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Assistant to the Dean for Student Services and Retention - University at Albany

University at Albany
Rensselaer, NY
Closing date
Nov 25, 2023

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Student & Scholar Services
Position Type
Employment Type
Organization Type
College / University

The University at Albany School of Social Welfare (SSW) is dedicated to the realization of a fair and just society and institutions that are diverse, inclusive, and equitable. Our students have educational and research opportunities to improve human well-being on local, national, and global levels.

SSW prepares students for successful careers in social work through coursework and research with internationally known faculty, hands-on experience with our community and state partner agencies, and study abroad opportunities.

This position would be a great fit for a mid-career professional social worker. This position provides excellent benefits and professional growth opportunities. The employee will develop new skills, learning from, and being an integral part of a seasoned team. Employees can continue their education and are eligible for reimbursement for 1 course per semester at the University at Albany.

The Director of Student Services and Retention has responsibility for implementing educational policy in ways that prioritize increasing/supporting student enrollment and retention, promoting student success, and cultivating a diverse and inclusive learning environment. The responsibilities include promoting student success, implementing academic policy, coordinating academic programs, overseeing registration procedures for SSW graduate students, monitoring and supporting students' standing (academic difficulty, retention efforts, grievances, and readmissions), supporting faculty and supervising staff and graduate assistants.

The incumbent will assist both students and faculty participating in the on-campus BSSW, MSW, and Ph.D. programs, the online MSW program, and non-degree program in understanding and navigating social work education requirements, university procedures, academic regulations, and the challenges to pursuing a social work education program (i.e., completing 900+ hours of field practicum, managing online classes, working full or part time while completing graduate study, or being a first-generation graduate student). The incumbent also assists students in understanding how personal issues/challenges impact academic performance and career pursuits.

As part of promoting student success, the Director of Student Services and Retention will have primary responsibility for the daily implementation of academic policies, procedures and systems, course offerings, and schedules. The incumbent will also provide input on policy and curriculum development and all issues relating to academic programs in the School of Social Welfare. Additionally, the incumbent will supervise one professional staff member and 2 graduate assistants.

Primary Responsibilities:

Promoting Student Success
  • Oversee all administrative processes related to student academic programs, e.g., credit transfers, course substitutions, exemptions, etc.
  • Provide leadership for students' understanding of social work education, social work careers, licensing, and professional development.
  • Investigate reasons for students' academic difficulties and develop appropriate programmatic solutions when possible.
  • Troubleshoot alternatives to withdrawal.
  • Evaluate student needs and exercise professional judgment in referral to other offices.
  • Coordinate workshops focused on student success.
  • Respond to student and faculty concerns regarding student progress.
  • Coordinate with State Department of Education and University Registrar's Office on licensure procedures for graduates.
  • Develop student-centered approaches to university practices regarding professional licensure, e.g., degree verification, verification of educational requirements.
  • Collaborate regularly with field education office regarding student issues and best practices for effective communication between field office and Associate Dean's Office.
  • Provide leadership for the implicit curriculum of the BS and MSW programs, e.g., advisement services.
  • Oversee submission of Graduate DARS and train others on its use.
  • Liaise with university offices to troubleshoot barriers that impede students' progress.
  • Assist in developing and implementing new practices supportive of SSW students' success.
  • Resolve all MSW degree clearance issues.
  • Coordinate regularly with the field education office.

Academic Policy
  • Recommend development of new or revision of exiting academic policies to the Associate Dean.
  • Advise full-time and part-time faculty about academic policies affecting courses and students.
  • Coordinate with University departments and administration on interpretation and implementation of policy.
  • Participate in faculty governance as member of MSW Program Committee and on-call consultant to BS and PhD Program Committees.

Oversee a Student-Centered Registration Process
  • Develop registration materials for MSW (both face-to-face and online programs) and PhD programs.
  • Manage all phases of non-degree advisement and registration.
  • Create individualized program models for students who are off sequence.
  • Resolve student registration conflicts.
  • Monitor enrollment and make recommendations for adjustments to class schedule.

