The Opportunity

Reporting to the vice president of student success and equity, the assistant vice president of financial aid (AVPFA) provides effective, strategic leadership to the financial aid department and is responsible for the overall management and administration of all student financial aid. The AVPFA oversees the awarding and disbursement of the annual financial aid expenditures and directs a comprehensive aid budget of approximately $55 million. As the chief financial aid compliance officer and the College’s primary authority on state and federal student financial aid, the AVPFA ensures regulatory compliance with all institutional, state, and federal financial aid programs. The AVPFA is a strategic partner in meeting the admission, enrollment, and retention goals and works collaboratively with colleagues across the College to achieve these goals.

The Position

Role of the Assistant Vice President of Financial Aid for Tulsa Community College

The AVPFA embodies Tulsa Community College’s (TCC) student-centered values and ensures the goals and outcomes of the financial aid department support the recruitment and continued success of students. The AVPFA will be expected to:

  • lead a team of 28 staff, including five direct reports, and provide ongoing growth, professional development/training and effective performance management;
  • maintain a financial aid office that provides efficient, consistent, and effective customer services to all constituencies;
  • create and analyze forecasting models, along with other offices and Student Success and Equity leadership to project student and parent needs for financial assistance;
  • oversee and administer all student financial aid and scholarship programs, including the interpretation, implementation, and compliance with Title IV Student Assistance Regulations, Title 38 Veterans Educational Benefits, and the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education;
  • facilitate timely and effective processing of financial assistance and disbursement for all students to support TCC’s enrollment goals;
  • ensure proper and timely reporting and reconciliation of funding for all aid accounts;
  • work collaboratively with TCC’s legal counsel, controller, and CFO to maintain the appropriate agreements, programs, and financial management systems to ensure compliance and proper expenditures of funds;
  • create and maintain departmental systems, policies, and procedures to ensure effective preventive and detective internal controls and monitoring for all financial aid operations;
  • continuously assess operational effectiveness and provide solutions to enhance and automate financial aid processes;
  • ensure accurate and timely completion of all required reporting for all state and federal programs and serve as TCC’s representative for institutional, state, and federal audits;
  • collect and report financial aid data for national surveys and reports;
  • lead ongoing efforts to inform and educate the campus community and other constituencies regarding financial aid policies, updates, and changes; and
  • prepare and review all web content related to student financial assistance.

History of the Position

The former Director of Financial Aid, Karen Jeffers, served in the position for over eight years prior to her departure in June of 2021. At this time, Eileen Kenney, associate vice president of enrollment and retention assumed interim director responsibility for the financial aid department. In recognition of the increased complexity and responsibilities of the director of financial role, the decision was made to elevate the role to assistant vice president of financial aid (AVPFA), reporting the vice president of student success and equity. In addition, In addition, The Evans Consulting Group was hired in July 2021 to assess the department and make recommendations and preliminary changes.

Opportunities and Challenges of the Role

The new AVPFA must be a highly experienced, strategic financial aid leader with the ability to effectively oversee a comprehensive student financial aid portfolio within a dynamic and diverse academic setting. The new AVPFA must initiate and maintain an office culture that empowers and supports staff to provide efficient, customer-focused experiences for all constituents. In addition, the new AVPFA must possess a broad understanding of state, federal, and institutional financial aid policies that govern financial stewardship, regulatory compliance, and reporting. Finally, the new AVPFA must be a strong communicator; an adept internal and external financial aid department representative and advocate; and a strategic partner in advancing TCC’s admission, enrollment, retention, and graduation goals. Within this context, the incumbent should expect the following opportunities and challenges.

  • TCC is a dynamic and diverse community with an enrollment of over 23,000 students. With nearly 70% of TCC’s students qualifying for some form of financial aid, the new AVPFA must be an expert financial aid leader that can strategically oversee TCC’s $55 million, comprehensive financial aid budget and provide optimal funding for all TCC students.
  • With an average age of 24 and an underrepresented student population of over 46%, TCC faces the unique challenge of serving a largely non-traditional, diverse, population that may not be well-versed in financial aid literacy. The new AVPFA must be adept at developing robust and comprehensive communication strategies to broaden the availability of financial aid information using a variety of methods.
  • The new AVPFA will need to take time to get to know the team and establish positions with the entire team, including the roles, talents, and contributions to the organization and its success. In addition, the new AVPFA must learn the structure of the team and strategies necessary to maintain a cohesive team located on four campuses.
  • Championing and maintaining a customer-focused philosophy and culture within the financial aid department is also a key priority for this position. The new AVPFA must be a strong manager who can effectively lead and support the team as they embrace a culture of service, care, and collaboration to meet the needs of the students and families they serve. The new AVPFA must also ensure that the department’s financial aid services align with the achievement of TCC’s enrollment goals.
  • As the College’s chief financial aid officer, the new AVPFA must “own” financial aid education on campus, and must be a proactive communicator who helps campus partners understand the delicate balance between student support and maintaining financial aid compliance and meeting regulatory requirements.
  • There will be substantial support for the new AVPFA from senior leadership at TCC, as evidenced by the elevation of this position from the director level to the assistant vice president level. In addition, TCC understands the importance of financing an education and is willing to make a continual investment to provide optimal funding for its students. This position presents an ideal opportunity for a highly experienced financial aid leader with the motivation and desire to make a difference.

Measures of Success

The AVPFA will work with the vice president of student success and equity to determine specific measurements of success and related timetables. The search committee offers the following general metrics for the position.

  • The AVPFA is a visible and engaged leader and colleague throughout campus and has established collaborative working relationships with all internal and external stakeholders.
  • The AVPFA has demonstrated transparency and has provided strategic vision, leadership, accountability, and ownership. 
  • The AVPFA has worked with the associate vice president for enrollment and retention other stakeholders to implement key college priorities for financial aid advancement or improvement.  
  • The AVPFA will have assessed the skills and knowledge of the staff and developed a strong sense of teamwork among staff.
  • The AVPFA has continued the work of evaluating departmental resources and staffing needs to determine the support necessary to deliver essential financial aid services that support TCC’s admission, enrollment, retention, and graduation goals. 
  • The financial aid department is defined as a strong, high functioning, well-regarded, and resilient team that works with synergy and shared purpose, readily collaborating across departmental and division lines with a demonstrated commitment to supporting students from enrollment through graduation. 
  • The AVPFA has formulated a comprehensive set of recommendations that will enable TCC to proactively address the changing landscape of financial aid services and support, while operating within the required standards of financial aid compliance and integrity.

Qualifications

Qualifications and Characteristics of the Role

The position requires a bachelor’s degree (master’s degree preferred), as well as a minimum of seven years of progressively responsible leadership roles and a minimum of five years at the financial aid director level. Substantial, documented, professional experience in financial aid offices and staff administration is required. 

TCC is particularly interested in candidates that possess expert knowledge of policies, regulations, and practices for awarding financial aid, including needs analysis, packaging, and expert knowledge of techniques for recruitment and retention of students through financial aid and scholarship leveraging and predictive enrollment modeling. Knowledge of the Banner system would be a plus. The ideal candidate must possess advanced problem identification and problem solving skills; exceptional critical thinking and decision making skills; and expert utilization of data and current industry technology in support of the division’s goals and responsibilities. The successful candidate must present documented experience in 

project management, organizational effectiveness, and staff management. 

Stakeholders at TCC indicated that in addition to the required qualifications for the AVPFA position, the following personal characteristics would also be sought:

  • a high level of initiative, organization, and energy;
  • the ability to manage, motivate, empower, and retain a diverse staff and to foster a supportive, open, and collaborative work environment;
  • ability to manage multiple priorities in a dynamic environment;
  • collegiality, energy, integrity, and high professional standards;
  • a forward-thinking mindset;
  • strong technical competencies;
  • adept at supporting and managing change and can diplomatically improve upon existing operations and practices;
  • excellent goal-setting skills and can establish processes to achieve those goals; 
  • accountable and transparent and, in turn, expects accountability and transparency from the team;
  • able to appropriately balance staff advocacy with the overall needs of the department and the College;
  • an effective communicator and collaborative within TCC’s diverse network;
  • ability establish a positive work environment;
  • empathy for the student experience and flexible with staff;

a customer care philosophy and understands how to effectively balance the needs of students with the overall needs and priorities of the College.

Institution & Location

An Overview of the Division of Financial Aid

The financial aid department is responsible for administering all financial aid for TCC students in the form of grants, scholarships, loans, and part-time employment from federal, state, institutional, and private sources. https://www.tulsacc.edu/admissions-aid/financial-aid.

The financial department is comprised of 21 staff members. The leadership team includes an associate director and two assistant directors of financial aid.

 

Institutional Background

Tulsa Community College has served Tulsa and northeastern Oklahoma since 1970. Now Oklahoma’s largest multi-campus community college, TCC serves more than 23000 students in college programs annually. Four fully equipped campuses – Metro, Northeast, Southeast, and West – populate the Tulsa area, along with several community campuses in the suburban areas.

TCC consistently ranks among the elite of the nation’s 1,150 community college associate degree producers, serves more college students in northeastern Oklahoma than any other public college or university and reports one of the largest freshman classes in Oklahoma every year.

Creative, innovative learning environments on every campus keep pace with rising career areas. Students can choose from associate degree and certificate options ranging from bioscience to tomorrow’s technology.

