Chief Strategic Engagement Officer

  • 4401 Village Dr, Fairfax, VA 22030, USA
  • Full-time

Company Description

Virginia International University (VIU) was established in 1998 with the goal of providing affordable, quality higher education for students preparing to meet the ever-evolving needs and opportunities of the 21st Century workforce. Located in Fairfax, Virginia, just minutes from Washington, DC, VIU is an independent academic establishment combining a liberal arts tradition with emphasis on career orientation. We are currently offering graduate and undergraduate level programs in computer science, business, and management, as well as full and part-time certificates in a variety of professional and technical fields, including English as a Second Language (ESL). Our Student body comes from over 50 different countries as of today.

It is the policy of VIU to provide equal employment and educational opportunities for all people regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, disability, source of income, place of residence or business, and veteran status. An integral part of this policy is to administer recruiting , hiring, working conditions, benefits and privileges of employment, compensation, training, opportunity for advancement including upgrades and promotion, transfer, and termination of employment including layoff and recall for all employees in accordance with this policy.

Job Description

Job Summary:

The Chief Strategic Engagement Officer (CSEO) is responsible for initiating, directing, and implementing a range of activities that build and strengthen a base of diverse business, community, education, and philanthropic stakeholders and engage them in advancing the organization’s mission and resources.  The Chief Strategic Engagement Officer will provide leadership and strategic focus to further the University’s development, alumni, marketing, communications, and community engagement initiatives.  Responsible for the development of a study abroad program as well as designing and implementing a comprehensive institutional advancement program.


Marketing & Communications

  • Oversee the public relations team to facilitate brand development and implementation; managing and overseeing the organization’s identity and brand, digital media relations, and internal and external communications
  • Develop communication initiatives across various platforms, including oversight of the content, messaging, and updating of the organization’s websites and social media accounts
  • Oversee the design and production of communication materials, including an annual report, newsletters, and other marketing materials and print publications, such as brochures, flyers, posters, banners, logos, and electronic media
  • Conduct market research and use institutional data to identify new markets and work with the University admissions team on recruiting strategies and advertising campaigns to reach targeted audiences
  • Work closely with Academic Affairs to identify students, faculty, and programs for promotion and to create a compelling and unique narrative and value proposition for the University that will strengthen its reputation
  • Advise in the planning and execution of special events and activities and establish a network of campus/community partners for the promotion of events
  • Develop a robust media relations and strategic visibility program that gains local, regional, national, and international coverage
  • Serve as the creative director and editor-in-chief of all of the organization’s communications
  • Work closely with communications team to write speeches and articles and create compelling content
  • Oversee the marketing and communication budget in ways that garner the best return on investment for marketing and communications expenditures

University Advancement & Development

  • Develop and execute strategic plans and goals for Advancement and fundraising aligned with the mission, vision, and short- and long-term goals of the University
  • Lead strategic discussions about programs that can strengthen the financial resources of the University
  • Identify and implement strategies to increase private funding for School programs and capital needs as well as secure gifts and grants from private foundations and government sources
  • Develop annual plans and budgets for Alumni & Parent relations, Annual Fund, Gift Planning, Comprehensive Campaigns, Major Gifts, Individual Giving, Grants Development, Foundation & Corporate Relations, Stewardships, and Advancement Services
  • Build a high-performing program with a focus on increasing philanthropic revenue through corporate, foundation, and individual giving
  • Implement strategies for to identify, cultivate, solicit, close, and steward donors and prospects, including personal solicitations of major donors
  • Cultivate and maintain a dynamic portfolio of high net worth individuals and secure major, capital, and planned gifts, as well as advanced annual gifts and endowment support through developing authentic relationships
  • Develop appropriate cultivation and solicitation strategies and move prospects in a timely fashion from solicitation to closure
  • Focus on securing gifts for University-wide priorities that include, but may not be limited to: general endowment, academic programs, scholarships, unrestricted support, facility renovations, new facilities, and campus improvements
  • Ensure smooth functioning of donor recognition systems and stewardship and determine appropriate metrics for reporting
  • Engage University community to enhance the culture of philanthropy and to take an active role in fundraising; maintaining cooperative working relationships with faculty, administration, and staff whose cooperation is essential to effective outreach and fundraising
  • Develop a plan to best develop and engage alumni and foster a culture of giving back
  • Devise and implement effective internal and external messaging and methods of advancement communication

