Director of Financial Aid

Clarkson University
Potsdam, NY

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Executive Administration Jobs
C-Level & Executive Directors
Administrative Jobs
Institutional & Business Affairs, Financial Aid
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Job Details

Job Title: Director of Financial Aid

FLSA Status: Exempt

Department: Financial Aid

Title of Manager/Supervisor: VP for Enrollment Management

Number of Employees Reporting to this Position: 6-7

Position Summary:

The Director of Financial Aid oversees the delivery of financial aid of more than 4200 undergraduate and graduate students, and 6-7 full-time team members and is responsible for the strategic leadership, administration, management, reporting, communication, fund management and disbursement of all student financial aid in a manner consistent with the University's mission. This position requires expertise in inclusive leadership, change management, planning, organization, budgeting, coordination, and direction of all activities in the Office of Financial Aid.

The Director of Financial Aid serves as the chief compliance officer and is designated as the University’s designated “capable individual” with oversight of all forms of state & federal aid and is responsible for timely, accurate reporting and full compliance with all federal and state laws, regulations, and institutional policies. Assist in annual financial aid audit with external auditors and discuss any recommendations for procedural improvement. In addition, provides expertise in the formulation, oversight and implementation of University financial aid policies, NCAA financial aid compliance, procedures and operations under the highest professional standards. It is imperative to stay abreast of regulations, guidelines and professional literature to maintain a keen ability to provide tactical recommendations regarding strategic financial aid initiatives.

Director of Financial Aid is a critical member of the Student Achievement Leadership Team and works collaboratively with internal and external partners to design and implement an enrollment strategy for students that will enhance an inclusive, diverse, and progressive student body. This position will explore and execute improved operating and communication efficiency of the financial aid unit and will be expected to fully integrate financial aid strategies that will enable Clarkson to best serve students and the University’s goals for enrollment, retention, reputation, and net revenue.

The Director of Financial Aid will continually work to improve financial aid delivery and communication processes with special attention toward the integration of both to improve service to all students.

The Director of Financial Aid will work to position the Office of Financial Aid to serve the greater Clarkson community through outreach and financial aid awareness. The Director of Financial Aid reports to the Associate Vice Provost of Academic Affairs & Student Achievement (AVPAASA).

Position Responsibilities/duties:

30% Leadership

Provide oversight, leadership and guidance for the strategic role of the Office of Financial Aid. Work collaboratively with the Student Achievement Leadership Team to develop and enhance an inclusive and progressive enrollment and communication strategy for current students and prospective freshmen, transfer, Clarkson School, continuing student, and graduate students. Oversee the development and updating of the financial aid policies and procedures, and ensure staff are trained on a regular basis. Engage in activities to foster growth and uplift the staff in the Office of Financial Aid. Engage in change management activities ensuring change is an inclusive process. Assessment of administrative capability so that staff are working in unison to achieve goals.

Keep the AVPAASA up to date on all issues. Provide recommendations regarding strategic financial aid initiatives. Ensure alignment with the institutional mission and goals.

Lead and support Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts pursued by the Office of Financial Aid.

30% Administration

Direct and oversee the administration of Financial Aid area responsible for the communication and delivery, processing, reporting and compliance of all financial aid including grants, scholarships, loans, income share agreements, and work-study, and NCAA Division I athletic financial aid. Ensure the Financial Aid communications provide superior service for all incoming inquiries.

Research and remain current on all regulatory guidelines and pending regulatory changes related to federal and state student aid administration and coordinate appropriate updates to policy and procedures in a timely manner, as well as communicate based on interpretation of regulatory guidance. Enforce and interpret academic, administrative, and student SAP policies and procedures. The Director of Financial Aid will oversee and coordinate the financial aid office response to annual audits and complete all federal and state reports. It is imperative the Director of Financial Aid understands and effectively communicates financial aid policies and provides interpretation for students, faculty, staff and other stakeholders.

