Job Details

Amherst College
  • Position Number: 4210328
  • Location: Amherst, MA
  • Position Type: Student Affairs and Services

Director for Student Engagement and Leadership

Amherst Campus
Full Time

Amherst has taken a leadership role among highly selective liberal arts colleges and universities in successfully diversifying the racial, socio-economic, and geographic profile of its student body. The College is similarly committed to enriching its educational experience and its culture through the diversity of its faculty, administration and staff.

Job Description:

Amherst College invites applications for the Director for Student Engagement and Leadership position. The Director for Student Engagement and Leadership is a full-time, year-round position, the position is in salary grade SM-3, our typical hiring range for this position will start at $80,000, actual salary will be commensurate with skills and experience. Given Amherst's distinction as one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country, the successful candidate will demonstrate the ways in which they bring value to and will work towards supporting a broadly diverse community.

Reporting to the Chief Student Affairs Officer and Dean of Students (CSAO/DOS), the Director for Student Engagement and Leadership will oversee the Student Engagement and Leadership Office and supervise a diverse team of professional and student staff within the Office of Student Affairs at Amherst College. Including the associate director for engagement and leadership, assistant director for student engagement and leadership, orientation and new student coordinator and the office manager. The Director will make strategic decisions and steward a vision and resources in ways that further Amherst College's commitment to providing all students with a transformative and unparalleled experience. The director oversees departmental operating accounts totaling over $350,000 and the AAS's account totaling over $1.2 million in student fees annually.

They will imagine and execute on new possibilities for student engagement and community building, service, student leadership, and develop systemic ways to develop, implement and assess successful student-centered policies, practices, and initiatives. The director is responsible for ensuring that the office creates programs and productions that build community, foster a sense of belonging, center wellbeing, and facilitate campus-wide discourse via organizational and leadership programs, the arts and multiple student media publications and platforms. The director is responsible for oversight of a diverse and exciting assemblage of programs, services, and spaces. Including the Keefe Campus Center, New Student Orientation, serves as the direct advisor to the Association of Amherst Students (AAS), WAMH 89.3 FM radio station, Olio yearbook, Amherst Student Newspaper, and Campus Activities Board. Additionally, supports, advises, and provides training and leadership development for a diverse group of student leaders and over 100 student groups. This position will serve as a key collaborator with a broad range of College offices.

Summary of Responsibilities:

Leadership and Management Responsibilities
  • Manages the day-to-day operations of the Student Engagement and Leadership Office.
  • Develops and implements the overall strategic vision of the office.
  • Hires, on-boards, and supervises the team of professional and student staff that work for the office.
  • Provides oversight, strategic guidance, and support to a dynamic team of professional and student staff that see organizations as transformative learning environments vital to the educational mission of the College, and offer students opportunities to engage as leaders that make a difference.
  • Initiates all aspects of organizational planning for the Student Engagement & Leadership Office in concert with Student Affairs.
  • Serves as a campus leader and subject matter expert regarding topics of student engagement, student activism, student leaders/organizations, campus climate and protest response, and regularly provides consultation and guidance related to issues management on these topics.
  • Conducts organizational design analysis and planning to optimize individual and organizational effectiveness and develops staff training and development programs.
  • Oversee the operating budget for the Student Engagement and Leadership Office, the allocation and spending of the Student Activities Fee, Keefe Campus Center and Powerhouse operating budgets, and other gifts or endowments specific to Student Engagement and Leadership.
  • Create long- and short-term plans and evaluation of student engagement strategies and programs

Student Organization Engagement and Leadership
  • Establishes effective working relationships with individuals and departments to facilitate the dissemination of information and promote supportive and helpful relationships with students, staff, and faculty, while recognizing the need for sensitivity to a diverse student population.
  • Develops and executes on innovative and creative ideas to promote and support leadership engagement, student development, and sense of belonging amongst the student body.
  • Establishes and maintains strong relationships with students, student leaders, student activists and student organizations, and contributes to a vibrant and welcoming campus experience for all students by being involved, visible, and engaged in all aspects of campus and student life.
  • Centers equity, access, and inclusion frameworks in all student programming and engagement efforts.
  • Continually assesses student needs and interests, as well as remains abreast of current trends and best practices in the field of student affairs (and adjacent fields) related to student leadership, engagement, identity development, civic engagement, mental health/wellbeing and sense of belonging.
  • Utilizes relevant data, scholarship, and student development (and other relevant) theories/models when planning and developing programs and services designed to foster and support student learning and growth.
  • Maintains high level oversight of all training, advising, support with event planning, fiscal resources, budget planning, policy analysis and administrative support for the various organizations and spaces within the office.

Program Planning and Campus Partner Collaboration
  • Develops and implements systems of assessing the quality and effectiveness of all programs and establishes ongoing quality improvement methods.
  • Creates and implements systems to improve quality and manage risk, including staff professional development programs, regular assessments of student satisfaction, and methods for engaging with students about campus climate and the student experience.
  • Leads internal and external committees and task forces related to special projects/initiatives focused on student leadership, engagement and belonging.
  • Serves as campus lead for protest and demonstration engagement and response.
  • Prepares reports, presentations and other related materials for CSAO/DOS and campus stakeholders.
  • Represents the Student Engagement and Leadership office and the Division of Student Affairs on key campus, system-wide and external committees and task forces.
  • Collaborate with the College's Conferences and Special Events office to maintain student-centered space usage and scheduling policies for student programming and event spaces
  • Oversight over reservable spaces utilizing the EMS scheduling software. Including the Keefe Campus Center, Powerhouse, Fire Pits, etc.
  • Provides oversight and ensures programming is in place for summer, holiday, winter/J-term breaks.


  • Master's degree in higher education, student affairs, public administration/policy or related field.
  • Highly experienced in the areas of strategic planning, organizational development, assessment, and evaluation in advancement of organizational goals within a complex institution of higher education.
  • Demonstrated ability to analyze complex information, problems, and processes in an objective manner and formulate conclusions to provide a sound basis for establishing priorities, selecting appropriate courses of action, and making recommendations.
  • A high degree of political acumen regarding sensitive and highly visibility issues; ability to establish and manage delicate balances that must be achieved among competing variables and interests in a diverse, and complex university environment.
  • Demonstrated experience leading, supervising, and developing professional staff, including skills related to team building, coaching and performance management.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively and develop trust with college students, student leaders, student activists and student organizations.
  • Knowledge and applied praxis of effective models/philosophies in higher education and student affairs, and of student development theories related to leadership and engagement; sense of belonging; free speech expression; protest and demonstration response; and issues of diversity, equity and social justice.
  • Excellent interpersonal, cultural fluency and conflict resolution skills. Ability to effectively communicate and collaborate with people of diverse backgrounds.
  • Excellent judgment and discretion in handling confidential and sensitive issues and information.
  • High level of acumen related to understanding, interpreting, and applying College regulations, policies and procedures.
  • Ability to deliver clear, informative, and persuasive presentations to internal and external stakeholders.
  • Strong oral communication skills with ability to work effectively in group processes. Excellent writing skills to produce clear and concise reports, policies, procedures, and general correspondence, as well as to convey support and care in the wake of campus, local, national, or global incidents that impact students and the campus community.
  • Experience with fiscal management, budget development and oversight of multiple fund sources, including student fees and referenda.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of, commitment to, and experience working with, members of African, Black & Caribbean; Asian, Asian American & Pacific Islander; Chicanx/Latinx; Native/Indigenous; South West Asian & North African; Disabled; Neuro Diverse; Trans & Non-Binary; Queer; Undocumented and other historically marginalized or underrepresented communities.

  • 8-10 years of experience in student affairs work, student leadership development, and or student activities/engagement.
  • Demonstrated expertise with crisis management, crisis intervention and case management on college campuses.

Amherst College offers many opportunities for professional growth and development, continued learning, and career advancement.

Amherst College is pleased to provide a comprehensive, highly competitive benefits package that meets the needs of staff and faculty and their families. Benefits are an important part of our overall compensation, so it is critical that you review all of the options to ensure it meets your total compensation requirements. Click here for Benefits Information.

Interested candidates are asked to submit a resume and cover letter online at Please be sure to upload all requested documents prior to clicking Submit. Applications cannot be revised once submitted. (Current employees and students should apply by clicking on the Career icon from their Workday home screen) Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled.

To find information about job group and level (JGL) follow this link.

To apply, visit

Copyright 2022 Inc. All rights reserved.

Posted by the FREE value-added recruitment advertising agency