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Director of Financial Aid

Hawai'i Pacific University
Honolulu, Hawaii

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Director of Financial Aid


Hawai‘i Pacific University, in partnership with the national search firm, Scott Healy & Associates, invites applications and nominations for the position of Director of Financial Aid. Hawai‘i Pacific University seeks an experienced leader to enhance an organizational atmosphere where divisions and units work collaboratively to enhance the student experience, leveraging aid to strategically influence enrollment.


The Director is a key member of the Enrollment Management Team, supporting HPU's mission and strategic plan. Teamwork, customer focus, continuous learning, applying technology, valuing diversity, big picture perspective, and openness to change are integral to the success of the team. Under the general supervision of the Vice President of Enrollment Management, the Director of Financial Aid has responsibility for creating a student-focused experience within the Office of Financial Aid.



Financial Aid Strategy Development and Administration (50%)

  • Provides strategic leadership and oversight in all aspects of the University's administration of financial aid and automated systems, including federal, state and institutional funds.
  • Ensures that maximum care and superior service is deployed to assist parents and students to finance an HPU education. Uses professional judgment to work with parents and aid recipients to resolve issues regarding financial aid decisions and procedures within established guidelines. Works with enrolled students to maximize understanding of aid policies and procedures related to on and off campus study opportunities, as well as summer programs. Performs outreach to parents and students to promote the various student-financing options that are available to prospective and continuing students; includes speaking to groups.
  • Performs high-level data analysis, developing and implementing financial aid strategies and action plans to support student recruitment and retention. Develops institutional grant aid annual and multi-year projections and prepares related surveys and analysis. In collaboration with the Vice President of Enrollment Management, researches packaging components annually to ensure competitive edge with peers but also maintains financial resource budgets. Constructs aid packages within established guidelines and policies to meet the objectives of the University.
  • Works collaboratively with admissions, business office, registrar and advancement office in the recruitment, and retention and fundraising efforts of the University.  Develops innovative strategies to deliver student financial services and collaborating with other departments to improve efficiencies.  Collaborates with other enrollment manager leaders to implement a comprehensive outreach strategy that will lead to enrollment growth as outlined in the University's strategic goals.  Collaborates with other enrollment manager leaders on enrollment target goal setting and operational/staffing changes designed to maximize yield.


Fiscal Management (25%)

  • Prepares annual reports on institutional financial aid awarding and processing. In collaboration with the Vice President of Enrollment Management, uses predictive modeling to develop aid awarding hierarchies and strategies to influence class composition consistent with the University's enrollment management strategy.
  • Oversees and maintains compliance with federal and state regulations, and institutional policies and procedures.  Prepares reports for the federal and state governments as required.     Manages all aspects of the Federal Student Aid programs as well as external aid opportunities and maintains compliance with NCAA regulations in collaboration with HPU Athletics.
  • Guides and leverages the Department's use of technology and systems while maintaining appropriate controls.  Holds the ultimate responsibility for the effective use of the Banner information system, ensuring that all modules related to student financial services are working effectively and efficiently.
  • Collaborates with appropriate HPU executives/senior administrators to forecast and implement a budget to ensure resources are sufficient to carry out current strategies as well as future goals. Ensures that the department meets annual and long-term goals and financial objectives necessary for continued success.
  • Coordinates and implements institutional policies and procedures to effectively administer the University's enrollment management program.


Leadership and Team Relations (20%)

  • Represents the University and Department to internal and external constituencies and promotes the institution’s mission, vision and values.
  • Provides leadership, supervision and training to department staff, espousing a high level of customer service.
  • Supervises the Associate Directors and all Financial Aid department staff. Administers procedures for the recruitment, selection, orientation, supervision, and evaluation of staff, all with customer service as a guiding principle.


Performs other related duties as assigned (5%)

  • Actively participates as an effective member of team by completing assigned duties, accepting additional assignments or reassignments.
  • Assists with seasonal peaks.




  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional experience; Master’s degree preferred.
  • 7 years of progressively responsible and successful leadership in financial aid administration, including experience with data management, predictive modeling, and aid integration with the admissions process; 10+ years preferred.
  • Proven record of financial analysis and planning.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of federal, state, private financial aid programs, reporting, and regulations.
  • Knowledge and understanding or the ability to learn applicable federal and state regulations and regulations regarding administering financial aid for an NCAA Division II program.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of best practices and broad experience in developing and administering need-based aid programs.
  • Demonstrated experience with budget preparation and program administration and using quantitative and qualitative data in support of decision-making and to maintain compliance.
  • Working knowledge of financial aid automated systems to assist in overall management of aid processing.
  • Candidate must be legally authorized to work in the United States. Visa sponsorship and relocation allowance is not available for this position. 
  • Experience with Banner information system preferred.


