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Program Facilitator, FirstHand

The Program Facilitator, FirstHand, will lead several of the University City Science Center’s (UCSC) FirstHand youth lab-based programs. This position will be responsible for organizing, facilitating and leading 4-6 programs a week for middle school & high school Philadelphia youth that will run between the hours of 9 – 5, or during normal business hours with occasional exceptions. Most programming will take place in the FirstHand lab with occasional virtual programming as requested by schools.

This is a hands-on program lead position, requiring the capacities to inspire and manage youth, coordinate program delivery schedules, deliver several weekly STEM programs, and maintain relationships with partners. The Program Facilitator should be comfortable in workshop and lab environments, leading from virtual platforms and engaging with students of diverse backgrounds and learning styles.

The Program Facilitator-FirstHand will represent the Science Center in the community – including but not limited to schools, camps, teachers, and community groups. Additionally, the facilitator will be working closely with start-up and resident STEM companies in the Science Center ecosystem. This position works closely with the Director and Program Manager to develop and maintain partnerships that advance the Science Center’s role in youth education and programming.

The Program Facilitator-FirstHand has internal contacts with the entire administrative staff of UCSC and external contact with scientists, designers, technologists, entrepreneurs and the wider Philadelphia community. This position has access to sensitive UCSC information and is expected to handle such information with integrity and professionalism. This position has regular contact with members of the community and is expected to represent the UCSC in a professional manner. This position is a grant-funded position and is currently funded through December 2026.

The Program Facilitator will report directly to the Program Manager, FirstHand and participate in department activities as necessary.

Key responsibilities of this role include:

  • Works with the FirstHand Program Manager on planning, coordination, and management of approximately 4-6 multi-week youth programs, to include managing attendance, coordinating with teachers and administration, documenting internal curriculum and other related duties.
  • Implement UCSC engagement in youth out-of-school time education, community outreach and support teacher pd activities.
  • Serve as point of contact for chaperones and leaders from local youth-serving organizations, including schools and community centers
  • Works with the Program Manager on recruiting and maintaining relationships with on-campus mentors from the startup and entrepreneurial community in Philadelphia.
  • Works with Program Managers and Coordinators to refine and develop industry-relevant STEM curriculum.
  • Participate in reporting and evaluation activities to include scheduled site visits with funders, development of accurate project and program budgets, and ensuring appropriate grant compliance.
  • Keep up with and apply emergent trends in education, design, STEM, social practice, and technology through a variety of sources to include reading various blogs, magazines, periodicals, books, and by attending conferences, exhibitions, and symposiums as necessary.
  • Collaborate with the UCSC development and marketing teams to promote FirstHand through developing relationships with potential youth-serving partners, community members, and UCSC campus residents, via social media and network pages, and in person by attending events, exhibitions, and other related networking opportunities.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Ability to confidently manage middle and high school classrooms in-person and virtually with agility and attention to student needs.
  • Passionate about hands-on STEM learning and a general interest in gaining more knowledge in STEM subjects and topics related to FirstHand curricular content.
  • Technologically savvy with knowledge of social media tools, and mastery of virtual classroom environments like Zoom, Google Meet and Microsoft Teams.
  • Technologically savvy with knowledge of social media tools, with ability to operate a computer and use/quickly learn a variety of common software programs including Microsoft Office, Adobe CS, and customized databases.
  • In-depth knowledge and experience leading youth programs. Experience with culturally relevant pedagogy and project-based learning is a plus.
  • Ability to de-escalate student conflicts and bullying.
  • Skill to operate a variety of lab equipment/ technology, electronics, and audio/visual systems effectively and safely.
  • Demonstrates ability to work with other people through a cooperative effort. Thrives on a small team that collaborates regularly.
  • Demonstrates ability to execute daily and special project goals by carefully setting priorities, meeting deadlines, delegating appropriately, and scheduling time efficiently.
  • Ability to demonstrate self-initiative and work effectively independently.
  • Ability to communicate effectively, verbally and in writing, about arts, science and technology initiatives with the Science Center management team, SC staff, and a wide variety of external stakeholders.
  • Ability to organize multiple tasks in an efficient manner and follow-up and follow-through with strong attention to detail.
  • 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.
  • Adheres to all UCSC and departmental policies and procedures.

Embodies and Models Science Center Values: 

  • Unity: Promotes one Science Center, united and guided by our mission. 
  • Open Communication: Practices open communication by encouraging a diversity of ideas and recognizing the value of sharing opinions and experiences in our work.  
  • Integrity: Creates an environment of trust and integrity. Honest and ethical in everything.  
  • Impact: Works to make a meaningful and measurable difference in the lives of others.  
  • Equity & Inclusion: Fosters an environment that embraces the strength in the diversity of our team and our community.   
  • Innovation in Action: Committed to continuous learning and open to new ideas that drive positive change.  

The successful candidate will have 2-3 years of experience working in direct service/education of middle school-aged youth, ideally in an Out-of-School Time environment. Experience in Informal Science and STEM education program development and teaching experience is preferred. Experience working in Philadelphia middle schools is a plus. Fluency in Spanish is also a plus. BA/BD/BS degree from an accredited college or university in Education or STEM field or other related field of study.

Candidate must be fully vaccinated by date of hire.

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

About the Science Center

The University City Science Center is Philadelphia’s premier catalyst of entrepreneurial activity, healthcare innovation, and economic growth. Established in 1963, the nonprofit has been recognized by The Brookings Institution as a best-in-class investor, mentor, and economic development partner for young technology companies. Working alongside industry partners and leading research and academic institutions across the globe, the Science Center has supported over 1,000 early-stage companies. Today, the organization advances healthcare innovation from idea to the marketplace through startup support services, allocating capital, gathering the innovation community, and building inclusive STEM pathways for Philadelphia youth and adults. For more information visit or follow us at @UCScienceCenter.