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Director of the Academic Center for Excellence

Concordia University Chicago
Illinois, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Closing date
Sep 20, 2021

View more

Position Type
Administrative, Student Affairs, Academic Advising & Academic Support Services, Disabled Student Services
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time
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Job Details

Concordia University Chicago (CUC) invites applications for the full-time, exempt position of Director of the Academic Center for Excellence (ACE). Under the general supervision of the Associate Dean of Students - Academic Resources, the person selected for this position creates, manages, evaluates, and assesses ACE staff, activities, services, and initiatives with integrity and excellence. As a mentor and role model who teaches and advises students who require extra support, the director honors the individual needs and gifts that each person embodies as they pursue academic and personal success. The director promotes and monitors academic support programs and activities such as tutoring services and academic recovery programs for students. Additionally, he/she develops and leads academic support workshops for the general student body within the context of a faith-based environment. The director of ACE strives for excellence as the University's lead disability specialist and coordinates access to accommodations and services for students with disabilities. Candidates must be committed to the mission and identity of Concordia University Chicago. Additionally, they must profess values congruent with the teachings of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS). This position reports directly to the Associate Dean of Students Academic Resources and is located in River Forest, IL.


Retention & Probation Student Support

  • Lead and contribute to university retention initiatives focused on supporting student academic success and increasing student progress toward graduation
  • Research, develop, and implement academic recovery program for probation students
  • Mentor individual academic probation students and supervise their academic progress
  • Serve on Academic Suspension Appeals committee

Accessibility Services

  • Maintain knowledge of current and prospective legislation and regulations governing the application of the Americans with Disabilities Act with regard to higher education policies, procedures, and practices
  • Review and verify disability documentation of functional limitation to determine eligibility for temporary and permanent reasonable accommodations of support and service requests
  • Promote and facilitate university-wide equal learning opportunities

Academic Support/Resource Workshops & Orientations

  • Represent ACE at orientations for incoming students for fall and spring semesters
  • Collaborate with Academic Advising & Study Abroad, Center for International Student Services, and Library staff to develop and lead workshops geared toward academic, personal, and social development
  • Promote student engagement in academic success initiatives, programs, & activities
  • Tutor students directly in humanities, social sciences, and undergraduate & graduate-level writing
  • Assist undergraduate students in applying for scholarships, fellowships, graduate school, and service organizations in individual appointments via WCOnline

Intellectual Enrichment & Distinctive Programming

  • Team with CUC faculty to offer students enrichment lectures, debates, and table panels across a variety of academic disciplines in CUC/s new CULearn Teaching & Learning Commons
  • Provide graduate students with strategies for Masters theses and Doctoral dissertation support
  • Utilize ACE personnel and non-personnel resources to develop a distinctive ACE academic culture of undergraduate research
  • Assist undergraduate students with applying for nationally competitive fellowships and scholarships
  • Collaborate with Associate Dean of Students, Academic Resources on possible scholarship for presentation/publication

Faculty/Academic Department Engagement

  • Partner with the Math and English faculty who manage the Math and Writing centers
  • Use Academic Early Warning System (AEWS) to assess academic support needs and initiate proactive outreach to departments to identify potential support options and collaboration opportunities
  • Formalize and implement digital faculty peer tutor referral system
  • Manage and promote proctoring options
  • Teach COL 1000 and organize routinized academic support for CUC's Excel Scholar population
  • Actively promote ACE & academic support to various deans, department chairs, and faculty
  • Develop a close working relationship with Writing Center leadership and collaborate with the Writing Center on policies, procedures, and programming.

Recruitment, Training, Management, and Professional Development

  • Recruit highly qualified professionals and student staff to fulfill a variety of positions to support undergraduate and graduate student needs
  • Train professional and student staff to reflect Concordia's mission and values
  • Provide regular professional development opportunities for professional and student staff to ensure continuous improvement of support and resource options based on emerging and promising practices in the field of learning assistance

Communication & Reporting

  • Use data extracted from sources such as WCOnline the Academic Early Warning System to create and share reports that inform decision-making, policies, procedures, and budget allocations to promote ACE growth and CUC student retention
  • Record, assess, and present trends in student needs & engagement to faculty and administration
  • Monitor tutoring and graduate assistant hours and document in a bi-weekly cost efficiency report measure and forecast needs
  • Maintain strategic communication plan to ensure students, faculty, and staff are educated about support and resource options
  • Compile quarterly reports for Board of Regents

Skill Sets


  • Thorough knowledge and fluency with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and related legislation
  • Technologically savvy; Advanced Microsoft Office proficiency with an emphasis on PowerPoint, Publisher, ACCESS, & EXCEL
  • Facility with WC Online
  • Professional and diplomatic written and verbal communication skills; Effective communication and empathetic listening skills
  • Advanced critical, creative, and strategic thinking
  • Competent problem solving and conflict resolution
  • Exceptional time & priority management
  • Confident and collaborative organizer with initiative
  • Positive mindset with a sense of humor


  • Demonstrated leadership in the field of higher education academic support
  • DegreeWorks, Blackboard Learn, Blackboard Analytics/Intelligence, Argos, Qualtrics
  • Familiarity with and understanding of higher education standards, resources, and certifications provided/promoted by related professional and academic associations.


Master's degree in education or related field required; Undergraduate certification or colloquy completion as a professional church worker in the LCMS preferred

Minimum of five years of experience for the following:

  • Effective professional and student staff management
  • Assessment and continuous improvement of learning center services and programs
  • Engagement with diverse college student populations facing physical and academic challenges
  • Direct support and advocacy for college students with disabilities
  • College level curriculum development, direct instruction, and tutoring
  • Academic support program development and implementation
  • Implementation of computer assistive technology

Compensation and Benefits:

Starting range is dependent upon individual qualifications and experience. Concordia University Chicago benefit options include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Health, Dental, and Vision Insurance
  • Flexible Spending Account (FSA) and/or Health Savings Account (HSA)
  • Disability and Survivor Plan (Basic Life Insurance)
  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
  • Retirement Pension Plan
  • Retirement 403(b) Savings Plan
  • Supplemental Life Insurance
  • Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance
  • Accident Insurance
  • Critical Illness Insurance
  • Tuition benefits (available for employees and their qualified dependents)

Application Information:

Interested individuals should include a cover letter, resume and references with their online application.

Concordia does not discriminate in the employment of individuals on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, disability, sex or age. As an institution of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, however, and to the extent allowed by law, Concordia University reserves the right to give preference in employment based upon religious affiliation.

Concordia University Chicago does not generally sponsor for employment visas except for positions that oversee, teach or support our international programs.

About Concordia University Chicago:

Concordia University Chicago is a liberal arts-based Christian university founded in the Lutheran tradition. Through its College of Theology, Arts & Humanities, College of Business, College of Education, and College of Health, Science & Technology, Concordia-Chicago offers more than 160 areas of study in small classes taught by professors who are passionate about teaching and student success. All undergraduate and graduate degrees are fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Concordia University Chicago has been recognized as a College of Distinction since 2010, and is consistently ranked among the Best Regional Universities - Midwest by U.S. News & World Report. For more than a decade, combined undergraduate and graduate enrollment has exceeded 5,000 students. Concordia University Chicago is located in River Forest, 10 miles west of downtown Chicago. Learn more about our commitment to higher education, rooted in the Gospel, at

Steadfast in Jesus Christ as revealed in the Holy Scriptures, Concordia University Chicago promotes academic rigor in its liberal arts and professional programs; grounds students in objective truth, integrity, and excellence; and practices faithfulness to the Confessional teachings of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, as it forms students for vocations in church, family, and the world.

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