Trusts & Foundations Associate

Wednesday, 15 Mar 2023

Founded in 1974, Deakin is a public university in Victoria with 61,000 students across five campuses: Melbourne Burwood, Geelong Waurn Ponds, Geelong Waterfront, Warrnambool, and the online Campus. We are a progressive and open-minded university, with the highest student satisfaction in Victoria and consistently ranked in the top 1% of the world’s universities.

The Trusts & Foundations Associate provides support to the Trusts & Foundations Manager and other colleagues across the Development portfolio in a number of areas, principally:

  1. Major gift fundraising
  2. Support for philanthropic scholarships, awards and prizes administration and process
  3. Other development activities as directed

Raise philanthropic gifts from philanthropic trusts and foundations, which will support projects, programs and people at Deakin University. With a portfolio of prospective donors, partner with professional and academic colleagues to seek philanthropic support that drives forward the University’s mission.

Leverage a strong collaborative approach across the University, faculties, centres, institutes and professional service units to maintain a high-quality stewardship process for active donors, working closely with the Donor Relations team in doing so.

Reporting directly to the Trusts & Foundations Manager, this position sits within the Development team in the University’s Advancement function, which comprises Advancement Operations, Alumni Engagement and Development.

Your key responsibilities will include:

  • Effectively managing a designated portfolio of major gift donors and prospective donors – focused primarily on those who are capable of making gifts between $15,000 and $100,000
  • Building new and productive relationships with a diverse range of professional and academic staff, stakeholders or key and influential individuals both inside and outside the University, to engage in developing effective and meaningful philanthropy with donors and prospective donors
  • Conducting and coordinating regular visits for the purposes of identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship of gifts
  • Investigating and probing for the facts, identifying relevant solutions and selecting the most appropriate from the range of alternatives
  • Ensuring accurate data of donor/prospective donor engagement is maintained through using the Deakin Advancement CRM – Deakin Blackbaud ARMS – in a timely and effective manner.
  • Using reporting and insights available through Deakin ARMS, and associated systems, to drive efficient and effective fundraising practice
  • Supporting senior fundraisers in advising on University-wide philanthropic strategy and processes
  • Displaying leadership in your field, through understanding and demonstrating best practice and emerging trends – and weaving this into your approach in engaging donors/prospective donors with Deakin
  • Striving for excellence and consult regularly with clients to clarify who requires the information, the purpose for which it is required, criteria for success and where and when advice and recommendation is required
  • Communicating with confidence using examples and the most appropriate influencing technique for a given situation to increase understanding and support
  • Challenging existing processes by formulating creative and inclusive alternative solutions and benefits, including liaising across University functions on scholarships, awards and prizes processes

To be successful, you’ll have:

  • A Degree with subsequent relevant experience; or
  • Extensive experience and specialist knowledge or broad knowledge in technical or administrative fields or
  • An equivalent combination of relevant experience and/or education/training.
  • A strong track record of successfully achieving stretch financial targets in complex environments – ideally in a philanthropic setting, and ideally at a 5-figure plus level.
  • Demonstrated experience in driving conversations with purpose to build and strengthen relationships towards a particular outcome.
  • Demonstrated experience using data and analysis through CRMs drives the most effective and efficient fundraising practice
  • Desirable: An understanding of the Australian philanthropic community

For a copy of the position description, please see Deakin Careers.

Applications for this position close on the 15th of March, 2023.

Successful applicants will need to comply with vaccination mandates imposed by the relevant state/territory government. Applicants who attend third-party sites to undertake University activities will also be required to comply with any other directions or requirements in place at the third-party location.


  • Infrequent work outside business hours is required (e.g., work at evening events)
  • Drivers Licence
  • Working with Children Check (refer to Recruitment Procedure)

Please submit your updated resume and a short cover letter outlining your skills and experience for this role.

For a confidential discussion regarding this position, please contact Vanessa Meachen (Trust and Foundations Manager) at [email protected]

Are You Ready?

Deakin is a Victorian university with a global impact. We are an agile, dynamic, and innovative university committed to making a positive impact through our excellence in education, research and innovation and the contributions we make to the wider community.

We understand that our reputation has been built on the dedication and expertise of our staff and we offer a dynamic and diverse working environment with opportunities to grow and develop careers. We believe that a progressive, thriving culture will ensure that people choose to come, and stay at Deakin and contribute to our ongoing success.We value diversity and aim to build an inclusive environment that champions, embraces and respects differences. We support and encourage applications from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and people of all abilities, cultures, sexual orientation, and genders.