieces and collaborate on creating materials, including TV and print material, websites, social media, displays, giveaways, events, and sponsorships for the department’s programs. Assist with maintaining program websites, creating social media content, writing press releases, newsletter copy, and other content as needed, and supporting additional communication channels. Develop a working knowledge of federal and state requirements that could impact stakeholders. Consider these requirements during outreach initiatives, customer interactions, and general communications with external and internal stakeholders. Assist in reviewing legal disclosures, forms, and program documents. Review internal and external communications, marketing materials, and advertisements to comply with applicable laws, regulations, policies, and procedures.

     

    This individual will assist in making post-secondary education more affordable and accessible to families through the communication, promotion, and management of the 529 plans offered by the Education Trust of Alaska (Trust). The right candidate will demonstrate a passion and enthusiasm for education, a commitment to affordability, and an ability to coordinate many details, tasks, projects, and objectives to achieve the strategic goals of the Trust. The ideal candidate will have experience working in a fast-paced environment and be open to learning new, complex, and multi-faceted programs.

    About the department: The Education Trust of Alaska (the Trust) administers Alaska’s three 529 plan offerings: Alaska 529, the T. Rowe Price College Savings Plan, and the John Hancock Freedom 529. The Trust has contracted with an external Program Manager, T. Rowe Price, to provide recordkeeping, customer service, marketing, and investment management for Alaska’s 529 plans. 529 plans are savings vehicles that allow families to save for future college expenses in a tax-advantaged way. The department's role is to set policy, procedures, and long-term strategies for the plans and then manage the Program Manager relationship to ensure compliance with approved policies and procedures. Additionally, since the 529 plans enjoy certain federal tax advantages, they are highly regulated by entities such as the SEC, MSRB, and IRS. The program must remain in compliance at all times with regulations, and the department must stay up-to-date with the regulatory environment and adapt the program as necessary to remain a qualified program.  

    The ability to travel 1-2 times per month for business meetings, in-person events, or professional conferences is expected.

    This is a Grade 78, 12-month position, complete with a competitive UA Benefits package.  Though a hybrid/remote work arrangement is available, this position requires regular availability for in-person client meetings and outreach events. Therefore, the candidate must be willing to live in the Fairbanks North Star Borough. 

    KNOWLEDGE/SKILLS/ABILITIES:

    Advanced knowledge of best practices in communications, marketing, public relations, and sales.

    Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, and organize and present facts and opinions with internal and external stakeholders.

    Proficiency with business communication tools, including the Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel), social media platforms, and customer relationship management platforms. Advanced computer skills or the ability to troubleshoot.

    Basic design skills using Adobe Photoshop and InDesign, Canva, or other creative software tools.

    Ability to establish and maintain professional relationships with individuals and groups.

    Excellent customer service skills.

    Ability to interpret and explain complex policies, rules, and regulations.

    Ability to exercise sound judgment in analyzing situations and making decisions.

    TYPICAL EXPERIENCE:

    Three or more years of professional experience with communications, business administration, relationship management, customer service, project management, marketing, outreach, account management, accounting, finance, budget management, recruitment, human resources, training, or different business administration experience equivalent to that of the department.

    REQUIRED EDUCATION OR TRAINING:

    Three or more years of college coursework. Preference is given to candidates with a four-year degree from an accredited college or university and candidates who have obtained a Master’s degree or post-baccalaureate credential in a related field. Three years of professional experience in communications and marketing, business administration, sales, relationship management, customer service, or an equivalent combination of training and experience. Preference is given to candidates with marketing, business administration, sales, or relationship management experience.

    INSTRUCTIONS TO APPLY:

    Please submit a cover letter, resume and the contact information for three professional references. Finalists may be asked to complete a skills assessment.

    To ensure consideration, please apply by 11:55PM Alaska Time on June 26, 2022.  The initial review of applicants will begin on 6/27/22. This recruitment will remain open until filled.

    *To be eligible for this position, applicants must be legally authorized to work in the United States without restriction.  Applicants who now or may in the future require visa sponsorship to work in the United States are not eligible.

    University employees working in connection with certain federal contracts are required to be vaccinated or have an approved medical or religious exemption in place as of Jan. 18, 2022. All new hires subject to this requirement must be fully vaccinated with an FDA- or WHO- authorized or approved COVID-19 vaccine or have obtained a university-approved disability/medical or religious exemption no later than six weeks from the new hire's start date. 

    Required employees 

    • Employees based on UAF’s Troth Yeddha’ campus in Fairbanks, regardless of university affiliation and remote work status; 

    • Employees based in UAF research units outside Fairbanks. Examples include the Seward Marine Center, Kodiak Seafood and Marine Science Center, HAARP, Poker Flat, Lena Point, and Toolik Field Station;

    • Employees, regardless of their work location, paid by or directly working on impacted UAF federal contracts. 

    Reasonable Accommodation Statement:

    The University of Alaska (UA) is responsible for providing reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities throughout the applicant screening process. If you need assistance in completing this application or during any phase of the interview process, please contact UA Human Resources by phone at 907-450-8200.

    Affirmative Action Statement:

    UA is an AA/EO employer and educational institution and prohibits illegal discrimination against any individual: www.alaska.edu/nondiscrimination

    Background Check:

    The successful applicant is required to complete a background check. Any offer of employment is contingent on the background check.

    Probationary Period:

    Pursuant to University Regulation 04.07.020, new employees of the University are employed in an at-will probationary status for the first six months of employment. During the probationary period, employment may be terminated for no reason or any reason. Promoted employees also serve a probationary period with limited rights of retreat.

    Public Disclosure Statement:

    Your application for employment with the University of Alaska is subject to public disclosure under the Alaska Public Records Act.

    University of Alaska is a Drug-Free Workplace.

    University of Alaska campuses are Tobacco-Free. 

    Training Policy:

    It is the policy of the University of Alaska (UA) that all employees are required to complete training to meet the requirements of the positions they hold, and to complete the required training within a specified period to remain employed at the UA.

    Contact Information:

    If you have any questions regarding this position, please contact University of Alaska HR at 907-450-8200.