The Educational Opportunities Center Navigator will provide high-touch case management services to Grand Rapids Community College's Educational Opportunities Center (EOC) participants in support of the EOC's efforts to expand secondary school diploma attainment, financial aid applicants, and postsecondary college admissions and enrollment rates for area residents of West Michigan. This work will happen at GRCC, as well as at multiple locations within the EOC's service area. Key responsibilities include assisting participants with completion of intake application forms, administering assessments to determine EOC program eligibility and support needs, providing personalized academic coaching, and developing Individual Educational Plans for participants. This position also will educate participants about secondary school reentry, GED preparation, high school equivalency, and alternative education program options. Additionally, the Navigator will assist participants with the completion of college and financial aid application processes and connect students with representatives, resources, and support services at GRCC and other area institutions of higher education. This position is also responsible for planning and facilitating field trips to higher education institutions and leading a wide range of workshops and training sessions related to FAFSA completion, financial literacy, preparing for college entrance exams, time management, and other relevant topics.
ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS
Assist prospective students in completing intake application forms to assess their needs and determine their eligibility to participate in EOC programming.
Review potential participant intake form responses and conduct in-person or virtual initial interviews with each applicant to establish eligibility for participation and service needs.
Administer holistic assessments to measure and characterize individual student skills, characteristics, needs, and barriers. These assessments include, but are not limited to, intake forms, Clifton Strengths, learning style inventory, and Grit scale.
Based on intake and assessment responses, work with participants to create personalized Individual Educational Plans (IEP) that define recommended steps in the pathway toward postsecondary program enrollment.
Provide guidance to adults on secondary school reentry, GED preparation, high school equivalency, and alternative education program options throughout both urban and rural areas of Allegan, Barry, Ionia, Kent, Lake, Mason, Mecosta, Montcalm, Muskegon, Newaygo, Oceana, Osceola, and Ottawa counties.
Conduct readiness assessments, assist participants in locating programs that offer materials/instruction in Spanish or other languages, and provide test vouchers for those unable to afford testing fees.
Connect adult learners to GED preparation programs tailored to their personal needs using a 'no wrong door' approach to provide a warm hand-off.
Provide high-touch case management services to assigned Educational Opportunities Center participants. Maintain appropriate documentation and concise notes of interactions, referrals, resources, and interventions provided to individual students.
Provide ongoing and individualized academic coaching for students, which includes personalized communications and prompts, one-on-one meetings to identify academic, financial, and social barriers to academic and career success, and academic plan development to overcome these barriers and reach established goals.
Utilize Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software to assist in case management efforts, including assigned student communication and documentation. In addition, use CRM to develop and enact ongoing communication and outreach plans including email, event management, texting campaigns, and task assignment.
Collaborate with GRCC faculty and staff from various student support service areas, including Academic Advising and Transfer Center, Academic Support and Tutoring Services, Admissions, Counseling and Career Development, Disability Support Services, Financial Aid, Veterans Services, other departments to support participant needs.
Leverage relationships with financial aid, admissions, and other higher education professionals at postsecondary institution partners to provide students with additional support and direct connections at the college or university of their choice.
Connect students with personal, career, and academic advising services and resources.
Assist EOC participants in the exploration of prior-learning credit assessment opportunities at GRCC and other regional institutions.
Provide participants direct assistance and support in applying for admissions to postsecondary institutions, both at partner sites and GRCC locations.
Plan, organize, and facilitate approximately four field trips each year to various two- and four-year postsecondary institutions.
Plan, coordinate, schedule, and lead workshops to support participants in completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and related financial aid processes at their chosen 2- or 4-year institutions.
Work with GRCC's Financial Aid staff to deliver virtual and in-person financial aid presentations that inform participants about available types of financial aid, eligibility requirements, and related application processes.
Plan, coordinate, schedule, and lead in-person and virtual financial literacy information sessions at college and community venues using Financial Avenue modules and resources.
Coordinate guest speakers from local banks, credit unions, and other organizations to discuss budgeting and planning for college expenses.
Plan, coordinate, schedule, and lead in-person and virtual workshops and information sessions related to study skills, time management, competitive writing, preparing for college entrance exams, and other relevant topics.
Serve as a primary contact and advocate for veterans and members of other groups, such as homeless youth, traditionally underserved populations, students formerly in foster care, DACA, students with disabilities, those from low-income backgrounds, first generation college students, and others who may require specialized assistance.
