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Associate Dean for Student Affairs

Harvard Graduate School of Design
Massachusetts, United States
Salary Not specified
Posted date
Jul 27, 2021

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Position Type
Administrative, Academic Affairs, Academic Administration, Student Affairs, Chief Student Affairs Officers & Vice Presidents
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time
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The GSD seeks an experienced and forward-thinking leader with demonstrated success in higher education administration to serve as the Associate Dean for Student Affairs.  Reporting to the Executive Dean, the successful candidate will provide leadership for integrated delivery of Student and Enrollment Services and provides supervision to the directors overseeing these functions.  The Associate Dean will serve in a key leadership role in high-level planning on matters pertaining to student body composition, admissions practices, and results, financial services delivery, career planning and services, and admissions.  This includes developing and implementing strategies for building and supporting a student body that is excellent and diverse across multiple departments and programs. 


  • Reporting to the Executive Dean and working closely with the Dean, leads the Office of Student Affairs, including Admissions, Financial Aid, Registration, Career Services, and Student Support Services, supporting approximately 950 students.
  • Provides direction for and fosters collaboration amongst these areas to support academic goals and ensure that incoming and current student needs are met.
  • Provides leadership and develops a strategic vision that contributes to continuous improvement, innovative solutions, planning efforts, and other departmental initiatives.
  • Works closely with the Dean, the administrative leadership council, and faculty across the School to further develop strategies and programs that will position the School to attract and retain highly qualified students and ensure GSD's place as a leader in the field of design.
  • Develops strategy to ensure that belonging and inclusion efforts are infused in all aspects of the student experience within the GSD and attends to the issues of intersectionality within and among GSD students.
  • Plays a key role in reviewing and establishing policies and processes as they relate to Student Affairs.
  • Maintains and ensures compliance to School, University, and Federal rules and guidelines.
  • Serves on School and University-wide committees and works on special projects as needed. Serves as a member of the GSD's Administrative Leadership Council, and as a member of the University's Council of Deans of Student Services (CODOS) leadership group.
  • Oversees the department budget.


Supervises 3-4 direct reports including several director level positions.  


Bachelor's degree; minimum 10 years of job-related experience; previous experience working in higher education; experience supervising staff.


Advanced degree preferred; demonstrated expertise in one area of student and enrollment services; knowledge of student personnel issues, including matters pertaining to Title IX preferred; demonstrated excellence in leadership, team building, motivating and supervising staff; excellent communication (verbal/written/presentation); strategic planning and negotiation skills; experience with diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging programming and facilitation; demonstrated ability to make hard decisions as well as forge strong working relationships with a variety of constituencies; ability to work both collaboratively and independently, with a creative approach to problem solving and demonstrated success in dealing appropriately and effectively with individuals at all levels of an institution and from a wide array of countries and cultures; excellent management skills and a proven ability to lead and mentor staff across functional areas and to develop and implement strategic goals; strong analytical skills and ability to maintain confidentiality.


Harvard will require COVID vaccination for all Harvard community members who will have any on-campus presence. Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement and exceptions may be found at the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage:


The Harvard Graduate School of Design is passionate about fostering a diverse, inclusive, respectful, and professional work environment.   Applicants of all race, ability, gender expression and identity, sexuality, religion, education, class, national origin, and diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Until our return to campus and full operational status, which is still to-be-determined, this interview process and position will take place in a modified manner – including virtual interviews, remote onboarding, and remote work.

In order to be considered for this role, a cover letter is required.  Candidates must be authorized to work in the United States now and in the future.  We regret that we cannot sponsor a work visa.

Please apply online at the Harvard Careers website. Upload a cover letter and resume to: and keyword search to requisition # 54581BR. 

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