Assistant Director - Wurtele Center for Leadership

Center for Work & Life Job Description

Job Summary

Oversees the design and facilitation of leadership development partnerships between the Center and internal areas of the College, with an emphasis on academically-focused leadership development. Leads collaborative efforts to expand the ways in which the work of the Wurtele Center for Leadership bridges the curricular and co-curricular areas of College life. Takes the lead in developing and teaching a cross-disciplinary, problem-based collaborative capstone course accessible to all majors at Smith as part of the Center’s initiative to develop student collaborative leadership capacity.

Essential Functions

Instruction (50%):

Design and teach a cross-disciplinary, problem-based collaborative capstone course open to Smith students from any major. Identify real-world, complex problem-based challenges and lead student teams through the process of problem framing and iterative design and testing of solutions. Create and facilitate connections with field experts and mentors.

Strategic Partnering & Leadership (25%):

Provide strategic thinking and guidance in order to deepen the ways in which the Center builds connections between students’ development as leaders and change makers in their curricular and co-curricular experiences on campus. Create partnerships with academic departments and programs to support the integration of the Center’s approach to leadership development within students’ academic experience, including supporting interdisciplinary, team-based scholarship and applied problem-solving learning opportunities. Organize the Center’s efforts to create collaborative relationships with additional on-campus departments and individuals that support the co-curricular leadership development of Smith students, including the Lazarus Center for Career Development, the Smith College Museum of Art, CEEDS, Lewis Center for Global Studies, and the Botanic Garden.

In collaboration with the WCL Director and leaders of the Conway Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center, the Design Thinking Initiative, and the Narratives Project, provide support for an intensive in-depth program offering, linked to the above capstone course, that will allow students to explore their purpose and learn to lead collaboratively toward ethical, innovative social impact. Assist the strategic process of developing and organizing the program, including branding and communication in order to attract student participants.

Program Design and Facilitation (10%):

In partnership with the Director and other staff, collaboratively design and co-lead workshops and/or other events and experiences sponsored by the Wurtele Center and/or in conjunction with campus partners. Track and execute the logistical details and tasks necessary to ensure the success of programming.

Assessment & Communication (15%):

Develop and lead an assessment and communications strategy for the Center, with the support of other team members. In partnership with Institutional Research and the Wurtele team, establish creative and comprehensive methods for tracking and documenting the work of the Center, as well as telling the story of the Center’s accomplishments and outcomes.

Supervise student interns, galvanizing them to assist with communications and research efforts of the Center. Mentor and provide feedback.

Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications (knowledge, skills, education, experience, certifications, licenses)

Master’s degree or higher, 3-5 years of relevant experience, and expertise in problem-based, collaborative, cross-disciplinary applied learning and program coordination in a higher education setting or an equivalent combination of education/experience.

Preferred Qualifications

Position requires a demonstrated ability to build bridges across curricular and co-curricular programming; experience and/or familiarity with a liberal arts college environment is a plus. Proven experience designing and teaching real world problem- and team-based curricula grounded in the learning sciences. High aptitude for strategic thinking, program design and project management, including a proven ability to see a project through from conception through implementation. Strong commitment to women’s leadership development and willingness to explore its many possible meanings and manifestations. Track record of working collaboratively and productively with a range of constituencies within an educational setting, including students, faculty, staff, and alumnae. Familiarity with human-centered design as an approach to problem-solving and leadership is highly desirable. Strong interpersonal, collaborative, facilitation, and writing skills are essential.

Please attach/upload a current resume and cover letter in order for your application to be considered for this position.

Review of applications will begin

November 20, 2020

Compensation Grade:

Grade G

Position Type:


About Smith College

Located in Northampton, MA, Smith College is one of the largest women’s colleges in the country and is dedicated to excellence in teaching and research across the liberal arts. A faculty of outstanding scholars interact with students in small classes, as advisors, and through student-faculty research projects. The College is a member of the Five College Consortium with Amherst, Hampshire and Mt. Holyoke Colleges, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Students cross-enroll and faculty cross-teach across the Five Colleges.

Smith College is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, age, color, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression or veteran status in the recruitment and employment of faculty and staff, and the operation of any of its programs and activities, as specified by all applicable laws and regulations. Women, minorities, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

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