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Lead Navigator and Manager for The Bridge

Community Education Coalition
Job Description
Job Title: Lead Navigator and Manager for The Bridge, at the AirPark Columbus College Campus
Location:  Columbus, Indiana
Reports To: Director of Employer Engagement for the Community Education Coalition
FLSA Statue:  Exempt – Full time
Employer: The Lead Navigator and Manager will be an employee of the Community Education Coalition, supporting The Bridge, working collaboratively with and in support of the three AirPark Columbus College Campus post-secondary institutions.
Position Summary
The Position: Lead Navigator and Manager will be the lead manager for The Bridge, responsible for ensuring the day-to-day operations and services offered by the center run smoothly. The Lead Navigator and Manager will help three key AirPark campus constituents--prospective students, current students, and employers--connect to information and resources across campus and within the community. As the founding Lead Navigator and Manager, the role provides a great opportunity to help define, develop, and implement the programmatic elements of The Bridge. Furthermore, the Lead Navigator and Manager will be responsible for training and managing all Student Navigators, who will be hired starting in the fall of 2022 and will continue to be hired on a semester/academic year basis.

The Bridge: In the spring of 2022, the Community Education Coalition (CEC) renovated the first floor of the Columbus Learning Center (an AirPark Campus building shared by the three campus post-secondary institutions that is managed and operated by the CEC) to launch a new student connection and employment center called The Bridge. Opening in fall 2022, The Bridge will serve as a connection hub for services shared by all three AirPark Campus institutions. It will support prospective and current students throughout their student journey on campus in alignment with employment opportunities by providing a welcoming place where current and prospective students can be assisted by a navigator and connected to resources across campus and within the community via a warm hand-off. For more information about The Bridge, please see this video,

With the launch of the center, the work of The Bridge is just beginning. The position of Lead Navigator and Manager is critical to the success of the center, including a successful launch and helping to continuously monitor and improve the services and activities of the center.

Long Term Outcomes and Goals:  The outcomes and goals we hope to achieve in support of students, through the work of The Bridge, include:
  • Increase access to education pathway and career information & campus and community resources
  • Increase access to supports & resources for students who are struggling with financial and life challenges
  • Create a more welcoming campus and foster a deeper sense of belonging for all students
  • Increase connection to internships and jobs
Expectations and Responsibilities
The Lead Navigator and Manager for The Bridge is responsible for fostering a relationship- and service-focused culture within The Bridge. The Lead Navigator and Manager must be committed to promoting student success to improve the economic and civic well-being of individuals and communities.  The Lead Navigator and Manager must also have a high level of energy and a positive attitude toward work and others. In this role, the Lead Navigator and Manager will also serve as a “spokesperson” for The Bridge, championing the center to key stakeholders and assisting as needed to give presentations about The Bridge externally throughout the campus service region.
In addition to the skills and strengths that would make a candidate effective at the duties described below, a successful candidate has aligned values of servant leadership, systems thinking, and equity first.

The Lead Navigator and Manager is responsible for executing the following operations, management, and process improvement activities:
  • Oversee and manage the daily operations of The Bridge while fostering a culture of servant-leadership and student success
  •  Foster relationships among the center’s three key target audiences (current students, prospective students, and employers) while promoting student success
  • Manage Student Navigators on a daily basis, including assisting with hiring and overseeing training, coaching, scheduling, and regularly evaluating performance
  • Identify and share feedback to project teams regarding process gaps and improvements for the The Bridge operations and services
  • Oversee the maintenance of the warm hand-off contact database to ensure that all contact information across campus and in the community is current
  • Manage partnerships with coffee/snacks and campus maps/brochures/swag vendors to ensure that the center is always well stocked
  • Develop tours through The Bridge tailored to the center’s three key target groups (prospective students, current students, and employers)
  • Manage and oversee events within The Bridge, supporting event hosts and coordinating with campus IT and security as needed to ensure support
  • Manage and approve (as needed) room reservations within The Bridge
  • Create monthly reports on visitors served in The Bridge through ticketing and on room utilization
  • Participate on a few of the CLC project teams
  • Other duties as assigned
The Lead Navigator and Manager is responsible for executing the following daily duties in support of students and visitors:
  • Serve as main point of contact for visitors to The Bridge, and be present in The Bridge on a regular daily schedule
  • Greet visitors entering the center and work to understand visitors’ questions/issues
  • Create a ticket to log each visitor interaction
  • Conduct warm hand-offs to pre-identified contacts at the three AirPark Campus institutions and within the community
  • Walk visitors through information and campus materials that will be pre-loaded at The Bridge computer bar
  • Follow up with visitors after their visits to The Bridge to ensure that their questions/issues have been resolved
  • Promote The Bridge by inviting visitors to enjoy snacks and swag
  • Occasionally, lead visitor tours through The Bridge
  • Occasionally, oversee events within The Bridge
Successful candidates must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions of the position.
  • Associate degree required; bachelor's degree preferred; relevant work experience will also be considered
  • Skilled in interpersonal relationships, especially with making individuals feel welcomed and valued regardless of their circumstance
  • Ability to bring energy and enthusiasm when building relationships with students, visitors and partners
  • Commitment to promoting student success to improve the economic and civic well-being of individuals, their families, and communities
  • Willingness and ability to take ownership of the new services in The Bridge, and take responsibility for the success and continuous improvement of the program
  • Proven experience in managing and supporting a team of direct reports
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Ability to work with individuals with various values, lifestyles, socioeconomic, and ethnic backgrounds, with a sensitivity to other cultures
  • Experience in collaborating across multiple partner organizations and fostering a collaborative environment
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail
  • Excellent responsiveness, reliability and the ability to take initiative and anticipate tasks without direction
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including strong public speaking skills
  • Excellent customer service skills, including active listening, attentiveness, conflict resolution, decision-making, empathy, patience, open-mindedness, flexibility, and friendliness
  • Ability to adapt to and adopt change while incorporating feedback from different viewpoints
  • High level of computer literacy and ability to learn new technology and systems quickly
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office
  • Ability to analyze data as it informs decision making and to communicate to multiple partners what data is saying
  • Ability to execute physical demands of the job, including being present in The Bridge and interacting with visitors for most of the workday
  • Bilingual in English and Spanish is a plus
Position Highlights How to Apply
Please email a resume, cover letter, and references to Kathy Huffman at
Interviews will start immediately and continue until the position is filled.

