Director of the Memorial Union

Iowa State University
Ames, Iowa
Feb 21, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Iowa State University is the most student-centered public research university in the nation. It is a place where adventurous minds are encouraged to accomplish amazing things. As a major international university ranked in the top 50 among public universities by U.S. News & World Report and a member of the Association of American Universities, Iowa State offers a student experience rich in social and academic diversity. Over 36,650 students choose from 100 majors, study with world-class scholars, and hone their leadership skills in more than 800 student organizations. Students from all 50 states and more than 120 countries converge on one of the nation’s top 25 most beautiful campuses. Big 12 sports and a tradition of cultural and popular performances make campus life fun and memorable. Iowa State is a land-grant university, has set enrollment records the past nine years, and is the largest university in the state of Iowa. Iowa State is located in Ames, a community of 60,000 ranked as the second-best college town (under 250,000 population) and among the top 10 best places to live in America.

Reporting to the Senior Vice President for Student Affairs (SVPSA), the Director of the Memorial Union (DMU) provides leadership for the Memorial Union and within the Division of Student Affairs through advancing the mission and goals of the division, coordinating efforts within the Memorial Union and other campus areas, and partnering with other University operations through development of strong communication and working relationships, contribution to executive decision making, and implementation of plans. The DMU is responsible for directing, overseeing and administering all facilities, programs, activities, products, services, and tenant relations within the Memorial Union, including the Student Activities Center, Event Management Office, parking ramp, tenant space, and the recreation area. This position oversees the Student Activities Center and, in that role, provides opportunities for students to be successful while challenging students to be independent, responsible learners; provides leadership for student activities, organizations, and functions that promote civility, celebrate diversity, and support an inclusive campus climate; and implements programs and services that empower students as leaders and promotes a sense of belonging for every student at Iowa State. The DMU has overall responsibility for the fiscal and personnel resources and will develop revenue generating strategies necessary to enforce the fiscal strength of the Memorial Union.

The successful candidate will possess the ability to effectively manage multiple competing priorities and coordinate complex administrative operations; strong writing and verbal skills; familiarity with current trends in higher education, including best practices, and student development theory; a demonstrated commitment to the ideals and principles of multiculturalism, social justice, and diversity; strong human relations skills; and effective management, motivation, conflict resolution, and problem-solving skills.

A master’s degree and eight years of related experience are required. Experience must be at a comparable level and in a college or university with progressive leadership responsibilities. Preferred qualifications include a degree in higher education (or related field); higher education administration experience in a student union and student activities environment; experience supervising professional staff; and a demonstrated ability to work and relate effectively with college students.

Review of applications will begin March 22, 2017 and will continue until the position is filled. A resume with an accompanying cover letter may be submitted via the Spelman Johnson website at Nominations for this position may be emailed to Heather Larabee at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Spelman Johnson

Iowa State University – Director, Memorial Union

Heather Larabee, Search Associate

Visit the ISU website at

Iowa State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, marital status, disability, or protected veteran status, and will not be discriminated against.