Director, Innovation Center
Grand Canyon University is seeking a new Innovation Center Director. This role is responsible for providing leadership and strategic direction to GCU’s Innovation Center. The role of this center is to provide a business incubator and co-working space for tenants as well as space for engineering and technology labs and light manufacturing. Responsible for envisioning, developing and implementing a robust culture across GCU and the local community to support the Innovation Center.
Grand Canyon University is integrated with Phoenix valley communities and supports economic development and job creation. The Innovation Center provides businesses the opportunity to hire students, graduates, and the local community via a co-working, R&D, incubation-type facility.
- Oversees the day to day operation of the Innovation Center facility, including marketing the facility, recruiting potential tenants and getting approval for tenants.
- Manage the facilities and create the infrastructure/operational processes needed to create a leading business incubator space attractive to engineering/technology companies and research labs.
- Seek angel and capital investment opportunities for client (tenants) organizations to aid in the commercialization or acquisition process in collaboration with GCU’s Canyon Angels division.
- Seek funding sources to accomplish the financial goals of the Innovation Center.
- Explore grant funding opportunities; respond to eligible grant proposals and ensure effective record keeping relative to grant funds.
- Recruit clients (tenants) to utilize GCU’s Innovation Center.
- Provide excellent customer service to the Innovation Center tenants; conducts annual assessment to ensure incubator is meeting current targeted industry/tenant needs.
- Provide support to entrepreneurs across acceleration and scale.
- Provide continued strategic guidance to entrepreneurs in areas such as business modeling, sales, and marketing, financial, fundraising, overall strategy, operations, etc.
- Serves as "public face of GCU Innovation Center"; makes presentations to interested parties and networks to get press coverage for the Innovation Center in collaboration with GCU public relations team.
- Responsible for financial management of Innovation Center; provides capital and overhead budget and manages to revenue goals and expenses.
- Works with community stakeholders and advances community partnerships on behalf of the Innovation Center to stimulate economic development.
- Assists in coordinating facility operations with University maintenance, custodial and public safety staff.
- Ensure operations allow for the safe conduct and accomplishment of tenant startups, labs, and manufacturing activities.
- Oversee the end to end delivery of incubator program activities and events, ensuring that stakeholder requirements and program milestones are met.
- Bachelor’s degree preferably in business, engineering, technology, entrepreneurial studies or marketing.
- Minimum 5 years’ experience in managing a start-up business or providing services as a business consultant to start up business through all stages, initial funding through to launch.
- At least 4 years’ experience working with entrepreneurs, start-ups, learning/tinkering labs, incubator or incubation consultancy or experience in maker spaces and engineering/technology projects, familiar with 3D printing and engineering innovation.
- Demonstrated ability to cultivate, build and maintain strong working relationships with start-ups, entrepreneurs, mentors, universities, industry experts, associations, chamber of commerce and industries, state and local governments and angel investors.
- Experience in seeking capital investment funds or grants
- Outstanding customer service skills and ability to represent Grand Canyon University professionally.
- Basic computer skills including MS Office suite (Word, Excel, Power Point, etc.)
- Ability to cope with changing priorities and work effectively while under stress.
- Ability to lead staff in an effective and positive manner; ability to foster collaborative and cooperative work environment.
- Be capable of articulating complex institutional viewpoints, goals and needs.
- Demonstrated success in fundraising including personal solicitation and in closing principal gifts.
- Demonstrated understanding of, sensitivity to, and respect for the diverse academic, socio-economic, ethnic, cultural, and disability orientation of all internal GCU stakeholders and potential external GCU audiences.
- Excellent written and verbal communications skills, and effective and influential presentation skills.
- Grow the brand equity of the Innovation Center
- Strong organizational and time management skills with a demonstrated ability to handle, prioritize, coordinate and complete competing tasks within deadlines through strategic planning required.
- Ability to think critically and act strategically.
- Excellent negotiation and facilitation skills with high personal integrity and ethics.
- Results oriented professional who thrives in a fast-paced environment and adapts easily to change.
- Willing to work outside normal business hours and days.
- Ability and willingness to travel both locally and domestically.
- Must be able to pass pre-employment background investigations.
- Provide a positive example to students by supporting the University's Doctrinal Statement, Ethical Position Statement and Mission of Grand Canyon University.
- Master’s degree preferred
- Incubation management experience: Providing business development coaching and advice to startups
GCU's Christian worldview has shaped the university's mission and growth for more than 65 years. As a Christ-centered higher education institution, GCU integrates faith, learning and work to connect the GCU community with distinct Christian principles and strong central values. The University values diversity among its students, faculty and staff, and invites applications from all qualified individuals, including minorities, females, individuals with disabilities and veterans. At GCU, working professionals may find their purpose in ways marked by compassion, service, integrity and concern for the common good.
Employment is contingent upon the satisfactory outcome (as determined by the university) of pre-employment screening activities, including a background check.
Only candidates who submit a resume and complete the full application will be considered - anyone without a resume will be declined automatically. For assistance with your job application please use our External Candidate Job Application Guide.
For more information on Grand Canyon University, visit us gcu.edu
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