Desired Knowledge, Skills, and Traits:

  • A strategic thinker with a deep appreciation for the core academic purposes, mission, and culture of a university.
  • Strong communication and critical thinking skills, combined with the proven ability to move ideas forward in a collaborative manner.
  • Ability to communicate with a variety of institutional stakeholders and external audiences.
  • Strong organizational skills with the ability to handle multiple projects concurrently.
  • Commitment to the enrollment management organizational structures and use of data analytics.
  • Sensitivity to and respect for the wideranging needs of a diverse population.
  • Computer literacy. 
  • Ability to work in an environment that utilize excellent time and stress management skills.
  • Report to work obligations to support the department and may require work during HPU’s winter break, if necessary. 
  • This position may be considered an essential position with report to work obligations depending on the type of emergency, campus closure, or evacuation.
  • Must meet training and background check qualifications and comply with the Protection of Minors policy.
  • Able to work all shifts and extended hours. 


This individual must be a leader in contributing to student satisfaction through the delivery of excellent customer service in all aspects of the administration of financial aid services. The Director will have an unwavering dedication to compliance and financial aid stewardship. The Director has an understanding of data management and analysis, predictive modeling, and aid integration with the admissions process. This position requires teamwork, supervision, and personal interaction that cannot be had in a home office, therefore, regular and predictable on-site attendance is a job requirement. This position may require flexible work hours on occasion.


About Hawai‘i Pacific University:

Hawai‘i Pacific University (HPU) is an international learning community set in the rich cultural context of Hawai‘i. Students from around the world join us for an American education built on a liberal arts foundation. Our innovative undergraduate and graduate programs anticipate the changing needs of the community and prepare our graduates to live, work, and learn as active members of a global society. HPU’s campus is located in downtown Honolulu, the business and financial center of the Pacific. The beautiful aquaculture research facility, the Oceanic Institute, borders the ocean. With students from all 50 states and 65 countries, HPU is one of the most culturally diverse universities in the world.


At HPU we believe that it is our responsibility to give back to the community and respect the land we live in. Students, faculty, staff, and the broader University community are encouraged to find experiential learning opportunities with community impact that perpetuates our Hawaiian values of Pono, Kuleana, and Aloha:

  • Pono, meaning righteous, honest and moral, and an energy of necessity.
  • Kuleana, meaning responsibility and rights, and concern for all interests, property, and people.
  • Aloha, meaning hello, goodbye, love, kindness and grace, unity, humility, patience and waiting for the right moment.



About Honolulu, Hawai‘i:

Honolulu, Hawai‘i is a beautiful city filled with vibrant culture. In this cosmopolitan capital, you’ll find everything from historic landmarks, to fine dining, to world-class shopping. Home to the majority of Oʻahu’s population, Honolulu stretches across the southeastern shores of the island, from Pearl Harbor to Makapuʻu Point, encompassing world-famous Waikīkī Beach along the way.


The lush, emerald landscapes, breathtaking beaches, and warm, sunny weather create a paradise-like atmosphere in Honolulu. The rich Hawaiian heritage and the Aloha spirit of the people make Honolulu feel like home. From enjoying the stunning sunsets over Waikīkī Beach to exploring the diverse marine life while snorkeling in Hanauma Bay, every day is a new adventure. With its delicious cuisine, colorful festivals, and a perfect blend of city living and natural wonders, Honolulu offers an atmosphere that is as enriching as it is beautiful.


Application and Nomination Process:

All correspondence relating to the position of Director of Financial Aid at Hawaiʻi Pacific University should be directed in confidence to the University’s executive search consultant:

Adam Barrett, Associate Vice President

Scott Healy & Associates


A complete application should include the following:

  1. Cover Letter outlining your interest and qualifications for the position;
  2. Updated CV;
  3. Three (3) professional references with contact information, title, institutional affiliation, email address and direct phone numbers. (No references will be contacted without written permission from the candidate.)



Applications received by December 11, 2023 will receive priority consideration. The search will remain open until the position is filled.


Hawai‘i Pacific University is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to fostering a diverse, equitable environment in which faculty and staff can excel irrespective of ethnicity, gender, faith, age, color, disability or genetic information. Hawai‘i Pacific University encourages applications from veterans and individuals with disabilities. A pre-employment background investigation is performed on candidates selected for employment.

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