Program Manager (CUP)

The Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP) is seeking a Program Manager to be an integral part of our team’s work collaborating with community organizations and designers to create visually-based popular education tools, and in developing trainings to help share CUP’s methodologies.

We are seeking a creative and energetic individual with skills and experience in policy, community engaged design, project management, creating and leading trainings, and an ability to collaborate with people from a diverse range of backgrounds, who wants to use design and art to contribute to meaningful social change. 

About CUP

The Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP) is a nonprofit organization that uses the power of design and art to increase meaningful civic engagement in partnership with marginalized communities. 

CUP’s work addresses the needs of communities organizing for social change around complex public policies and decision-making processes that impact their lives, from affordable housing to labor rights. By collaborating directly with communities to create accessible and visual explanations on issues important to them, CUP provides individuals with the tools to claim their rights, advocate for their needs, and fight for social justice.

For more information, visit CUP at:


Program Manager

The Program Manager will be part of CUP’s Community Education team. In our Community Education programs, CUP collaborates with community organizations and advocacy groups, as well as visual thinkers like graphic designers and illustrators, to create accessible visual explanations of complex policy and social justice issues.

The Program Manager will manage a range of projects and support the administration of the programs they are a part of. CUP’s Community Education programs are Making Policy Public, Public Access Design, Envisioning Development Toolkits, and Technical Assistance. In addition, the Program Manager will help develop trainings on CUP’s methodologies, and supervise staff. The Program Manager will report to CUP’s Director of Programs. 

The ideal candidate for this position would be someone with strong project management skills; an understanding of American urban policy and planning issues, through a racial justice lens; an ability to lead community engaged design projects and work with marginalized communities; a desire to work in a collaborative setting with a broad range of partners; experience developing or implementing curricula or trainings; and a demonstrated understanding of racial justice and equity. 

We ask that you specifically address these areas, as well as other qualifications, in your cover letter. 



The Program Manager’s responsibilities include:

  • Managing projects, including coordinating a diverse group of participants, keeping projects on schedule, and managing project budgets
  • Using CUP’s community-engaged design methodologies to collaborate with various stakeholders to create accessible, visual explanations of complex issues, including facilitating interviews, focus groups, and other feedback sessions with members of the target audience for each project
  • Conducting outreach to, and building and maintaining relationships with existing and potential project partners, particularly community organizers and advocates and designers
  • Managing contractors as well as other CUP staff, particularly program assistants and interns
  • Writing, with a focus on clear, jargon-free communication that makes complex ideas accessible
  • Providing art direction and guiding design processes with our design collaborators
  • Researching complex policy and planning topics and translating them for lay audiences
  • Leading and assisting with developing workshops and other trainings
  • Evaluating projects and programs
  • Assisting in development of new projects and programs and continued evolution of existing programs
  • Overseeing printing, production, and fabrication of final products
  • Developing written program outreach materials, including press releases, website news updates, and materials for grants and other communications, as required
  • Participating in activities that help CUP to thrive, including strategic planning, fundraising, supporting the development of CUP’s organizational infrastructure, providing other organizational support as needed, and engaging in our work to continue to further make our projects and processes more directly anti-racist


Requirements for this position include:

Core Skills & Experience:

