Asst Director, Devel & Alumni Relations / Development Officer I – East Lansing, MI

Asst Director, Devel & Alumni Relations / Development Officer I

Michigan State University

East Lansing, MI


Working/Functional Title

Asst Director, Devel & Alumni Relations

Position Summary

Basic Function and Responsibility

The College of Natural Science at Michigan State University is seeking a responsive, collaborative, and results-oriented individual to join its highly successful fundraising team as the Assistant Director of Development  Reporting to the Senior Director for the College, the Assistant Director will serve as a major gift fundraiser for the College of Natural Science. Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to, managing a portfolio of donors for the College; focus primarily on discovery work and new alumni/donor engagement and building the pipeline for long-term relationships that promote the reputation and success of the College and MSU, and participating in College initiatives/events.

The ability to think and act strategically will be critical to the success of this position. The Assistant Director of Development will play a key role in developing and advancing donor relationships and encouraging increased giving through the execution of cultivation and stewardship strategies for alumni and friends of the College of Natural Science. With a portfolio of 100-120, the Assistant Director of Development is responsible for developing ongoing personal relationships with prospects, as well as internally with stakeholders who can support the deepening of those relationships. In their gift work, the Assistant Director will employ an aggressive, strategic moves management program, averaging 12-15 face-to-face strategic visits per month and 2-4 solicitations per month. 

Duties and Responsibilities:

Discovery, Cultivation, Solicitation, and Stewardship:

  • Maintain an active pool of 100-120 prospects under strategic management.
  • Achieve fundraising goals through an active and consistent program of prospect/donor outreach, including 150 significant personal contacts annually. 
  • Conduct research to identify and meetings to qualify major gift prospects through discovery visits, commensurate with portfolio composition.
  • Engage donors and potential donors through personal visits, online meetings, phone calls, email, mail, social media, or other strategies as appropriate.
  • Determine prospects’ passions/interests/needs and meld with College funding priorities and opportunities.
  • Serve as a liaison officer between the College and donors and potential donors to ensure that such information and service as may be desired is provided to the full extent permitted by university policy, rules and regulations.
  • Serve as a consultant to donors on the tax advantage of various types of gifts.
  • Develop proposals, appeal letters, and other materials for engagement, cultivation, and solicitation purposes.
  • Plan and host campus visits of donor or potential donors or their representatives.

Strategy & Coordination:

  • In collaboration with the Senior Director and the College Alumni and Engagement team, design and implement programs and events (on and off campus) to promote engagement with the college and increase donor response.
  • Communicate with and coordinate donor/prospect activity with fundraising colleagues across campus, including regional representatives.
  • Prepare annual personal fundraising goals and analyze/report goal accomplishment.

Unit Specific Education/Experience/Skills

Knowledge equivalent to that which normally would be acquired by completing a four-year college degree program in Communications, Public Relations, Marketing and/or Business; one to three years  of related and progressively more responsible or expansive experience in professional fundraising, public relations, marketing, or related field; working knowledge of tax laws affecting charitable giving; or an equivalent combination of education and experience; possession of a valid vehicle operator’s license. 

Desired Qualifications

  • A love of travel, involving automobile, airline, and rail
  • Excellent writing and verbal communication skills
  • Experience in public speaking
  • Collaborative team-oriented style
  • Working knowledge of tax laws affecting charitable giving

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, disability or protected veteran status.

Required Application Materials

Resume and cover letter

Special Instructions

How to Apply

If you have any questions regarding this position, please contact Patricia Karam, Director of Recruitment at [email protected]

All candidates must submit an application and resume through the Michigan State University Human Resources web-based system. The URL for this website is Please indicate the position number 848500 when submitting your application.


Work Hours

8 – 5 with some evenings and weekends


Remote Work Statement

MSU strives to provide a flexible work environment and this position has been designated as remote-friendly. Remote-friendly means some or all of the duties can be performed remotely as mutually agreed upon.

Bidding eligibility ends on 3/7/23 at 11:55 PM


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