Program Officer, Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative

Who We Are 

At IREX we strive for a more just, prosperous, and inclusive world—where individuals reach their full potential, governments serve their people and communities thrive.

But around the globe, persistent poverty, repression, and injustice prevent too many people form achieving their full potential.  To address these problems, we focus on people, not on vaccines, roads, or wells. We support individuals and institutions to create change in their own communities—and to create person to person bridges between nations.

IREX works with partners in more than 100 countries in four areas essential to progress: cultivating leaders, empowering youth, strengthening institutions, and increasing access to quality education and information.

IREX seeks Program Officer candidates for the U.S. Department of State’s Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) Fellowship Program. The YLAI Fellowship brings young entrepreneurs from Latin America, the Caribbean, and Canada to the United States for entrepreneurial leadership training and professional placements. The YLAI Fellowship creates unique opportunities for Fellows and Americans to collaborate as they spur economic growth and prosperity across the Western Hemisphere.

As Program Officer you provide vision and leadership for the YLAI Fellowship’s Partnerships Component, including programmatic and logistical development and implementation, budgetary oversight, data management, and staff management, including oversight of specific program activities and supervision of other team members.

We are doers. Our decades of on-the-ground experience help us create greater impact, practical recommendations, and lasting partnerships.

Are you the next member of our team?

Your Background & Skills 

  • Bachelor’s degree in international development, international education, business, or related field, Master’s degree preferred;
  • Minimum four years of experience implementing international education programs and demonstrating relevant progressive experience with a focus on exchange or alumni programming and/or professional training/development programs;
  • Experience with Department of State or other USG grants and contracts;
  • Minimum of two years managing staff or similar experience preferred;
  • Experience with procurement procedures and sub-award management, preferred;
  • Experience monitoring program budgets, preferred;
  • Experience in coaching, advising, or other relevant leadership development work with young professionals, preferred;
  • Experience recruiting and managing partners, preferred
  • Skills in or interest in developing capacity for related platforms including Salesforce, Mailchimp, Submittable, or similar;
  • Demonstrated understanding of Canada, Latin America and Caribbean and recent developments in the region;
  • International work or study experience in Canada, Latin America or the Caribbean preferred;
  • Able to work independently and as a team member with consistent ability to take initiative, meet deadlines, and be flexible
  • Proven organizational skills and ability to manage multiple tasks with a high degree of accuracy and attention to detail, including the ability to prioritize tasks in a fast-paced office environment;
  • Demonstrated ability to plan strategically and creatively to meet specified objectives with strong ability to anticipate challenges and generate solutions;
  • Strong interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills;
  • Demonstrated excellent writing and document proofing skills, with experience documenting program impact using data;
  • Proficient in Microsoft office products, especially Excel;
  • Professionalism in written correspondence and report writing, excellent oral presentation and facilitation skills;
  • Availability for potential domestic and international travel;
  • Knowledge of Spanish, French or Portuguese, preferred
  • You must have unrestricted authorization to work in the United States.

Your Daily Tasks 

  • Support team leadership in all aspects of program implementation to ensure timely and accurate completion of deliverables for the Young
  • Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) Fellowship Program;
  • Lead all aspects of the partnerships component, a main programmatic component, which involves the recruitment and support of program partners, including but not limited to city liaisons, host organizations, and members of congress;
  • Initiate and cultivate relationships with relevant partners, including academic, corporate, start-ups, non-profit, government partners, and vendors;
  • Develop and maintain processes to collect, track, and organize a wide range of partner information and program data, maintaining accuracy and completeness;
  • Provide written input for complex documents, including program reports and evaluations;
  • Provide updates and story leads to the Communications team for impact reports and distribution;
  • Manage and monitor communication with program participants and partners, including communicating program updates and answering questions;
  • Support donor communications, including regular updates on program developments;
  • Oversee and contribute to the production of participant materials and resources for program partners;
  • Lead internal learning, reflection and knowledge sharing around project components and/or best practices;
  • Support project efforts to develop and implement virtual and in person programming and exchange opportunities;
  • Provide logistic support as needed, including event planning, travel arrangements, and scheduling meetings;
  • Oversight of the partnership budget and procurement process in line with USG standards;
  • Support the accurate reconciliation of program expenses each month as needed and assist team leadership in tracking program expenditures;
  • Support the proposal process, by managing specific proposal tasks;
  • Create a positive team environment adhering to IREX’s organizational values and management principles;
  • Directly supervise the work and development of one or more staff;
  • Proactively support IREX’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts; and
  • Represent IREX and Leadership Practice Area interests both within and outside of IREX.

IREX will make reasonable accommodations in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments of 2008.

Successful candidates are subject to background screenings. 

This position is eligible for Telework. The eligible employee is a regular, full-time DC-based staff who works from a worksite outside the DC office for one or more days a week. 

This position is not ineligible for Immigration Sponsorship. 


EOE – Equal Opportunity Employer 

We are an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity.

All individuals, regardless of personal characteristics, are encouraged to apply. AA/EOE/M/F/Vet/Disabled

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