Associate Director, Advancement Communications – UPPER CANADA COLLEGE

We are seeking a strategic, creative, and collaborative Associate Director, Advancement Communications to develop and execute long-range communication and marketing strategies and plans that connect UCC’s rich and extraordinary story with its renewed vision and mission, enhance the strength of UCC’s brand position, and engage audiences in achieving advancement and campaign objectives.

Location: Toronto, ON
Employment Type: fulltime
Level: senior
Salary Range: $70,000 – $90,000

The Associate Director will capitalize on emerging opportunities to share UCC’s stories including campaign announcements, milestones, donation news, and other communications with stakeholders, the UCC community, the general public and strategic partners — stories that are driven by our renewed vision to inspire boys to be their best selves and grounded in our mission to provide transformational learning experiences.

In this new role, the Associate Director will bring a view across all relevant channels and platforms in order to provide creative and operational leadership to ensure that communications are on-brand and advancing the school’s priorities while informing and building engagement, affinity, and pride of association among key stakeholders: alumni, donors, parents, students, volunteers, employees and strategic partners.

Reporting to the Executive Director, Marketing and Communications, the Associate Director will be a key member of the high calibre, high capacity, and supportive Marketing and Communications team. The Associate Director, Advancement Communications will work collaboratively alongside Advancement colleagues to support the broader strategic priorities at the College, as well as with faculty and staff across the School, and with alumni and parent volunteers.

Independent and outcome focussed, the Associate Director will be productive, working in a home office setting and within our offices located at Upper Canada College.  UCC is working within a hybrid model with staff expected in the office a minimum of 2 days per week.

About Upper Canada College

Upper Canada College’s mission to deliver transformational learning experiences is supported by expert faculty, cutting-edge facilities, and wide-ranging co-curricular offerings. UCC is an IB Continuum World School with 1,200 students in Senior Kindergarten through Year 12, including 88 boarders from around the world.

Located in central Toronto on 35 acres of green space in central Toronto, Upper Canada College was founded in 1829. Our alumni community of more than 12,500 in 80+ countries includes leaders and innovators in politics, finance, arts, athletics, media and beyond. We are proud that approximately 20 per cent of UCC students receive financial assistance from the school’s sector-leading program, with $5 million available annually to Canadian students.

Strategic Directions: Towards 2029

Strategic Directions: Towards 2029 sets the course for our preferred future, one that is driven by our renewed vision to inspire boys to be their best selves and grounded in our mission to provide transformational learning experiences. Our Strategic Directions reaffirm our foundational focus on educating boys in an exceptional day school and boarding environment, delivering a rigorous liberal education through the International Baccalaureate Programme, and ensuring financial accessibility for boys of the highest potential.

Our history of bold and progressive thinking has inspired UCC’s renewed Strategic Directions— developed in extensive collaboration with our community. Three new goal pillars will guide our commitment to these strategic priorities and initiatives. They are Best Self—nurturing the unique combination of head, heart, and humanity in each boy; Flourishing Community—creating a vibrant school that values lifelong engagement; and Bold Future—embracing a culture of courage, striving for excellence, and advancing the common good.

This is a dynamic new agenda for UCC. It bolsters our commitment to deliver innovative teaching practices and learning outcomes, reflects the promise and pluralism of our global society, and supports the wellbeing of our boys, faculty, and staff. Our goals for the future are ambitious and exciting. We look forward to working with all members of the UCC community to achieve them, culminating in the extraordinary milestone of the College’s bicentennial.

For more details, please visit:

UCC’s Commitment to Pluralism

Education is critical to building an inclusive, just society. When we equip learners to challenge stereotypes, bias, and fear, and to understand their origins — and when we celebrate and support the identities of all in our community and make it safe for them to be themselves — we create true belonging.

To fully realize UCC’s vision to reflect the pluralism and promise of Canada, and to fully live our pluralism value, we’re implementing a multi-year strategy to foster a transformational learning environment where all students, employees and community members feel valued and that they truly belong.

The course we’re charting is grounded in ongoing consultation, which to June 2021 has included more than 25 sessions involving close to 400 community members, as well as continuous dialogue, and the creation of a strategic planning committee with representation from across the College. Responding to our community’s needs and to complex global challenges, the strategy aims to remove barriers and biases that impede belonging and inclusion, and to integrate a breadth of voices and experiences.

UCCs pluralism strategy comprises 56 initiatives and 163 related actions to be implemented over at least the next five years. It addresses eight anti-oppression categories: ableism; anti-racism; antisemitism; homophobia and transphobia; Indigenous reconciliation; anti-Muslim discrimination; sexism; and socio-economic discrimination.

Through our wide-ranging initiatives and actions, we’re paving the way for positive change in seven specific categories across all aspects of College life: curriculum and pedagogy; students, programs, and support; people, organization, and professional development; admission; community; facilities and learning environments; and monitoring and evaluation.

Advancement @ UCC

The Advancement Team at Upper Canada College is collectively responsible for advancing the mission of the College through meaningful philanthropic relationships, community relations and communications.

Every dollar contributed supports the educational mission of UCC, whether by contributing to our sector-leading financial assistance program that enhances the accessibility, diversity and impact of the UCC experience for all students, and supporting the ongoing development and excellence of our facilities, programs, and faculty, through to the provision of equipment and resources for teaching and learning, athletics, arts and culture.

