University of Minnesota
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C4W staff Dec 2017


Position Opening: Director, Minnesota Writing Project

Priority review begins October 15, 2018

The University of Minnesota’s Center for Writing announces our immediate search for the Director of the state's site of the National Writing Project.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Minnesota Writing Project (MWP) Director (Education Program Specialist 4) is responsible for vision and goals, program development, assessment, and stewardship of resources— in order to fulfill MWP's mission to improve student literacy through the development of the leadership, voice, and professionalism of educators. Specifically the MWP Director will (1) develop and teach on-campus MWP Institutes and courses; (2) develop and lead professional development programs and workshops for K-16 educators; (3) oversee the MWP budget and procure funding for MWP programming through grants and external sales to educational institutions; (4) lead and administer MWP daily operations in alignment with University of Minnesota and National Writing Project principles, policies, and practices; (5) develop, plan and support outreach programs for youth; and (6) collaborate closely with the Center for Writing leadership team to integrate MWP programming into the Center’s mission to support students and educators who practice, teach with, and research writing at the University of Minnesota, throughout the state, and around the world. This is a 12-month, full-time annually renewable position with an excellent benefits package; salary commensurate with candidate's experience and qualifications.

Essential Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in Education, English, Writing Studies, or related field
  • Ten (10) or more years of professional experience in an educational setting
  • Teaching licensure at the primary or secondary education level
  • Experience developing and providing professional development for K­12 teachers, such as consulting as a literacy coach or curriculum specialist, leading inservice workshops, facilitating teacher reading or writing groups, etc.
  • Minimum 3 years combined experience classroom teaching and leading educator professional development
  • Participation in National Writing Project (NWP) programming, at a local site or national level
  • Outstanding communication and collaboration skills

Preferred Qualifications

  • Minimum 6 years combined experience classroom teaching and leading educator professional development
  • Demonstrated commitment to the core principles of the National Writing Project
  • Experience as a teacher consultant and/or site leader in a NWP site
  • Experience managing budgets and working with financial professionals
  • Experience writing grants and other fundraising activities
  • Experience leading diverse teams of teacher colleagues
  • Experience teaching writing across content areas and grade levels, as well as in both face-to-face and digital environments
  • Experience working with multilingual students and/or students from historically underrepresented communities
  • Experience developing partnerships among educational institutions and community organizations
  • A record of research, publication, and presentations focused on teaching writing and supporting teacher professional development
  • Interest in working in an inclusive and diverse community

We especially welcome candidates who are multilingual and/or from underrepresented and/or marginalized communities and/or identities.

About the Job

1. Develop, direct, teach, support, and assess on-campus MWP Institutes and courses for educators (20%)

  • Teach MWP Invitational Summer Institute (CI 5463) every other summer
  • Chair Summer Institute search committee – solicit applications from K-16 teachers, coordinate and conduct interviews, correspond with all applicants
  • Conduct internal and National Writing Project Summer Institute data collection and assessment
  • Teach or hire, support and collaborate with instructors teaching  Writing and Social Justice (CI 5465) every other summer
  • Maintain Memorandum of Agreement between College of Education & Human Development and the College of Liberal Arts to support the joint Certificate in Teaching Writing and Critical Literacy and offering of tuition-shared courses in Curriculum & Instruction
  • Advise students enrolled in the Certificate in Teaching Writing and Critical Literacy and teach its capstone course (CI 5469), when appropriate

2. Develop and lead professional development programs and workshops for K-16 teachers (20%)

  • Develop MWP professional development programs in collaboration with the Center for Writing leadership team (Director, Co-Directors, Center Administrator)
  • Lead and facilitate teacher professional development workshops, retreats, and programs in schools, districts, and public venues
  • Develop, invite, coach, and collaborate with MWP teacher consultants to lead and present at MWP professional development activities
  • Manage event reservation system, in collaboration with Center for Writing webmaster and Center Administrator
  • Establish professional development partnerships with schools and districts through marketing, consulting, and creating External Sales contracts (see essential function 3 for more details)
  • Partner and collaborate with University departments (Writing Studies, English, Curriculum & Instruction, College in the Schools, etc.) and education organizations (MN Department of Education, Education Minnesota, etc.) to develop relevant programming for teachers

3. Oversee and monitor MWP budget and procure and steward funding for MWP programming through grants and external sales to educational institutions (20%)

  • In collaboration with the Center for Writing Administrator, monitor and forecast MWP budget and reconcile budget for National Writing Project and other sponsored projects reporting
  • Submit proposals for federal funding through National Writing Project Teacher Leadership Development Grants and Professional Development in a High-Need School SEED Grants and other programs
  • Serve as Principal Investigator, fiscal monitor, and final report author on federal and other grants
  • Seek additional grant resources and collaborate with other U of MN units on grant-seeking
  • Market, create, and manage Cooperative External Sales Agreements with local schools and districts to provide teacher professional development and youth programs
  • Solicit donations, steward funds, and communicate with donors to MWP's UM Foundation demand fund (6464)

