College Success Advisor

April 27th, 2017 · No Comments


College Success Advisor, Position Overview

The College Success Advisor (CSA) plays a critical role in ensuring the success of our scholarship recipients in obtaining a college degree. The CSA reports to the Executive Director (ED) and serves as the primary liaison to students and mentors. The CSA works with the College Success Manager (CSM) to support students in our High Hopes Scholarship program by providing information, supporting and counseling students, planning student and mentor events, and working with constituents and partner organizations to build a support network for the High Hopes Scholars. The CSA also has primary responsibility for the development and implementation of the mentorship program including recruiting, training, and supporting mentors. This is a non-exempt, full time (40 hours per week) position with a comprehensive benefits package.

Key Responsibilities

Applicant Outreach and Selection (10%)

  • • Review scholarship applications and make recommendations to the scholarship committee on scholar selection.
  • • Work with the CSM to plan and execute interview day and the scholarship awards ceremony.

Scholar Counseling and Support (45%)

  • • Manage and track the disbursement of scholarship funds.
  • • Conduct outreach to selected Scholars: maintain active and consistent contact; troubleshoot challenges and issues; provide support, resources, and referrals as needed.
  • • Collect updates and transcripts, monitor grades and progress to degree completion.
  • • Maintain well-organized records and provide reports on students’ progress and activities to BCF and individual donors.
  • • Work with the CSM to plan, manage and execute summer college transition programs.
  • • Build community among students including developing and implementing peer support programs and networks at selected colleges and universities.
  • • Facilitate success of the scholar-mentor relationship.

Mentor Program (35%)

  • • Work with the Board of Directors’ Mentor Committee to develop and implement an annual plan for recruitment, selection, training, and recognition of volunteer mentors.
  • • Build relationships with social, civic, corporate and local organizations to develop and/or utilize volunteer mentors.
  • • Check in with mentors throughout the year, providing resources and referrals as needed.
  • • Develop and organize training and social events for mentors and scholars.
  • • Help build community among mentors.
  • • Maintain updated records on volunteer mentors.
  • • Work with the CSM and scholars to plan and execute the annual holiday party.

Other (10%)

  • • Work with the ED and CSM to create and execute the marketing and communications plan related to students and mentors that includes gathering student stories, updating the web site, email communications, and social media.
  • • Assist in the collection of qualitative and quantitative data to help guide decision-making and funding applications.
  • • Perform various administrative tasks related to the High Hopes Scholarship Program.
  • • Participate in and assist with all BCF events including the Annual Dinner and Spring Event.
  • • Support organizational objectives as needed.
  • • Other duties as assigned by supervisor.


The CSA must be cross-culturally competent with the ability to communicate and relate effectively to a wide variety of people. Successful candidates will possess the following:


  • • Bachelor’s degree.
  • • Passion for creating educational opportunity and equity.
  • • Creativity and adaptability with the ability to effectively resolve issues.
  • • Effective communication and interpersonal abilities with the skills to listen, solicit input, share information and respond tactfully and appropriately.
  • • Ability to work both collaboratively and independently to move projects forward.
  • • Proficient with the use of office-related applications, cloud-based software, and social media.
  • • Strong writing skills and attention to detail.
  • • Ability to self-manage and meet internal deadlines.
  • • Willingness and ability to work occasional evenings and weekends.
  • • Flexibility and appreciation of the challenges working in a resource-constrained environment.

Highly Desirable

  • • Some knowledge of college access and success processes, best practices for working with first-generation and underrepresented college students, student financial aid processes, campus-based student support services, theories of student development and maturation, and the role of mentors in the success of college-aged students.
  • • Experience working as an advisor or counselor to college-going or college-bound youth.
  • • Experience in volunteer management.

Work Environment

The BCF has a small office located on the bottom floor of the YMCA PG&E Teen Center in downtown Berkeley, close to BART, with numerous lunch and coffee break destinations.

Salary and Benefits

BCF offers a competitive salary and benefits package including health and dental coverage, flexible work hours, a gym membership, and paid vacation and sick leave. Salary is dependent on experience. BCF actively supports the growth of all employees and encourages professional development, networking, and collaboration. We utilize the YMCA of the Central Bay Area (Y) for many of the administrative functions of the organization and the CSA is technically an employee of the Y.

Start Date

Official start date is July 3, 2017. In addition, the CSA will be required to attend the 2017 High Hopes Scholars Summer Orientation scheduled for Saturday, June 24, 2017.

Supervisory and Other Duties

This position has no direct staff supervisory responsibilities but may work closely with program assistants, student interns, scholars and volunteers. Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of the activities, duties or responsibilities that are required.

How To Apply

Please combine your cover letter and resume into ONE PDF document and email to Subject: BCF College Success Advisor. The deadline to apply has been extended to May 25, 2017.

About the Berkeley Community Fund

The Berkeley Community Fund (BCF) empowers Berkeley youth from lower-income families to achieve their aspirations by providing them with scholarships, connections, and other supports instrumental to success in college and beyond. Through our High Hopes Scholarship Program, we work with students attending four-year colleges and universities across the United States. Scholars receive $16,000 paid directly to them over four years plus a number of other supports to help them successfully complete college. In 2017, we will pilot a program for students who attend community college and plan to transfer to a 4-year institution.

Our scholars come from groups generally underrepresented in higher education; many are students of color, recent immigrants to the U.S., and/or the first in their families to attend college.  Our goal is to help them better navigate the demands and challenges of higher education and increase the likelihood that they will successfully obtain a college degree.

BCF has focused on social and economic justice issues and the common good since it was founded in the early nineties. We refined our focus in 2007 and now use donations from the community to support college success for Berkeley students. Since 2008, we have awarded more than $2.68 million in scholarships to 168 motivated and promising Berkeley public high school graduates, all of whom have demonstrated great resilience in overcoming early life challenges. Over 90% of our scholars have earned bachelor’s degrees or persisting in college.

The BCF is an equal opportunity employer. For more information about us, visit our web site at