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Associate Director of International Corporate and Foundation Relations

Post Date: 07-08-2020
Deadline: 08-20-2020
Job No.: 660391
Department: University Advancement
Type: Administrative Professional
Salary Range: Negotiable

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Michigan State University has been working internationally for more than 60 years and is home to renowned scholars and scientists from around the globe as well as a vibrant and diverse community of undergraduate and graduate students. MSU leverages international partnerships with scientists and practitioners from academia, the government, private sector, and strategically chosen research and development organizations to create new knowledge and explore innovative and practical solutions to the world’s most pressing problems.

 The growth of Michigan State University’s international work is inextricably linked to the establishment of the Office of International Studies and Programs (ISP) in 1956. As a university-level office under the leadership of an associate provost and dean, ISP supports international activities throughout MSU, working to mobilize the institution's research and scholarship, enhance study abroad and other educational programs, form and strengthen international partnerships, and welcome and support international visitors, scholars, and students.

 With MSU’s continued expansion of and emphasis on internationally focused research, programs, and initiatives, the university is seeking an Associate Director of International Corporate and Foundation Relations to build relationships with and philanthropic support from international corporations and foundations – both US-based as well as in-country (particularly in Africa, Asia, and Latin America).  The Associate Director will lead the identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of a portfolio of international corporations and foundations focusing on commitments at the $100,000 level and above.  This position will require significant international travel.


The Associate Director of International Corporate and Foundation Relations plays a vital role in creating successful strategies for engaging and working with internationally focused corporations and foundations.  The Associate Director is responsible for maintaining and cultivating a portfolio of international corporations and foundations (both US-based and in-country). The Associate Director will coordinate and direct activities that will ensure regular and increased support from these organizations to fulfill the international goals and priorities of Michigan State Universities and key colleges and units. Activities include, but are not limited to, the following: 

 Cultivation, Solicitation, and Stewardship 

  • Manage a portfolio of 75 international corporations and foundations, both US-based and in-country.
  • Identify, cultivate, maintain, and build relationships with assigned corporate and foundation donors and prospects, both US-based and in-country.
  • Develop strategies, systems, and procedures for advancing the goals and priorities of Michigan State Universities, key colleges and units and International Studies and Programs with these corporate and foundation donors and prospects.
  • Act as liaison to an assigned set of corporate and foundation donors and prospects to develop and maintain their interest in MSU’s internationally focused research, programs, and initiatives with the objective of increased funding. Accomplished through consistent and relevant communication, as well as meetings with corporate and foundation program staff both in the United States and in-country (particularly in Africa, Asia, and Latin America).
  • In pursuit of support, actively seek and develop new corporate and foundation relationships for MSU’s internationally focused research, programs, and initiatives.
  • Manage cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of assigned corporate and foundation donors and prospects.
  • In collaboration with college/unit Directors of Development, as well as with the central Corporate and Foundation Relations team, work with administrators, deans, department heads and faculty to develop and submit proposals consistent with funder programs and policies and ensure appropriate contacts between MSU and corporate and foundation representatives.
  • Coordinate follow-up on successful proposals ensuring timely submission of narrative and financial reports.
  • Develop cultivation and stewardship activities for assigned corporate and foundation donors and prospects.
  • Arrange strategic visits for MSU leadership and faculty members with assigned corporate and foundation prospects and donors both in the United States and in-country (particularly in Africa, Asia, and Latin America).
  • Work closely with ISP Dean to leverage their strategic travels to set up meetings with corporations and foundations both internationally and stateside. Create briefings and appropriate materials for meetings and staff ISP Dean (and other leadership) during international and stateside travels.

 Strategy Development and Implementation 

  • Monitor assigned corporate and foundation donor/prospect strategies and funding interests with the objective of identifying potential alignment with MSU/ISP international priorities and faculty research, education, and outreach activities.
  • Become knowledgeable about and conversant with the University’s international research, programs, and initiatives, as well as with current relationships with assigned corporate and foundation donors and prospects.
  • Gather and disseminate information on funding opportunities for assigned corporate and foundation donors and prospects to faculty and administrators.
  • Collaborate and cooperate with members of the Foundation Relations and Corporate Relations Teams as well as with Advancement colleagues to advance fundraising priorities and achieve strategic goals.
  • Working with university advancement and college communicators, as well as central and college CFR colleagues, develop regular touchpoints highlighting MSU’s international work that aligns with specific programs and priorities of the corporations and foundations. Work with college leadership to determine the appropriate sender and recipients. Create follow-up process.
  • Set up regular meetings with Deans and Research Deans of relevant colleges and units to learn and document their international strategic priorities and programming. This position requires heavy meeting schedules around ISP housed international initiatives.
  • Other duties as assigned.


Required Qualifications:

Knowledge equivalent to that which normally would be acquired by completing a four-year college degree program in Communications, Public Relations, International Relations, Marketing and/or Business. Three to five years of related and progressively more responsible or expansive work experience in professional, higher education, and/or international fundraising, marketing or related field; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.  This position requires significant international travel; a valid driver’s license is required.

 Desired Qualifications for the Successful Candidate:

The successful candidate will have experience working internationally, will enjoy international travel, and will be adept at working within multiple cultural contexts. She/he will have excellent written and verbal communication skills and will be team-oriented.  In addition, she/he will have a demonstrated ability to establish and manage multiple business relationships with complex, multifaceted international organizations successfully and simultaneously. Individuals sought for this role will have the ability to understand quickly and translate clearly and succinctly faculty research and its value to potential funders.


  • A Bachelor’s degree is required. An advanced degree is desired.
  • Three to five years fundraising experience (preferably international) seeking corporate and specifically foundation support for a university, or experience in another strongly related field, is necessary.
  • Demonstrated experience working within multiple cultural contexts.
  • Knowledge of a foreign language(s) and/or experience living abroad, particularly in Africa and Asia is highly desirable.
  • A demonstrated record of identifying the interests of corporations and foundations and matching them to university resources is highly desirable.
  • Candidate should be goal-driven, show strong initiative, and be a self-starter.
  • Excellent verbal and written communications and interpersonal skills.
  • Strong organizational skills.
  • Ability to work effectively in a complex institution.
  • High comfort level working with people in leadership positions.
  • A collaborative team-oriented style is highly desirable.

Significant international as well as domestic travel is required

How to apply

If you have any questions regarding this position, please contact Patricia Karam, Recruitment Manager at

All candidates must submit an application and resume through the Michigan State University Human Resources web-based system the URL for that website is  Please indicate the position number 660391 when submitting your application.

We will continue to evaluate applications until the position is filled.

 MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.

 MSU is committed to achieving excellence through a diverse workforce and inclusive culture that encourages all people to reach their full potential. The University actively encourages applications and/or nominations of women, persons of color, veterans and persons with disabilities.