Knowledge and comfort with best practices for utilizing technology is essential in order to maintain smooth customer service and interoffice data sharing. Responsible for the oversight of all financial aid technical functions, systems testing, upgrades, bundle testing, etc. with PeopleSoft as related to business processes within the Financial Aid Department.

30% Operating/Supervision

Fiscally manage all office initiatives including budget establishment, cost monitoring and compliance-based reporting. Build communications with the greater University community for financial aid, financial awareness and outreach. Provide mentorship, direct supervision and development of full-time associate director, assistant directors, financial aid coordinators, and financial aid advisors.

10% Other Duties:

Perform other related duties including but not limited to serving on various internal and external teams and committees. Serve as an effective and collegial campus collaborator within the Clarkson community. Be an active participant in professional organizations.

Essential Skills:

• Strong skills in communication, concise report writing, interpersonal relations

• Honest, direct communication style

• Demonstrated leadership skills and commitment to building a culture of trust and transparency while working in a team setting.

• Ability to be proactive, innovative, and solutions oriented

• Excellent analytical, quantitative/qualitative, and innovative problem solving skills

• Proven track record of quality and integrity

• Expertise in current financial methodology and regulations

• Ability and willingness to delegate effectively

• Skilled decision-maker, with transparency in decision-making and management

• Excellent oral, written and presentation skills; exceptional listening skills


Minimal Qualifications:

• Bachelor’s degree with at least 7-10 years of experience in a leadership position, financial aid and/or enrollment management

Preferred Qualifications:

• Master’s degree in relevant field of study

Physical Demands:

The physical demands characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

The employee is expected to adhere to University policies.

Special Instructions to Applicants: An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, Clarkson actively seeks and encourages applications from minorities, women and people with disabilities.

All offers of employment are subject to the applicant successfully passing a background check (including, but not limited to, employment verification, educational and other credential verification, and criminal records).

  • All employees are required to be full vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to the start of employment


Working at Clarkson University

As a private, national research university, Clarkson is a leader in technological education and sustainable economic development through teaching, scholarship, research and innovation.   We ignite personal connections across academic fields and industries to create the entrepreneurial mindset, knowledge and intellectual curiosity needed to innovate world-relevant solutions and cultivate the leaders of tomorrow. With its main campus located in Potsdam, N.Y., and additional graduate program and research facilities in the New York Capital Region, Beacon, N.Y., and New York City, Clarkson educates 4,300 students across 95+ rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, the arts, education, sciences and health professions. Clarkson alumni earn salaries that are among the top 2.5% in the nation and realize accelerated career growth.  One in five already leads as a CEO, senior executive or owner of a company. 

Clarkson welcomes scholars and students from all over the world.

Our community and campus settings enhance the quality of student life and afford students access to and interaction with their faculty. We value the diversity of our University community; and we strive to attune ourselves and our programs to our global, pluralistic society. We share the belief that humane and environmentally sound economic and social development derive from the expansion, diffusion and application of knowledge.

Through our Office of Human Resources, we focus on the recruitment, onboarding, training and professional development of our employee community across multiple campuses and learning environments. The goal is a campus community where all are welcomed and valued members who contribute to the development of global citizenship by promoting a diverse and inclusive environment.


#ClarksonIgnite is our catalyst for exploring, creating and achieving what’s next.

#ClarksonIgnite Fellows:

The Studio  -

Three Day Start Up


IgniteClarkson is a highly-collaborative community that ignites connections across fields, industries and cultures. 

Together we ignite the mindsets and skill sets that are in demand for tomorrow’s best careers . To think, act and lead globally, we span disciplines to find new solutions and deepen our respect for the diversity of our University community.

We develop innovative programs and research portfolios in partnership with business and industry to explore, create and achieve better futures. We invest in people, ideas and our campus’ living. We give our time, resources and goodwill to drive the future.

We are all Golden Knights who commit to living the Clarkson Values and sharing our success as a model of these ideals. Through the legacy of our personal accomplishments and generosity, we ensure the next generation has the same opportunities to create a better world for themselves and society.

Teaching at Clarkson –
Women’s D1 Ice Hockey National Champions!
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