Director of Strategic Industry, Government and International Relations

Columbia University
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Feb 20

Position description

The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) seeks an energetic a Director of Strategic Industry, Government and International Relations with a history of demonstrated success in leading industry relations initiatives and other innovative relationships in a higher education setting. S/He will identify key partners with industry, foundations, government agencies, and other organizations and will develop mutually beneficial partnerships by linking the expertise of the School with their industry, philanthropic, and societal missions. Working closely with SEAS faculty, SEAS senior administrators, and the Office of Dean, the incumbent will provide strategic leadership and will expand both philanthropic and sponsored research opportunities with existing and new external partners. In addition, the incumbent will develop programs for interaction with industry and other external partners. These alliances will support a number of important initiatives at SEAS, including funding for academic and research programs, faculty and industry collaborations, internships, student recruitment and hiring, and executive training programs.

Reporting to Dean and Sr. Executive Vice Dean, the incumbent will lead a new effort to improve the existing industry and external relations program and increase the number of donors and sponsors that support SEAS efforts worldwide. The incumbent will be responsible for developing and managing the Industry Affiliates Program, an engagement program that will be established to extend SEAS' work with the private sector and to provide its members with relevant and valuable programming and interactions. To this end, the incumbent will grow and manage the program, develop strategies to recruit and retain members, and to implement best practices for the operation's sustainability. The incumbent will also explore other forms of collaborations with external partners, including but not limited to joint research centers or labs. The incumbent will provide high level support to leverage existing external relationships that will increase opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. Working with our external partners, the incumbent will seek student internships, develop relationships that facilitate student recruitment and hiring, and help to identify industry speakers for high level events, panels, and practicums. Charged with accelerating the identification and development of new partnerships, the incumbent will identify and establish new donors by developing a portfolio of prospects and assertively cultivating and soliciting those prospects. This will include developing and executing strategies that align marketing and philanthropic interests of external partners with SEAS programs and initiatives. The incumbent will work with colleagues in the Office of the Dean, the SEAS departments and centers, and other units to plan and execute donor trips, special events, and meetings with faculty, staff, program officers, and others.  


  • Bachelor's degree required, and a minimum of eight to ten years of industry relations experience in a research-intensive university setting.  
  • Demonstrated experience with the practices and norms of industry philanthropy. Demonstrated success in all phases of personally cultivating, soliciting, and stewarding large gifts ($1,000,000 and above) from corporations. Knowledge of program design and budget creation for solicitations. Knowledge of university policies and practices related to the acceptance and administration of grants from industry entities, and knowledge of university stewardship practices. A successful record of securing grants and gifts is essential. 
  • A motivated self-starter with a demonstrated record of building and expanding industry and external relations in a university setting. Strong analytical skills required to evaluate opportunities, develop effective plans and strategies, assess feasibility, and evaluate results. 
  • The successful candidate will have the ability to converse effectively regarding technical/scientific topics. The successful candidate must possess excellent interpersonal skills, the ability to interact with both internal and external constituents, and detailed & precise written and oral communication skills. 
  • Ability to quickly establish credible relationships with high level executives and build a broad knowledge about a variety of relevant industries essential.  
  • Proven ability to work collegially and effectively with development professionals, school administrators and faculty, and other constituencies. 
  • Demonstrated success in managing multiple projects simultaneously with a high degree of attention to detail. 
  • Must be able to travel and spend a majority of time planning, meeting with, and following up with prospects and existing donors.

Preferred Qualifications: Master's Degree, preferably in Engineering 

Application instructions

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