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The College of Engineering has an outstanding opportunity for a Director of the STARS Program.
The Director of the STARS Program provides overall day-to-day management of the program. This is a team leadership role that is outcome-driven in maintaining retention initiatives that support students from economically and educationally disadvantaged backgrounds to receive BS degrees in Engineering and Computer Science.
This position manages and mentors a full-time staff of six. As part of a holistic model for student success, this position coordinates activities and provides resources for staff on how to work with, support, advise and retain STARS students. Reporting to the STARS Faculty Director, the STARS Director ensures that all operational, administrative, marketing, recruitment, outreach and financial activities of the STARS program are operating at their highest capacity, and that the program maintains or increases current retention and graduation rates. This position requires a high level of personal initiative, strengths in problem solving, the ability to operate with minimal supervision and monitoring, and the ability to handle sensitive and confidential material. The Director is responsible for establishing project timelines and exercises sound judgment regarding content to deliver to the students in the program. The Director must stay abreast on literature regarding success strategies for at-risk college students in engineering fields.
RESPONSIBILITIES: Management, Coordination, & Evaluation • Along with STARS Faculty Director and STARS Executive Director, participates in short and long-range planning including developing goals, objectives and implementing retention best practices for STARS. • Works closely with STARS Operations Manager to ensure program operations are aligned with student development outcomes. • Serves as point of contact for day-to-day program activities. • Stays up to date on the latest educational literature regarding student success and uses this information to provide leadership in identifying and implementing changes around curriculum content and student academic performance trends. • Works closely with STARS math and science instructors and tutors in the overall design and implementation of the STARS curriculum including establishing course policies about absences and information to be included in the common syllabus for all STARS courses and workshops. • With a sense of immediacy, regularly engages with math and science instructors and tutor leads in sharing student development best practices to determine what is working and what alternatives and refinements are needed to current practices (for individual students, each cohort, and the overall program). • Regularly collaborates with and represents STARS across campus in the realm of academic and student affairs to effectively and intensively support STARS students in their success. • Works closely with CoE advising staff to stay up to date on CoE policies and procedures, especially in terms of admissions and department placement. When needed, effectively advocates on behalf of students and the program. • Works closely with STARS advisor in filling student engagement requests from the Faculty Director and Executive Director in meeting the program’s fundraising needs. • Guides and works with operations manager in collecting and regularly updating data and in responding to data requests in a timely manner; analyzes data in support of programmatic decision-making.
Operations • Provides operational direction and day-to-day oversight to the College of Engineering STARS program in partnership with the Faculty Director. • Implements long and short-term planning and monitoring with measurable objectives for overall delivery of programs, events and activities to maintain or improve quality. • Tracks and reports on student program participation and academic performance. • Provides leadership, supervision and development of the STARS team; leads the annual work planning process for all STARS staff. • Works closely with STARS advisor on course availability, registration and registration procedures, including registering students. Assists the STARS advisor in ensuring the STARS curriculum remains in alignment with prerequisite course requirements for all Engineering and Computer Science majors. • Works collaboratively with the Engineering Academic Center and math and science departments to ensure STARS students can gain priority registration into select courses. • Develops and implements STARS students’ administrative policies, procedures and handbook in accordance with university and FERPA policies and procedures. • Oversees and analyzes student feedback and satisfaction based on annual evaluation report, balancing the demands of policies and procedures of UW, the CoE, program and student needs.
Administration • Develops business practices and organizational change needed to fully operate the program and improve processes and workflow. • In collaboration with the STARS operations manager, develops, manages, evaluates and implements multi-dimensional admission outreach and recruitment strategies and processes, with an eye towards how this process and admissions materials can regularly be improved. Conducts interviews, determines student admissibility, and communicates admission or denial to STARS. • Works collaboratively with CoE outreach staff and targeted college prep organizations such as OMAD, GEAR-UP, MESA, Upward Bound and others for recruitment purposes. • Represents the STARS program to constituents such as Washington State Opportunity Scholarship, high school counselors and others. • Along with the CoE HR Team and the STARS operations manager, leads staffing searches for STARS personnel vacancies. • Alongside the STARS operations manager, assures excellence in marketing; develops marketing materials, press releases and communication materials for STARS, including updating the website. • Provides input on and oversees the collection of data; uses data to effectively inform decisions; prepares communications, reports, and website materials, and leads writing of the STARS Annual Report. • Provides strategic insight into planning, implementing, and refining the STARS organizational structure as it grows and develops. • Implements, communicates and enforces STARS, CoE and UW policies, processes and procedures. • Collaborates with colleagues in DEI and across campus on related diversity and student services committees and initiatives.
Supervision • Effectively and regularly sets goals and priorities for individual staff and the entire STARS team, ensuring they work together to enhance and bolster student development and success, increase retention and minimize and manage crisis situations. • Holds individual weekly or bi-weekly meetings with each staff member. When possible or necessary attends instructors’ bi-weekly meetings. • Recruits, hires, trains, and leads STARS staff, including collaborating with the team to cultivate the values of the program and support efficiencies in program operations. Works closely with operations manager in onboarding and off-boarding staff. • Works with individuals and the team to set goals, providing feedback and coaching and fostering professional growth and development; conducts performance evaluations; and as needed, constructively addresses employee performance deficiencies on a timely basis consistent with applicable policies.
