Associate Director of Development, Arts and Science

Vanderbilt University - Nashville, TN4.0

Full-timeEstimated: $52,000 - $69,000 a year
The Associate Director of Development will be responsible for soliciting gifts of $100,000 and larger for Vanderbilt University’s Arts and Science team within the Development and Alumni Relations (DAR) department. This position is responsible for development solicitation strategies for potential major gift donors; make direct solicitations; staff dean, faculty, and volunteers as needed.

The Department of Development and Alumni Relations (DAR) assists Vanderbilt University in securing the resources, both human and financial, that are required to achieve its mission and goals. The Department is responsible for the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of individuals and organizations whose charitable objectives are consistent with those of Vanderbilt University’s teaching and research programs.

Duties and responsibilities

Identify, cultivate and solicit alumni, parents and friends for gifts of $100,000 and above; develop solicitation strategies for potential major gift donors; make direct solicitations; staff dean, faculty, and volunteers as needed.

Manage a portfolio of approximately 75 major gift prospects and donors.

Make a minimum of 100 face-to-face prospect visits each fiscal year.

Support the Associate Dean and Senior Director of Major Gifts in strengthening the major gift pipeline for the A&S team.

Represent the Associate Dean and/or Senior Director of Major Gifts as needed.

Establish oneself as a knowledgeable staff member by:
Learning the Vanderbilt mission and being knowledgeable about Vanderbilt and the college of Arts and Science’s responsibilities to the missio
Attaining an in-depth understanding of the A&S development programs and their goals.
Cultivate relationships with Development and Alumni Relations (DAR) staff, Deans and administrators within A&S, and Vanderbilt University as a whole. In addition, cultivate relationships with external constituencies such as alumni, parents, and friends of the University by:

  • Collaborating with DAR staff to build and maintain best practices in soliciting major gifts
Establishing a sound working relationship with DAR staff to enhance collaboration. This includes working with other major gifts officers, operations/advancement services, school leadership, reunion teams, and the DAR leadership team.

Enhance departmental performance standards by:
Performing as a team player
Maintaining a level of reliability that generates stability in the department
Meeting or exceeding department performance standards
Fostering a spirit of cooperation

Contribute to departmental efficiency by:
Understanding and effectively communicating departmental policy and procedures
Clearly communicating concerns and questions to supervisor and staff
Soliciting guidance from supervisor and co-workers when uncertainty arises
Conveying thoughts to supervisor on improving departmental performance
Performing other duties as assigned

Approach each situation with a professional attitude by:
Exercising good judgment in discussing issues and results
Maintaining composure and a calm demeanor during challenging situations
Respecting the need for confidentiality of donors and colleagues
Profile of an Ideal Candidate

Bachelor’s degree, or the equivalent, is necessary
One year of development or relevant experience, or the equivalent, is necessary
Three to five years of experience in development preferred, including direct donor solicitation of five and six figure gifts from individuals
Willingness and ability to personally solicit gifts of $100,000 and larger
Excellent oral and written communication skills
Interpersonal skills and judgment suitable for exercising appropriate discretion and demeanor when dealing with alumni, parents, friends, and employees
Ability to exercise good judgment in the handling of confidential information
Ability to use current computer technology, such as Windows, Excel, Word, and Vanderbilt’s donor management system
Experience with trip planning, domestic travel, and scheduling “discovery” appointments with individuals (i.e., donors, prospects, clients, customers that applicant may have never met before)
Familiarity with Vanderbilt and/or solid understanding of a major research university environment is preferred.
The capacity to perform in an intellectually rigorous and complex academic environment
The ability to apply sound judgment in all situations is required, as are excellent organizational skills with a meticulous attention to detail
Ability to work independently, take initiative, manage multiple projects simultaneously, meet deadlines, and adapt to ever changing priorities are essential
Excellent organizational skills, oral and written communications skills and the ability to articulate the needs, interests and accomplishments of Vanderbilt University to a wide range of audiences
Exhibit personal characteristics enabling effective interaction with important constituencies and possess a genuine commitment to the advancement of education, research, and to the principles governing Development and Alumni Relations
Routine overnight travel is required
Some evening and weekend work, as needed
Value the importance of equity as an organizational operating principle and be committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
About Vanderbilt Benefits

Vanderbilt University offers a competitive, flexible benefits package including health, dental, vision, life, accidental death & dismemberment, disability insurance, paid time off, and a 403(b) retirement plan with employer match. Vanderbilt offers tuition assistance to employees, spouses, and dependent children.

About Vanderbilt University

Vanderbilt University, located in Nashville, Tennessee, is a top-15 private research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. Vanderbilt is situated on a 330-acre campus near the thriving city center, serving more than 12,000 students and employing almost 7,000 faculty and staff. The university’s students, staff, and faculty frequently cite Nashville and the surrounding area as one of the many perks of being a part of the Vanderbilt community. Vanderbilt University is a place where your expertise will be valued, your knowledge expanded, and your abilities challenged. It is a place where your diversity is sought and celebrated. Vanderbilt was recently named as one of “America’s Best Large Employers” and the top employer in Tennessee and the Nashville metropolitan area in 2019 (Forbes).

Commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Vanderbilt University is committed to achieving the goal of a diverse and inclusive academic community of faculty, staff, and students. We seek individuals who are committed to this goal and our campus values.



Vanderbilt University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and protected veterans are encouraged to apply

Job: External Affairs & Communications Professionals
Primary Location: United States-Tennessee-Nashville
Organization: 42312 - Development Teams