Program Manager, Blackstone Bicycle Works

Blackstone Bicycle Works (BBW) is a youth education program of the Experimental Station (ES). BBW is a full-service bike shop dedicated to promoting ecological practices and empowering youth from Chicago’s South Side—teaching mechanical skills, job skills, and business literacy to youth ages 8-18.

The program manager should effectively and efficiently oversee and manage BBW’s youth program, including the business operations of the bicycle repair shop. In overseeing the day-to-day operations, the program manager should model excellent customer service and problem solving skills for staff and youth and work with ES and BBW staff to provide a supportive and safe environment. Additionally, the program manager should advance and inform short and long term program goals and be a strong representative and advocate for the organization and program.

The ideal candidate is passionate about…

  • Bicycle mechanics
  • Youth instruction and mentorship
  • Operating a small business
  • Bicycle advocacy

Responsibilities and Duties:

Provide strong leadership for and management of the overall program.

  • Maintain a safe and positive learning environment at BBW.
  • Coordinate and lead daily youth instruction. Further develop and refine curriculum and instruction methods.
  • Oversee youth's participation (intake, retention, parental communication) and their engagement with all areas of the program and business.
  • Oversee program data and other documentation (participation rosters, youth work logs, skill sheets, apron system, activity summaries, photo/video documentation).
  • Manage auxiliary youth services (internship and externship programs, homework/tutoring, college advising, field trips, races, career exploration, mentoring, snack and meal programs).
  • Manage program staffing by: developing individual staff and cultivating a strong staff team; leading weekly meetings with BBW staff; setting and tracking goals with the team; overseeing and approving staff schedules; managing and developing program volunteers.
  • Oversee business operations, including: monitoring inventory, quality control, and sales; tracking customer repairs and general bicycle assembly; maintaining high levels of customer service and satisfaction; supervising and developing bicycle mechanics.
  • Manage all program spaces, equipment and supplies.
  • Provide oversight for Youth Leadership Team, the program’s youth council.

Work closely with ES Assistant Director (AD) to support the broader growth and improvement of the program.

  • Develop program initiatives with AD and other staff to address needs and opportunities that arise.
  • In coordination with AD, oversee and implement program budget.
  • Coordinate program outreach by supporting partnership development and fundraising efforts, coordinating off-site bike sales, managing communication with parents, coordinating with the BBW Marketing and Communications Department, and developing and implementing adult education and external youth education classes.
  • Meet with AD weekly and communicate daily.
  • Assist AD as needed with management of BBW.


  • Education: College degree or equivalent work experience.
  • Experience: Minimum of 1 year of demonstrated success managing youth programs; additional youth program management experience preferred.
  • Skills and Abilities: Able to communicate and relate with a diversity of youth, adults, staff, and groups; work as part of a team; work independently; take initiative and solve problems; remain calm under pressure; repair and refurbish bicycles; organize and execute plans; and effectively use email, google apps, and social media.
  • Physical and Mental Demands: Must be physically and mentally able to perform essential functions, possessing sufficient physical strength and energies to effectively engage in activities with youth, and manage and maintain the program’s supplies, equipment, and facilities.

LOCATION: 6100 S. Blackstone Ave. Chicago, IL

COMPENSATION: Salaried at $37,000-$40,000 per year with benefits, commensurate with experience.

HOURS: Full-Time position; Tuesday-Saturday (may vary and include evenings)

IMMEDIATE SUPERVISOR: Assistant Director, Experimental Station

TO APPLY: Email your cover letter and resume to with your name and “BBW Program Manager Application” in the subject. The deadline to apply is October 31st, 2016. This is an at-will position scheduled to begin November 15th. 


Experimental Station provides equal employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics. In addition to federal law requirements, Experimental Station complies with applicable state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment.