Manager, Graduate New Student Transition

Job Description


Overview Term: 1 year The Manager, Graduate New Student Transition, is accountable to the Associate Director, Student Transition and Learning Services in the SSO for institution wide strategic planning and leadership in the development and implementation of a comprehensive and proactive transition program for graduate students. The manager serves as an expert to the campus in the areas of graduate student experience and transition. They work collaboratively and strategically with key stakeholders (including faculty, staff and students) to identify and lead opportunities for cross campus alignment of initiatives that proactively contribute to the graduate student experience. The Manager consults on, leads and directs the work of others who may or may not report to them in order to deliver programs, services and communications that support graduate student success. Responsibilities Leadership, Management and Strategic Direction Serves as the primary ‘face’ and liaison to Graduate Level Administration in the Faculties and Graduate Studies and Post-doctoral Affairs for the SSO with regards to Graduate student transition Identifies direction and strategic goals from Graduate Level Administration in the Faculties, the GSPA and SSO and works to align support, expertise and resources to support a seamless experience for Graduate students as they transition to the university Provides leadership and direction to the campus surrounding the development of programming and services that support a positive graduate student experience, including the orientation of all new graduate students Manages the creation and delivery of strategies and initiatives designed to enhance the graduate student experience with a particular focus on supporting the transition of new graduate students Works closely with other SSO managers to ensure programs and strategies complement one another and, when appropriate are consistent in delivery and outcomes for all graduate students Establishes key performance indicators and processes to measure achievement in all areas of responsibility including setting strategic priorities for new graduate student programs and providing regular progress updates and reports to key stakeholders Works with SSO leadership to summarize and disseminate key research related to new student transition programming for graduate students Provides strong leadership and direction to all direct reports including setting clear and reasonable goals and expectations, providing on-going feedback and establishing a strong foundation for performance through comprehensive training and on-going professional development as required They are responsible for all human resource functions as they relate to their area of responsibility including recruitment, hiring, performance management, performance appraisals etc The Manager also participates as a member of the SSO Leadership Group and provides input to the strategic plans for the department The Manager demonstrates a commitment to equity, diversity and anti-racism through their leadership, and management and operational practices Relationship Building Develops and actively maintains a positive and productive relationship with Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA), Graduate Student Association (GSA), graduate faculty contacts, campus partners (as appropriate) and the SSO Facilitates a strong working relationship with campus partners and collaborates on strategies that will support both the successful transition of new graduate students and contribute to an overall positive graduate student experience across multiple portfolios within the SSO Provides guidance to other staff in the SSO, particularly the Communications, Student Experience and International Student Experience teams, to ensure a coordinated and integrated approach to program development, delivery, and communications for graduate students Leads regular team and department-wide meetings as appropriate Program Development and Administration Provides strategic oversight to Waterloo’s orientation and transition program for new graduate students including Waterloo Grad Ready as well as the development of any additional transition and orientation initiatives both in person, virtual or hybrid. This includes assessment and reporting, managing scope, forecasting future resource requirements and ensuring program outcomes are met Leads efforts to ensure programs currently offered by the SSO are well integrated and seamless for graduate students - this includes the student leadership program, foundational training program, and orientation and transition programs Provides guidance to stakeholders on campus who support new student transition programs/opportunities to create an engaged and inclusive community of University of Waterloo graduate students Maintains a strong understanding of current trends and best practices around the student experience in higher education as it pertains to graduate transition programming Staff and Volunteer Development Outlines clear expectations and responsibilities for student staff and volunteers, as they relate to graduate student transition programming Responsible for the recruitment, hiring, selection, ongoing training, appreciation and recognition of graduate student staff. Works closely with staff in the SSO to ensure compensation and appreciation of student staff and volunteers is equitable Maintains consistent and appropriate levels of communication with student-staff and volunteers to ensure ongoing engagement and accountability Qualifications Master’s degree required, PHD in progress or completed preferred 5 years of experience in a student services setting working with students, staff and student associations/groups 2 years program/project development and management experience is an asset Volunteer management/previous staff supervision experience - particularly in a student leadership capacity Demonstrated experience working with various stakeholders, and navigating competing priorities is an asset Demonstrated experience working with graduate students is preferred Foundational understanding of the graduate student experience based on research, literature and best practice related to student retention, engagement and development Demonstrated ability to communicate clearly, work collaboratively, build consensus and be sensitive to the needs and interests of various stakeholders, both within the department and across the institution Exceptional organizational skills as well as the ability to multi-task, manage, and forecast required resources Proven ability to take initiative and be both creative and flexible High degree of political acumen Demonstrated ability to contribute to and thrive in a collaborative environment and to apply a positive team approach to working with colleagues within and outside of the office Demonstrated ability for coaching full-time and graduate student staff in event management, facilitation, and program content development

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