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Solution Architect

at The College Board | Reston Office (Reston, VA) | View all jobs

The College Board is conducting a search for a Solution Architect for our IT department. This position is based in our Reston, Virginia office.

About the College Board

We are a mission-focused organization that believes that investing in education is investing in the future. From our earliest days, we have devoted ourselves to educational opportunity and achievement. We have promoted innovation, equity, and excellence for generations of students. We are advocates for children and parents; we empower teachers and educators, and we are a strong presence in thousands of schools and communities across the country through programs and services - the SAT, Advanced Placement (AP®) and Pre-AP are just a few. Our work falls broadly into four categories: College Readiness, College Connection & Success, Student Opportunities, and Advocacy.

Named by Fast Company as one of the most innovative education companies, the College Board is a mission-focused organization. This job requires a strong focus on improving educational opportunities and outcomes, particularly for disadvantaged students, in the context of a competitive business environment.

About the role

The Data and Technology Architecture group of the College Board seeks a Solution Architect to work within the Access IT team. In this data explosion age, processing, analysis, and management of data are the core activities of almost all businesses.  College Board is looking for an experienced technologist with technical depth and strong interpersonal skills who is passionate about working with customers to help build applications at scale. This includes enabling innovation through continuous deployment in DevOps and building web & mobile scale-out applications. The Solution Architect is accountable for the comprehensive high-level design, functionality, economics, and architectural compliance of solution options for a variety of initiatives within Access IT.  They are responsible for delivering EA-compliant solution architectures that meet the business’ features prioritized for delivery. The Solution Architect will identify core and important features for Program and Business and realize them with state-of-art technologies. This individual will apply proven communication, analytical and problem-solving skills to help identify, communicate and solve systems problems.  In addition, the Solution Architect provides consultative technical leadership across the organization, from strategic decision making down to the project planning level. 

What you’ll do

  • Architect and deliver optimal solutions that are aligned with an EA perspective.
  • Create synergies and reuse within and across projects.
  • Establish Access IT team architectural standards and strategies as the norm.
  • Partner with domain SMEs (Business, UX, and Operations) to Analyze features through our Intake and Prioritization process. Analysis will include:
    • Conferring with stakeholders to define business requirements for complex systems development – from both functional and non-functional perspectives (i.e. concept of operations, performance, test, cost, schedule, training, support and disposal).
    • Collaborating with other architects –data architects, technical architects, business architects, domain architects, or enterprise architects -- and marry their various requirements into one solution.
    • Modeling business and systems processes based on findings through use case scenarios, workflow diagrams, and data models.
    • Evaluating alternative architectures with respect to their composition, e.g. people, hardware, software, facilities, policies, documents, risks and cost.
  • Create systems models, data models, specifications, diagrams and charts to provide architectural expertise, direction, and assistance to project and development teams.
  • Validate the architecture’s compliance to the requirements and verifies the system’s compliance to the architecture.
  • Develop, document, and communicate plans for investing in systems architecture, including analysis of cost reduction opportunities.
  • Contribute to technology strategy and planning. Conduct research on emerging technologies in support of systems development efforts and recommend technologies that will increase cost effectiveness and systems flexibility. 
  • Participate in the architecture roadmap activities.
  • Review new and existing systems design projects and procurement or outsourcing plans for compliance with standards and architectural plans.
  • Develop, document, communicate, and enforce system standards as necessary.
  • Provide guidance to junior members of the team.

 About you

  • Education - Bachelor's degree in the field of computer science or systems engineering (Master’s degree preferred).
  • Professional training and/or certifications using Amazon Web Services, Oracle, , Linux, Java, and Microsoft tools and technologies desired.
  • 10+ years of general experience in systems design and integration
  • 5 years minimum across multiple disciplines (Requirements Engineering, Risk management, Technology planning, design, development, System Integration, or Quality Assurance).
  • Demonstrated professional competence in the principles and practices of technical architecture as they relate to:
  • Service Oriented Architecture
  • Identity and Access Management (IAM) (Oauth, SAML)
  • Familiarity with technologies and a demonstrated understanding of challenges posed by:
  • Cloud-scale applications and mobile platforms (IOS & Android)
    • Assessing the adequacy of technology controls and security measures
    • Maintaining effective policies and procedures as technology changes
  • Demonstrated experience with development platforms:
    • Cloud-based applications using AWS services
    • Java, J2EE, JavaScript (node.js), SQL, Tomcat, JBoss, WebLogic, Oracle, SQL Server, etc.
  • Demonstrated experience in leading and mentoring technical staff in the development and usage of technology architectures and solutions including migration to AWS Cloud (Lambda, EC2, DynamoDB, Etc.)
  • Demonstrated experience with systems engineering and administration (testing infrastructures, Linux/Unix administration, ansible for deployment etc.)
  • Experience in creating technical blueprint that can be leveraged by other IT groups, including the use of Serverless Architecture
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain good customer working relationships
  • Working knowledge of and experience with other enterprise domains (application, security, infrastructure data, etc.)

More about you

  • Extensive experience in developing strategic solution architecture plans.
  • Exceptional analytical, conceptual, and problem-solving abilities.
  • Superior written and oral communication skills; ability to present ideas in business-friendly and user-friendly language.
  • Excellent architecture and technical support documentation skills.
  • Proven experience in systems and network design and development.
  • Strong understanding of information processing principles and practices.
  • Experience architecting/operating solutions built on AWS
  • Technical knowledge of Cloud Computing, DevOps, and Micro services.
  • Strong knowledge of COTS evaluation principles and practices.
  • Ability to conduct research into emerging technologies and trends, standards, and products as required.
  • Able to prioritize and execute tasks in a high-pressure environment.
  • Experience working in a team-oriented, collaborative environment;
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Strong consultative skills
  • Highly self-motivated and directed, with keen attention to detail.
  • Strong leadership skills and customer service orientation.
  • Lifelong Learner – what is learned today will be obsolete tomorrow; demonstrated continuous learning
  • Willingness/ability to work off-shifts (evening, night-time, weekend) as needed



We offer an outstanding benefits package that includes up to four weeks of paid time off each year, comprehensive health insurance, a generous retirement savings plan, tuition reimbursement, ongoing professional development and training, and more. 


Our mission is to clear a path for all students to own their future.

EEOC statement

The College Board is committed to diversity in the workplace and is an Equal Opportunity Employer. The College Board participates in E-Verify, a service of DHS and SSA, where required. Please understand that only qualified applicants will be contacted.