Dean of Student Services

Job description

Job Description Summary

Cuesta College is located in the heart of scenic San Luis Obispo County, and is ranked by as a top five California community college for 2016. Cuesta College has a rich history of educating San Luis Obispo County residents since 1963. Cuesta College serves more than 10,000 students with an increasingly diverse student body of 55% White, 32% Latinx, 5% Mixed Race, 3% Asian/PI, 2% African-American. Courses are offered online and at three physical sites; the main campus in San Luis Obispo, the North County Campus in Paso Robles, and the South County Center in Arroyo Grande. Cuesta College offers 77 degrees and 64 certificates, including 30 Associate Degrees for Transfers to the Cal State University system with several more transfer degrees under development. The college boasts robust Allied Health and Career Technical Education programs and consistently sends students to compete at the national level in areas such as welding, automotive, public speaking, and more. The college's music ensembles are often in the spotlight, winning an award recently from Downbeat magazine and regularly performing at state, national, and international festivals. In addition, Cuesta's theatre program consistently wins national and international awards from the Kennedy Center.

Cuesta College is committed to being an inclusive institution that inspires a diverse student population to achieve their educational goals. In 2016, it was designated as a Hispanic Serving Institute (HSI), reflecting the great responsibility that the college has to further the educational attainment and economic well-being of the surrounding community. The Cuesta Promise Scholarship has provided a fee-free first year to every new high school graduate in San Luis Obispo County. Starting with the graduating class of 2018, the Cuesta College Promise Scholarship expanded to include a second year of fee-free education. Over 3,000 students have received the Cuesta Promise with over 35% being Latinx and almost 60% being female. In 2018, Cuesta College was also the only California Community College awarded a $2.5 million Title V "Developing HSI Grant" from the US Department of Education to expand educational and vocational opportunities for Latinx students. Cuesta is committed to the Board of Governors California Community College Vision for Success Goals, including eliminating equity gaps within 10 years. The College's Educational Master Plan, Strategic Plan, and Student Equity/Student Success and Support/Basic Skills Integration Plan collectively seek to ensure all students are successful at fulfilling their educational needs.

Cuesta College has strong student, faculty, and staff campus engagement including affiliations with the statewide Latina Leadership Network, Central Coast Coalition for Undocumented Student Success, Alpha Gamma Sigma Honors Society, MEChA, Student Veterans Club, STEM Club, and Dreamers Club.

Cuesta College has 139 full-time faculty, 543 adjunct faculty, 234 classified staff, and 41 managers and administrators. The college encourages all employees to be part of the participatory governance process. The College's annual budget is approximately $55 million. Thanks to a $275 million bond measure approved by the voters of San Luis Obispo County in 2014, Cuesta College is repairing aging facilities, updating classrooms, equipment, and technology, and improving programs. Our growing North County Campus opened a new Campus Center in Spring of 2018 and houses a new Veterans Center, EOPS Center/CalWorks/Foster Youth Center, Disabled Student Program and Services (DSPS) office and Student Cultural Lounge. Cuesta will be opening a Dream Center to support undocumented students on both the San Luis Obispo and Paso Robles campuses in Spring of 2019.

Under general direction of the assistant superintendent/vice president of student services and college centers, the dean of student services provides leadership for the Counseling, Financial Aid, Extended Opportunity Programs and Services/Cooperative Agencies Resources for Education (EOP&S/CARE), California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs), and Disabled Students Programs and Services (DSPS) programs and centralized district student outreach; and develops comparable student support services throughout the district. The dean leads and oversees program planning, review, assessment and improvement provides linkages with county organizations and agencies; serves on the President's Cabinet; and performs other related duties as required.

The dean of student services position is distinguished from other positions by the requirement to direct and provide leadership for centralized district student outreach and for the student services departments of Counseling, DSPS, EOPS/CARE, CalWORKs, and Financial Aid, within the Student Services and College Centers Cluster, including assessment of needs and development of long-range plans. The dean implements the philosophy and policies of the district and works effectively with other divisions and departments to support the district's mission, vision and values and to achieve institutional goals and objectives.

Incumbents in this position support program outcomes, student learning outcomes and institutional effectiveness by maintaining program currency, conducting program-related research and assessment and implementing identified improvements.

Essential Functions & Qualifications


  • Provide leadership for student services programs;
  • Implement the policies of the San Luis Obispo County Community College District and ensure operations are aligned with district mission, vision, values and institutional goals and objectives;
  • Direct and provide leadership for the Counseling, Financial Aid, EOP&S/CARE, CalWORKS, and DSPS operations; supervise on and off campus activities related to each program;
  • Ensure comparable student access to and quality of services on all sites and on-line through coordination and consultation with district administration, managers, faculty, and staff;
  • Conduct program research and implement changes based on data-based evidence and best practices;
  • Lead the management of program budgets and ensure all requirements are met for expenditures of categorical grant allocations, including maintenance of effort (MOE) contributions;
  • Recommend for hire, assign, supervise, and evaluate student services personnel;
  • Lead student services departments in completing Annual Program Planning and Review and in conducting Comprehensive Program Planning and Review;
  • Lead student services departments in establishing program outcomes, student learning outcomes and outcomes assessment;
  • Oversee accurate and complete management information system (MIS) reporting;
  • Align services with Student Support and Success Program (SSSP) guidelines;
  • Coordinate centralized district outreach and track resulting student enrollments;
  • Serve as co-chair of The Cuesta Promise with the Executive Director of Foundation/Institutional Advancement.
  • Maintain currency in technology and coordinate the implementation of computer applications with the Computer Services Department;
  • Report regularly on areas of responsibility to the assistant superintendent/vice president student services and college centers;
  • Serve as the assistant superintendent/vice president student services and college centers designee in administering the student judicial process as needed, including student incidents; complaints and grievances;
  • Collect and analyze student services specific data in collaboration with the Office of Research;
  • Develop and administer periodic student data reports and distribute to appropriate college personnel, departments and outside agencies;
  • Represent the college in the community through community contacts, special off-campus events, and memberships in community organizations;
  • Participate in college governance and provide leadership for district committees and district planning activities;
  • Coordinate with the Cuesta College Foundation to promote philanthropic contributions to the district/program;
  • Authorize and coordinate use of facilities and equipment;
  • Perform duties and functions as a member of the Student Services Management Team;
  • Maintain currency in local, state, and federal trends to forecast services and related modifications of current practices;
  • Represent the district in regional and statewide professional organizations and activities, professional conferences, workshops and webinars;
  • Provide professional development opportunities for student services personnel;
  • Perform such additional duties as may be assigned by the assistant superintendent/vice president of student services, including direct responsibility for the development, supervision, and evaluation of programs as appropriate;
  • Must meet the minimum qualifications for an educational administrator (pursuant to Title 5, Section 53420):
  • Possession of a master's degree; and
  • One year of formal training, internship, or leadership experience reasonably related to the administrator's administrative assignment.
    • In addition, must meet qualifications for an EOPS Director (pursuant to Title 5, Section 56262)
  • Within last four years, two years of full-time experience or the equivalent in the (1) management or administration of educational programs, community organizations, government programs, or private industry in which the applicant dealt predominantly with ethnic minorities or persons handicapped by language, social or economic disadvantages, or, (2) as a community college EOPS counselor or EOPS instructor, or have comparable experience in working with disadvantaged clientele.
  • Completed a minimum of six units of college-level course work predominantly relating to ethnic minorities or persons handicapped by educational, language or social disadvantages.
  • Knowledge and Experience:
    • Working knowledge of higher education student services, programs, and processes which are of special value to disadvantaged, underrepresented, and nontraditional students;
    • Two years or more of previous employment in student support services at the community college level;
    • Budget management;
    • Federal Department of Education policies and regulations as related to student financial aid;
    • Legal requirements for accommodating community college students with disabilities;
    • Current technologies, integrated software systems, website management, automated delivery systems for students, personal computer and associated office software such as word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, and/or database software;
    • Correct usage of English, grammar, spelling, punctuation, and vocabulary;
    Ability to:
    • Establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with those contacted in the performance of duties;
    • Manage multiple programs with varying program requirements/mandates;
    • Provide district leadership in the achievement of institutional goals and objectives;
    • Demonstrate a sensitivity to and understanding of the diverse academic, socioeconomic, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds of staff and students and of staff and students with physical and learning disabilities.
    Physical ability to:
    • Read and comprehend printed matter and text and data on computer monitors;
    • Communicate intelligibly and effectively via speech, telephone, written correspondence, and/or email;
    • Sit or stand for extended periods of time;
    • Lift and/or carry 25 pounds;
    • Exert manual dexterity sufficient for keyboard and other office equipment operation;
    • Work at a desk, conference table or in meetings of various configurations.
    License and Certificates (current within the last year):
    • Valid driver's license and eligible to obtain California driver's license upon hire.
    Additional Information

    Required Documents: Candidates will be required to submit a cover letter, resume, reference list, unofficial transcripts, and diversity statement when applying for this position.

    When uploading documents, PDF uploads are preferred.

    Diversity Statement Instructions: Cuesta College is committed to building and maintaining a workforce that reflects and honors the diversity of our students. It is important to us that our faculty, staff, and administrators demonstrate an understanding of, sensitivity to, and respect for the diverse academic, socioeconomic, ethnic, and religious backgrounds as well as sexual orientation and abilities of all constituents in the Cuesta College community.

    In 500 words or less, with consideration to our Mission Statement and our values expressed above, please explain how you will demonstrate your commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in this position.

    Reference List Instructions: Your reference list must include five professional references, their contact information, and their relationship to you.

    Completed online applications and all supporting documents must be submitted by the closing date for this position. LATE, INCOMPLETE, FAXED, MAILED OR EMAILED APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

    Cuesta College will not sponsor any visa applications.

    San Luis Obispo County Community College District ("Cuesta College") is an equal opportunity employer committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, medical condition, pregnancy (including pregnancy, childbirth, and medical conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth), age, disability (physical and mental), genetic information, military and veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal and state law in admission and access to, or treatment in employment, educational programs or activities at any of its campuses. Reasonable accommodations will be provided for applicants with disabilities who self-disclose. Cuesta College also prohibits harassment on any of these bases, including sexual harassment, as well as sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.
    In compliance with California law, all prospective staff and students are entitled to read the Annual Security Report, published each October by the Cuesta College Department of Public Safety. This report contains information about our emergency and crime reporting procedures, as well as crime statistics for the past 3 years. You may request a copy of this report at one of our two Public Safety Offices: on SLO campus at Building 6600A or on North County Campus at building N1021, during campus business hours. You may also access the complete text of this report at the following website address:

    Interview Process Information

    Selected applicants will be invited to attend an interview on Wednesday, July 17, 2019.

    Second interviews will be held on Thursday, July 18, 2019.




    Diversity Profile: University



    View more

    Learn more on Inside Higher Ed's College Page for University

    Arrow pointing right
    Job No:
    Posted: 6/13/2019
    Application Due: 7/7/2019
    Work Type: