Help Wanted: Regents Seek GEAR UP Regional Coordinators

Want to make some GEAR UP money? The Board of Regents is hiring six regional coordinators. Here’s the listing for Dakota State University:

Dakota State University seeks applicants for a Regional Coordinator position with South Dakota GEAR UP. This position will be an employees of Dakota State University out of Madison, SD but will physically be located in Pierre, SD. Travel will be required, including some overnight.

Responsibilities include:

  • Facilitate the communication between schools and the Gear Up project.
  • Provide training and support for the School-Based Coordinators.
  • Collect and organize project participation data from each of the schools in their region.
  • Distribute the student planners to students at each school site.
  • Submit a monthly activity and event report to the Statewide Coordinators.
  • Submit regional data quarterly to the Statewide Coordinators.
  • Visit each school in your region weekly.
  • Facilitate a Gear Up specific event or activity twice a month in each of your region’s schools, including academic, college and career planning sessions.
  • Attend a weekly telephonic meeting with the Statewide Coordinators.
  • Work with the Statewide Coordinators to plan and carry out summer events in your region.
  • Assist in identifying students to attend the Summer Leadership Camp.
  • Work with the regional universities to host college visits to your schools, financial aid workshops and visits by students to universities.
  • Work with the regional universities to provide ACT preparation and completion of the test.
  • Work with the regional universities to explore dual credit opportunities for the students in the districts that you serve.

There will be six open positions, one at each of the six South Dakota Board of Regents institutions. These positions will coordinate with and submit reports to both Statewide Coordinator of Academic Year Programs and Statewide Coordinator of Summer Programs. The position is grant funded. Continued employment is contingent on performance and availability of funding.

Minimum Qualifications:

A Bachelor’s Degree in Education, Psychology, Social Science, Counseling or closely related field and experience working with students with diversified backgrounds is preferred. Candidate must demonstrate a working knowledge of high school graduation requirements, college admission and financial aid, and scholarship resources. Other desired skills and abilities include knowledge of Native American and rural students, and the ability to relate to secondary and postsecondary students and their communities.

Strong cross-cultural interpersonal and writing skills are necessary, including public speaking skills and the ability to present GEAR UP in a positive way to diverse populations [South Dakota Board of Regents, job posting, downloaded 2016.04.19].

Pay will be between $35K and $45K, depending on qualifications. The Regents will also be looking for 28 part-time school-based coordinators, who will get about $30K a pop. The Regents have budgeted $1.48 million for GEAR UP salaries and benefits, a bit more than half of the $2.83 million they’ve budgeted for the program.


11 Responses to Help Wanted: Regents Seek GEAR UP Regional Coordinators

  1. Matt Rankin

    My old next door neighbor in Spearfish, who works at BHSU, has done some GEAR UP hiring already; I’ve contacted her a couple of times about it, and she is really standoffish about the whole thing as she has been apparently fielding a lot of negative calls already.

    I asked for names, contact info, and website information for these people that are already working for GEAR UP, information that she would not provide, stating “We need to protect our employees.” She also stated that she reads this blog “Every morning.” I think it is a fair assessment that she has been dealt a shitty task by her preexisting job, and the rearrangements made by the State.

    She was really hostile when I said arrangements could be made on Pine Ridge so that GEAR UP employees couldn’t be on the reservation without escort, as an official function of Tribal Governance. She thinks EVERYTHING IS TOTALLY OK NOW that the Regents are in charge. Holy Cow.

    I think the main reason she is pissy is I’m a white male, and she’s “kinda got some indian in there”, like so many that haunt (milk) native academia in the west. I speak Lakota, she does not. Let’s have a blood quantum argument on top of GEAR UP tension. I’m totally sure while I’m getting to know the kids on the rez that will never hear of GEAR UP, she will be living a very comfortable life in Spearfish.

  2. The corruption continues. No money to help kids, but lots go into the pockets of more cronies.

  3. Nick Nemec

    Good grief the majority of money goes to salaries and benefits. This program will do damn little helping Native kids be successful in college.

  4. mike from iowa

    I don’t see a single penny budgeted for independent OVERSIGHT! Or any oversight for that matter.

    Any idea how much they plan to spend per student? Or will it be first come,best served?

  5. Steve Sibson

    What a huge waste of money. Social engineering is very expensive, but is necessary for those who want control.

  6. Jackie Jessop Rising

    Sadly, because the grant was not managed before, in an effort to make sure the program is working and that the people involved are working, it ends up costing more money. Had it been done this way from the beginning, the problems would have never existed.

  7. Huh, I thought SDBOR hadn’t moved on this yet, given the December proposal was a rough-ish proposal listed for ‘information purposes only’. I wonder where I missed its approval in the Board agendas… Oh well. Is there any information known at this time on whether the annual summer program (which was part of the December proposal) is green-lit for this year at SDSMT?

  8. The payroll for Regional Coordinators falls between $210,000 and $270,000 plus an additional $840,000 for part-time school-based coordinators. A conservative estimate puts it at $1,100,000 annually plus administrative salaries which can be quite extensive given GEAR UP’s history. So how much money will be available for scholarships?

  9. Ed Campbell

    Kelo tonight had an interesting comparison of SD’s implementation of Gear Up as compared to Iowa. Iowa’s approach appears to be much less of a boondoggle.

  10. Matt, I understand your neighbor’s desire to protect employees, but there’s no way the state can conceal the identity of state employees. Names and salaries are all on the state’s online payroll database. We should have a full accounting of all Regental employees who work for GEAR UP… and every GEAR UP employee should be a Regental hire, not someone hidden away in some private, unaccountable, corporate subcontractor