Executive Director, Office for International Students and Scholars

Missouri, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Mar 19, 2021
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

Summary of Position

The Executive Director provides leadership, management, and direction for the Office for International Students and Scholars (OISS).  The Executive Director will serve as a liaison to all colleges that interact with international students and scholars. Serves as the Principal Designated School Official (PDSO) and Responsible Officer (RO) to fulfill the obligations for compliance with federal regulations related to the enrollment of international students and employment of international scholars. This position leads a wide range of educational and cultural programs, immigration advising, and other support services for international students, international exchange students, and international alumni.  In addition, this position supports efforts to recruit and retain the most promising scholars from around the world including faculty members, research associates, postdoctoral research fellows, visiting scholars and physicians. This role will provide strategic supervision of a highly functional team to support the international student and scholar experience at Washington University.



  • Seven years of experience as an immigration and academic officer of a university-based department providing services and advising to international students, faculty and staff
  • Three years as a senior administrator supervising staff
  • Knowledge of immigration regulations, policies and procedures
  • International student and scholar advising experience
  • Demonstrated ability to proactively promote and sustain effective working relationships within a diverse multicultural environment and meet the needs of a diverse population
  • Demonstrated expert knowledge of federal regulations pertaining to and interpretation of F and J visas
  • Direct immigration employment-based experience - knowledge of government regulations, J processes, and filing procedures for H-1B, TN, E-3, O-1, and permanent residency
  • Must have experience as PDSO and RO
  • Demonstrated knowledge of data management systems, we will be transitioning from ISSM to Terra Dotta in the next 12 months
  • Master's degree or higher in a relevant field, D. or Ph.D. in a related field preferred
  • Experience living or working for a significant time outside the U.S. is preferred
  • Proficiency in a second language is preferred
  • Familiarity with immigration employment based visas for physicians and researchers on a medical campus preferred


Management and Administration

  • Supervise 11 professional staff and provide leadership of the office that advances the mission and strategic priorities of both the Danforth and Medical Campuses
  • Remain current with all aspects relating to the field of international services within higher education
  • Effective management of all OISS budgets
  • Oversee sessions for students and scholars including, but not limited to, workshops on immigration matters, taxes, OPT, CPT, employment, and transition to the U.S.
  • Proactively develop and implement relevant programming for student and scholar success and retention
  • Provides the necessary leadership to ensure that the OISS is providing the highest level of service to the students, scholars, and campus-at-large
  • Demonstrate commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace environment
  • Maintains professional growth and the development of staff by participating in educational programs and professional organizations and activities to maintain knowledge of national trends and promote leading edge expertise in this area
  • Hires, trains, supervises and evaluates all full-time professional staff

 Immigration Oversight

  • Oversee the F-1 student visa services. Serve as Primary Designated School Official (PDSO) for the Student Visa Program in SEVIS
  • Oversee the J-1 research scholar (visiting scholar), H-1B faculty/researcher, and employment-based Permanent Residency cases
  • Serve as Responsible Officer (RO) for the Exchange Visitor Program for the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS)
  • Oversee management of the SEVIS monitoring system and is responsible for the institution's SEVIS recertification through SEVP
  • Ensure that the office is using database systems and other technology to maximize the efficiency of operations
  • Assure compliance with any and all federal, state and university policies, including USCIS and Department of State regulations
  • Recommend and interpret policies regarding international students and scholars


  • The spokesperson for OISS to both the campus-at-large as well as the external community
  • The primary liaison to the any government agencies that come to campus to make inquiries
  • Primary liaison with General Counsel as it relates to sensitive legal issues; with Dean of Students and Graduate Student Life, and Vice Chancellor for Human Resources as it relates to international community problems or issues
  • The Executive Director is responsible to for making presentations about OISS and any aspect of immigration when called upon by the university partners and leadership
  • Serve as liaison to the university community for the successful integration of international students and scholars at the institution.
  • Work with academic department chairs, human resources, general counsel, VC for International Affairs, admissions, administrators from all 7 academic schools, Habif Health and Wellness, and all other relevant offices within student affairs and on campus
  • Provide education and consultation on complex student and scholar immigration issues
  • Participate in the strategic development and implementation of short and long-term internationalization goals
  • Foster positive intercultural interactions among domestic and international students

Challenges and Opportunities

The opportunity presented the new Executive Director starts with the inheritance of a highly functional, adaptable and talented team.  As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, this moment provides us with somewhat of a clean slate to set a vision and path for the future. Building on a stable and growing international population, in collaboration with university leaders, the Executive Director will position international students into the collective consciousness of the university.  The Executive Director will need to convey the story of our international students and scholars by effectively and strategically communicating the role and impact of OISS at Washington University.

The challenges for this position should be considered complementary to the aforementioned opportunities.  The Executive Director will need to identify the gaps that exist in function, process, programs to align with the university strategic plan. While there is a lot of overlap within OISS, finding balance on the team to support the work of both our scholar contacts on the Danforth and Medical campuses and our international students and scholars will be essential.  This position will further build and strengthen partnerships across the campus as a relentless advocate to divisional and campus leadership to garner and grow resources to support OISS. 


Salary Information

Salary is complemented by a comprehensive benefits package which includes medical, dental, retirement, tuition, and paid time off.


Candidates should email their resume and cover letter with statement of interest to:

 Mark S. Prosperi                                     

Executive Director, Talent Management                      

      and Executive Search                      

  Washington University in St. Louis                                         

  Email: Prosperim@wustl.edu


Apply on line at  https://jobs.wustl.edu/ and enter the job number 50596 in the keywords window.

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