External Engagement & Partnerships

  • Serve as an exemplary University advocate in the community and develop and manage positive and effective relationships with public, private, corporate, philanthropic, and nonprofit sector partners to advance the organization’s goals and link the community with the University
  • Represent the organization through meetings and presentations to local, state, national, and international partners and stakeholders
  • Identify mission-aligned opportunities for the organization to support and partner with external stakeholders
  • Develop and implement a strategic business plan to increase collaborative academic partnerships in support of the organization’s strategic plan, including collaboration with local and international higher education institutions and organizations
  • Maintain and expand strategic collaborative partnerships with community, corporate, and government entities on the local, national, and international levels, including involvement with local Chambers of Commerce, city councils, local government, non-profits, local business, and community committees
  • Establish partnerships and cultivate mutually beneficial relationships in the areas of internships, service-learning, civic engagement, volunteerism, and community-engaged research
  • Establish partnerships with local organizations and stakeholders who could contribute to organization conferences, publications, or other related initiatives
  • Work with Academic Affairs to engage in conversations with local corporate and government entities to determine how the organization can make programs and curricula more relevant and of greater value for both students and employers
  • Work with the Academic Affairs team to identify opportunities for service-learning initiatives and to support faculty with integrating community outreach and service-learning into curriculum
  • Develop public and legislative support for higher education
  • Participate on the T.I.G.E.R.S. Team committee by identifying opportunities for volunteer service initiatives and planning and coordinating opportunities in the community for students, faculty, and staff

Career Services

  • Provide strategic leadership for the Career Services team responsible for developing, implementing, and evaluating recruiting systems, programs, and events that connect employers with students, faculty, and alumni
  • Solicit and utilize employer feedback to work with Academic Affairs on updating curricula and to create and implement academic programs that respond to the needs of business, industry, and organizations
  • Develop new contacts with external organizations for the purpose of expanding employment opportunities for students and alumni

Study Abroad

  • Manage a portfolio of foreign education programs in a variety of geographical areas
  • Advise students regarding credit transfer, suggested classes, and other logistics involved in studying abroad, including informing students about travel necessities, such as insurance and visas, and providing training on cultural adjustment
  • Oversee participation from application to return, working with both outbound and foreign exchange students
  • Coordinate logistics with international partners, conduct pre-departure orientations, and serve as the main contact for the University’s study abroad program
  • Maintain compliance with all government organizations monitoring international student visa regulations by serving as a Designated School Official (DSO) and maintain knowledge of both SEVP policies concerning academic programs and F-1 student visa regulations
  • Advise prospective, new, and continuing international students regarding student visa process, maintaining F-1 status, work authorization , and other related topics
  • Use SEVIS to create and maintain student immigration records
  • Stay informed about world events that may affect the safety and well-being of students and have action plans in place to react promptly to any emergency and serve as the liaison for students while abroad regarding travel-related or other emergency situations
  • Monitor education-related developments at partners institutions to ensure the academic integrity of the programs


  • Conduct regular quality assurance checks to ensure policies, procedures, programs, and services are being carried out as planned and with the level of quality expected
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of policies, procedures, programs, and services using data-driven analysis and formulate strategies for addressing concerns and overall improvement


  • Master’s Degree from an accredited university required, concentration in business or marketing preferred
  • 10+ years of relevant experience in marketing, business development, advancement, and engagement
  • Thorough understanding of best practices and regulations in advancement and fundraising, with demonstrated success with annual funds, major gifts, alumni relations, planned gifts, and corporate and foundation fundraising
  • Understanding of marketing and communication that positions the organization for higher visibility, increased brand recognition, and successful outcomes of marketing objectives
  • Ability to identify and pursue new opportunities and partnerships that enhance the organization’s community engagement and expands and diversifies funding sources
  • Ability to understand the needs and interest of donors and partners and to engage, inspire, and empower members of diverse constituencies so partner with and support the organization
  • Ability to serve as an articulate spokesperson for the mission and the values of the organization
  • Experience building brands and the ability to design, implement, and evaluate strategic marketing campaigns
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to communicate effectively orally and in writing
  • Strong relationship-building skills, including the ability to motivate and persuade others
  • Exceptional problem-solving skills and ability to develop innovative and forward-thinking strategies and initiatives
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills, including excellent listening skills
  • Ability to maintain a high level of confidentiality and treat confidential matters with tact and discretion
  • Excellent computer skills, particularly in MS Office products such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook
  • Ability to work with a highly diverse staff, faculty, and student body
  • Strong organizational and project management skills and the ability to meet deadlines and carry out projects with minimal supervision

Additional Information

Think you have what it takes?  Apply today!

NOTE: Candidates selected for a phone screen or an interview will be contacted.  Please do not call to follow up on your application as we have a high volume of calls and will not be able to respond to every inquiry