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Senior Manager, Program Development - World University Service of Canada

Oct 25, 2019
Ottawa Area, Ontario

Position Title:  Senior Manager, Program Development

Position Location:  Ottawa

Reports To:  Chief Programs Officer

Contract Term:  14 month contract/Parental Leave

Start Date: November 1, 2019

If you wish to apply for this position, please follow this link to register on WUSC’s candidate database.

World University Service of Canada (WUSC) is a leading Canadian international development organization focusing in three programmatic areas: Education, Economic Opportunities and Empowerment. Our vision is a better world for youth - a world where all young people, especially women, are empowered to secure a good quality of life for stronger families and communities. WUSC currently works in 25 countries across Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Latin America, with an annual budget of approximately CAD $45 million. We have a staff of over 90 people in our Ottawa office, and over 200 people overseas implementing 16 development projects in collaboration with donors such as Global Affairs Canada (GAC), the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, and the African Development Bank. Globally, we collaborate with a network of higher education institutions, civil society organizations, private sector partners, professionals, students, volunteers, faculty and community leaders that work with us to achieve our mission.

WUSC’s activities seek to balance inequities and create sustainable development around the globe; the work ethic of our staff, volunteers, representatives and partners shall correspond to the values and mission of the organization. WUSC promotes responsibility, respect, honesty, and professional excellence and we will not tolerate harassment, coercion and sexual exploitation and abuse of any form.   

WUSC is seeking an experienced, dynamic individual to play a leadership role in its expanded management team. Working under the direction of the Chief Programs Officer and in close collaboration with the Director of Programs, the successful candidate will cover a parental leave to lead the implementation of WUSC’s funding diversification strategy that advances its strategic framework of education, economic opportunities and engagement of young people in Africa, Asia, and the Americas.

The ideal candidate is entrepreneurial, passionate about WUSC’s work, has the skills and experience to work effectively from project-level details to organizational-level strategy, and is excellent at managing relationships and leading teams to accomplish big goals. The position would be of interest to individuals who thrives in a fast-paced and high-output environment.


Key Areas of Responsibility

Duties include:

1.     Program Development Team Management

  • Personnel management of staff and consultants engaged by WUSC for program development
  • Develop and execute an annual workplan for the Program Development team, in line with WUSC’s donor diversification and institutional funding strategy
  • Coordinate and chair the weekly program development team meetings
  • Manage the program development budget, in collaboration with the Finance team

2.     Institutional Funding Strategy Development & Execution

  • Assess, monitor, mitigate and manage risks related to WUSC’s funding portfolio
  • Liaise with other members of the Program Leadership Team to seek synergies in new program design
  • Work closely with the Executive Director and Program Leadership Team to develop strategic positioning for WUSC with key donors
  • Ensure robust program development performance measurement through PD annual review and other mechanisms (ie. proposal debriefs)
  • Identify relevant institutional funding opportunities for new program initiatives and lead internal “go/ no-go” decision process
  • Regularly coordinate and collaborate with the philanthropy team, using a ‘continuum of resource mobilization’ approach

3. Partnership Development & Representation

  • Identify appropriate strategic and operational partnerships for WUSC programs and develop teaming/ partnering agreements with them
  • Engage regularly with WUSC’s strategic partners, institutional members and network to identify and pursue relevant joint program development opportunities
  • Build relationships with institutional donors on behalf of WUSC, including with Global Affairs Canada, other bilateral and multilateral donors and foundations
  • Represent WUSC at relevant conferences, fora and working groups

4. Program Design & Proposal Development

  • Play a leadership role in articulating WUSC’s programming approach, drawing on internal and external best practice
  • Coordinate participatory program design, including the integration of input from program beneficiaries, including youth and women
  • Ensure WUSC’s Age, Gender & Diversity Policy is applied, support gender mainstreaming in projects and development of project-specific gender equality strategies
  • In conjunction with the Monitoring, Evaluation, Research & Learning (MERL) team, develop Results-Based Management tools (logic model, performance measurement framework, risk register) for new programs
  • Coordinate the timely submission of expressions of interest, concept notes, unsolicited proposals and competitive bids, including playing an active role in proposal writing
  • Ensure initial security assessment and recommendations as part of program design process, in conjunction with Director of Organizational Services and Director of Programs

Any other duties as assigned.




  • Complete fluency, oral and written in English and French is essential. Spanish is an asset.


  • Master’s degree in a related field.

Skills and experience

  • 10 years of related experience
  • 2 years of experience in a developing country context
  • 5 years of experience in personnel management in a team environment
  • Safety & security awareness and expertise, including willingness to travel to fragile contexts
  • Demonstrated track record of securing resources from institutional and other donors for international development initiatives
  • Knowledge of and experience working in developing country contexts, preferably some in WUSC’s countries of programming
  • Demonstrated experience in cultivating and maintaining relationships with Global Affairs and other donors and stakeholders
  • Superior oral and written communication skills: clear, concise, persuasive writing style
  • Sound understanding of gender and development issues and commitment to gender equality
  • Significant knowledge or experience in two or more of the following sectors or programming areas:
    • Education (system strengthening, access to education for marginalized populations, education quality improvement)
    • Economic Opportunities (Inclusive market development, sustainable livelihoods, vocational training, value chain)
    • Empowerment (civic engagement, youth inclusion & leadership, local governance, multi-stakeholder approaches)
    • Women’s rights and gender equality (gender based violence, women’s economic empowerment, gender mainstreaming).


  • Strong capacity for strategic analysis and representation, including working with networks and developing partnerships
  • Excellent administration and organizational skills, including ability to prioritize tasks and handle multiple initiatives simultaneously
  • Proven ability to lead multiple task-oriented teams in a dynamic and constructive fashion
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and demonstrated capacity to work in partnership in a cross-cultural context



WUSC is an equal opportunity employer. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all abilities. Accommodations are available on request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process.

Only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. No telephone calls please.

If you wish to apply for this position, please follow this link to register on WUSC’s candidate database.


About WUSC

WUSC offers a dynamic international work environment with a diverse intercultural workforce.   We offer employees exciting opportunities to apply their skills and gain experience all while making a difference for youth around the world. We believe youth have the potential to provide for their families, build strong communities, and create positive social change for future generations.  Employees at WUSC work hard to create lasting change in education, employment and empowerment.  

The WUSC office is centrally-located in Hintonburg, Ottawa. We offer competitive benefits, four weeks of annual leave (for full-time employees), safe and healthy working conditions, and fair compensation.

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