The Athletic Academic Support Specialist is responsible for assisting student-athletes to persist in college and graduate in a timely manner. In addition, the athletic support specialist will provide advising support to student-athletes with respect to applicable NCAA Division II academic eligibility rules. Essential to this position is the requirement to provide information to student-athletes, coaches, and appropriate athletics personnel, supporting the academic success of student-athletes. This position will coordinate with the athletic staff and coaches on all aspects of academic support for student athletes. The individual in this position will work with student-athletes requiring academic skill development and individualized support of academic success plans.
Specific Duties and Responsibilities
Provide strong academic advising support by being knowledgeable of academic policies and procedures, unique to Missouri Southern State University
Assist student- athletes with making decisions that foster student academic success with degree completion while gaining important lifelong skills
Review the schedule of student athletes to ensure they are progressing according required academic standards towards graduation and NCAA Eligibility Requirements
Serve as the primary advisor for all undeclared football student-athletes and provide them with strategies and exploration activities to help them declare a major by the end of their 5th semester
Oversee Study hall and work in partnership with the Student Success center to ensure room availability, compile and distribute weekly study hall reports to the coaches, and get student-athletes academic assistance with tutors
Set up one-on-one regular meetings and develop academic success plans for student athletes identified as high risk. Such students will be determined collaboratively with coaches, student GPA and other factors.
Disseminate information on institutional policies and procedures
Unofficially evaluate and determine the transfer of credits, and course descriptions to determine transferability
Review and interpret placement information, standardized test scores, unofficial transcripts, and courses prerequisites
Perform and interpret degree audits
Advise student-athletes on graduation requirements and assist students in preparing and meeting these requirements
Maintain accurate records (including electronic records) of interactions with student-athletes
Serve as liaison and foster intentional relationships with other advisors, offices, and departments.
Refer student-athletes to the appropriate specialized staff for such issues as mental health counseling, financial assistance, tutoring, career services, study abroad, etc.
Participate in the development, implementation, review, presentation, and revision of materials and trainings related to academic support and advising.
Stay abreast of changing institutional information including admissions requirements, new programs, course changes, deadlines, important dates, costs, expanding facilities, updates in college-wide initiatives, transfer requirements, and state and federal mandates and communicate these to students
Engage in professional development activities, including but not limited to, memberships in professional organizations; workshops, division, and department training sessions; stay current with information technology skills
Remain current on applicable NCAA academic legislation as it pertains to persistence and degree completion for MSSU students. (This position does not have the authority to make determinations of athletic eligibility, an authority which resides with the Athletics Compliance Office and the Registrar)
In coordination and partnership with the Athletics Compliance Office, create or use existing reporting systems to distribute reports to coaches and other athletic departments relative to the student athletes’ academic progress and academic success for eligibility purposes.
In coordination and partnership with the Athletics Compliance Office, using the institution’s reporting systems, generate reports, request new reports as needed, and distribute reports to coaches relative to student-athletes’ academic success
Ongoing collaboration with campus units to educate student-athletes on major and course options, and other academic opportunities
Document procedures for academic advisement of student-athletes, in an effort to provide assistance for other institutional staff who might need to assist student athletes.
Foster the successful connection of declared student-athletes with their respective faculty advisors
Serve as the liaison between faculty, faculty advisors, and coaches relative to student-athletes’ academic progress
Provide outreach and academic advisement to student-athletes with poor midterm grades and those referred to Lion Alert for academic reasons
Meet with prospective student-athletes on admission tours, recruitment visits, and Admissions Discovery Days
Provide course advisement, academic support and career and personal guidance and educate student-athletes on rules of eligibility and personal responsibility;
Performs other related duties as required
Education, Experience, and Licenses
A Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university required; Master’s degree preferred.
At least 2 years working with student-athletes and understanding their unique needs
Must complete and keep up with ongoing MSSU Master Advisor Training program
Must maintain relevant memberships on associations related to job duties
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Must be clearly student-focused in both philosophy and purpose
Strong interpersonal, and organizational, skills
Excellent command of communication skills
An outgoing personality with excellent ability to build rapport easily
Thorough knowledge of NCAA mission, values, objectives and eligibility rules
Ability to work closely with students of multi-cultural experiences and backgrounds; including international students.
Ability to provide for the academic skill development needs and design individualized academic success s for students.
Practice respect for and sensitivity to diversity of individuals and their experiences.
Adhere to FERPA and confidentiality of all accessible information including employee
Demonstrate high ethical standards
Ability to work collaboratively with both faculty and staff
Attention to detail for tracking student success and educational plans
Ability to analyze complex issues and prepare concise reports
Ability to use internet and other resources for information gathering
Ability to manage workload both independently and as part of a team, and ability to meet deadlines and deal with stressful situations
Ability to respond to common inquiries or complaints
Ability to read, analyze, and interpret common academic and legal documents.
Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, draw valid conclusions, present information, and write reports
Proficiency with computers, keyboarding, email and internet browsing required. Experience working with database software preferred
Missouri Southern State University is located in Joplin, Missouri. Joplin, with a population of around 50,000, is a retail hub serving approximately 400,000 people - the fourth largest metro area in Missouri. Approximately 5,600 undergraduates are enrolled in our state-supported, comprehensive university offering more than 100 degree options and a strong commitment to international education, liberal arts, and professional and pre-professional programs. MSSU is a member of NCAA Division II and the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA).