Manager of Academic Programs and Partnerships

Lucas Museum of Narrative Art

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The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art seeks a dynamic connector, collaborator, and leader in developing academic communities as its Manager of Academic Programs and Partnerships. Reporting to the Director, Public Programs and Creative Practice and part of the division of Learning and Engagement, the Manager will contribute to ongoing strategic planning leading to the museum’s opening and beyond. Holding an expansive notion of expertise, they will develop innovative programs, fellowships, dynamic relationships, and resources that build an engaged community of scholarship around Narrative Art and social impact. The incumbent will connect with academic institutions broadly and develop a suite of offerings that include convenings, symposia, publications, and professional development for students, artists and academics. They will work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders, designing shared outcomes that situate formal learning and scholarship within higher education alongside lived experience.

The Manager brings expertise in the culture and practices of higher education as well as research programs, publishing and idea dissemination, community care, and mentoring dynamic cohorts. The Manager will have demonstrated experience creating and overseeing initiatives to address the needs of college and graduate students, scholars, artists, and other academic stakeholders. They will have experience engaging with two-year community and vocational colleges as well as baccalaureate and graduate degree granting programs. . They must know how to develop program evaluation, be responsive to feedback from internal and external stakeholders, and be confident in making strategic adjustments when needed. This role will evolve as the museum opens and over time, they must thrive with ongoing change, be nimble in practice, and flexible in thought. This role has a unique opportunity in shaping the museum’s pedagogical practice, programmatic strategy, research platforms, and staffing from the ground up.

All staff at the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art lead through a deep commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion both within the Museum and with the communities we serve.

  • Develop flagship programs serving academic audiences that expand the notion of Narrative Art and bring rigor to its consideration within art history, visual studies, and other fields. These may include public and scholarly convenings, publications, residencies, and professional development opportunities

  • Forge deep partnerships with higher education and research institutions, ensuring alignment with institutional mission and strategic priorities in the years up to and beyond opening

  • With colleagues in People & Culture and across the museum, establish and manage an internship and fellowship program, from hiring to program parameters and workflows

  • Mentor and support emerging professionals during their time at the museum and beyond

  • Utilize research in arts and humanities to implement a vision that supports the museum’s People First and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion mission.

  • Collaborate to create structures that enable access and support scholars and researchers in engaging with the museum’s collections

  • Establish robust learning communities that connect individuals and contribute to social belonging

  • Collaborate with internal and external stakeholders to design and implement ongoing evaluation and assessment to improve programs and measure impact

  • Collaborate with colleagues in Learning and Engagement, Curatorial, Publications, Social Impact, Film Programs, and External Affairs to ensure relevance to current issues and diverse constituencies; connect programs to collection, exhibition, and publications content; and effectively market programs

  • Work in partnership with external stakeholders to expand the reach, accessibility, and impact of the museum’s programs, exhibitions, and resources

  • With the Director of Public Programs and Creative Practice, develop budgets for academic programs, tracking expenses and resource use in alignment with departmental priorities

  • Recruit, hire and lead diverse teams that may include part-time staff, interns, and volunteers

  • Research museum and library collections and exhibitions to identify throughlines with contemporary scholarship and artistic practices, and invite robust academic discourse around these materials

  • Stay abreast of current and forward-looking practices in higher education and academia, identifying opportunities to share practices across various scholarly fields



  • Minimum five (5) years developing high quality, innovative and impactful programs and relationships in higher education institutions or cultural organizations

  • Successful track record of developing and maintaining mutually beneficial partnerships with or on behalf of academic communities

  • Experience teaching at the college level and/or developing curricular resources for higher learning and adult audiences

  • Minimum of three (3) years managing staff and/or cultivating healthy, high performing cohorts

  • Practice in developing a range of participatory engagements that connect artists, scholars, community members, and audiences, with attention to engaging a range of learning styles, cognitive and physical abilities, and cultural backgrounds

  • Demonstrated practice of centering DEAI principles and values in relationships with internal and external collaborators and program frameworks

  • Experience creating program spaces that center accessibility and inclusion

  • Familiarity with working in a start-up environment and entrepreneurial drive recommended. The role will require big-picture thinking as well as the willingness to experiment, adapt, and lead through uncertainty. Additionally, an awareness that the position will evolve as the museum takes shape and form is essential


  • Advanced degree or equivalent experience in related field required


  • Ability to initiate and execute high quality program experiences in a variety of formats and settings

  • Excellent interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills

  • Strong organizational and project management skills

  • Self-motivated with high initiative and resourcefulness

  • Ability to work with a wide range of age groups and talent abilities


  • Demonstrated knowledge of educational pedagogies related to art and art history, object-based and experiential learning, community engagement and partnerships, and visitor-centered experiences

  • Knowledge of the processes and requirements for academic publishing

  • Knowledge of current research and trends in academic practices and programs

  • Enthusiasm for a range of visual storytelling forms and traditions

  • Proficient knowledge of the Microsoft Office Suite, including Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint

  • Experience using Project Management and Customer Record Management software a plus


  • Ability to thrive in an entrepreneurial, creative, collaborative, and nimble environment

  • Eagerness to experiment, adapt, and evolve as the museum takes shape and form

  • Intentional strategy in honoring the diverse perspectives and experiences of internal and external stakeholders

  • Proven ability to establish and maintain positive and collaborative working relationships with colleagues, vendors, community members, and organizational partners

  • Capable of undertaking multiple projects simultaneously and balancing long- and short-term priorities, with equal attention to big-picture goals and small logistical details

  • Ability to present ideas and information clearly and compellingly, and to sensitively respond to feedback and questions from multiple audiences and stakeholders

  • Fluency in English is required. Conversational proficiency in Spanish is desirable

  • Ability to travel to different locations in Southern California as needed for meetings or programs

How to Apply

Please apply via the link provided.

Thank you.

Posted on August 24