Senior Program Officer, Education

Senior Program Officer, Education

Fidelity Foundations

Boston, MA   |   November 12, 2021

About Fidelity Foundations

The Fidelity Foundations are a group of private foundations that fund a diverse set of programs on a national scale. In addition, the Foundations fund non-profit organizations that strengthen the communities in which Fidelity Investments employees live and work. Our values of integrity, compassion, innovation, and expertise guide our investments in education, arts and culture, health, conservation, and economic opportunity.

Today, the Foundations are at an important and exciting stage in our organizational history having grown and evolved in recent years under new leadership. As our strategies and organization continue to develop, we are seeking individuals with skills and expertise that support the advancement and execution of a long-term portfolio of philanthropic investments.

As a capacity-building funder, the Foundations seek to make catalytic, impactful, and lasting investments in non-profits at strategic inflection points and support projects that substantially enhance their impact and sustainability. Many projects involve planning, infrastructure (e.g., capital, and technology), training, and other improvements to increase effectiveness. Grantmaking is executed through quiet giving, and most grants are awarded anonymously.

The Foundations’ Education Program includes the following focus areas, with an emphasis on supporting learners from historically underserved backgrounds:

  • College access and success
  • Innovative post‐secondary models
  • Early career pathways and training

Cross‐cutting topics include mentorship, financial capability, and other approaches that support individual choice and success. The education team is also exploring opportunities to support non‐profits in early education and care.

Learn more about one of our Foundations at:

The Opportunity

The Senior Program Officer will partner closely with the Education Director and education team members with primary responsibility for refining and executing the Foundations’ strategy related to student access to and success in strong post-secondary pathways and degrees. The role will focus on partnerships with higher ed institutions, and includes work with non-profits and field builders; the SPO will grow, manage, and evaluate a portfolio of related philanthropic investments.

Specific responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Lead and guide the Foundations’ college access and success strategy, with an emphasis on higher education partnerships and grantmaking, and responsibility for a specific payout target related to these investments
  • Build and maintain meaningful relationships with practitioners, partners, and thought leaders to understand opportunities and challenges and develop projects of interest to the Trustees
  • Work to advance promising proposals and organizations by conducting due diligence through site visits, in‐depth materials reviews, financial analysis, and other activities
  • Develop and refine proposals and write crisp, detailed internal summaries, documents, analyses, and grant recommendations for senior management, leadership teams, and Trustees
  • Guide and contribute to the Foundations’ research agenda and strategy development in collaboration with Research, Learning, and Evaluation team
  • Monitor and evaluate grant effectiveness against grant and portfolio objectives
  • Support grant administrative processes, including tracking relevant and timely information into grants management system
  • Provide expertise in support of other program areas and projects as required
  • Follow media and literature to stay abreast of non-profit trends and best practices, and attend relevant conferences to broaden knowledge
Candidate Profile

The ideal candidate for the Senior Program Office role will exhibit many, but likely not all, of the following experiences and competencies:

  • A minimum of 12 years of related education work, with particular expertise in college access and success, career and technical pathways and degrees, or related fields; experience in an institution of higher education serving students from a diversity of backgrounds would be ideal
  • Exceptional relationship-building and management skills who can create meaningful long-term relationships to support the Foundations’ grantmaking in education
  • Natural curiosity and ability to envision possibilities, with an eye towards aligning opportunities with the priorities of the Foundations
  • A highly collaborative and collegial team member who understands the dynamics of a family foundation and embraces the opportunities associated with this structure
  • Ability to analyze and translate complex and voluminous information into clear, concise summaries and recommendations
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills, suitable for internal and external audiences
  • A proven track record of delivering against goals
  • Analytical skills and experience, especially in conducting due diligence for non‐profit organizations and projects; ability to assess information to draw sound conclusions
  • Ability to multi‐task and work flexibly and creatively within a fast‐moving, changing, and complex environment
  • Ability to move work forward independently and think big picture while collaborating with team and applying a keen eye to detail; demonstrated resourcefulness in setting and executing priorities and guiding investments in projects and systems
  • Experience with strategic planning and execution strongly preferred
  • Sound judgment, integrity, humility, and respect for confidentiality
  • Strong service orientation
  • Experience in philanthropy is preferred but not required

This position will report to the Education Director and will be based in Boston, MA. The successful candidate will need to undergo a comprehensive background check.

Compensation & Benefits

The Fidelity Foundations offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience, an annual performance-based bonus, and a comprehensive benefits package.


The Fidelity Foundations have partnered with Cassie Scarano and Ariella Pasackow of Koya Partners for this search. To express your interest in this role please your resume and a thoughtful cover letter at this link. All inquiries and discussions will be considered strictly confidential.

The Fidelity Foundations are committed to creating an equitable and inclusive professional environment. We encourage applications from candidates with a diversity of backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives.

About Koya Partners

Koya Partners, a part of the Diversified Search Group, is a leading executive search and strategic advising firm dedicated to connecting exceptionally talented people with mission-driven clients. Our founding philosophy—The Right Person in the Right Place Can Change the World—guides our work as we partner with nonprofits & NGOs, institutions of higher education, responsible businesses, and social enterprises in local communities and around the world.

For more information about Koya Partners, visit