The Advancement team is currently comprised of 22 staff organized in four units: Marketing & Communications, Community Relations, Advancement Operations, and Development. We work closely with faculty and staff across the School, and we also work very closely with alumni and parent volunteers.

Key Responsibilities:

 Advancement Communications

  • Work with UCC’s Advancement Team to develop and execute acquisition campaign strategies and tactics, managing creative development and campaign rollouts (personalized donor reports, Annual Fund campaigns, Reunion Giving campaigns, Legacy Giving campaigns) to support goals and objectives.
  • Work with UCC marketing colleagues to optimize the delivery of key campaign communications — selecting and optimizing the channels, design, user experience and reporting capabilities for key communications.
  • Work with VP Advancement and AVP Advancement to support requested donor communication needs including cases for support, individualized campaign materials, reports and other communications.
  • Standardize approach and process for campaign communications and marketing.
  • Lead creative and brand development strategies that optimize impact of campaign communications and marketing and creative across channels.

 Marketing & Communications Planning

  • Work with the Executive Director, Marketing and Communications to develop and implement long range communication and marketing strategies and plans that share UCC’s story, enhance brand positioning and engage audiences with the College’s strategic directions and campaign objectives.
  • Work with the Executive Director, Marketing and Communications on campaign and advancement annual/quarterly/monthly planning and budget process.
  • Manage external and internal creative partners.
  • Develop and implement integrated communications and marketing plans that bring fresh, innovative approach to promoting campaign activities and milestones.


  • Analyze relevant data on UCC audience and donor segments to refine communications and marketing strategies and plans in support of continually evolving campaign positioning.
  • Review campaign communications and marketing materials for consistency of brand and messaging.
  • Create and maintain UCC campaign-specific media database; develop media relations in key territories.
  • Initiate UCC campaign media opportunities to invite media and influencers to engage with school and campaign impact stories/news.
  • Prepare media backgrounders, briefings and provide media coaching and interview preparation related to campaign and donor stories.
  • Plan and track campaign communications and marketing and project budgets.
  • Working with Executive Director, Marketing and Communications, help to manage and direct agency involvement (media plans, creative development, design, PR services, etc.) related to campaign work.

 Knowledge Sharing

  • Develop relationships that enhance the College’s brand and effectiveness of its communications and marketing.
  • Leadership role in supporting communications and marketing team operations and processes.
  • Coach and mentor to develop team members.
  • Develop and maintain “knowledge sharing” relationships with fellow Advancement team members and across College.


  • Participate in variety of initiatives that enhance UCC’s community relationships (students, donors, prospective families, strategic partners, prospective families, alumni, parents, volunteers).
  • Participate in various Advancement cross-functional teams and projects.
  • Support marketing and communication needs of VP Advancement, AVP Advancement and Executive Director, Marketing and Communications as required.
  • Other duties as required.

Qualifications & Competencies:

  • Progressive communications experience in a fundraising environment.
  • Experience developing donor communication needs such cases for support, proposals, individualized campaign materials, stewardship reports, etc.
  • Demonstrated understanding of donor, prospect and alumni audiences.
  • Experience in marketing and communications; agency and brand management experience are assets.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and execute acquisition campaign strategies and tactics, managing the creative development and rollout of annual fund, legacy giving and other campaigns aligned with goals and objectives.
  • Demonstrated experience working with cross-functional teams on communications and marketing strategies, tactics and plans that leverage core strengths of a brand and position it for future growth.
  • Sophisticated writing and editing knowledge; print and digital media production experience an asset.
  • Strong organization skills; able to prioritize, work with interruptions and deal with several tasks simultaneously.
  • Experience managing range of internal and external partners including advertising and media partners. Experience managing campaign-related media requests.
  • Ability to anticipate and contribute to vision and distinctive strategies for marketing and communications in order to achieve desired outcomes for the College.
  • Strong relationship management, with a proven track record of strong collaboration with colleagues and external partners.
  • Excellent organizational, time-management and verbal/written communication skills.
  • Ability to assess risks and alternatives to determine the most appropriate course of action.
  • Applies analytical thinking, conceptual ability and experience to assess and address complex, ambiguous or contentious situations, including any crisis situations that might arise.
  • Ability to identify and evaluate trends and best practices in other sectors and determine applicability to the school/college.
  • Ability to understand and assess both big picture and individual issues, in order to effectively address all constituencies.
  • Applies sound judgment and problem-solving, an innate willingness to find reasonable solutions and work independently to do so.

For more Information

KCI (Ketchum Canada Inc.) has been retained to conduct this fundraising leadership search on behalf of Upper Canada College. Interested marketing & communications professionals are invited to contact Tara George at KCI Search + Talent via email at

Please send resume and letter of interest to the email address listed above by January 28, 2022.

Please note that the hiring range for this position is $70,000 – $90,000 per annum, plus a wide range of benefits and perquisites that are available to all UCC employees.

To view full Position Brief, please visit:

For more info about working at UCC please visit:

UCC is proud to be an Employer Partner of the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI). This partnership provides our team with learning resources and is one part of our journey to embrace pluralism – celebrating differences, cherishing similarities, and giving voice to multiple perspectives.

Upper Canada College requires full vaccination for all eligible students and employees who will be accessing the campus for in-person learning and activities. In accordance with the Ontario Human Rights Code, exemptions will only be considered for defined medical conditions as determined by a clinician and/or for reasons of religion or creed. Candidates are asked to proactively identify if they require more information about policy-accepted exemptionsA Criminal Records Check and a Vulnerable Sector Check will be required for this position.