Alumni Volunteer Manager – College of Arts and Law


6th July 2021

Job Summary

Are you a successful volunteering or alumni relations professional looking for your next challenge? Are you passionate about securing volunteers to help change lives? Are you looking to develop your career at a prestigious organisation?


The University of Birmingham

The University of Birmingham are an ambitious and successful research-intensive University (one of the top 100 research-led universities globally) and have produced 11 Nobel Prize winners. Academics here are tackling some of the world’s most pressing global challenges such as antibody testing and Covid-19, the impact of climate change on our woodlands and forests, issues caused by migration and displacement, the rise in youth mental health issues, and the prevention of needless maternal deaths in the developing world. Our students come from nearly 150 countries and our flagship outreach programmes mean that almost 25% of our student population come from disadvantaged backgrounds, one of the highest proportions in the UK.

The beautiful 276-acre campus – seven minutes by train from Birmingham city centre – includes 21 listed buildings and 6,500 trees. Over 30,000 students create a lively, vibrant working environment, with museums, an art gallery and botanical gardens, cafes, shops, concert halls, and sporting facilities. The benefits available to University staff include excellent transport links and our own University station, additional holidays at Christmas and Easter, access to the USS pension scheme, and the new Sports Centre and pool.


The College of Arts and Law

The College of Arts and Law (CAL) is home to over 6,000 students from the UK and across the world, making it the second largest on campus. It is home to world-renowned research centres and hosts the College of Arts and Law Graduate School to support postgraduate students.


Development and Alumni Relations Office

The Development and Alumni Relations Office (DARO) exists to support this academic and student community by engaging, inspiring, and celebrating alumni, individuals, and charitable funders who give their money, time, and networks to support the University’s strategic priorities. The Office, which is comprised of over 50 staff across four teams, is focused on fundraising and volunteering from alumni and individuals who are passionate about changing lives, through funding various research initiatives, supporting student scholarships, mentoring students, and providing internships. The recent launch of the hugely ambitious Birmingham in Action campaign frames these efforts, as we seek to secure one million volunteering hours from our students, staff and alumni and raise £400 million in support of institutional priorities.


The role

We are looking for an Alumni Volunteer Manager to join our team to refine and expand a bold and innovative alumni volunteering programme to support both the priorities of the College of Arts and Law and DARO. As a DARO business partner for the College, you will be based both within DARO and the College itself. You will be responsible for developing a range of volunteering opportunities for alumni, which support the College’s key priorities across a diversified curriculum, the student experience, graduate employability, student recruitment, research and influence. You will be responsible for growing the number of alumni volunteers for the College, reporting on the impact of your work internally and the relationship management of a number of key alumni contacts.


Main Duties

In consultation with the Head of Volunteering and College Director of Operations, and in collaboration with the College Directors of Education and Research, the post holder is responsible for the development, planning and implementation of a new alumni volunteering strategy for the College focused on the following areas:

  • Supporting education and the student experience
  • Facilitating alumni guest lectures, which enhance the student experience; this will include working with key academic contacts to incorporate volunteer alumni input into the curriculum.
  • Creatively engaging alumni volunteers in welcome week presentations in order to support the student experience and inspire students.
  • Recruiting high profile alumni volunteers to undertake distinguished lectures, further promoting the College and its profile.
  • Identifying ways for alumni volunteers to support the student experience for postgraduate and distance learning students.
  • Promoting the alumni service to current students in the College, ensuring they understand the benefits of maintaining a lifelong relationship with the University and their department.
  • Facilitating interaction between alumni and academic staff to inform a developing and relevant curriculum.
  • Promotes equality and values diversity acting as a role model and fostering an inclusive working culture.
  • Enhancing graduate employability and student recruitment
  • Engaging alumni volunteers who can provide career profiles and deliver careers talks to undergraduate and postgraduate students, to demonstrate the range of careers that CAL students go into.
  • Working with the College careers team to engage alumni volunteers who can offer internships and placements to students.
  • Increasing the number of alumni mentors that are available for undergraduate and postgraduate students.
  • Supporting Marketing and Careers Network by collating profiles of young alumni as well as graduate testimonials.
  • Supporting student recruitment events by engaging volunteers to attend open days and international pre departure events.
  • Supporting research and influence
  • Identifying and engaging alumni contacts who can support College research objectives by opening up their networks to support research bids.
  • Working with the Charitable Funding Partner on the identification of potential research funders and fundraising projects.
  • Recruiting alumni volunteers from around the world to act as ambassadors who can advcoate for the College in support of its objectives.
  • Working with the central DARO communications team to ensure that key research stories from the College are shared with all alumni and supporters and particularly alumni from the College.
  • Proactively identifying, managing and cultivating relationships with influential alumni in industry, higher education, government and policy makers, who have the potential to support College priorities.
  • Supporting the relationship management of Honorary Graduates within the College to ensure that their potential to support the College is maximised.
  • Championing the impact of alumni volunteering across the College, including delivery of a regular report to the College Board to demonstrate how alumni volunteering is supporting key College objectives.


Person Specification

Knowledge and experience

  • A strong track record of securing a large number of volunteers from across a wide variety of sectors.
  • Experience of building long-term relationships with senior individuals.
  • Passion for, commitment to, and knowledge of higher education and the role of philanthropy and volunteering.
  • Experience of delivering against agreed targets.
  • Experience of working in a large, complex organisation.
  • Awareness and understanding of College and University activities and objectives, particularly in relation to research and education.

Strategic thinking & perspective

  • An understanding of College and DARO strategic priorities and objectives, and how effective volunteering and alumni relations can support these.
  • The ability to think and plan strategically, both in the short and long-term.
  • The ability to work with initiative, to take decisions and think creatively and laterally.
  • Proven problem-solving capability.
  • A good understanding of the needs of academics and how you can best support the academic community.

Communication & collaboration

  • The ability to work across two parts of the University, ensuring the priorities of each area complement each other.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Able to interact effectively with senior colleagues (particularly within the College), volunteers, Honorary Graduates, donors and others.
  • Strong negotiation skills and the ability to persuade and influence.
  • The ability to represent the College and University externally with confidence, diplomacy and authority.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with colleagues within the College, both academics and professional services staff, and within DARO, particularly the fundraising and engagement teams.


  • Educated to degree level or equivalent.
  • Commitment to the vision and values of the College, DARO and the University.
  • An attitude of delivering the best ‘customer service’ within the College and attention to detail.
  • Strong sense of professional integrity.
  • Ability to prioritise own workload under pressure.
  • The ability to work effectively both in a team and independently.
  • Personal confidence, independence and determination to succeed.
  • Good organisational skills.
  • Knowledge of the protected characteristics of the Equality Act 2010, and how to actively ensure in day to day activity in own area that those with protected characteristics are treated equally and fairly.
  • An understanding of the implications of the Data Protection Act.


  • Financial responsibility for College Alumni Relations budget, including budget setting and management.

Planning and organising

  • The post holder will be self-reliant and will be expected to manage their workload.
  • The post holder will be expected to plan ahead, in terms of the operational aspects of supporting the College priorities.
  • The post holder will be expected to work closely with the Head of Volunteering and the College Director of Operations to ensure the programme is aligned the strategic objectives of DARO, the College and the University.


Informal enquires to Caroline O’Mara –


Valuing excellence, sustaining investment

We value diversity and inclusion at the University of Birmingham and welcome applications from all sections of the community and are open to discussions around all forms of flexible working


Apply on this link