The Opportunity

Established as a stand-alone university in 2009, Texas A&M University-San Antonio is a comprehensive four-year public university that reflects the culturally diverse, heritage-rich community it serves. Situated on nearly 700 acres in south San Antonio, Texas A&M University-San Antonio is a Military Embracing™ institution offering 30 undergraduate degrees and 14 graduate degrees to almost 7,000 students. The University is home to the Henry G. Cisneros Institute for Emerging Leaders and the Cyber Engineering Technology/Cyber Security Research Center. Texas A&M University-San Antonio holds the Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) designation. Military Times ranks the University No. 35 in the nation for “Best for Vets: Colleges.”

The Position

Role of the Associate Vice President and Dean of Students for Texas A&M University – San Antonio

Reporting to the vice president of student success and engagement, the associate vice president and dean of students (AVP/DOS) works collaboratively with the vice president and other university leaders to advance the strategic goals and innovation priorities of the Student Success and Engagement Division (SSE). In addition, the AVP/DOS will represent the SSE on various University committees and work closely with senior administrators of academic colleges in a variety of units including Student Success Center, Campus Police, and academic leaders. The AVP/DOS has a diverse portfolio of responsibilities that may include, but is not limited to, providing collaborative leadership for university-wide, data-informed initiatives on the undergraduate student experience; student learning and success; closing opportunity gaps; and helping all Texas A&M University-San Antonio students thrive. The AVP/DOS is responsible for policy development; administration; supervision of staff; budget development and oversight; program planning and implementation; as well as providing vision and strategic direction to departments and programs within the Dean of Students area of the SSE division: Student Rights and Responsibilities, New Student Programs, Student Involvement, Student Counseling Center, Disability Support Services, and Housing and Residential Life. The AVP/DOS participates in the formation of student policies and procedures and is the point of contact and facilitator for the Behavior Intervention Team. The AVP/DOS serves as an advocate for students and the student voice in university decisions that directly affect students’ education and well-being. The AVP/DOS coordinates and implements divisional initiatives such as staff development, new student orientation and convocation, campus programming, retention initiatives, strategic planning, and other duties as assigned by the vice president of student success and engagement.

History of the Position

The previous AVP/DOS spent eight years at Texas A&M University-San Antonio and separated from the institution in the summer of 2021. Immediately following the departure, Dr. Joni Baker, Title IX coordinator, was appointed interim AVP/DOS and will continue to serve on an interim basis while Texas A&M University-San Antonio conducts a national search for a permanent leader.

Opportunities and Challenges of the Role

The new AVP/DOS will have the opportunity to work closely with the vice president of student success and engagement to provide innovative counsel and should be a flexible and creative individual who embraces complex projects head-on. In transitioning to Texas A&M University-San Antonio, the AVP/DOS may encounter a number of opportunities and challenges as shared by university stakeholders.

  • Texas A&M University-San Antonio is a young institution with an exciting future. The AVP/DOS will play a vital role in the continued development of campus life and the student experience, as well as the institution’s mark on the San Antonio community and higher education.
  • There is genuine excitement that, with a new AVP/DOS coming on-board, there will be opportunities for deeper facilitation of a culture of creativity, innovation, and progressive thinking. Therefore, the AVP/DOS must assist in establishing the Division for Student Success and Engagement’s acceptance and understanding of upcoming changes.
  • This position affords the new AVP/DOS a great opportunity to highlight their professional skills and positively influence the campus community.
  • The AVP/DOS must quickly create a culture of trust, warmth, unity, and healthy collaboration.
  • The Division’s staff is committed, talented, and adheres to an exceptionally strong work ethic. As a result of the staff’s strong work ethic, there is a desire for the AVP/DOS to cultivate a work climate that allows for personal and professional balance.
  • The AVP/DOS will need to “hit the ground running” as many goals and initiatives are already in process, and Texas A&M University-San Antonio has an administrative culture that is fast-paced and change-oriented.
  • The AVP/DOS will find a peer group and colleagues that are welcoming, promote open communication, emphasize an orientation toward service, and share a desire for a progressive and forward-thinking professional.
  • The AVP/DOS must be able to successfully balance the administrative demands of a leadership position within a culture that also expects that the position will be a highly visible and accessible advocate to students.
  • Endeavoring to build a deep appreciation for the work of each reporting unit and actively facilitating collaboration between and across departments is essential. Accordingly, the AVP/DOS must be recognized as an ally, champion, and advocate for all direct reports, and take the time to get to truly know the entire staff, their roles, talents, and contributions to the organization and student success.
  • The AVP/DOS will need to build an exemplary team by earning trust through authentic relationship building, enhancing current staff morale, and creating a culture of honest information sharing, solicitation of others’ input, and fair and consistent accountability methods.
  • Staff members need an experienced leader to infuse new energy, innovative ideas, and a sense of direction/purpose within the organization.
  • It will be important for the AVP/DOS to review all student policies and procedures from multiple user perspectives to ensure they are clearly defined and consistently and uniformly upheld. The AVP/DOS will also be expected to prioritize the development of written protocol and policies and procedures for critical student incidents.
  • Student Housing has experienced exponential growth in campus housing requests. Due to the high demand of on-campus housing and physical space issues, this has yielded significant overflow of students being waitlisted or seeking alternative means to acquire housing off campus. The future of additional on-campus housing is one of the Division’s highest priorities.

