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Director of International Student Services

Soka University of America
Aliso Viejo, California
$83,000 - $95,000
Closing date
Jan 13, 2024

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Knowledge Communities
International Student and Scholar Services
Position Type
Employment Type
Organization Type
College / University

Job Details

The Director of International Student Services reports to the Dean of Enrollment Services and serves as the university’s Primary Designated School Official (PDSO). The Director oversees the Student Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), a central database that the government requires to maintain accurate and current international student information during various enrollment periods. This individual is responsible for gathering essential documents and issuing I-20 forms to new and returning students, confirming international student’s ability to travel for their study abroad programs, and managing the process of international students’ post-completion options. The Director is responsible for informing key personnel on and off campus regarding changes in the Department of Homeland Security’s laws and participates in recruiting, evaluating, and reading admissions files with the purpose of supporting the university enrollment goals.

Candidates should demonstrate responsiveness toward and understanding of diverse student backgrounds, especially with regard to socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, culture, ability/disability, sexual orientation, and gender identity and have a willingness to facilitate the university’s mission to develop global citizens.

Essential duties include but are not limited to:

International Student Services

  • Serve as the primary campus contact and maintains working relationships with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), US Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS), and US Department of State (USDOS) on matters of regulatory issues affecting international students. Serve as the Primary Designated School Official (PDSO) and interprets regulation authorizing Soka University of America to admit and enroll international students. Oversee the creation and distribution of appropriate information and instructional resources for international students, including university policies and procedures and revising campus materials. Provides counsel and support to all international students regarding traveling documentation for their mandatory study abroad programs by confirming the validity of their immigration documents. Advises students on working in the US, applying for a driver’s license, applying for SSN, transferring to a new school, or taking leave of absence and providing supporting letters as needed. Oversee and manage the process of each international student’s post-completion options, pursuing graduate studies or returning to their home country.

SEVIS Data Maintenance

  • Manages and provides oversight of the SEVIS system used to report international students' information and oversees all stages of visa processing.
  • Prepares and submits materials necessary for SEVIS Recertification for the F-1 visa program.
  • Maintains active SEVIS user’s records and verifies their information when necessary.
  • Tracks and certifies students’ full-time enrollment and registers all students in SEVIS.
  • Submit student and program data correction requests to SEVIS or SEVIS help desk.
  • Provide expertise and direction in the gathering of essential documents and the issuance of I-20 forms, including annual cost of attendance information, curricular and optional practical training, and communication to all relevant office stakeholders within Enrollment Services.
  • Collaborate with the Office of Admission and Office of Financial Aid to ensure timely issuance of I-20 documents.

International Admission

  • Manage undergraduate admission-related inquiries from prospective international students in person and in virtual settings with the purpose of supporting the university's long-term enrollment goals.
  • Utilize Admission Office CRM to record student data, view documents, and manage communication workflows.
  • Gather, analyze, and present statistical data and reports to management for the purpose of enrollment forecasting.
  • Participates in the evaluation of application materials and provides recommendations regarding an applicant’s candidacy for admission.
  • Assist with the development and revision of admission applications, brochures, bulletins, and fact sheets for the purpose of informing and recruiting students.

Management / Leadership

  • Supervise professional staff and student workers in their training, creating work schedules and daily tasks.
  • Interprets and incorporates regulatory changes into internal policies and procedures to ensure consistency in advising practices for professional staff.
  • Serves as a liaison between other Enrollment Service offices, Academic Affairs, Bursar, and Student Affairs.

Orientations, Activities & Workshops

  • Plans and conducts workshops for international students, staff, and faculty.
  • Support various Office of Enrollment Services-sponsored campus events.
  • Plan and implement OPT & CPT employment workshops.
  • Serve as an advisor to all students to promote social events and interactions that encourage cross-cultural awareness.

