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Job Opening: CURA Community Program Manager

August 4, 2016

Apply now for the CURA Community Program Manager position

The Community Program Manager is responsible for providing leadership for the successful operation and management of CURA’s Community Based Research (CBR) programs. CURA’s CBR programs provide applied research assistance to nonprofit organizations and local government agencies in Minnesota. The Community Program Coordinator also works closely with the Director of Community Programs to design and implement community programs that carry out CURA’s mission to connect the resources of the University of Minnesota with the interests and needs of communities across the State of Minnesota. This position is charged with providing coordinating leadership to the Kris Nelson Community Based Research Program, the Community Assistantship Community Based Research Program and the Krusell Fellowship Program.

The position is a full-time appointment in the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs (CURA). The Program Manager will be responsible for building and maintaining relationships with community organizations throughout the Twin Cities metropolitan area, focusing on organizations active in low wealth communities, communities of color and Indigenous communities in the region. The successful candidate will work with CURA’s Community Based Research (CBR) programs that provide applied research assistance to nonprofit organizations and local government agencies in Minnesota. The Program Manager will work with other staff at CURA to design and implement CBR programs that carry out CURA’s mission to connect the resources of the University of Minnesota with the interests and needs of urban communities.



  • Commitment to racial, economic and social justice.
  • Demonstrated knowledge and relationships with community based organizations in our region.
  • Four years experience working in a community based context.
  • Bachelor’s degree in urban affairs or related field
  • Supervisory and/or mentoring experience
  • Demonstrated ability and experience working with communities of color and indigenous communities
  • Commitment to collaborative decision-making processes and modes of working
  • Prior experience in the area of community based research
  • Proven creative and innovative thinker
  • Experience working with a range of constituencies: university and community
  • Experience working for a community based organization


  • Five + years experience working for a CBO
  • Familiarity with the University’s research, teaching, and outreach missions
  • Masters degree in urban affairs or related field
  • Experience with Community-University partnerships
  • Demonstrated knowledge of Twin Cities community groups, planning processes, community organizing and community development activities
  • Demonstrated working knowledge of program evaluation approaches and activities
  • Proven strong relationships with community based organizations and people across the state
  • Demonstrated familiarity with framing community needs and issues as community-based research
  • Demonstrated ability to coordinate multiple activities
  • Proven disciplined, demonstrated ability to meet deadlines
  • Demonstrated strong oral and written communication skills

About the Job

Job Description:

(50%) Act as liaison between CURA and community-based organizations (CBOs) in the Twin Cities for the purpose of:

  • Identifying potential community-based research and outreach projects
  • Provide strategic support and consultation to community members/organizations in the development of community based research projects.
  • Provide on-going project direction, supervision, support and monitoring to students and community members to ensure that the research project is successful.
  • Brokering relationships between CBOs and University faculty and students

(25%) Supervises community based research program processes and coordinates with appropriate administrative staff to ensure the smooth and successful operation of the community programs for which they are responsible including student hiring, contracting and information management.

(15%) Develops a deep understanding of community challenges and opportunities, strategically identifies issues shared across geographic and cultural communities and formulates innovative CURA responses.

(10%) Engage with a variety of CURA’s partners to represent and expand the reach of CBR programs.

  • Work with other community engagement units at the University to further the University’s engagement objectives
  • Build and maintain relationships with external partners, including funders, public agencies, and non-profit organizations
  • Organize outreach events that connect CURA’s CBR and technical assistance capacity with community organizations
  • Represent CURA at community events
  • CURA reserves the right to change or assign other duties to this position.

Program/Unit Description: The Center for Urban and Regional Affairs (CURA) connects the resources of the University of Minnesota with the interests and needs of urban communities and the region for the benefit of all. CURA pursues its urban and regional mission by facilitating and supporting connections between state and local governments, neighborhoods, and nonprofit organizations, and relevant resources at the University, including faculty and students from appropriate campuses, colleges, centers or departments.

CURA strives to be a nationally recognized model for university-community engagement. CURA is founded on the belief that partnership between the university and the community is mutually beneficial. Communities determine issues important to them, and provide an understanding of the context of these issues and the wisdom to shape how they can best be addressed to create vital places to live and work. The university contributes extensive knowledge and expertise to understand community issues and discover new approaches to address them. This model of engaged research leads to outcomes that strengthen the community and enrich academic research.

How To Apply


Applications taken until filled. Note that only applications submitted via the U of M Employment System will be accepted. Additional documents may be attached after application by accessing your "My Activities" page and uploading documents there.

A COMPLETE application will include:

  1. Letter of application that explains your vision for this position and how your career goals, training and experience support your candidacy;
  2. A complete resume;
  3. Names and contact information of three individuals who can comment on your abilities and experience.

Review of applications will begin on August 15th, 2016 and will remain open until the position is filled.


The University recognizes and values the importance of diversity and inclusion in enriching the employment experience of its employees and in supporting the academic mission. The University is committed to attracting and retaining employees with varying identities and backgrounds.

The University of Minnesota provides equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. To learn more about diversity at the U: http://diversity.umn.edu.

Background Check Information

Any offer of employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a background check. Our presumption is that prospective employees are eligible to work here. Criminal convictions do not automatically disqualify finalists from employment.

Apply now for the CURA Community Program Manager position