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Alumni Relations and Events Manager

Sotheby's Institute of Art - London

Reports to: Director/CEO

Sotheby’s Institute of Art seeks to appoint a key individual to play a leading role in shaping the full potential of the Institute’s alumni network and, in doing so, to have a deep impact on the future of the Institute.  This new position will report to the Director/CEO, and will work in collaboration with a counterpart in the New York Sotheby’s Institute.

Job Summary – overall purpose of the job:

This role will be responsible for strategically increasing engagement with the Institute’s 6000 alumni, through on- and off-site events designed to further develop the Sotheby’s Institute of Art community and global network of art world professionals.  The focus will be on building relationships primarily with London alumni as well as participating in the broader global strategy.  By working closely with the Admissions team, Career Services, and Institute staff and faculty, the appointee will be instrumental in championing the career success stories of alumni, and in helping to connect both Sotheby’s Institute of Art alumni and our current MA students with art world internships and jobs.

The post holder will also be the principal point-person for the planning and delivery of key events, such as our involvement with other stakeholders in the annual Bedford Square Festival, and most notably our 50th Anniversary Celebrations.  These seek to promote and raise the profile of Sotheby’s Institute of Art to its stakeholders and wider community.  The individual will work closely with their New York counterpart and the Senior Director for Admissions in the executing of these events, ensuring that all campuses – London, New York and Los Angeles – feel part of the year-long celebrations.

Key Job Deliverables / Responsibilities – principal activities undertaken by job holder:

Alumni Relations:

  • Build, maintain and manage international network of Sotheby’s Institute of Art alumni via databases, communication tools, and special events.
  • Working together with the Alumni Relations Manager in New York, help shape and implement a comprehensive communications and outreach plan to involve alumni appropriately in devising and supporting opportunities and events for alumni, current students and prospects.
  • Increase alumni engagement and exposure by collaborating with marketing and career services.
  • Manage all social media outlets including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and assume ownership of all alumni components for the Institute’s networking platform.
  • Track and ensure alumni contact and employment data is up to date by providing continual outreach through multiple channels to build long term relationships.
  • Work closely with Sotheby’s Institute of Art- London Career Services to ensure career opportunities are shared with alumni and students.


  • Under the supervision of the Executive Committee for the 50th Anniversary Celebrations, plan and deliver a series of events celebrating the Institute’s impressive history in Arts Education. These include but are not limited to receptions, speaker series and student recruitment related events.
  • Hold responsibility for budget planning and management, venue management and equipment and facilities management for specific events.
  • Provide onsite event supervision and coordination and work closely with University departments and outside vendors to ensure that the event runs smoothly.
  • Assist in the management of any emergency response or safety/security issues.
  • Solicit support from student event planners and staff volunteers.
  • Ensure the wider Sotheby’s Institute community is aware of and engaged in all events.


Experience and Skills


  1. At least 3 years’ experience of working in the public or private sectors (e.g. in a museum/gallery, university or college)
  2. Experience in planning and managing events
  3. Strong experience of working with alumni and/or students
  4. Ability to collaborate and maintain effective working relationships with faculty, staff, students, and external contacts
  5. Hands-on experience of managing, monitoring and reporting on budgets
  6. Proven communication skills, both written and verbal
  7. Experience with automated database systems, including a CRM (Salesforce, preferable) and Student Information System
  8. Entrepreneurial and self-directed work style with excellent organizational and administrative skills
  9. Strong organisational and planning skills and the ability to meet regular and tight deadlines
  10. Strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated problem solving abilities
  11. Ability to work evenings and weekends when necessary.


  1. An enthusiasm for the visual arts, art business and art education
  2. Knowledge of issues relating to Higher Education and Leisure Learning across the public and private sectors
  3. Some experience of fundraising would be an advantage.

Applicants will require the unrestricted right to work in the UK.

The Organisation – the job context

Sotheby’s Institute of Art - London is situated in Bedford Square, built between 1775 and 1783, one of the best preserved Georgian squares in London with a private central garden.  With around 70 staff and approximately 400 full and part-time students, the London Institute is part of the ‘larger academy’ of Bedford Square, located next door to premier educational institutions such as the Architectural Association and the Paul Mellon Centre, with the University of London and the British Museum in the neighbouring square.  Sotheby’s auction house, the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery and the Royal Academy of Arts are a few minutes’ walk away.  The Institute is also close to Mayfair, the traditional centre of the London art market, where many dealers and galleries are located.

Founded in 1969, Sotheby’s Institute of Art – London is among the world’s leading postgraduate level institutions offering Master’s degrees, Semester, Summer and Short Courses. Our Master’s programmes cover four principal subject areas: Art Business, Contemporary Art, Fine and Decorative Art and Design, and Modern and Contemporary Asian Art.  Within these subject areas students can take a wide range of tracks and concentrations, enabling them to create their own career pathway. For nearly 25 years we have been an affiliated institution of The University of Manchester, who validate our MA, Semester and Summer programmes in London.


To apply please send a CV and covering letter to, explaining concisely your suitability for the role.  Review of applications will begin immediately, with a closing date of Friday 5th October 2018.  Interviewing is expected to take place mid-October.

Location: London
Salary: £35,000 to £45,000 per annum, depending on experience
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Permanent
Placed On: 12th September 2018
Closes: 5th October 2018
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