  • • The Thomas K. McKeon Center for Creativity at Metro Campus is home to students engaged in journalism and broadcasting, digital and visual arts, and online learning.
  • • The Center for Excellence in Energy Innovation at Northeast Campus focuses on alternative energy, with instruction in wind energy, solar energy, biodiesel fuels, electric transportation, and home energy audits.
  • • The Health Sciences and Biotechnology Learning Center at Southeast Campus is the instructional center for future professionals in the biological, medical laboratory and nursing fields.
  • • The Veterinary Technology Center at West Campus acts as the learning laboratory in intensive nursing care, clinical laboratory procedures, radiology, anesthesiology, dentistry, and surgical assistance for students preparing to become Registered Veterinary Technicians.
  • • The TCC Honors Program and Global Education Office each offer students options to deepen their study, examine global issues, foster cross-cultural perspectives and engage in study abroad opportunities throughout the year.

http://www.tulsacc.edu/about-us/history 

About Tulsa, OK

Once considered the oil capital of the world, “T-Town” has developed into a vibrant, modern metro area of more than 968,000 residents. Straddling the South, Southwest, and Midwest regions of the country, Tulsa is home to a distinct culture comprised of the best characteristics of each of these regions and Tulsa’s Native American heritage. Perhaps the most inviting aspect of Tulsa’s culture, however, is its warm and welcoming hospitality, as well as the down-to-earth attitudes of residents who are passionate about their home town.

Many Tulsans are life-long residents, so to say that ties between locals run deep would be an understatement. It is equally true that residents are welcoming to newcomers. Running into friends or acquaintances at the grocery store, forming lasting relationships with your bartenders or baristas and having long conversations with strangers are all the norm.

The community often comes together to celebrate its heritage and common interests. Some of the most popular events include Oktoberfest, the Tulsa Tough annual bicycle race and affiliated Cry Baby Hill block party, several food festivals, a weekly food truck lunch, Mayfest, and the Center of the Universe music festival, just to name a few.

Many people are drawn to Tulsa’s relatively low cost of living and stay because of everything else the metro area has to offer. The median home sale price sits well below the national median, and though the average income in the area is also lower than it is in other cities, Tulsa residents make enough to live comfortably.

More than a quarter of Tulsa’s population is under 20 and the metro area also has a fairly sizable millennial population. In addition, Tulsa’s focus on entrepreneurship is attracting diverse, vibrant workers from all over, with the Tulsa Remote initiative. 

Many young people choose to live downtown or in midtown neighborhoods like Cherry Street and Brookside that have apartments and smaller single-family homes available for rent. Likewise, these and other midtown neighborhoods are also popular among couples and younger families who want to be close to coffee shops, restaurants, and bars. Suburbs in places like South Tulsa are also popular among families, as are affluent midtown neighborhoods like Maple Ridge.

Tulsa has some great outdoor spots that locals routinely take advantage of. More than 130 parks dot the metro area, including the popular River West Festival Park and Turkey Mountain Urban Wilderness Area. Roughly 50 miles of trails traverse the Tulsa area, providing hikers and bikers with beautiful views of the Arkansas River. The metro area is also home to more than 20 golf courses, as well as plenty of places to team up and play soccer, rugby, and baseball.

Enjoying live music is a favorite pastime for Tulsa residents, who flock to popular venues like Cain’s Ballroom, Tulsa Theatre, The BOK Center arena, and Guthrie Green.

Tulsa also appeals to art aficionados with a collection of galleries and the expansive Philbrook Museum of Art. Meanwhile, the Deco District showcases impressive examples of Art Deco architecture designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and other notable architects.

And finally, all of Tulsa is extremely excited about Gathering Place, recognized by USA Today as the Best City Park in 2021 and in TIME Magazine’s 100 Best Places to Visit in 2019. With the largest private gift to a public park in history, Gathering Place would not exist without the generosity of families and businesses committed to continual growth in the city, providing a place for Tulsa to gather together for generations to come. For more information, visit https://www.gatheringplace.org. 

For more information about Tulsa, OK, visit the Chamber of Commerce website at https://www.tulsachamber.com/.

Mission Statement

Building success through education

Vision

An educated, employed, and thriving community

Beliefs and Values

  • You Belong Here — We foster a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion that welcomes and respects everyone for who they are and who they will become.
  • Everyone Can Learn — We meet people where they are by creating a safe and supportive learning and working environment leading to success.
  • Community Is Our Middle Name — We build community, inside and out, through collaboration, service, sustainability, and social and financial responsibility.
  • Quality Education Is Affordable — We create a rigorous and engaging learning experience that provides exceptional value.
  • Excellence Is Our Culture — We live out excellence at every level by embracing change, always improving, and persisting to reach our full potential.

