Director of Education – Spurlock MuseumUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Spurlock Museum seeks a colleague with a talent for creating original programming, a love of world cultures, and a passion for engaging the public with museum collections, exhibits, and experiences. We value a strong commitment to ethical practices in cultural heritage management, creative thinking, and enthusiasm for collaborative work. The successful candidate will enjoy working in an environment that promotes innovation and experimentation and be dedicated to making the Spurlock Museum a welcoming and inviting space for our community. The Director of Education will have the opportunity to develop and implement new programming and methods of evaluation, mentor student and professional staff, and work collaboratively with staff and stakeholders to engage the University and broader community with the collection.

The Director of Education leads the Education Section Staff in developing, delivering, and managing a wide range of interpretive Museum functions. The Director of Education takes the Section lead in administrative and instructional duties, including personnel supervision, budget oversight, and grant writing. The Director of Education builds upon the successful programs of the Education Section, while also seeking opportunities to reach out to larger university and community audiences.

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer. Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. For more information, visit


  • Interpretation and Programs
    • Develop the overall vision for the Education Section and prioritize activities, funding, and staffing to enact this vision in support of the Museum’s mission and strategic plan.
    • Lead Education staff in the research and development of interpretive content of educational programs, event, publications, and online resources.
    • Lead program and event delivery and evaluation.
    • Direct visitor studies and evaluation initiatives for exhibits, programs, and events.
    • Develop interpretive focus, organization, and content of exhibits with Exhibit Committee members, curators, community members, and scholars.
    • Serve, as needed, as an exhibit coordinator for installations in the permanent galleries, the Campbell Gallery, the Hundley Central Core Gallery, and other public spaces.
    • Plan educational elements using traditional and new media, including interactives and targeted programs.
    • Develop partnerships and collaborative programs with University and community groups.
    • Work evenings and weekends, as needed, for educational events and programs.
  • Administrative Management

    • Supervise Education Section staff members, including: hiring, training, assigning and reviewing work, conducting performance evaluations, approving time, and setting work schedules.
    • Lead staff in setting and prioritizing individual and section-wide goals.
    • Mentor Education staff, student workers, interns, and volunteers and identify and prioritize professional development opportunities for the Education Section.
    • Plan and manage the budget of the Education Section in consultation with the Museum Director.
    • Research, write, and oversee grants in support of educational initiatives.
    • Plan and approve staffing levels and job descriptions for hourly Education staff and volunteers.
    • Create various statistical summaries used in reports and grant proposals.
    • Ensure all Education Section programs and initiatives are completed on time and within budget.
  • Museum-wide Initiatives
    • Pursue selected campus initiatives related to educational programs and events and serve as a liaison for developing the Museum as a resource for scholarship and education.
    • Work collaboratively with the Museum’s Director, Coordinator of Special Events, and the section leaders of Collections, Registration, Information Technology, and Security (the Core Committee) in the planning and pursuit of long-term, Museum-wide initiatives.
    • Serve as a member of the Exhibits Committee and work in support of exhibit development.
    • Represent the Education Section in Core Committee work, including Museum-wide strategic planning, budget development, and the development of museum policy.
    • Participate in the work of the Acquisitions Committee and oversee work done with the Museum’s Teaching Collection.
    • Participate in bi-annual Spurlock Museum Advisory Board meetings.
    • Other duties as assigned and mutually agreed upon, that further the mission of the unit.



  • Master’s degree
  • Three years of experience (paid, volunteer, or internship) working in a museum, gallery, library, cultural institution, or cultural center
  • Five years of experience developing and delivering informal education programs
  • Two years of supervisory experience
  • Experience writing grants and proposals
  • Knowledge of best practices and trends in informal education
  • Proven ability to mentor staff and/or volunteers and contribute to a positive and collaborative work environment
  • Proven effectiveness in research, writing, editing, and communication with a variety of audiences
  • Proven ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously and meet deadlines


  • Coursework or demonstrable knowledge of cultural studies, museum studies, history, art, or other subject areas related to the Museum’s collections
  • One year of experience developing exhibits
  • Two years of experience working with historically under-served populations
  • Two years of experience working with community organizations
  • Knowledge of museum industry trends, standards, and best practices


This is a full-time academic professional position. The expected start date is as soon as possible after the closing date. Starting salary for this position will be between $55,000-$60,000 per year, depending on experience and qualifications.


To apply for this position, please create a candidate profile at and upload your application materials by May 3, 2019. Online application will require names and contact information including email addresses for three professional references. As part of your candidate profile, upload the following required materials: a cover letter, CV or résumé addressing your qualifications as they align with the job description and a statement of museum philosophy no more than one page in length. This statement should address the role and significance of museums as well as your interest in pursuing a career in the cultural sector. Full consideration will be given to complete applications received by the closing date. Finalists for the position may be asked to submit a portfolio of relevant work products and completed projects. The University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer.

For questions regarding the application process, please contact 217-333-6747.  For further information on this specific position, please contact Karen Flesher at

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