4. Lead and administer MWP daily operations in alignment with the University of Minnesota's policies and practices and the National Writing Project's core principles of teacher leadership and reflective communities of practice (20%)

  • Collaborate with the Center for Writing leadership team (Director, Co-Directors, Center Administrator) on MWP short- and long-term planning and goals
  • Communicate regularly with MWP teacher consultants and stakeholders through face-to-face and online meetings, newsletters, annual reports, email and social media
  • Hire, supervise, mentor, and collaborate with MWP graduate assistants
  • Integrate MWP in the University's public engagement mission through participation in and collaboration with the Office of Public Engagement, the College Readiness Consortium, and other preK-16 outreach programs and committees
  • Represent MWP at National Writing Project meetings and site leadership activities
  • Engage in and support research and inquiry to enhance knowledge about teaching writing
  • Partner with neighboring NWP sites in the region, including hosting and supporting the NWP Midwest Conference with the Greater Madison Writing Project (WI) and Red River Writing Project (ND)
  • Develop and support MWP’s international collaborations, including the ongoing partnership with the Norwegian National Center for Writing Education and Research (Skrivesenteret)
  • Increase the visibility of MWP's contributions to teaching, research, and public engagement through regular participation in regional, national, and international conferences and organizations devoted to teacher professional development and literacy education

5. Develop, plan and support outreach programs for youth (10%)

  • Coordinate planning and administration of MWP's June youth writing camps
  • Recruit, orient, and support MWP teacher consultants teaching youth camps
  • Ensure compliance with all Safety of Minors policies and procedures
  • Collaborate with Office of Classroom Management and Liberal Arts Technologies & Innovation Services (LATIS) to secure rooms and technology
  • Publicize camps to K-12 networks inside and outside the University
  • Manage and monitor camp sales and scholarships, in collaboration with Center Administrator
  • Seek scholarship funding through MWP's UM Foundation crowdfunding tool
  • Communicate with parents and families of campers
  • Communicate and collaborate with youth camp partners, including the Student Parent Help Center and the Office of Recreational Sports

6. Serve as a member of the Center for Writing leadership team and contribute to this internationally recognized, complex, multi-program educational and research center that serves students, faculty and staff across the University, as well as preK-college educators statewide (10%)

  • Participate in weekly leadership team meetings to set and prioritize Center goals and planning to best align with University mission, goals, policies, and strategic planning
  • Co-lead E-12 Writing Centers Collective in collaboration with Center staff, which includes attending regional meetings, hosting visiting secondary school writing centers on campus, co-leading the annual Minnesota Secondary Writing Centers Summit, and supporting the professional development of primary and secondary teachers leading writing centers
  • Contribute to professional development of the Center's staff of more than 50 professional and student employees
  • Build connections between the Minnesota Writing Project and the Center's other programs: Student Writing Support, Literacy and Rhetorical Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies of Writing, and Writing Across the Curriculum
  • Participate in relevant activities in the Department of Writing Studies, home of the Center for Writing

About the Department 

The Minnesota Writing Project (MWP) is a National Writing Project site committed to improving student literacy through the development of the leadership, voice, and professionalism of teachers. By supporting and developing teachers, MWP facilitates ongoing learning and collaboration among teachers, empowering them to meet educational goals and challenges. MWP is committed to improving the writing of all students, strengthening university and school collaboration on writing instruction, and increasing the professional power of classroom teachers.

MWP is housed in the Center for Writing, an internationally recognized, complex, multi-program educational and research center that serves students, faculty, and staff across the University, as well as preK-college educators statewide. The Center for Writing employs over 50 professional and student staff and prides itself on a culture of collaboration, co-mentoring, and partnership to fulfill its broad mission.

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted online.

If you are not a current University of Minnesota employee, please click here.

If you are a current University of Minnesota employee, please click here instead.

1. Select the below link to access our site.  
2. Sign In to access your account, or if you are not an existing user select the New User link to create one.  
3. Review the job description and select the Apply button to begin your application.

Alternatively, go to the UMN employment site and type the job ID number "325871" in the search bar.

Additional documents may be attached after completing the online application by accessing your "My Activities" page and uploading documents there. Please be sure to attach the following documents to your online application:

  • letter of interest summarizing your qualifications
  • Curriculum Vita
  • Contact information for three professional references
  • Optional: writing sample(s) (maximum 10 double-spaced pages)
  • Optional: statement of teaching philosophy and/or administrative philosophy

Click here for prospective employee information on the University's HR Page. 

Priority review begins October 15, 2018.

Questions about this position or the Center for Writing may be directed to Jasmine Kar Tang, Center for Writing Co-Director and Search Committee Chair (


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:

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.

About the U of M

The University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (UMTC), is among the largest public research universities in the country, offering undergraduate, graduate, and professional students a multitude of opportunities for study and research.  Located at the heart of one of the nation's most vibrant, diverse metropolitan communities, students on the campuses in Minneapolis and St. Paul benefit from extensive partnerships with world-renowned health centers, international corporations, government agencies, and arts, nonprofit, and public service organizations.