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AHEPPP is happy to post job openings, free of charge, for member institutions. Positions will be posted on the website, posted in our members-only Facebook group and will emailed out to the AHEPPP membership. Please email [email protected]. Positions will be posted for 60 days unless otherwise noted or requested.

UMass Amherst | Director of New Student Orientation and Transitions

Institution: UMass Amherst
Job Title: Director of New Student Orientation and Transitions
Full Posting: click here

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.

Job Summary

The Director of New Student Orientation and Transitions manages all facets of a comprehensive orientation and transition experience for all entering undergraduate students (7000-8000/yr). In close collaboration with Admissions, undergraduate schools and colleges, Student Affairs & Campus Life, and numerous campus entities, this position has lead decision-making responsibility for all planning, organization, administration, operations & programs designed to support a seamless, successful transition to the University.

Essential Functions

  • Provides overall strategic vision, including identifying, setting and assessing short- and long-term goals that align New Student Orientation and Transitions with established professional standards, divisional and institutional strategic plans.
  • Leads or oversees recruitment, hiring, training, supervision and evaluation of all professional, classified, temporary, and student staff.
  • Develops, manages and administers departmental office annual budget, in excess of $1.8 million.
  • Plans, organizes, coordinates, manages and evaluates all orientation programs for all new first-year and transfer students each semester (7000-8000 students per year), including promotions, registration, facilities, staffing, scheduling, programming, and other logistics; coordinates activities with appropriate campus academic, student support, and administration/finance units.
  • Plans, develops, coordinates, executes and evaluates transition programs for all new first-year and transfer students each semester, beginning after orientation and extending through students' first semester.
  • Direct the content, development, implementation, management and assessment of Online Orientation courses and platforms serving all new students, including customized content for unique populations of students (e.g., transfers, international, first-generation) and for each school/college, and management of required university compliance courses for all entering students.
  • Direct the development, growth, management and evaluation of extensive social media and digital communications activities in support of new student success.
  • Other duties as required.

Other Functions

  • Performs related duties, as assigned or required, to meet Department, Executive Area/Division, and University goals and objectives
  • Understands responsibilities with respect to Title IX, Clery, and other compliance requirements
  • Demonstrates capacity, skill and willingness to engage students, and contribute to student success
  • Works collaboratively with other campus stakeholders to fulfill the mission of Student Affairs and Campus Life
  • Understands responsibilities, with respect to conflicts of interest, and behaves in ways consistent both with law and with University policy
  • Contributes toward creating a positive and respectful workplace, defined by personal and professional competence, integrity, and collaboration
  • Understands and contributes to the implementation of departmental and institutional goals for achieving non-discrimination and creating a respectful, inclusive environment that is supportive of diversity
  • Uses access to sensitive and/or not yet public University related information only in the performance of responsibilities of position and exercises care to prevent unnecessary disclosure to others

Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Master’s degree in higher education, student affairs, counseling education, or closely-related discipline
  • Five years of professional experience in appropriate levels and areas of specialization, specifically developing, managing and/or leading new student orientation programs in a university setting, or comparable experience; and including two or more years of supervisory experience.
  • Demonstrated understanding of and commitment to the undergraduate student experience at a major research university.
  • Excellent organizational, analytical, communication (e.g., oral, written, presentation), interpersonal, and customer service skills, including the ability to relate to students, parents and families from diverse backgrounds.
  • Experience with administrative duties such as budgeting, strategic planning, and/or assessment of learning.
  • Ability to establish priorities, manage multiple demands and projects, and meet deadlines in a fast-paced and complex environment.
  • Ability to work collaboratively as a member of cross-functional teams.
  • Demonstrated fluency with Office software (Excel, Word, Outlook, Powerpoint).

Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Knowledge of college student development theory, research & practice related to orientation, student transitions, learning and/or success.
  • Experience managing large events.
  • Experience using technology to further the mission of the department.
  • Experience with developing and delivering online orientation, distance education orientation programs, and/or orientation mobile app technology.
  • Previous experience with a student records database system.

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

  • Typical office environment.
  • Ability to drive as needed.
  • Ability to lift up to 30 pounds without restrictions.

Additional Details

  • Supervision Received: Reports directly to the Dean of Students
  • Supervision Exercised: Directly Supervises the following:
    • Assistant Director,
    • the New Student Transitions Coordinator,
    • Summer Program Staff including 2 Residence Directors, 2 Graduate Interns.
  • Indirectly Responsible for:
    • 70 plus summer Student Orientation Leaders,
    • 6 student office staff,
    • plus 20-75 student staff for programs throughout the academic year (e.g., fall orientation, transition programming, winter orientation)

Work Schedule

Monday – Friday; 8:30am-5:00pm; Position requires evening/weekend hours during Orientation Periods and other Campus Events as needed.

Salary Information

Professional Staff Salary Administration Program Position Level: 29

Salary Chart

Special Instructions to Applicants

In order to ensure consideration, please submit a cover letter, resume, and contact information for 3 professional references prior to the priority deadline of February 1, 2021. The position may remain open until filled. 

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.