Measures of Success

At an appropriate interval after joining Texas A&M University-San Antonio, a number of accomplishments will define initial success for the new AVP/DOS.

  • The AVP/DOS will maintain a proactive, highly visible, well-respected, and established leadership presence on campus that is credible, collegial, and highly effective.
  • The areas reporting to the AVP/DOS will be defined as a strong, highly 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 student success.
  • The AVP/DOS must be viewed as a highly-regarded expert on issues of student development, evolving trends impacting student life, and the programs and services designed to support student success, and on the diverse student body served by Texas A&M University-San Antonio.
  • The AVP/DOS will establish clear goals and objectives, monitor progress, and demonstrate measurable outcomes regarding student retention and success.

Qualifications

Qualifications and Characteristics

Candidates must possess a master’s degree in student affairs administration, higher education, education, counseling, social work, or related field with a minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience and leadership in student affairs, higher education administration, or related field to include a minimum of five years of experience in a supervisory or managerial role. Candidates possessing a doctoral degree are strongly encouraged to apply. Qualified candidates must have experience with undergraduate education and a high level of understanding of major issues and emerging trends within higher education that impact undergraduate students; a demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion; outstanding written and oral communication skills; high energy and creativity; a proven record of effective leadership, organizational, and managerial skills; and the ability to build critical, collaborative partnerships across the University.

Additionally, various stakeholders identified a number of characteristics, skills, actions, and/or abilities as important attributes of the AVP/DOS:

  • a strong understanding of contemporary student issues and values, and the ability to develop a natural rapport with students and student leaders;
  • a facilitator of change with the capacity to build alliances and bring others onboard with a mindset for strategic, forward thinking, and innovative approaches;
  • student-centered, mission-driven, and brings passion and enthusiasm for moving the institution forward;
  • the ability to make difficult decisions when necessary, to conduct difficult conversations when pertinent, to listen to all sides of an issue, to build consensus, and to remain “cool under pressure” no matter the situation;
  • creative, know-how to optimize resources, and sufficiently mature to know when and where to seek outside assistance;
  • strong crisis management skills and demonstrated experience successfully working through crisis situations, with knowledge of mental health issues, behavior intervention teams, and laws impacting campus professionals and students;
  • professional demeanor, good sense of humor, highly organized and disciplined, and the ability to relate easily to a wide range of groups;
  • a good listener who can synthesize information, get others on board, and articulately explain divisional goals and initiatives to individuals outside of the division and institution;
  • outstanding ability to motivate and empower staff to get results;
  • ability to balance patience and urgency in working with various institutional stakeholders;
  • an open, transparent, and collaborative work style;
  • ability to set priorities to achieve objectives and manage multiple projects concurrently;
  • a strong and insightful voice to the vice president’s leadership team with the ability to advocate for divisional and student needs within the context of broader institutional goals but also diplomatically express dissent when appropriate;
  • proficient at formulating policies and protocols to guide and support the work of the AVP/DOS office.

Institution & Location

Overview of the Division of Student Affairs

Mission

The Division supports and advocates for students by keeping their needs and perspectives at the center of everything it does.

Vision

The Division of Student Success and Engagement is a model for student success in providing leadership, expertise, and services to enhance student learning.