Attend professional development conferences, seminars, workshops and webinars to stay abreast of current regulations, trends and best practices related to Educational Opportunities Centers.
Other duties as assigned to further the mission of the Educational Opportunities Center and to fulfill EOC goals and performance objectives.
Degree in social work, higher education, or a related field preferred.
National Career Readiness Certificate preferred.
Bilingual, English-Spanish preferred.
Prior experience working in higher educational settings, preferably in student support services, or comparable relevant experience required.
Demonstrated knowledge of GED preparation and alternative education programs, as well as college admissions, academic advising, enrollment, financial aid, and career counseling processes.
Experience with cognitive and non-cognitive assessments preferred.
Experience in an education setting that serves a diverse student body preferred.
Preference will be given to a candidate who has succeeded in overcoming barriers similar to the target population of TRIO EOC.
Demonstrated knowledge and extensive software application experience, specifically Microsoft Office Suite, G Suite, Blackboard, Navigate, financial aid-related web systems, databases, student information systems (preferably PeopleSoft Campus Wide Information System), scheduling tools, CRM systems, and texting platforms.
Knowledge of data reporting systems, experience with data tracking, and preparing reports preferred.
Strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to work collaboratively as part of a team.
Ability to organize work, handle multiple tasks, and meet timelines.
Must possess excellent customer service skills and knowledge of related best practices.
Strong verbal and written communication skills are required.
Demonstrated ability to make formal presentations to large groups (50 people or more).
Must possess an understanding of prior-learning credit assessment and knowledge of academic and workforce training prior-learning opportunities at regional institutions.
The ability to exercise good judgment in handling sensitive information, maintain confidentiality, and fully understand and comply with FERPA laws and requirements.
Must demonstrate initiative, attention to detail, and organizational and problem-solving abilities.
Self-motivated with the ability to work independently with minimal supervision.
Must be personable and energetic with a strong student service focus.
Must provide exceptional and compassionate student service while effectively managing student issues and concerns.
Ability to communicate effectively with a diverse student, staff, faculty and business partner population. Additionally, must be able to effectively share complex information with students.
The position requires long periods of sitting, standing, reading and writing, listening and speaking.
Must be able to lift and move 30 pounds.
Must have a valid driver's license and reliable transportation to drive to various locations in the West Michigan region for meetings, activities, and events.
Mostly office environments or participation in events at local businesses and community organizations. Some activities may be held outdoors or in manufacturing settings. Some travel required.
Must be punctual with a good attendance record and have the ability to accommodate a flexible work schedule, including evenings and weekends as needed.
METHOD OF APPLICATION
Grand Rapids Community College is only accepting online applications for this position at GRCC job postings. Submit a cover letter and resume in one document. The opportunity to apply for this position will close on Open Until filled. Individuals with diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply. Grand Rapids Community College is an equal opportunity employer.
Grand Rapids Community College creates an inclusive learning and working environment that recognizes the value and dignity of each person. It is the policy and practice of GRCC to provide equal educational and employment opportunities regardless of age, race, color, religion, marital status, sex/gender, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, height, weight, national origin, disability, political affiliation, familial status, veteran status or genetics in all programs, activities, services, employment and advancement including admissions to, access to, treatment in, or compensation in employment as required by state and federal law.
GRCC is committed to reviewing all aspects of GRCC programs, activities, services and employment, including recruitment, selection, retention and promotion to identify and eliminate barriers in order to prevent discrimination on the basis of the listed protected characteristics.
The college will not tolerate any form of retaliation against any person for bringing charges of discrimination or participating in an investigation. Further information may be obtained from the EEO Office or the Office of General Counsel, 143 Bostwick Avenue NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503-3295.
The urban campus of Grand Rapids Community College is situated on a six-block area in the heart of Michigan’s second largest metropolitan area with a population approaching one million. GRCC, founded in 1914, is the oldest community college in Michigan, but the atmosphere is exciting and contemporary; its top-notch faculty, commitment to diversity in programming and campus lifestyle, and the strong spirit of community collaboration under the leadership of President Bill Pink, make it a vital and rewarding workplace. Known as “The Community’s College,” GRCC is responsive to the needs of surrounding business, economic, cultural and educational environments. The college offers credit and non-credit, associate degree and certification programs, and workforce training at both on- and off-campus locations so that students of all ages and abilities can pursue personal goals for higher education and/or enhanced job opportunities with success. For more information about GRCC, visit our website at www.grcc.edu