Director - Growth Strategy & Recruitment, Providence/Greater Boston

About Us

Our country's education and workforce systems are inequitable, failing to meet the needs of our country’s most marginalized citizens. Historically, workforce education has led to low-wage jobs disconnected from ongoing higher education, which has created significant barriers for career advancement. At the same time, traditional higher education has increasingly become unaffordable for Americans from lower-income backgrounds while also lacking direct connection to the labor market. The consequences of these systemic failures are dire. Despite increases in national high school graduation and college enrollment rates, systemic racism and inequity mean that college persistence continues to be low, particularly for people that are Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC).

At Propel America, we believe a better system should and can exist. We believe high school graduates shouldn’t have to choose between forestalling income and accruing significant debt while pursuing a traditional college degree or forestalling education and mobility for low-wage, entry-level work with few opportunities for advancement. Propel is building that better system, a ‘third way’ solution that allows young adults from low-income backgrounds to access an affordable and efficient pathway to a good job that serves as a springboard to a choice-filled life.

By working backwards from the needs of established employer partners, Propel America:

  • Supports young adults (18 to 24 years old), particularly those from low-income backgrounds, to prepare for living wage jobs
  • Partners with training and higher education organizations to offer workforce credentials that allow students (or “fellows,” as we call them) to earn college credits
  • Provides wraparound coaching and professional skill development to ensure fellows have what they need to be successful in their job interview, on the first day of work, and a plan for ongoing education and career advancement.

The Opportunity

Your mission is to develop the vision, strategy, systems, and relationships to retain and acquire school district and community-based partnerships to reach our vision of serving at least 2,000 18-24 year olds over the next 3 years.

As the Director - Growth Strategy and Recruitment, you will operate in a key dual client-facing role -- guiding school and community partners through the recruitment pipeline and supporting learners through the admissions process. This will require building the Propel America brand, deepening our work with current partner districts and schools, successfully expanding into new geographies with new partnerships, and stewading key decision-makers. And, you will build relationships with prospective young adults to support them in successfully applying and enrolling in Propel’s third way option.

Specifically, this role is about ensuring Propel America - Providence/Greater Boston can meet its ambitious growth and scale goals over the next three years and beyond, in a way that reflects our team’s core values.

The Director - Growth Strategy and Recruitment responsibilities include the following:

Recruitment/Growth Strategy Development

  • Establish a multi-year growth strategy reflecting employer demand, pathway availability, and a deep understanding of emerging needs and realities within the local community alongside the national recruitment team
    • Develop a local recruitment strategy by prioritizing and targeting specific districts, schools, and community partners, and align their needs to our different program offerings to drive recruitment efforts (i.e. Core HS product line, Bootcamp, etc).
    • Own the strategy and goals for new partner acquisition and current partner retention that translates into successful recruitment of recent high school graduates and 18-24 year olds.
    • Identify the most important recruitment channels, tactics, and outreach approaches, and leverage Propel’s suite of career and pathway exposure resources to reach enrollment goals.
    • Develop a deep understanding of the local postsecondary and workforce development landscape to localize our value proposition and recruitment strategy for 18-24 year olds.
    • Coordinate critical collaboration points with other team members.
      • Collaborate with the recruitment team and coaches to aid with partner engagement and provide enrollment support.
      • Collaborate with the design team to update marketing and recruitment materials, and create and leverage additional materials where needed.

Partner Relationships and Program Awareness

  • Implement a relationship management strategy for both current recruitment partners/stakeholders and prospective partners, maintaining both the high-level strategy for these communications and the day-to-day execution, using a variety of communication methods as needed.
    • Develop strong and trusting relationships that lead to invested and committed 18-24 year olds applying to Propel.
    • Coordinate communications across partnerships to help partners understand the impact and value of the partnership.
    • Leverage Propel America champions to serve as referrals to additional recruitment channels.
  • Increase broader community awareness, understanding of program offerings, and investment in Propel’s workforce development and post secondary education approach.
    • Engage directly with district, school, and community partners to convert them into Propel America champions.
    • Leverage marketing materials to build program knowledge and community investment in the third way option
  • Own the plan, from strategy to implementation, for guiding partners through the engagement and recruitment process; ultimately translating into learners successfully enrolling.

Applicant Experience

  • Develop meaningful relationships with prospective applicants, support them through the initial stages of the admission process, and collaborate with coaches to ensure a smooth transition through the application funnel.
  • Leverage a deep understanding of our programming, pathways, and the expectations of our training and employer partners to ensure committed learners are showing up ready and aware of the admissions process.
  • Work with the client services team to understand requirements for pathways and integrate that information and process into the applicant experience for fellows.

Org-wide Collaboration and Systems Use

  • Collaborate with team members and colleagues to continually strengthen our growth strategy, partnerships, and overall experience Propel America offers 18-24 year olds.
  • Leverage data, and organizational customer relationship management tools and systems, to gather key insights, make strategic decisions, and communicate and collaborate effectively with a variety of audiences.
  • Use tools and systems to track our recruitment pipeline and guide learners through the admissions process.
  • Work closely with the central team to streamline and leverage technology to ensure fellows have a smooth application experience.

Preferred Qualifications

  • 4+ years of experience in education partnership/recruitment. Knowledge of the secondary/postsecondary space with direct experience selling a program/product to or recruiting students for schools, districts, or CMOs
  • Proven history of consistently exceeding recruitment goals
  • Knowledge of the local secondary, postsecondary, and workforce development landscape
  • Experience working in direct service of young people with demonstrated results
  • Experience using key data insights and platforms (i.e Salesforce) to manage and forecast growth opportunities
  • Comfort with ambiguity and operating in a startup environment
  • Exceptional ability to persuasively and clearly communicate with a variety of stakeholders -- all while demonstrating urgency, empathy, understanding, and balance.
  • Strong values-alignment and equity orientation to advancing a job-first higher education approach for our fellows
  • Ability to travel regularly across the regional area
  • Ability to work flexible hours (e.g. nights and weekends) as necessary


The salary for this position is between $69K-$89K annually. Propel America offers a competitive total rewards package including coverage of 90% of health insurance premiums, unlimited PTO, and a flexible work environment.

Interested in applying?

Please submit your application here. The application deadline to apply for this position is January 6, 2022. After this date we do not guarantee review of submissions.

Propel America is an equal-opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. We encourage candidates from historically underrepresented backgrounds to apply.