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Progam Coordinator for Alternative Breaks


Volunteer Resource Center

Requisition Number:



Boulder, Colorado

Employment Type:

University Staff



Posting Close Date:


Job Summary

CU Alternative Breaks welcomes applications for a Program Coordinator. The Program Coordinator provides professional-level program direction and advising to over 200 Alternative Break participants and leaders, each year. Housed in the Volunteer Resource Center, the Alternative Breaks Coordinator is responsible for leading a quality, experiential, student leadership program that teaches critical-service learning as an outcome of participation. Additionally, the coordinator is responsible for the advisement of a portfolio of programs (15 Spring Break service-experience trips, 4+ Weekend Break service experience trips, 5+ First-Year Service Experience trips) offered by the Alternative Breaks program. Responsibilities include student advising, coaching and supervision, program development, community engagement, training development and facilitation, recruitment and retention of student leaders and participants, event planning, risk management assessment and reporting, assessment and evaluation of program, reporting, and fiscal control. This position requires attention to detail, tenacity, energy, a commitment to social justice and civic engagement work, and the ability to consistently serve as an advisor to students. The Alternative Breaks Coordinator is part of a dynamic and interconnected team of staff and students, and reports directly to the Assistant Director of the Volunteer Resource Center.

Who We Are

Alternative Breaks, a program of the Volunteer Resource Center, sends teams of college students to engage in community-based service projects during each college break, providing opportunities for students to learn about the problems faced by members of communities with whom they may otherwise have had little or no direct contact. This immersion in diverse environments enables students to experience, discuss, and understand social issues in a significant way, ultimately, moving students towards action to make a positive impact.

What Your Key Responsibilities Will Be

Program Management 
  • Manage all community partner/direct-service reservations.
  • Work with Alternative Break student coordinators, using assessment data to determine service sites for each year.
  • Prepare all necessary travel documentation for each trip, including site locations, trip rosters, accurate health form records, contact information for each trip and site contacts.
  • Design, implement, and manage the recruitment, retention, and application process for all student leaders and applicants across all trips.
  • Manage scholarship application process.
  • Plan and implement major and minor events, such as Spring Break Reveal and Weekend Break selection.
  • Plan for and schedule all site leader training.
    • Manage student leader concerns and meet regularly with all site leaders.
  • Revise, assess, and train student leaders on all risk management policy and process.
  • Adhere to, teach, and enforce all risk prevention strategies.
  • Assess all training and service experiences with the support of the Assistant Director.
Alternative Breaks Program and Volunteer Resource Center Leadership 
  • Create and execute fun, educational, impactful, and safe alternative break trips for CU Boulder students.
  • Create effective systems for successful Alternative Breaks program: Participant recruitment, Applications, Scholarships, Training, Assessment, and Reporting.
  • Ensure that program systems, processes, and policies are informed by a social justice framework.
  • Represent the Volunteer Resource Center and the University of Colorado to various constituencies to enhance community service and engaged learning, and campus-community engagement.
  • Develop strategies and template to improve Alternative Breaks quality effectiveness, accountability, and response to student and community partner needs.
  • Assist in Volunteer Resource Center program assessment and evaluation.
Fiscal Management 
  • Manage a sizeable programmatic budget—revenues, expenses, receipts, and reports for program expenses on all Alternative Break trips, with Assistant Director advisement.
  • Prepare and review all individual trip budgets with the Finance Office and seek approval of trip budgets through the Finance Office and the VRC Assistant Director.
  • Manage and assist students and staff partners with budget-related protocols.
  • Prepare all necessary budget documentation for each trip in order to advise students on keeping costs low, while maintaining high deliverables for each trip.
  • Effectively manage program participant retention in programs.
  • Manage the Alternative Breaks scholarship application and distribution process with the support of the Assistant Director, including donor management and relations in attending yearly donor events.
Training and Education of Student Leaders and Program Participants 
  • Assist in the creation and execution of site leader retreats.
  • Integrate diversity, social justice, civic engagement, social responsibility, critical-service learning into all training curricula.
  • Remain current on Alternative Breaks program best practices and implement data-driven continuous improvements.
  • Research and understand social and environmental issues of our Alternative Break trips to better explain to campus community and continue advising students.
  • Design and execute Memoranda of Understanding between the Volunteer Resource Center and Community Partners.
  • Cultivate new and existing; community and campus-wide partnerships of other students, staff and faculty to gain support for the Alternative Breaks program, including regularly meeting with other staff in the Division of Student Affairs to promote the Alternative Breaks program.
Supervision and Advising 
  • Advise, supervise, and support Alternative Breaks student coordinators.
    • Encourage, teach, and advise students in leadership skills, professional skills, and personal growth.
  • Facilitate and ensure smooth communication between student coordinators and student participants, site leaders, staff partners, and community partners.
  • Provide a mid-year and end of the year position evaluation with students and will work with the Director to develop an understanding of leadership within a student coordinator position.

What We Can Offer

The anticipated starting salary for this position is $47,000.


The University of Colorado offers excellent benefits, including medical, dental, retirement, paid time off, tuition benefit and ECO Pass. The University of Colorado Boulder is one of the largest employers in Boulder County and offers an inspiring higher education environment. Learn more about the University of Colorado Boulder.

Be Statements

Be Adaptable. Be Supportive. Be Boulder.

What We Require

  • Bachelor’s Degree. 
  • 1 year of professional work experience in an area related to service learning.
  • 1 year of professional work experience in an area related to advising college students.
  • 1-3 years previous experience participating, leading, planning or program management of service learning travel experiences in a higher education setting.

What You Will Need

  • Demonstrated knowledge and skills in campus programming. 
  • Demonstrated effectiveness using Microsoft Windows Office Suite and Google Suite.
  • Ability to build partnerships across an organization.
  • Ability to manage and prevent risk.
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to accomplish multiple tasks autonomously and efficiently.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish priorities and exercise ethical decision making on relevant issues.
  • Ability to work in a team-based setting.
  • Ability to work with diverse groups of professionals and students.
  • Excellent communication skills including strong writing, facilitation and interpersonal skills.

What We Would Like You To Have

  • Master’s Degree, preferably in Student Personnel, Student Administration or a related field.
  • Prior leadership experience with Alternative Service Break programs 
  • Previous experience in social justice education and facilitation.
  • 1 year previous experience planning and implementing co-curricular service-learning programs in a higher education setting.
  • Experience in establishing and maintaining a program budget.
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Previous experience supervising or advising students, professionals, or groups.
  • Demonstrated previous risk management experience.
  • Knowledge and demonstrated experience in the delivery of student and community engagement programs and related curricular and co-curricular programming in a Student Affairs environment.
  • Experience delivering student leadership training. 
  • Previous work experience of advisement in a collegiate setting with student-driven programs and services.

Special Instructions

To apply, please submit the following materials: 
  1. A current resume. 
  2. A cover letter that specifically addresses how your background and experience align with the requirements, qualifications and responsibilities of the position.
You will not be asked to upload references at this time.

Please apply by December 10, 2018 for consideration.

Application materials will not be accepted via email. For consideration, applications must be submitted through CU Boulder Jobs.

Posting Contact Name: Boulder Campus Human Resources

Posting Contact Email:

The University of Colorado is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer