Assistant Director and Head Advisor, BDIC

Job description

Assistant Director and Head Advisor, BDIC

Job no: 506219
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Bach Deg w/Ind Concentration
Union: PSU
Categories: Academic Advising & Learning Resources, Professional Staff Union (PSU)

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.

Job Summary

The Bachelor's Degree with Individual Concentration (BDIC) is a degree program that resides within Interdisciplinary Programs which serves all UMass undergraduates interested in designing their own interdisciplinary major. The program works with other colleges and departments to negotiate academic opportunities and faculty sponsors for BDIC students.

The Assistant Director works with the Director to plan, implement and supervise all programs, classes and initiatives within the BDIC major. The position assumes primary responsibility for curriculum development, personnel management, advising of majors and prospective majors, student recruitment, major publications and interdepartmental communication, alumni relations and budget management. Because the BDIC Director is a quarter-time position, additional leadership is required of the Assistant Director.

Essential Functions


  • Budget: Manages with Director, every aspect of BDIC budget and works with PeopleSoft SUMMIT reporting for budget managers.
  • Serves on BDIC Executive Board: Meets monthly with BDIC faculty board to assess, re-design and implement improvements to BDIC program.
  • Administers departmental and University policies: Clarifies policies as determined by the BDIC Executive Board to students, faculty and staff.
  • Outreach to other departments and universities.
  • Communicates and clarifies BDIC policies to faculty and administrators from other departments; represents BDIC at national interdisciplinary studies conferences.
  • Supervision: Supervises one clerical office manager position; one adjunct instructor of junior year writing; one student web master; 12-15 student peer advisors and receptionists.
  • Training: Trains all employees in all aspects of BDIC operation; creates training manuals for peer advisors and faculty supervisors; teaches peer advising training class each semester.
  • Alumni outreach: Works in conjunction with Director to plan and execute events, such as alumni forums, to encourage alumni participation and donations to program. Manages communications with alumni using electronic and print media.
  • New student recruitment: Creates and implements events for freshmen and transfer students, such as information sessions.
  • Represents BDIC at all campus open houses and majors’ fairs for prospective students. (Many of these events take place on weekends and evenings).
  • Departmental Scheduling officer: Manages scheduling of BDIC class offerings.


  • Prospective students/current students: Responsible for all areas of advising for the BDIC major, including meeting with prospective students and monitoring the progress of on-going students on a frequent basis. (BDIC is an advising-intensive program because students design their majors with help from advisors.)
  • Works closely with BDIC Academic Dean and other Undergraduate Advising staff to ensure students' progress and good standing.
  • Graduation clearance: Oversees process for clearing of all BDIC students' degree completion and certifies BDIC graduation with Registrar.

Programmatic Duties:

  • Curriculum development: Works with Director and BDIC Executive Board to explore and expand BDIC curricular opportunities within the major.
  • Course design: Advises junior year writing instructor regarding syllabus possibilities.
  • Creates recruitment and informational materials including newsletters, brochures, informational handouts and submissions to the Guide to Undergraduate Programs.
  • Coordinates special events, such as the BDIC Senior Celebration (a University mandated event coordinated in cooperation with the Director of Commencements) following UMass Commencement, guest lectures, student advisory board meetings and alumni events.

Other Functions

  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Master's degree in liberal arts or related field required.
  • 2-5 years experience in higher education setting.
  • Ability to interact effectively with faculty, students and alumni constituents. Capable of working successfully with diverse population including (but not limited to) faculty, academic and non-academic professional and classified staff, administrators, students and the general public.
  • Business manager experience (SUMMIT Reporting, People Soft Finance, Budget Projections, etc).
  • Experience in program design and curriculum development.
  • Strong writing and interpersonal skills. Strong leadership and counseling skills; demonstrated ability to lead, advise, train, negotiate and persuade same populations to work collaboratively, cooperatively, efficiently and effectively in a challenging, dynamic workplace.

Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Knowledge of BDIC program structure

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

Typical Office Environment

Work Schedule

Monday – Friday 8:30am – 4:30pm

Salary Information

MTA/NEA Professional Staff level 28

Special Instructions to Applicants

Candidates should submit a cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references. Applicants should apply by the priority deadline of September 17, 2020 to ensure consideration.

UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University. To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans. It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

Advertised: Aug 25 2020 Eastern Daylight Time
Applications close: Sep 17 2020 Eastern Daylight Time




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Job No:
Posted: 9/4/2020
Application Due: 9/17/2020
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