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University of Washington
Washington, United States
Salary Not specified
Posted date
Aug 14, 2021

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Position Type
Administrative, Student Affairs, Residence Life
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time
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Thank you for considering HFS Residential Life, a unit within Housing & Food Services at the University of Washington—Seattle.

At the University of Washington, diversity is integral to excellence. We value and honor diverse experiences and perspectives, strive to create welcoming and respectful learning environments, and promote access, opportunity and justice for all.

UW Housing & Food Services (HFS) is an integral partner in the University’s drive to provide vibrant student life and educational opportunities. HFS provides students with housing that meets their needs, promotes community, supports their academic success, leadership development and social connections, and facilitates campus engagement. As reflected in our mission statement—working together to enhance student life—teamwork and service to our students and customers are at the heart of our business.

To learn about our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion at UW Housing & Food Services, you are encouraged to review our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement Training.

View additional information about HFS, Residential Life and this position here.

The Director of Residential Life provides leadership, vision and direction to the programs and services associated with residential life for students residing in Housing & Food Services (HFS) communities including all residence halls, student apartments and family housing on the UW Seattle campus. Approximately 9700 beds fall under the purview of this director. The position has six direct reports that oversee three residential neighborhoods, student care and conduct, educational amenities (including three maker spaces), and administrative operations. In order to achieve desired outcomes and in support of departmental and institutional values, the Director of Residential Life must lead with a deep understanding of social justice and a demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. This position works collaboratively with all the other functional areas within Housing & Food Services and serves on the department leadership team, reporting to the Assistant Vice President for Student Life / Executive Director of Housing & Food Services.


Strategic Planning:

  • Direct strategic visioning and planning resulting in programs and services that effectively meet the needs of residents and supports institutional goals.
  • Develop and manage the unit operating budget, budget objectives and revisions.
  • Identify annual unit priorities, associated action plans and measures of success.
  • Keep abreast of the professional literature/research and new and emerging trends pertaining to student development in the campus residential environment and provide relevant information to Department leadership.

Organizational Effectiveness:

  • Oversee the development and execution of programs and services that address resident needs and support their growth and development as individuals as well as their academic success, including but not limited to:
    • Special interest living/learning communities
    • Student leadership opportunities
    • Community development initiatives
    • Appropriate response to student conduct issues
    • Educational activities designed for maximum student engagement
  • Ensure that programs and services are evaluated and that necessary adjustments are made to realize the intended impact.
  • Ensure a staffing structure that supports the delivery of programs and services and results in a positive experience for staff at all levels.
  • Oversee the development and execution of an effective training and development program for staff.
  • Develop the appropriate protocols associated with crisis management and incident response.
  • Oversee the development and execution of protocols related to major transitional periods (i.e. autumn opening and Move-in, Winter Break, closing and Move-out, spring to summer).
  • Develop appropriate policies and procedures to ensure compliance with applicable University, state, and federal regulations.
  • Develop and maintain positive and collaborative relationships with other campus entities (i.e., UWPD, Counseling Center, LiveWell, Office of Community Standards and Compliance, Academic Affairs, etc.) that enhance the Department’s ability to serve students and carry out associated responsibilities.


  • Identify, articulate, and model values and behaviors that support an organizational culture characterized as positive, productive and committed to serving students.
  • Guide, direct, and engage in program development, program delivery, communications, and decision making that reflect a deep understanding of diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Guide decision making processes appropriate to the situation in regard to soliciting input from multiple stakeholders and disclosing relevant information.
  • Serve as a member of the Department’s senior leadership team.
  • Oversee the strategies and parameters for the annual recruitment and selection of professional staff and student leaders.
  • Develop and maintain effective, positive and collaborative working relationships with all other Departmental functional areas.
  • Develop and maintain effective relationships with campus and external partners.
  • Represent the Department on various University committees and direct and serve on Department committees and teams.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to personal growth and development.


  • Supervise the work completed by direct reports, ensuring appropriate productivity and quality.
  • Evaluate the work completed by direct reports and provide constructive feedback so as to support success.
  • Provide guidance to direct reports on requirements and/or opportunities for learning and professional development for themselves and their respective team members.

Perform other duties as assigned.

An effective Residential Life Program supports student recruitment, retention, socialization and personal and academic success. Collaboration with other University entities contributes to consistency and alignment with institutional goals and objectives. This position is responsible for processes and protocols related to student conduct and compliance, and responding to emergent situations involving students. Failure to manage these situations properly could result in loss of life, loss of property, and/or liability for the University.

This position leads a unit whose staff interact with all persons living in residence on a regular basis, addressing a wide range of issues including health and safety concerns with a very diverse population. In some instances, immediate response is required to prevent loss of life and/or property. The position oversees the operationalizing of student development and applied environmental theory within a dynamic environment.

Position works typical business hours Monday through Friday; however, frequent evening and weekend commitments occur primarily during the academic year (Autumn through Spring quarters). Position is in an “on-call” status for emergencies at all times.

Direct supervision of 6 full-time professional staff and indirect supervision of an additional 37 full-time staff.

Assistant Vice President for Student Life/Executive Director, Housing & Food Services

Master’s degree in student personnel, counseling, higher education administration or related field and three years in a leadership position managing campus residential communities including experience that demonstrates:

  • Knowledge of student development theory and the ability to translate theoretical concepts into practice.
  • Strong communication skills including public speaking.
  • Understanding of principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion in regard to organizational development, supervision, staff development, and student learning and development.
  • Ability to develop effective relationships with a wide range of individuals internal and external to the institution.
  • Knowledge of student conduct processes, compliance requirements and best practices.
  • Knowledge of incident response and follow-up.
  • Understanding of program assessment and the ability to interpret and apply data to practice.

Equivalent education and/or experience may substitute for minimum requirements.


  • Terminal degree (Ed.D. or Ph.D.) in related field.
  • Ten years of experience in a leadership role in collegiate student housing.
  • Evidence of contributions to the field of student learning and development including conference presentations, publications, research and speaking engagements.

A satisfactory outcome from the employment verification and reference check processes.

Application Process:
The application process for UW positions may include completion of a variety of online assessments to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process. These assessments may include Work Authorization, Cover Letter and/or others. Any assessments that you need to complete will appear on your screen as soon as you select “Apply to this position”. Once you begin an assessment, it must be completed at that time; if you do not complete the assessment, you will be prompted to do so the next time you access your “My Jobs” page. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your "My Jobs" page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until all required assessments have been completed.

The University of Washington is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer.

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