Advising Strategy and Collaboration •Provides insight and guidance to the STARS advisor in the intensive practice of Holistic, Intrusive and Culturally Responsive Advising •Assist the STARS advisor on the design and development of the STARS seminar which is designed to effectively assist in study skills development, promote a sense of belonging and inclusiveness and create a welcoming learning environment. • Leads the process and collaborates with the advisor as well as instructors and TAs to monitor student academic performance and guides the team in developing and applying effective and timely strategies to assist in removing barriers to success for students, from admission through completion of the engineering math and science prerequisites. •Works closely with the STARS team to assist in student crisis management, including but not limited to: one-on-one conversations, partnering with the UW’s resources (Counseling Center, SafeCampus, Title IX Office), and with other CoE resources (HR Team, Advising Team), etc. •Collaborates effectively with various campus constituents on development, planning, coordination and delivery of advising and counseling services and new student orientation; especially in identifying academic or personal challenges that students may face and planning and implementing advising/counseling support. • Work closely with the STARS Faculty Director on department placement and ensures smooth transition of students into Engineering and Computer Science departments. • Collaborates/consults with STARS advisor in the design, development and implementation of the STARS Bridge Program and any other program activities. • On an as needed basis, takes on a small caseload of students (8-10); typically, these are students who need some additional assistance. • Works closely with the advisor in effectively and quickly responding to crisis situations (the STARS emergency phone is rotated between the advisor and the director). •The Director will fill in when necessary in the absence of the advisor.
Financial Management • Assists the STARS operations manager in ensuring integrity of all financial transactions and compliance with policies and regulations concerning the program’s budget activities; follows UW policies and procedures as well as NSF project guidelines as needed. • Assists in prioritizing initiatives or programs in line with the program's financial goals. • Supports STARS grant/gift development team with framing brand messaging to key external stakeholders, grantors and community, and serves on STARS fundraising event committees as appropriate.
Core Competencies Effective communications: Expresses oneself clearly and empathetically in interactions with others in all forms of communication, i.e., verbal and written, one-on-one and groups. Interpersonal Awareness: Builds and maintains positive relationships and actively contributes as a member of the team. Professional Credibility: Takes responsibility for meeting goals, objectives, obligations, and solving problems while representing the mission, vision and values of the organization. Critical Thinking: Obtains, analyzes and evaluates information effectively in the face of ambiguity. Makes appropriate decisions based on relevant information and experience. Ethics and Trust: Models and upholds the values of candor, openness, inclusiveness and honesty despite internal and external pressures. Acts consistently with Washington State ethical guidelines and organizational core values and beliefs. Valuing Diversity & Inclusiveness: Respects, values and contributes to the UW’s commitment to inclusiveness and diversity.
REQUIREMENTS: Strong candidates will have outstanding communication, organizational, leadership, and crisis management skills; the ability to develop and recommend short and long-range strategic plans; a deep commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive community; a collaborative nature and ability; and willingness to build professional relationships with students, parents, faculty, staff, and alumni. •Master’s Degree in Education, Social Sciences, Human Services, Engineering, or related field with preference for student personnel, student affairs, higher education, educational psychology, counseling, or related area or four years of relevant experience/education •Minimum 2 years of college advising experience. Must be able to problem-solve and support/advise students in personal and/or academic crisis. •Minimum 2 years of experience in a higher education setting, preferably with STEM students and at a large research institution. •Sound judgment and leadership in crisis management. •Excellent ability to think critically and innovatively about measuring student academic progress and assisting students in overcoming barriers to success. •Demonstrated history of, comfort with, and passion for working with diverse student populations, including, but not limited to, first-generation students, students from low-income backgrounds, underrepresented students and students with a spectrum of personal and academic challenges. •Demonstrated effective management experience, with at least 1 year of documented supervisory experience. •Excellent written, oral, interpersonal communications and rapport-building; demonstrated commitment to providing excellent customer service. •Experience juggling diverse and multiple projects or work assignments that range in duration and time sensitivity while having frequent interruptions and emergent priorities. •Outstanding organizational skills, attention to detail, ability to meet deadlines. •Strong analytical skills and ability to exercise independent judgment aligned to program management, organizational goals, and frequently changing priorities. •Ability to exercise a high degree of responsibility and independent judgment and to have availability to work a flexible schedule, which can include some evenings and weekends. Must be available for STARS Bridge program (longer hours, typically two weeks before fall quarter begins). •Ability to make and communicate difficult decisions in a clear and effective manner, to use outstanding judgment, and set an example for others to follow. •Proficiency with Microsoft Office suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access). The above list of primary tasks, functions, and responsibilities is not exclusive or exhaustive and incumbent may be required to undertake other duties as assigned as may occur within the changing needs of the organization and scope of the position.
Equivalent education/experience will substitute for all minimum qualifications except when there are legal requirements, such as a license/certification/registration.
DESIRED EXPERIENCE •1-2 years of experience with proactive or intrusive advising. •Experience working with STEM students in higher education setting. •Evidence of ability to be innovative in the workplace. •Knowledge of University of Washington academic procedures, policies and administrative systems (e.g., SDB, EARS, DARS, MyPlan, etc.) comprehension of the distinctive qualities of the UW. •Thorough understanding of student development theory and practice; comprehension of the history and context of the undergraduate experience, especially at large research universities.
Application Process: The application process for UW positions may include completion of a variety of online assessments to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process. These assessments may include Workforce Authorization, Cover Letter and/or others. Any assessments that you need to complete will appear on your screen as soon as you select “Apply to this position”. Once you begin an assessment, it must be completed at that time; if you do not complete the assessment you will be prompted to do so the next time you access your “My Jobs” page. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your "My Jobs" page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until all required assessments have been completed.
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