Alaska Humanities Forum
Equity and Justice Fellow
Do you believe in the power of the conversation to enhance our lives and communities? Do you believe that the way conversations are designed, hosted, and facilitated impacts the future of Alaska?
The Alaska Humanities Forum’s Equity and Justice Fellowship is designed for someone who is a self-motivated individual with a curious mind and wide-ranging interests, excellent written and oral communication skills, an outgoing and amiable personality, the ability to work independently, and experience juggling multiple large-scale projects simultaneously.
The fellow will be responsible for supporting the Forum’s work by:
Building and implementing a praxis for community conversations that works to bridge distance and difference across the state.
Applying the frameworks of decolonization, anti-racism, and feminism to community conversations.
Building strategic partnerships to ensure the power and sustainability of this work.
More than directly applicable experience, we’re looking for someone who is excited by this opportunity and ready to learn.
The Alaska Fellows Program
This position is part of the Alaska Fellows Program. All fellows live together, “in community,” in their respective host site. Each host site is unique and remarkable.
Fellows receive housing, a monthly living stipend and a $500 relocation stipend. The fellowship includes facilitated and funded opening and closing retreats.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. If you are applying to a position in Juneau, please note that the program will last seven months (October-April) while other programs will run nine months (September-May).
For other questions about the application process, email email@example.com.
The Alaska Humanities Forum
The Alaska Humanities Forum (the Forum) is dedicated to connecting Alaskans and strengthening communities across the state. Using the humanities – literature and storytelling, history, art, music, philosophy, our shared cultural heritage – we create the space for Alaskans to share their stories, ideas, and perspectives so that they may better understand themselves, one another, and the human experience. Since 1974, the Forum has represented and served Alaska as one of 56 state and territorial councils supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and as a member of the Federation of State Humanities Councils.
The Forum’s work falls into three main categories:
We utilize cultural immersion, reflective learning, and place-based exploration to better prepare and connect educators and youth in rural and urban communities across Alaska.
Our leadership programs build capacity across industries and sectors to grow a statewide network of thoughtful, engaged, ethical, and courageous leaders for Alaska.
The Forum leads, hosts, and funds public events, programs, and community discussions. We empower Alaskans as co-creators in our state’s history, narrative, and future.
The Conversation Programs include both Forum-supported projects and Forum-conducted programs that help to build a culturally diverse, economically vibrant, and equitable Alaska where people are engaged, informed, and connected. Our constantly-evolving portfolio is responsive to community needs and funding opportunities. As a result, the team is dynamic and flexible, an incubator for experimentation and innovation.
We believe that meaningful connections are most easily forged face-to-face, and we intentionally invest in gathering and convening in-person whenever possible. We also believe that thoughtfully designed virtual gatherings can deepen and extend in-person programming, and COVID-19 has pushed us to develop our capacity to design and deliver rich online experiences.
We use shared experiences such as readings, film screenings, music, exhibits, stories, and guided walks to create common ground for connection across different values, beliefs, cultures, perspectives, and backgrounds.
We recruit participants with diverse perspectives and diverse experiences, which requires us to reach actively and persistently beyond our existing networks.
Forum-supported programs include:
Community Conversations, such as
Continuous: A Community Conversation on Culture and Gender
Who is In Your Family? A Community Conversation on Kinship and Legacy
The People’s State of the Union
Language Barriers, Language Bridges: A Community Conversation about Language and Identity
What Are the Limits of Our Responsibility? A Community Conversation on Homelessness
Magnetic North film-series
This Role if For Someone Who:
Thinks critically about the future of Alaska and what a more connected community would look and feel like
Is skilled in identifying and articulating various worldviews
Is able to apply the frameworks of decolonization, anti-racism, and feminism to community building
Enjoys engaging in robust conversations about race, culture, gender, and sexuality
Program Design and Creation of New Materials
Support Forum staff and partners in designing courageous conversations that are culturally responsive and connect across differences.
Support in identifying the role Forum programming plays in building a better Alaska and designing a praxis for the Conversation Programs team that supports that vision.
Regularly collect and interpret program feedback (including but not limited to participant surveys) and incorporate into program design.
Modify and revisit previously designed materials based on feedback from partners and participants.
Work with partner organizations to co-facilitate workshops and Community Conversations.
Actively manage group dynamic, pulling participants back to the discussion’s intention and ensuring a balance between participants who tend to be more outspoken and those who tend to be quieter and more reserved.
* Note: The fellow will receive facilitation training and development from the Forum. The fellow should have a strong interest in facilitating difficult dialogues, but need not have pre-existing experience.
Relationship Management and Network Development
Identify key partner organizations in communities outside of the Anchorage area, and work with them to plan and implement conversation programming.
Cultivate relationships with artists, writers and other creative content creators around the state and investigate ways to incorporate their work into conversation programming.
Identify, prioritize, and attend events to build and reinforce key relationships.
Staff Mentorship and Support
Support Forum staff in elucidating and giving voice to different world views that exist in our agency.
Coach individuals in navigating power dynamics within and across the agency.
Deepen and complicate conversations about racial equity in staff meetings and team meetings
Qualifications and Experience
You have a bachelor’s degree, preferably in a humanities or liberal arts field, though other academic backgrounds are acceptable if you can demonstrate a strong personal interest in the humanities. Additionally, a demonstrated interest in working with audiences and participants of widely varied social and educational backgrounds is highly desirable.
Experience with Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel are required; competence with Microsoft’s mail merge function and Excel formulas would be useful but can be trained. Experience with Tableau, DonorPerfect, Canva, Wix, Facebook for Business, and/or Instagram are also useful, but not necessary.
This is an uncommon role that will require a lot of learning, so you should not worry if you lack directly transferable experience for the “essential position functions” (see above). That said, you should be prepared to make tangible contributions to the team from your first day (even while learning) and be hungry to tackle increasing levels of responsibility quickly.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
Ability to thrive in a fast-paced, low-structure environment.
Strong listening and inquiry skills.
Talent for recognizing unexpected connections, subtle opportunities, and novel solutions.
Resourcefulness and creativity.
Capacity to work independently.
Willingness to take risks, try new things, and explore uncharted territory.
Awareness and understanding of cultures, both traditional and contemporary.
Conditions of Employment
The Equity & Justice Fellow is a temporary, exempt, full-time position based in Anchorage with a regular work schedule of 40 hours per week. The position will involve staffing Forum-hosted events an average of 2-3 evenings per month. Occasional weekend (1-2 days/month) hours will also be expected for events, conferences, and workshops, and flex days will be offered in return.
Normal hours are 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., with 1/2 hour for lunch.
The Alaska Humanities Forum is an equal opportunity employer. We will not discriminate and will take affirmative action measures to ensure against discrimination in employment, recruitment, advertisements for employment, compensation, termination, upgrading, promotions, and other conditions of employment against any employee or job applicant on the bases of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
Please send a resume and cover letter to Megan Cacciola, firstname.lastname@example.org and Taylor Strelevitz, email@example.com.
When submitting your applications, please also copy firstname.lastname@example.org.