Institutional Learning Outcomes

  • Communication Skills
  • Personal Responsibility
  • Critical Thinking
  • Social Responsibility

http://www.tulsacc.edu/about-us/mission 

Strategic Plan

The Tulsa Community College Board of Regents approved the College’s 2021-2025 Strategic Plan: Building Success Through Education in April 2020.

Built upon the foundation of the College’s mission, vision, beliefs and values, the Strategic Plan is a values-based plan. It allows the College to embrace who we are, and it ensures every employee can contribute to the College’s success.

More information regarding the strategic planning process, outcomes and KPIs can be found at: 

tulsacc.edu/about-us/strategic-planning.

Leadership

Leigh B. Goodson, President and CEO

Leigh B. Goodson has served as president and chief executive officer of Tulsa Community College since July 2014. As president at TCC, she successfully launched and met the College’s $20 million campaign, developed Oklahoma’s first “early college high school program,” gained TCC acceptance into the AACC Pathways Project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and is a key contributing member of the Tulsa Higher Education Consortium, a collaborative partnership with local universities. In 2021, under her leadership, TCC won the American Association of Community College’s (AACC) Award of Excellence in both the Student Success category, as well as Safety and Planning.

Dr. Goodson earned a Doctor of Philosophy in Education Research and Evaluation from Oklahoma State University (OSU), a Master of Science in Organizational Communication from Fort Hays State University in Hays, KS., and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from OSU. She is a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma class XXIII and Leadership Tulsa Class 35 and completed an Aspen Presidential Fellowship in 2016. In 2020, The Journal Record recognized Goodson as Oklahoma’s Most Admired CEO in the public category and inducted her into the Circle of Excellence for being honored three times as a 50 Making a Difference honoree at its annual Woman of the Year event. She is an active member of her community, and currently serves on the boards of the Oklahoma Business Roundtable, Tulsa Area United Way, Jobs for the Future Policy Trust, CCCSE National Advisory Board, and Tulsa Regional Chamber. She is a sought after local and national guest speaker on various topics including leadership development and community college student success. Goodson has invested herself and her career in education, having served previously as a university faculty member, university administrator, and school board member for Tulsa Public Schools. Her priority and passion is student success.

http://www.tulsacc.edu/about-us/administration/leigh-b-goodson-president-and-ceo 

The Academic Program

  • Student/Faculty Ratio 20:1
  • Full-time Faculty 280 (27 percent)
  • Part-time Faculty 739 (73 percent)
  • Full-time Staff (non-faculty) 556 (51 percent)
  • Part-time Staff (non-faculty) 542 (49 percent)
  • Associate Degree Programs 83
  • Credit-bearing Certificate Programs 38

Note: The above statistics are based on official, end-of-term data for Fall 2020, unless otherwise noted.

http://ira.tulsacc.edu/content/institutional-data 

Academic Schools:

  • Business and Information Technology
  • Health Sciences
  • Liberal Arts and Communication
  • Science and Mathematics
  • Visual & Performing Arts

http://www.tulsacc.edu/programs-courses/academic-schools 

The Student Body

  • Annual Enrollment (credit students, 2020-21) 23,000
  • Fall Enrollment (credit students, fall 2020) 15,568
  • Full-time Status (12 or more hours) 5,030 (32 %)
  • Age 24 and Under 10,630 (68%)
  • Average Age 24
  • Female 9,975 (64%)
  • Racial/Ethnic Minority 6,742 (46%)
  • First-time Students 3,033 (19%)
  • Developmental Placement (for those with test data) 47 %
  • Tulsa Achieves 2017 Cohort 1,863
  • Tulsa Achieves All Cohorts (2007-2020) 23,623
  • Concurrent Enrollment 2,204
  • Retention Rate (full-time) 61%
  • Three-year Graduation Rate* (full-time) 22%
  • Three-year Transfer Rate* (full-time) 22%
  • Degrees Awarded (2020-21) 2,577 (91%)
  • Certificates Awarded (2020-21) 246 (9%)

*Based on first-time, degree/certificate-seeking students who entered in Fall 2017. 

Note: The above statistics are based on official, end-of-term data for Fall 2020, unless otherwise noted.

http://ira.tulsacc.edu/content/institutional-data 

Benefits Overview

Benefits Overview

  • Medical Plans
  • Dental Plans
  • Vision Plans
  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Life/AD&D Insurance
  • Disability Insurance
  • Voluntary Benefits

For more information: https://pa-hrsuite-production.s3.amazonaws.com/990/docs/50119002.pdf

Application & Nomination

Application and Nomination

Review of applications will begin February 11, 2022 and continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position may be emailed to Lynette M. Lindsey at lml@spelmanjohnson.com. Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Tulsa Community College website at https://www.tulsacc.edu.

Tulsa Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, qualified disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, or any other basis protected by applicable discrimination law in its policies, practices, or procedures. This includes, but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid and educational programs, activities, or services.