Thames River Innovation Places or TRIP is a Groton-New London collaboration that recently received $900,000 from the state of Connecticut after achieving Innovation Places designation. This funding serves to stimulate entrepreneurship and economic growth in the region. Five (5) diverse TRIP projects aim to do just that. They are Cultivator Kitchen, Community Concierge, Redevelopment Placemaking, Ignite, and Undersea Technology Consortium.

Ignite is a collaboration between the CURE Innovation Commons and Spark Makerspace designed to ignite new ideas, businesses, and innovative growth in the Thames River region by producing events, sponsoring education, and connecting entrepreneurs into the business development support system.

The Ignite Program seeks a high energy individual with excellent written and verbal communication skills, knowledge of social media and marketing, experience coordinating events, especially those involving a diverse demographic of participants. The ideal candidate has a background in entrepreneurship, science, technology and/or education.

The Program Manager will work closely with the Ignite team to develop, coordinate, promote, and deliver highly successful Ignite events for the community. The subject matter will be wide-ranging but all geared to attract community volunteers and entrepreneurs alike, grow connectivity, start businesses, and help existing businesses to grow. These events will be diverse—ranging from purely educational, such as how to code to the science of the microbiome, from Hackathons to Boosts.

The Ignite team’s success will be measured quantitatively. The Program Manager is expected to ensure Ignite appropriately tracks and reports on milestones and metrics. Among the metrics are: the number of new volunteers and entrepreneurs engaged, the diversity of participants, upticks in social media impressions and number of teams coalesced to potentially start new businesses.

Job responsibilities:

  • Oversee Ignite marketing and branding, including website development and social media outreach
  • Manage event planning, budgeting, oversight, execution, and follow up
  • Develop and oversee event follow up routine to get additional metrics regarding effectiveness and impact of programming
  • Data tracking and reporting against milestones and metrics
  • Recruit and manage volunteers to support event production and promotion
  • Solicit and secure event sponsorship
  • Support Ignite grant writing efforts
  • Work with Ignite team to set meeting agendas, take meeting minutes, and share appropriately
  • Work closely with the TRIP Director to ensure Ignite activities are synergistic with TRIP activities

Desired Skills:

  • Strong leadership skills and ability to work with others with a professional demeanor.
  • Ability to work with a diverse population of community leaders, volunteers, and members.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • Ability to multi-task with a strong sense of time management.
  • Must be self-directed with high level of energy.
  • Strong listening skills.
  • Knowledge of finance and budgeting.
  • Must be creative with the ability to initiate projects and follow-through to completion.
  • Strong computer skills, including google drive and social media platforms.
  • Must be flexible and able to work evenings and weekends as needed.

Preferred Experience:

  • Experience with marketing, social media, and press communication.
  • Experience with event development, management and production.
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience.


Salary range of $55,000 – $75,000 per year as a full time Independent Contract Position.

Please send resume and cover letter to by September 1st.

This project was made possible by the support of CTNext.