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Assistant Dean and Senior Director McCormick Career Development

Northwestern University
Evanston, Illinois
Commensurate with qualifications
Posted Date
Apr 19, 2023

Assistant Dean and Senior Director McCormick Career Development

Job ID: 47550
Location: Evanston, Illinois

Department: MCC Engineering Career Develop
Salary/Grade: EXS/13

Job Summary:
The Assistant Dean and Senior Director McCormick Career Development oversees and manages all aspects of McCormick’s Engineering Career Development (ECD) office, a full-service career advising and professional development center. The Assistant Dean of ECD is responsible for developing (with the School’s senior leadership team) the vision for career support across all degree programs as well as for developing and managing the area’s functions, including employer relations, student/alumni counseling, systems/analytics, and the strategic management of the team and budget. The position reports to an Associate Dean and serves as a key member of the Dean’s leadership team.

ECD provides a broad portfolio of career development programs and services to all current McCormick undergraduate and graduate students, as well as alumni at every stage of their professional lives: cooperative education, internships, service learning, research experience, career skills coursework, and full-time employment are among the ECD set of offerings.

ECD has enjoyed notable growth and success in delivering programs, services, and partnerships that support our sought-after Northwestern Engineering students in maximizing their career readiness and impact. The office works in close partnership with Northwestern Career Advancement to ensure that McCormick students enjoy the best possible career support.

McCormick is now looking for a new strategic and collaborative leader to amplify and grow ECD in response to new opportunities, growing demand, and a changing careers marketplace.

About Northwestern: In the last three decades, Northwestern University has firmly rooted itself as a preeminent national and global university. Northwestern’s ascent into the upper echelon of major research universities has been guided by a series of excellent and long-serving leaders, who have consistently strengthened critical components of the University and enabled world-class faculty, students, and staff to realize the mission of the institution.

Northwestern, a member of the AAU, is one of only four top 10 US universities also ranked in the top 20 in each of the five graduate education categories: Business, Education, Engineering, Law, and Medicine.

Northwestern is committed to supporting a diverse and inclusive campus community. The four intertwined strands of access, equity, enrichment, and well-being guide the focus of the institution's work through the development and implementation of strategic equity, diversity, and inclusion initiatives across the University. With an endowment of approximately $16 billion, Northwestern is among the best endowed institutions in the world.

About the McCormick School of Engineering: The McCormick School of Engineering, established in 1909, is located on Northwestern’s Evanston campus and is driven by a mission to produce leaders and path-breaking research that will create the maximum positive change in the world. The school’s reputation and culture of collaboration draw top faculty, staff, and students from across the globe.

McCormick’s approximately 300 full-time faculty, over 200 part-time and adjunct faculty, and 415 staff members serve a population of 1,973 undergraduate students and 2,198 graduate students (1,089 doctoral students and 1,401 master’s students), which has grown by almost 20 percent over the last decade. The increased demand from students for a McCormick education can be attributed to the strong and collaborative culture of student engagement, access to world-class faculty, and an emphasis on nurturing skills for technical excellence, problem-solving, and leadership.

About the McCormick Engineering Career Development (ECD): Started as a small team over 15 years ago to manage a cooperative education program, ECD has evolved and grown steadily in scope and staff to manage student internships, research experiences, service-learning opportunities, and full-time employment for McCormick students. ECD enhances each student’s unique career plan by offering both students and employers a mutually beneficial means of connecting in the world beyond the classroom. ECD’s mission is to provide all McCormick students with the tools necessary for lifelong career management and to forge relationships with employer partners to this end.

*Note: Not all aspects of the job are covered by this job description.

Specific Responsibilities:

  • Strategic planning and execution – The Assistant Dean leads the development and execution of a strategic plan that will sustain, grow, and measure programs designed to assist students to manage their career experiences. Partners with ECD team members, senior leadership, campus partners, employers, and students to continually improve and evolve career services. Serves as the executive ‘face’ of McCormick Career Services and effectively communicates the value of the Northwestern Engineering brand and student to the employer marketplace. Tracks industry/marketplace trends, best practices, and benchmarks against peer programs and employer feedback.
  • Supervisory & Personnel Development - The Assistant Dean will manage and mentor the ECD team staff; developing staff members, hiring for growth, and organizing human resources to optimize service quality and career pathing. As the ‘Advisor in Chief’, the Assistant Dean will lead by example.
  • Finance & Administration – The Assistant Dean will lead financial and administrative planning for ECD, planning & managing budget to fund the strategic mission - including financial sustainability & enhancement models. Plans & implements annual budget including fiscal resource allocation. Oversees routine budget reconciliation & analyzes budget position. Explores opportunities to increase resources through employer fees, sponsorship (where appropriate) or alumni gifts.
  • Internal Partners & Stakeholder Alignment - Staying aligned with and gaining leverage from Northwestern & McCormick partners and stakeholders will enable the Assistant Dean and ECD to fulfill its mission. McCormick senior leadership, department chairs, and master’s program directors, and student groups/clubs will all have valuable perspective on student needs and industry foci. Northwestern’s Career Advancement, the campus-wide career center, has resources to leverage and shares some of the employer relationship management. Northwestern Alumni Relations and Development works closely with ECD on employment management/industry engagement as well.
  • External Relationships - The Assistant Dean will provide leadership and direction for employer recruitment/management and industry/careers associations. Leads the strategic direction regarding employer recruitment and relationship management strategy and may personally lead key/major relationship development; identifies key stakeholders and influencers within employers and other organizations; creates and nurtures mutually beneficial relationships between internal units and employers that support programs and activities and meets career objectives. Identifies opportunities, solicits organizations, cultivates, and stewards relationships which expand alternative sources of resources and services. Uses this platform to improve Northwestern Engineering's reputation and visibility. Coaches employers on the best way to facilitate employment of students; how to navigate the institution and partner with different units of the school. Manages relationships with schools and other campus units with the school.
  • Programs & Events - Develops, plans & implements strategies, goals & approach for programs collaborating with internal/external partners to ensure that events are implemented and meet or exceed planned goals. Determines goals, objectives, outcome measurements and metrics, financial feasibility, marketing strategies and collaboration opportunities with other internal and external organizations. Oversees the ongoing development and refinement of the program's curriculum/topics in consultation with subject matter experts. Provides leadership for planning, scheduling, delivering, and maintaining programs to sustain quality. Integrates programming across McCormick.
  • Marketing & Promotion - The Assistant Dean amplifies the story of Northwestern Engineering, improves Northwestern Engineering’s reputation and visibility in interactions with employers, industry, and press. The Assistant Dean works with the marketing and communications team to develop and implement strategies that effectively communicate the value of Northwestern Engineering and its students to key stakeholders.
  • Career Services Tech - Systems & Analytics - The Assistant Dean will oversee and lead the use of technology for career services, ensuring that the tools enable education, student self-service, management of process, data collection, and scale. This includes developing and implementing innovative technological solutions to enhance the delivery and effectiveness of career services for students and alumni, as well as to improve the efficiency of ECD staff. Also includes ensuring the quality, accuracy, and integrity of Careers data for analytics and reporting. Provide direction to staff who perform data analytics and produce reports that can best inform ECD decisions to help meet the School’s goals; effectively communicate data and trends to internal and external stakeholders. The Assistant Dean will stay up to date with emerging technologies and assess their potential for use in career services.
  • Equity & Compliance - The Assistant Dean oversees development & implementation of processes & procedures that ensure compliance with all applicable federal, state, local & NU laws, regulations, policies & procedures, related training/certification, and supporting documentation. Ensures equitable access to services, in line with Northwestern diversity and inclusion focus. Ensures international student support and documentation (CPT) for employment.

Minimum Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities.)

  • Successful completion of a full 4-year course of study in an accredited college or university leading to a bachelor's or higher degree; OR appropriate combination of education and experience.
  • Minimum 10 years’ experience in career counseling/advising in higher education and related work, including leadership experience.
  • Demonstrated competency in senior management responsibilities including strategic planning, leadership, financial stewardship, and corporate relations.
  • In-depth knowledge of career development strategies, employer communications and management, student needs and motivation, hiring practices across relevant industries for Engineering graduates.
  • A collaborative leadership style, including supervisory experience.
  • Demonstrated empathy and diplomacy in dealing with diverse constituent groups, with sometimes competing interests given the complexity of stakeholders.
  • Ability to work and manage effectively in a fast-paced environment with changing deadlines.
  • Must be able to travel.

Please apply online at

At Northwestern, we are proud to provide meaningful, competitive, high-quality health care plans, retirement benefits, tuition discounts and more! Visit us at to learn more.

Work-Life and Wellness:
Northwestern offers comprehensive programs and services to help you and your family navigate life’s challenges and opportunities, and adopt and maintain healthy lifestyles.
We support flexible work arrangements where possible and programs to help you locate and pay for quality, affordable childcare and senior/adult care. Visit us at to learn more.

Professional Growth & Development:
Northwestern supports employee career development in all circumstances whether your workspace is on campus or at home. If you’re interested in developing your professional potential or continuing your formal education, we offer a variety of tools and resources. Visit us at to learn more.

Northwestern strongly recommends COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters for people who can obtain them as a critical tool for minimizing severe illness. More information can be found on the COVID-19 and Campus Updates webpage.

The Northwestern campus sits on the traditional homelands of the people of the Council of Three Fires, the Ojibwe, Potawatomi, and Odawa as well as the Menominee, Miami and Ho-Chunk nations. We acknowledge and honor the original people of the land upon which Northwestern University stands, and the Native people who remain on this land today.

Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Click for information on EEO is the Law.

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