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About Virginia529


Access Program Director


Virginia529 is the largest 529 plan in the nation and helps families save for higher education and disability expenses through a variety of investment programs.  As an independent state agency, we are focused on our mission to make education accessible and affordable for everyone while providing meaningful work to our diverse and collaborative team.  If you want to make a difference with us, learn more about working for us by visiting our Careers page.

Our growing team is seeking an experienced professional to join our team as an Access Program Director. This person will provide the strategic, policy, and program direction of the Agency’s education access, affordability, and attainment initiatives which are developed and executed through partnerships with third-party access providers. The ultimate goal of the programs is to promote access to and attainment of post-secondary education with an emphasis on under-represented and under-resourced individuals and groups in the Commonwealth of Virginia. 

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In this position, you will:

  • Research and develop early commitment, scholarship, outreach, mentoring, and related programs targeting low and moderate income families in high need areas, schools and communities in Virginia.
  • Assist in the organization and coordination of the Access Advisory Committee (the Committee) being formed to assist the Board and CEO; serve as a liaison between the Committee and staff to establish program goals and strategy and execute the workplan accordingly.
  • Represent Virginia529 in national and state higher education, college access and early commitment organizations with the goal of making postsecondary education more affordable and accessible for all Virginians.
  • Research similar programs in Virginia and nationally, analyze economic data, and identify national trends which will impact the successful implementation of the program. Use data to identify opportunities for adoption and expansion of the program.
  • Develop and track metrics to determine the impact and success of the individual access partners and the initiative as a whole.  Develop models for future funding, investment, and outcomes.
  • Identify partners and programs for potential expansion, including evaluating for alignment, establishing metrics for success, negotiating contracts, and onboarding into the overall access program.
  • Partner with the Government Relations team on legislative initiatives to make post-secondary education accessible to more Virginians. Keep abreast of and make recommendations for legislative and policy changes at both the state and national level which could impact access to higher education.

Successful candidates will have:

  • Bachelor’s degree in related field required, graduate degree in related field preferred
  • Ten or more years’ experience in education, education access, program management, or related field; an equivalent combination of education and experience will be considered
  • Five or more years’ experience working with the development and implementation of complex programs or initiatives
  • Expert-level knowledge of post-secondary education opportunities and obstacles 
  • Experience with data modeling and analysis
  • Ability to communicate and interact with officials in government and education and to work effectively with a wide range of constituencies in a diverse community
  • Extensive knowledge of higher education funding sources including student loans, FAFSA, scholarships, and savings plans
  • Superior negotiation and problem-solving skills
  • Excellent project management and organizational skills
  • Superior public speaking and presentation skills


  • Generous healthcare benefits with multiple plans to choose from
  • Defined benefit and contribution retirement plans with cash match
  • 12+ holidays
  • PTO – new employees earn 25 days/full year
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Agency-paid continuing education
  • 529 match program
  • Relaxed work environment

Work environment:

  • This position may work a hybrid schedule, with few days per week onsite in our office
  • Typical office environment with considerable time in a sitting, stationary position
  • Must be able to occasionally move about the office to retrieve files and documents
  • Constantly operate a computer and other office equipment including typing and keying
  • Frequently communicate with employees, vendors, and applicants; must be able to exchange accurate information accordingly
  • Occasional travel required

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More about Virginia529

About Virginia529

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Board Leadership

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