Dean of Admission and Financial Aid

Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County
Mar 19, 2014
Executive Administration Jobs
“As income inequality increases in America, as the federal government considers its fiscal challenges, and as the Supreme Court reconsiders race-based affirmative action, attention to access by talented low-income students to the nation’s top colleges and universities is both timely and imperative. Solutions may not be simple or inexpensive, but the fact is that these qualified students are out there. We should be giving them every opportunity, first encouraging them to apply and then making it possible for them to attend.” --from Vassar College President Catherine Bond Hill in the Huffington Post, “Improving Socioeconomic Diversity at Top Colleges and Universities” Vassar College, a prestigious and progressive liberal arts college located in Poughkeepsie, New York, seeks applications and nominations for the position of Dean of Admission and Financial Aid. The new Dean will continue to focus on attracting and enrolling highly qualified students from all socio-economic, cultural and geographic backgrounds, which the College values and strongly supports with its policies of need-blind admission and meeting the financial need of its students. The Dean of Admission and Financial Aid oversees a staff of 28, serves on select faculty and administrator committees, and is a collaborative partner with several departments on campus, including the Offices of Alumnae/i Affairs and Development, Finance and Administration and Communications. The Dean of Admission and Financial Aid is a member of the senior staff, who works collaboratively on College-wide goals and decision-making. Priorities: Through need-blind admission and a dedication to need-based financial aid policies, Vassar has been successful in increasing socio-economic, geographic and ethnic diversity while maintaining the high quality academic profile of the student population. The new Dean will embrace this commitment while bringing new ideas and creativity to enrolling students who will thrive at Vassar College. Recognizing the strength and diversity of the current, highly-skilled admission and financial aid teams, strong leadership with the ability to foster growth is essential. The Dean will provide direction through the technological transition into a paperless operation, and sophistication in market analysis and enrollment modeling. Other priorities include bolstering relationships with faculty and alumni, partnering with marketing and communications staff and promoting Vassar College effectively in all arenas. Qualifications: Candidates for this position should be passionate about a liberal arts education and dedicated to diversity in all forms. The ideal candidate will have the professional presence, skills and demeanor necessary to represent Vassar effectively to internal and external communities, as well as to the media. Candidates should have these additional qualities and experiences: • Sophistication and familiarity with shaping a class in a selective admission environment • Excellent oral and written communication skills • A strategic approach to admission and financial aid that is both data-driven and mission-guided • Willingness to support and nurture the professional development of staff members • Strong belief in collaborative efforts with senior administration and faculty • Ability to integrate the offices of admission and financial aid into campus culture by working with all facets of campus life, including student organizations, administrative offices, faculty, athletics and alumni • Awareness of market trends especially in selective admissions • Interest in the innovative and productive use of new technologies • Financial and budgetary mastery • An inspirational leadership style • Calm, warm and welcoming demeanor characterized by empathy and the ability to listen • Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree preferred Vassar College: Vassar College is a highly selective, residential, coeducational liberal arts college with an endowment of approximately $900 million. Consistently ranked among the top colleges in the country, Vassar is renowned for pioneering achievements in education, for its long history of curricular innovation, and for the beauty of its 1,000-acre campus. With more than 2,400 undergraduate students and an 8-to-1 student-faculty ratio, Vassar is committed to providing a rigorous course of study among 29 departments, 6 interdisciplinary programs, 12 multidisciplinary programs, 50 majors and 1,000 courses. There is no “typical” Vassar student; students come from every socioeconomic background, ethnicity, religion, political ideology, sexual orientation, and cultural identity. But there is definitely a Vassar “type” – intelligent, creative, idealistic, curious, ambitious, and independent. The Vassar campus boasts over 100 academic and residential buildings, with 98 percent of the student body living on campus. Currently under construction is an 80,000 square foot Integrated Science Center with state-of-the-are research and teaching facilities, made possible in large part by a highly successful $430 million capital campaign. Twenty-three teams participate in NCAA Division III athletics with extensively expanded athletic facilities. Under the leadership of President Catharine Bond Hill, Vassar College has increased in diversity, improved in facilities, and maintained a superior level of academic excellence. For more information about the College, visit Location: The 1,000-acre Vassar campus is located in a residential area of Poughkeepsie, NY, in the heart of the scenic Hudson Valley. Poughkeepsie has a population of 100,000 and serves as the county seat of Dutchess County. Within Poughkeepsie are numerous opportunities for entertainment and shopping, the Bardavon Opera House, dance clubs, theaters and shopping malls. There are a great variety of restaurants at every price range. Poughkeepsie and the surrounding communities offer excellent schools and beautiful homes for families. To the north and west of Poughkeepsie, opportunities for recreational and outdoor activities abound— including hiking, skiing, kayaking, rock climbing and camping. Since Poughkeepsie is located approximately 75 miles from New York City, one can travel to New York in the comfort of a commuter train, arriving in less than 2 hours. Residents of Poughkeepsie and surrounding communities enjoy access to the big city while taking advantage of living within the benefits and the beauty found in the Hudson Valley. Hudson Valley has regularly appeared in National Geographic , and the Huffington Post recently featured the high quality of life in this area. To Apply: Lahti Search Consultants ( is assisting Vassar College with this search for a Dean of Admission and Financial Aid. For more information, or if you wish to nominate someone for this position, please contact Terry Lahti (, Mary Napier ( or Robin Reynders ( All communications will remain confidential. If you wish to apply, please send a resume and cover letter by email to: Although resumes will be reviewed until the position is filled, for assurance of full consideration, please submit materials before April 15. Formal interviews are anticipated in May, with an expected start date of July 2014. Vassar College is strongly committed to fostering a community that reflects the values of a liberal arts education and to promoting an environment of equality, inclusion and respect for difference. Vassar College is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer, and applications from members of historically underrepresented groups are especially encouraged.