Student Standing
  • Implement, develop, and oversee procedures to identify and support students in academic difficulty (warning systems, corrective actions).
  • Counsel students about probation and monitor their academic progress and compliance with the probation agreement.
  • Coordinate the grievance and re-admissions procedures.
  • Review academic performance of students each semester and recommend and monitor corrective action when appropriate.
  • Oversee in-school procedures for dealing with students in academic difficulty.
  • Implement procedures for graduate students dismissed from the program.
  • Coordinate with the university's Graduate School about student status.
  • Organize and guide the Committee on Standards for Social Work Education regarding students' requests for readmissions.
  • Coordinate with the Committee on Standards for Social Work for student grade grievances and ethical violations.

Faculty Support
  • Onboarding and orientation of instructors.
  • Resolve instructor/student problems relying on NASW code of ethics and SSW standards for social work education.
  • Respond to faculty questions and need for assistance.

Program Assessment and Evaluation
  • Assist with data collection for the Exit Survey for graduating BSW and MSW students.
  • Conduct exit interviews for students who withdraw.
  • Develop program changes and recommendations based on evaluation of Exit Surveys and Exit Interviews.
  • Coordinate survey of MSW student preferences for course topics.
  • Coordinate data-gathering for annual CSWE statistics and other reports as needed.

  • Supervise and organize HelpDesk GAs
  • Supervise professional staff (Admissions and Recruitment Coordinator)


Minimum Qualifications:
  • MSW degree from a Council on Social Work Education Accredited program.
  • Demonstrated experience working with diverse, underserved, and marginalized populations.
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office, specifically PowerPoint, Excel, and Word.
  • Minimum of 2 - 4 years post-graduate social work experience.
  • Applicants must demonstrate an ability to develop inclusive and equitable relationships within our diverse campus community.
  • Applicants must demonstrate an ability to support diversity, equity, access, inclusion, and belonging relative to their role.

Preferred Qualifications:
  • New York State license to practice social work (LMSW or LCSW)
  • Experience working in higher education.
  • Creative and entrepreneurial spirit; strong intellectual curiosity.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with demonstrated presentation abilities.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work across a complex organization.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Demonstrated analytical and strategic thinking skills; the ability to embrace ambiguity and challenges.
  • Demonstrated integrity and the ability to handle sensitive and confidential information with appropriate discretion.

Additional Information:

This is a promotional opportunity for current UAlbany employees.

Eligibility for Consideration:
  • You must be employed at the University at Albany campus.
  • You must be in a State funded UUP professional position (MC employees are not eligible).
  • You must have a permanent, term, or probationary appointment (temporary employees are not eligible).

For details concerning the University's Promotion Policy for Professional Employees, please see HR Memorandum 88-4.

Professional Rank and Salary Range: Staff Associate, SL4

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, or Clery Act, mandates that all Title IV institutions, without exception, prepare, publish and distribute an Annual Security Report. This report consists of two basic parts: disclosure of the University's crime statistics for the past three years; and disclosures regarding the University's current campus security policies. The University at Albany's Annual Security Report is available in portable document format [PDF] by clicking this link

Pursuant to NYS Labor Law 194-A, no State entity, as defined by the Law, is permitted to rely on, orally or in writing seek, request, or require in any form, that an applicant for employment provide his or her current wage, or salary history as a condition to be interviewed, or as a condition of continuing to be considered for an offer of employment, until such time as the applicant is extended a conditional offer of employment with compensation, and for the purpose of verifying information, may such requests be made. If such information has been requested from you before such time, please contact the Governor's Office of Employee Relations at (518) 474-6988 or via email at


Please apply online via

Application Instructions:

Applicants MUST submit the following documents:
  • Resume
  • Cover letter stating all the required minimum qualifications and any of the applicable preferred qualifications
  • Contact information for three professional references

Note: After submitting your resume, the subsequent pages give you instructions for uploading additional documents (i.e. cover letter etc.).

See the FAQ for using our online system. Please contact us if you need assistance applying through this website.

Returning Applicants - Login to your UAlbany Careers Account to check your completed application.

Closing date for receipt of applications: November 22, 2023

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