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Director, Commercialization Solutions

The University City Science Center is seeking a dynamic leader to work collaboratively with internal and external stakeholders to analyze the needs of entrepreneurs and other key organizations to develop solutions and programs to meet those needs. The Director, Commercialization Solutions will lead engagement with external organizations, including University Tech Transfer offices (TTOs), corporate development offices, academic and clinical entrepreneurs and other domestic and international organizations that align strategically with the Science Center, to help the Science Center design programming that is impactful and useful to our partners and innovators, meeting needs and gaps that exist in the ecosystem. This person will be able to identify problems and gaps in innovation, help design and build creative solutions, and execute on solutions that leverage the Science Center’s networks. This role will primarily focus on sourcing innovative technologies to plug into existing programs at the Science Center.

The Director, Commercialization Solutions will focus in three areas:

  1. Developing and managing and growing relationships with prospects and partners who can plug into existing commercialization programs;
  2. Managing and growing relationships with tech transfer offices and Science Center shareholders in the region;
  3. Developing and operating a startup accelerator suite of programs.

The Director will also interface with other programs within the Science Center, including the ic@3401 co-working facility, funding programs such as QED and Phase 1 Ventures, Quorum, Venture Café, and STEM and workforce development initiatives, as well as exploring community, partnership, and sponsorship opportunities as appropriate.

The Director will have a cross-industry knowledge of the needs of technology-based startup companies in the life/health sciences, physical sciences, and/or digital industries; will be a competent project and process manager with an interest in “innovation ecosystems”; will be an enthusiastic developer and manager of highly integrated networks of key people including entrepreneurs, inventors, investors, and industry professionals; and will be comfortable supervising commercial facility management personnel.

The Director, Commercialization Solutions will report directly to the Vice President, Commercialization and New Ventures and will lead the QED Program and other key staff. This position will participate in department activities as necessary.

Key responsibilities of this role include:

  1. Operational oversight of the Science Center’s outreach activities to entrepreneurs and engagement with internal and external programs:
    1. Monitor and directly promote business growth and development of companies participating in business incubation programs, including by providing concierge services for participants that connect them to academic, professional services, investor, and other resources as appropriate;
    2. Create and maintain networks of entrepreneurs, mentors, professionals, funders, corporate innovation teams, tech transfer offices, and other B2B contacts, and facilitate their strategic interaction with participating start-up companies and Science Center programs;
    3. Connect and integrate incubation program participants with existing Science Center and regional initiatives, events and meet-ups, and develop dedicated events and meet-ups as appropriate to meet the needs of participating start-ups;
    4. Design strategic expansion of the Science Center’s networks and engagement activities.
  2. Creation and oversight of one or more venture accelerator programs:
    1. Administer (and as needed, develop) a program plan, operating policies, and outreach documents, consistent with the Science Center’s existing funding program parameters;
    2. Recruit domain-specific experts and entrepreneurs to act as mentors, advisors, selection team members, and define their roles and relationships;
    3. Solicit technology investment opportunities among existing companies that are at, move to, or have graduated from the Science Center;
    4. Manage participants throughout their engagements with commercialization programs;
    5. Develop opportunities to showcase participating companies and facilitate their graduation to post-program opportunities;
    6. Develop roles through which to engage investors, ultimately developing sources of funding to support program growth;
    7. Supervise one or more interns or program staff, according to program scale
  3. Collaborate with Science Center program and operations staff to:
    1. Create progress reports for public/private funders and other stakeholders as necessary;
    2. Assist in the preparation of documentation or other materials for use in fundraising efforts, as required;
    3. Manage accounts and program budget;
    4. Manage internal and external communications for commercialization programming and support communications for our other programs as needed.
  4. Represent the Science Center among its various communities and stakeholders and promote business incubation and venture acceleration programs with visiting delegations and at regional and national conferences and through membership in professional and industry organizations related to business incubation.

Management Duties

  1. Provide management of department and administrative support staff through independent judgment and decision-making.
  2. Regularly direct the work of, schedule, and provide staff development opportunities and training to program staff.
  3. Perform management functions for the department such as performance management, salary recommendations, workload distribution, communication, and recognition activities.
  4. Participate in the development of a departmental budget as part of the organization’s budget preparation process and operate within budget limitations.
  5. Ability to accept feedback on ways to improve, as well as deliver constructive feedback to teammates.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  1. Passion for science, technology and entrepreneurship, and a strong understanding of practices and concepts of growing early-stage technology companies. International experience a plus.
  2. Demonstrated ability to combine analytic, strategic, and communication skills to drive group results.
  3. Demonstrated ability and willingness to build relationships with key actors in innovation, entrepreneurship ecosystems, and drive related corporate or organizational engagement.
  4. Demonstrated willingness to optimize facts, judgment, and desire to create new programs and enterprises, with an entrepreneurial and disciplined approach to “make it happen”.
  5. Demonstrated ability to lead and execute daily and special project goals by carefully setting priorities, meeting deadlines, delegating appropriately, and scheduling time efficiently.
  6. Ability to analyze complex data and use critical thinking to identify strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
  7. Ability to lead change in a positive and productive manner.
  8. Ability to communicate effectively, verbally and in writing, about scientific, technical, and business issues, with the Science Center management team, Science Center staff, and a wide variety of external stakeholders.
  9. Ability to organize multiple tasks in an efficient manner and follow-up and follow-through with strong attention to detail.
  10. Demonstrated ability to lead other people through a cooperative effort.
  11. Possesses strong interpersonal skills as demonstrated by compassionate, courteous, cordial, cooperative, and professional interaction with diverse groups of co-workers, external business partners, and the community.
  12. Ability to operate a computer and use a variety of common software programs including Microsoft Office, Salesforce, spreadsheets, and customized databases.
  13. Adheres to all UCSC and departmental policies and procedures.

The successful candidate will have 5+ years of experience in facilitating start-up business growth. Operations experience in commercial product development is desired. Experience in both non-profit and for-profit organizational environments desired. A Master’s degree in Business, Finance, Law, or Science from an accredited college or university is preferred.

The Science Center offers a comprehensive employee benefit package which includes Medical, Dental, Short and Long-Term Disability, Flexible Spending, Life Insurance and 403(b) with a significant company match.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer

Interested candidates should forward a resume and salary requirements to: Human Resources, University City Science Center 3675 Market Street, Suite 400 Philadelphia, PA 19104 or email