  • A minimum of 5 years of work experience in a related field with demonstrated ability to effectively manage multiple projects simultaneously
  • Relevant fields may include public policy, government, communications design, service design, arts/culture/curatorial management, urban planning, as well as others, but the strongest applicants will demonstrate some ability to understand both design and policy
  • Experience successfully leading community-engaged design, human-centered design, or other participatory design processes from an anti-oppressive perspective and which center directly impacted communities
  • Strong visual literacy, including ability to read and understand visual images, to provide productive design feedback, and to guide a design process to meet project goals
  • Ability to read, understand, and interpret public policy
  • Experience successfully creating and leading trainings, workshops, or other interactive educational experiences
  • Experience successfully working with a broad range of partners in a variety of communities; particularly with a strong understanding of racial justice and an ability to engage respectfully with individuals from historically under-represented communities (whether or not you come from one yourself); our stakeholders and partners include members of many different communities, community organizers, funders, government agencies, designers, teaching artists, and high school students
  • Strong communication skills, including the ability to speak and write in a clear and accessible way for multiple audiences
  • High level of proficiency with Adobe Creative Suite software and Microsoft Office
  • Understanding of racial justice and ability to apply an anti-oppressive lens to understanding the issues we work on and how we work. The ideal candidate can be reflective in their own growth around racial justice, and is eager to participate in ongoing efforts to create more just and anti-oppressive practices.
  • Strong time management skills and attention to detail, which we think is an important way we are accountable to our partners in being able to complete our projects effectively and use their time respectfully.


In addition, any of the following are a plus:

  • Experience managing or working with project budgets
  • Experience supervising entry-level staff and/or interns
  • Familiarity with NYC community organizing landscape
  • Lived experience related to the issues our work addresses
  • Fluency in another language, particularly Spanish, Mandarin, or Cantonese


Culture, Salary & Benefits

CUP is committed to fostering equity and racial justice in the work we produce, the way we produce it, and the way we function as an organization. We seek to be an organization where people with different abilities and from different racial, ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic backgrounds can thrive together, and where our practices create opportunities, not barriers, to achieving greater social justice.

In support of our commitment to achieving these goals, CUP strives to be a healthy, positive, and sustainable place to work. To that end, we provide free health insurance benefits, professional development opportunities, and a reasonable work schedule that allows our staff to have a healthy life both inside and outside of work. We are also committed to working together as a staff to better understand issues of race, equity, and justice and to continue to further our own education on how we engage with and address those issues as individuals and as an organization. We support all staff members in pursuing continuous professional development, and use our annual review process to identify individual goals for each year.   

This is a full-time, salaried position. The salary range for the position will be in the range of mid$50,000s to mid-$60,000s, commensurate with skills and experience. We also provide fully paid health insurance, as well as a starting paid time off package of 15 personal days and 12 sick days. CUP is an 11-person organization with an annual budget of $1.2 million.

Our office is based in Gowanus, Brooklyn, but we work with community partners all over New York City and travel throughout the five boroughs regularly. This position may also entail occasional travel outside of New York City in the future, when it is safe to do so. Normal staff hours are 10 am to 6 pm, but our work requires occasional evening and weekend events, such as launch events, workshops, presentations, and fundraisers. Given the current situation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all CUP staff are currently working remotely and will continue to do so until we feel safe returning to work. That means this will begin as a remote work position. However, the applicant must be in New York City and able to work from the CUP office when it reopens.


Timeline & Selection Process

Applications will be accepted until noon Eastern time on Monday, October 19th. 

CUP staff will review all complete applications and schedule remote interviews in early and mid-November. Finalists may be asked to complete a short assignment.

Applicants will be notified in early December.


How To Apply

If you are interested in the position, your application should include (in this order): 

  • A cover letter, in which you address why you are interested in this position, how your experience qualifies you for it, and why you would like to work at CUP
  • A current resume
  • A short writing sample (3 pages maximum), preferably on a topic relevant to CUP’s work
  • A list of 3 references, with contact information. (No need to provide letters!)

Please send all materials as a single PDF (max 5 MB) to [email protected]. Include “Program Manager” in the subject line.

Please note that we will NOT review applications that do not provide all requested materials. In addition we will not use links to access additional information that is not included directly in the PDF (this includes links to web-based portfolios).

No phone calls, please. 

CUP is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to fair and inclusive employment practices, and strongly encourage Black, Indigenous, and people of color; women; LGBTQ individuals; people with disabilities; and others who may contribute to the diversification of ideas to apply.


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  • Reed Young
    published this page in Job Board 2020-09-22 13:01:27 -0400