Other Information
The Community Education Coalition is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer dedicated to diversity in the workplace. Our policy is to provide equal employment opportunities to all qualified persons without regard to race, gender, color, disability, national origin, age, religion, sexual orientation, veteran status, gender identity and/or expression, or other status protected by law.

Work schedule will be Monday through Friday, on a regular daily schedule, on site in the Columbus Learning Center supporting The Bridge.

A competitive salary and benefit package is available commensurate with experience.
About the CEC and the AirPark Columbus College Campus
Community Education Coalition: The Community Education Coalition (CEC), located in the Columbus Learning Center at 4555 Central Avenue, Columbus Indiana, is a partnership of business, education, and community leaders whose goal is to align the learning system to support economic growth and a high quality of life with special emphasis on Columbus and Southeast Indiana, while also supporting state and national work.
The mission of the Community Education Coalition (CEC) is to promote initiatives that will increase access to education, increase the educational attainment of the region and align the regional learning system with economic opportunity. The Community Education Coalition advances equity in all its work, paying special attention to racial and income inequality, to ensure that each person thrives educationally, financially, and civically.
For more information, please visit the CEC website at

AirPark Columbus College Campus: The AirPark Columbus College Campus is home to three of Indiana’s leading educational institutions: Ivy Tech Community College, Purdue Polytechnic Columbus, and Indiana University Purdue University Columbus. They reside on a shared campus called the AirPark Columbus College Campus on the northside of Columbus. Serving students across the Southeast Indiana region, an average of 4,000 students are enrolled at the campus institutions per semester.
The curriculum offered across the three AirPark Campus institutions is vast and has been designed alongside regional employers to ensure alignment with regional workforce needs. Students are often able to take courses at more than one institution. Furthermore, transfer pathways have been deliberately developed to make it easy for students to transfer across institutions.
The AirPark Campus student body is a mix of traditional-age students and adult learners. About one in ten students speaks a language other than English. In recent years, the number of Latino students has increased dramatically. The campus contains a large share of first-generation college students. About a third of students commute over 30 minutes each way, and many have full-time jobs and families.
The campus aspires to be the most equitable and first choice for students in the region to pursue and achieve post-secondary education credentials, linking directly to high-quality regional employment opportunities. For more information, please visit the campus website at

Ivy Tech Community College Columbus: We are Ivy Tech, Indiana’s Community College. We serve the people of our state through accessible and affordable world-class education and adaptive learning. We empower our students to achieve their career and transfer aspirations. We embrace our vision of economic transformation inspired by the education and earnings attainment of our citizens, the vitality of our workforce, and the prosperity of our unique and diverse communities.
Ivy Tech Community College was founded in 1963. It is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s most extensive singly accredited statewide community college system. Ivy Tech has over 40 locations throughout Indiana. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association. It offers Associates Degrees, Nursing, Technology, Business, General Studies, Remediation, Adult Learning, Workforce Training, and Customized Training. It provides the facility of more than 1,000 online classes. It ensures complete attention to the students with an average class size of 22 students. Its primary focus is on providing the state’s most advanced technologies and training facilities to the students.

Purdue Polytechnic Columbus: Purdue University is a land grant-university dedicated to learning, discovery, and engagement.  The Purdue Polytechnic statewide program delivers Purdue programs around the state of Indiana. Headquartered in the Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence (AMCE), Purdue Polytechnic Columbus offers four undergraduate majors plus certificates. Our facilities include the Purdue Polytechnic Measurement Center, an environmentally-controlled laboratory. Majors include Mechanical Engineering Technology, Computer and Information Technology, Industrial Engineering Technology, and Engineering Technology and are identical to those located on Purdue’s main campus. Students can earn a respected Purdue diploma right here in Southeastern Indiana. 

Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus: IUPUC—Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus—continues to deliver high-quality undergraduate and graduate degree programs aligned with and responsive to regional educational needs since 1970. IUPUC is located in Columbus, Indiana, and enrolls between 1,500 and 1,800 students annually. IUPUC offers academic programs to students who reside in Bartholomew, Brown, Decatur, Jackson, Jefferson, Jennings, Johnson, Ripley, Shelby, and other counties in southern Indiana. We seek greater diversity in our faculty and staff to broaden students’ academic experience and to enrich our campus community. Candidates must be sensitive to the needs of and possess an interest in working in an academic community that is diverse with regard to gender, race, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation or identity, disability status, and protected veteran status.

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