Jacob Dolan has joined the Made in Durham partnership as an employer engagement associate focused on helping faculty and staff at three alternative schools expand career exploration and readiness training for students.
Dolan will work to engage more local employers in providing work-based learning opportunities for students at the three schools: Achievement Academy of Durham, Performance Learning Center at Durham Public Schools and Gateway to College at Durham Technical Community College.
He will design a strategy to help “opportunity youth,” those who have dropped out and returned to school or are still disconnected from education, understand their career options. He will help schools, students and employers implement work-based learning strategies that expose students to a variety of work opportunities and allow them to develop employability skills.
Dolan will prepare and support supervisors at worksites that host students as well as the youth who engage in work-based learning. He will also develop resources that help students access quality, appropriately targeted employment training.
Dolan brings a background in business and education to this role. He worked as a Durham Public Schools middle school teacher for three years, then spent the past 11 years in various management roles in business, leading the hiring and training of new employees and supervising managers and employee service and operation teams.
As a manager at REI, Dolan focused on improving customer service by developing and piloting hiring programs, training programs and the rollout of new technologies and new processes for teams at local and regional levels. He loves developing talented employees and served as the informal or formal mentor for numerous employees and managers.
Also during this time, Dolan deepened his engagement with nonprofits through partnerships and volunteer roles. He earn a certificate in nonprofit management at Duke University and recently completed a three-year term on the national board of trustees of East Coast Greenway Alliance (ECGA), serving as vice chair in his last year. As vice chair, he co-led a year-long strategic planning team with key stakeholders and partners to explore the direction necessary to achieve ECGA’s 2020 vision.
Dolan holds a bachelor’s degree in English from University of Virginia and a master’s degree in teaching from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.