Vice President of Education and Engagement
Job Details
National Building Museum - Main Office - Washington, DC
Full Time
Up to 25%

Organization Summary


The National Building Museum inspires curiosity about the world we design and build.


We are a private, nonprofit institution, created by Congress in 1980 to commemorate American achievements in architecture, design, and engineering and to encourage excellence in the building arts. Today, the National Building Museum transforms understanding of the history and impact of architecture, engineering, landscape architecture, and design. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and special events, we welcome all ages to experience stories about the built world and its power to shape our lives, communities, and futures.


Our Commitment


At the Museum, we pursue diversity and endeavor to create an inclusive and accessible environment for our staff, visitors, stakeholders, and Board members. We value diverse perspectives and believe the power of diversity enriches us all. Creating an inclusive environment is critical to every individual’s work. We are an equal opportunity employer, and we encourage candidates from historically underrepresented groups to apply.


Position Description


The National Building Museum seeks an experienced, enthusiastic, and process-minded Vice President of Education and Engagement (VPEE) to rebuild and oversee its Education and Visitor Services Departments. Reporting directly to the President & Executive Director, the VPEE is part of the Executive Leadership Team, represents the department at Board and high-level meetings, provides direction for staff all while developing strategies for educational offerings, community engagement, on-site activations, and efficient operations aligned with and in support of the Museum’s strategic priorities.


The VPEE joins the Museum at an exciting time as it reopens from a 16-month closure, under new leadership and with new opportunities to support and grow the diversity and reach of highly impactful programs and exhibits both online and onsite. The VPEE will lead the design and development of creative engagement and learning opportunities with programs for all ages across various platforms that leverage the assets of the Museum; create visibility for the Museum as a national “thought leader”; incorporate instructional best practices to achieve learning outcomes; drive attendance; strengthen visitor experiences, and deepen community connections. The VPEE will work collaboratively with Marketing, Development, Special Events, and Operations Departments and acts as a strategic partner to the VP of Exhibitions, offering content and engagement strategies to make exhibitions more accessible and impactful for more audiences. 


The VPEE will embody the values of the Museum and act as a leader in building an inclusive and equitable environment for colleagues, clients, and visitors.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities


  • Leads the development and execution of annual goals, objectives, operating plans, and priorities for Education and Engagement, comprised of Education, Public Programs, and Visitor Services.
  • Creates and implements strategies and executes programs that ensure an outstanding experience for the Museum’s entire visitorship.
  • Cultivates and manages external partners to strengthen education programs and create unique, visitor experiences.
  • Works collaboratively with department heads to assess and leverage signature programs and events for maximum visitor impact.
  • Works within institutional priorities, budget, and programmatic peaks to build a multi-year staffing and growth plan for the department. Hires manages and supports direct reports.
  • Brings an education and visitor-centered lens to exhibition development, supporting the process as a contributing team member and a strategic partner to the VP of Exhibitions and curatorial team.
  • Works with the Visitor Services Manager to ensure that all VS staff maintain excellent customer services standards and receive appropriate training. Works with COO and technology staff to ensure staffing and training for program support.
  • Cultivates a culture of ambassadorship across the organization and with all front-facing staff.
  • Employs and holds team accountable to high standards for program design and evaluation; supports team to collect and use visitor data effectively to engage and develop audiences and to guide decisions and works across the organization to ensure all staff and Museum functions incorporate goals and evaluation in design and data analysis to guide decisions.
  • Brings strategy to volunteer program management and group tour program development.
  • Develops and maintains Department budgets and applies strategic thinking and analysis to ensure sustainability and growth.
  • Works with the Development team to cultivate Museum members and identify and apply for funding opportunities.
  • Brings leadership and passion to the Museum’s new IDEAS (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Access, and Strategy) Committee.
  • Supports the COO in advising on building-wide operational efficiencies and logistics with visitor impact.




  • Bachelor’s degree in education, museum studies, architecture, urban planning or related field; advanced degree preferred.
  • 8-10+ years of educational or programmatic leadership experience in a senior role; direct experience in exhibition-driven education initiatives.
  • Robust knowledge of best practices in program design, evaluation, and curriculum development preferred.
  • Awareness of the impact of remote learning on educational priorities and educator needs.
  • Demonstrated experience building community engagement.
  • Demonstrated experience working with diverse audiences including experience developing accessible programming for audiences with different learning styles and abilities.
  • Experience leading and managing teams with a high standard of excellence and accountability.
  • A gifted communicator and collaborator, able to bring out the best in colleagues and infuse energy into creative initiatives.
  • Passion for architecture, design, and/or social history preferred.
  • A love for learning and a sense of humor.


To Apply

Please visit our website at to view all of our current job openings and apply. A resume and cover letter are required for consideration.