Educational Policy, Research and Advocacy Manager (flexible)

The Excel Center

This position is based out of our corporate office in Indianapolis, frequent travel to Indianapolis and several other cities may be required, and employee location is flexible within the United States.  The general salary range is $58-$73K including full benefits (below):

The Policy, Research, and Advocacy Manager, National Office ensures local and national leaders have the information necessary for making informed decisions related to opening, funding, and sustaining The Excel Center campuses across the nation.  Reporting to the Director, Director, Research & Evaluation, this role works in partnership with leaders in the Goodwill Movement to assess the feasibility of opening The Excel Center locations, identifies community development and fundraising opportunities, and consults on potential legislation needed to support the opening of new schools.  The Manager supports the creation of a national conversation about the importance of adult high school education and inspires advocates to implement policy and systems changes by compiling research and data related to The Excel Center model.  The Manager works closely with Goodwill leadership to ensure that all initiatives and plans are well managed and executed and meet the diverse needs of all stakeholders.

Example Duties and Activities 

  • Researches and understands education laws, state codes, authorizer accountability, regulations, and policies, at a state and national level, that will affect The Excel Center and communicates all gathered information in well-written, concise feasibility studies.
  • Provides data, research, and information as needed to support the development of grant applications, legislation, lobbying agendas, and policy development.
  • Stays up-to-date on new information and research related to adult education.  Ensures this information is effectively shared with the National Office team and National Network partners.  Develops tools and mechanisms for collecting data from the National Network partners and establishes strong working partnerships.  Supports National Office leadership with the development of tools that ensure fidelity to The Excel Center model and promotes educational best practices.
  • Supports the Director, Business Development and Advancement by building a rigorous basis of evidence through program studies and evaluations.
  • Supports the development and use of a National Network virtual hub, communications, and marketing collateral.
  • Assists with organizing and executing The Excel Center National Network Annual Conference.
  • Works closely with the Director to identify, cultivate, solicit, and steward funders.
  • Contributes to building and maintaining a positive, inclusive culture that values diverse opinions, challenging work, and high levels of accountability.
  • Supports and trains National Network partners on topics such as advocacy, communication campaigns, community development, data, etc.
  • Provides feedback to National Network partners in areas related to a successful opening of a school such as building needs, leadership needs, and staffing needs.
  • Provides guidance to National Network partners relating to local, state, and federal policies that impact their school operations.
  • Supports staff selection with National Network partners as needed.
  • Provides leadership and guidance for National Network partners when meeting with elected officials and, when needed, meets with elected officials to support the growth of The Excel Center across the country.


Required Competencies 

  • Degree and Credential Requirements – Bachelor’s degree in education, education policy, research administration, political science, sociology, or a related field.
  • Project Management (Education) – Develops project management plans and the day-to-day management of project activities and deliverables, which includes but is not limited to scheduling, implementation, fieldwork, direct stakeholder engagement, and funder and regulatory reporting.  Oversees multiple workstreams and delivers against scopes implementing strategies that outline time, resources, requirements, deadlines, and answers to unexpected events in order to streamline the process.  Knowledgeable of the steps involved in effective proposal writing and submission of high-quality applications including a strong understanding of education policies and regulations at both a local and national level.  Demonstrates leadership skills, especially around presentation/communication/innovative solutions to problems, concerns, issues, and roadblocks.
  • Research Mindset – Seeks out and researches information effectively to identify opportunities to further goals.  Adept at database mining, assessing internal/external data, utilizing a network, asking good questions, and developing a plan with goals and outcomes.  Strikes an appropriate balance between the thirst for knowledge and time management.  Is highly detailed and organized.
  • Building Collaborative Relationships – Develops, maintains, and strengthens partnerships at all levels with others inside or outside the organization who can provide information, assistance, and support.
  • Communication Skills – Articulates thoughts and expresses ideas effectively using oral, written, visual, and non-verbal communication skills, as well as listening skills to comprehend others’ needs.
  • Informed Decision-Making – Identifies and comprehends issues, problems, and opportunities; compares data from different sources to draw conclusions; uses effective approaches for choosing a course of action or developing appropriate solutions; takes action that is consistent with available facts, constraints, and probable consequences.
  • Technical Knowledge – Has proficient knowledge of G Suite, MS Office, database mining and management, and Internet searching.
  • Ethical – Adheres to procedures and protocol, including maintaining confidentiality in passwords, logging on and off procedures, and adherence to The Excel Center model and Goodwill’s values.  Uses discretion in sharing and protecting private information.


Other Requirements

  • Background Screening – All candidates must pass a pre-employment background check. Must have a valid driver’s license, up-to-date auto insurance, and a good driving record.
  • Is willing to conduct local travel via car and air travel to any of TEC National Network Partners.


Benefits: Full-time employees may participate in a comprehensive benefits program that includes:

  • Continuing education and leadership development as well as tuition reimbursement
  • Comprehensive health plan
  • Generous paid time off (PTO) and paid holidays
  • Sabbatical and parental leaves
  • Life, dental and vision insurance
  • Short- and long-term disability plans
  • Nationally recognized preventive health and wellness program
  • Section 125 pretax health spending account, dependent care spending account, and premiums
  • Retirement planning options with generous company % match
  • Eligible for the Public Student Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program
Job Type
Grade Level
Adult Education
Grade Categories
Administrator, Other, Student and Family Services, Support Staff
School Year