Other Administrative Duties

  • Oversees OISS office budget, projections, and expense reconciliations.
  • Organize and maintain physical and digital student records.
  • Regularly attends conferences with the purpose of advising university deans, directors, department heads, managers, and other key personnel working with international students on changes in immigration regulations.
  • Support Dean of Enrollment Services international initiatives.

Minimum Qualifications:


  • Due to federal database access requirements, only U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents may apply for this position.


  • A bachelor’s degree in a related field is required. Master’s degree in administration, education, international education, or higher education administration preferred.


  • Minimum of five (5) years of professional experience in academic administration required. Significant and progressive administrative and management experience including, but not limited to personnel management, budget management, program analysis, and reporting.  Significant and progressive experience and knowledge of best practices in one or more of the International Student Services Office’s primary areas of responsibilities (e.g., international student recruiting and admissions, international student services, exchange programs, visa issuance, etc.).
  • Human relations and demonstrated excellent organizational, interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills required.
  • Experience with SEVIS and computer information systems for managing student records.
  • General working knowledge of Admission and Financial Aid service and program information.
  • Knowledge of retention issues and the use of technology in the recruitment process.
  • Excellent public speaking and presentation skills.
  • Flexibility, creativity, and the ability to travel in a challenging environment are required.
  • Demonstrated experience in working with diverse and international populations and the ability to read, comprehend, and apply complex regulations and convey them to others. Solid knowledge of the SUA mission and its community.  


  • Maintains the ability to receive and carry out direction with high ethical and professional standards.
  • Excellent analytical, problem-solving, oral, and written communication skills.
  • Strong customer service and interpersonal skills with the ability to demonstrate understanding and sensitivity regarding diverse cultural traditions and linguistic backgrounds.
  • Capacity for developing and sustaining effective relationships with administrators, faculty, staff, and students, as well as a variety of outside organizations.
  • Ability to organize and manage a complex international student record-keeping function; prepare, maintain, and interpret statistical data.
  • Ability to work independently and in collaboration with the other members of Enrollment Services and the campus community.
  • Proficiency in personal computer systems utilizing student information systems such as PeopleSoft, Slate CRM, word processing, spreadsheets, and power points.
  • Knowledge of USCIS federal regulations, SEVIS-related processes, and reporting requirements.
  • Excellent organizational skills and the ability to maintain a prominent level of accuracy and careful attention to detail.
  • Ability to effectively manage multiple short-term and long-term tasks and to exercise good judgment in stressful situations.

Soka University of America offers excellent benefits. The anticipated hiring range for this position is $83,000 - $95,000 and will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. 

Employment is contingent upon the completion of a successful background check. Soka University requires all employees and students to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19.  If hired, you are required to be fully vaccinated (including booster) for COVID-19 as a condition of your employment at Soka University, except in instances where you have a qualifying medical condition or sincerely held religious belief that is contrary to receiving the vaccine. You will be required to provide your vaccination record on your first day of employment.

Application review will begin immediately. The position will remain open, and applications will be reviewed until the position is filled.

Application Requirements: 

Must submit the following to be considered:

  • letter of interest for this position
  • resume
  • three professional references

Please apply on the Interfolio site by clicking on this link:

For inquiries, e-mail:

Soka University of America is an equal opportunity employer.


Founded on the Buddhist principles of peace, human rights, and the sanctity of life, Soka University of America is a secular, four-year liberal arts college and graduate school with a unique mission: to educate global citizens to contribute to a better world. Situated atop a ridge overlooking a 4,000-acre wilderness park, Soka is three miles from the Pacific Ocean, midway between Los Angeles and San Diego. SUA ranks highly among liberal arts institutions, tying for 29th in U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Colleges 2023” list. Soka’s focus on fostering global citizenship is evident in the global makeup of its student body, 50% of which are international students; compulsory second language and study abroad programs; and an interdisciplinary core curriculum featuring small, dynamic classrooms with a 7:1 student/faculty ratio (average class size 12). 


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