Core Values & Tenets

The Division of Student Success and Engagement embraces the university mission and core values, including Excellence, Student Focus, Audaciousness, Opportunity, and Collaboration. As an integral part of the Texas A&M University-San Antonio community, members of the Division of Student Success and Engagement seek to align programs and services through the lens of the following tenets:

  1. Student-Centered
    1. Helping students’ advance to their goals
    2. Being mindful of students’ perspectives
    3. Fully exploring students’ options
  1. Inclusive
    1. Accepting different learning styles and participation styles
    2. Embracing unique identities
    3. Reaching out to community partners
  1. Transformative
    1. Expanding students’ world view
    2. Appreciating every interaction as an opportunity
    3. Expanding capacity and depth of the individuals through experiences
  1. Engaging
    1. Promoting a sense of community
    2. Encouraging inclusive processes
    3. Fostering a collaborative spirit

Office of the Dean of Students

The Office of the Dean of Students is dedicated to promoting the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of students and their families and civility, accountability, and responsibility among the student population.  The office houses Student Rights and Responsibilities, New Student Programs, Student Involvement, Student Counseling Center, Disability Support Services, and Housing and Residential Life.

Student Rights and Responsibilities

The main role of the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities is to oversee the student conduct process and be an advocate for students who may have questions regarding community standards. Staff members strive to promote a campus climate of integrity, service, commitment, and excellence by focusing on promoting a holistic approach to student rights and responsibilities.

New Student Programs

The Office of New Student Programs at Texas A&M University-San Antonio is designed to provide incoming students, and their families, with shared experiences and intentional connections that create community, promote Jaguar pride, and set the tone for student academic success, while navigating life as a student.

Student Involvement

Student Involvement strives to create inclusive experiences, programs, and opportunities for students to engage with one another to promote growth and create a diverse and inclusive community on campus.

Student Counseling Center

The Student Counseling Center (SCC) is a welcoming, inclusive, and confidential space that serves a culturally diverse Texas A&M University-San Antonio student population by providing quality mental health services, fostering a sense of belonging, collaborating with campus and community partners, and promoting holistic wellness to improve student success.

Disability Support Services

Disability Support Services (DSS) provides innovative services that empower and inspire student learning, development, and independence by facilitating equal access through reasonable and appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities. DSS collaborates with the diverse Texas A&M University-San Antonio campus community to offer guidance, support, and advocacy promoting equity for all.

Housing and Residential Life

Esperanza Hall is Texas A&M University-San Antonio’s first on-campus student housing and the Jaguars’ home away from home.

Leadership of the Division

Dr. Mari Fuentes-Martin, Vice President of Student Success and Engagement

Dr. Mari Fuentes-Martin is the Vice President of Student Success and Engagement (VP-SSE) at Texas A&M University-San Antonio. Dr. Fuentes-Martin has a record of excellence in executive leadership and an administrative acumen that guides her as she leads the next generation of student success and engagement. Her experience in these critical areas, as well as her deep understanding of the dynamics of higher education in Texas and the student populations, further propel Texas A&M University-San Antonio’s mission and enriches the student experience. She leads the University’s development of student success and engagement strategies and enhances the resources, activities, and services supporting student affairs, as well as links the collection, assessment, and use of data to establish and inform best practices across the institution to effectively support student success and engagement.

Dr. Fuentes-Martin has served in various student affairs leadership roles, including overseeing LSU’s William A. Brookshire Military and Veterans Student Center. She has held numerous student affairs positions at the University of Texas-Pan American, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, the University of Texas at Brownsville, and Texas Southmost College, as well as roles at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and the University of Notre Dame. Before joining Texas A&M University-San Antonio, Dr. Fuentes-Martin served as a school evaluator for the Middle States Commission of Higher Education. Her professional accomplishments also include participation in the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities Kellogg MSI Fellows Program, the Foundation for Women’s Resources Texas Leadership Class of 2005, and the Texas A&M University System Chancellor’s 21st Century Council Fellowship for Doctoral Studies in Educational Leadership. She earned a Doctorate of Education from Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, as well as a Master’s of Science in Administration and a Bachelor of Arts (History/Business Administration) from the University of Notre Dame.

https://www.tamusa.edu/officeofthepresident/leadership/mari-fuentes-martin.html

Institutional Overview

Institutional background/history

Texas A&M University-San Antonio is a contemporary university reflective of the diverse and heritage-rich community it serves. Founded as the first upper-division institution of higher education in South San Antonio, Texas A&M University-San Antonio today is a comprehensive four-year university offering affordable, high-quality education.

From May 2009, when Texas A&M University-San Antonio became a standalone university, to fall 2017, enrollment grew 340 percent. The University currently serves nearly 7,000 students and has graduated more than 8,000 alumni. The student body is 60 percent female and 72 percent Hispanic, and approximately 77 percent of students are the first in their family to attend college.

Through the University’s 30 undergraduate degrees and 14 graduate degrees, students can pursue a wide variety of in-demand fields, such as education, business, information technology and cyber security, criminology, and biology. Texas A&M University-San Antonio prepares and empowers students with knowledge and marketable skills that prepare them for rewarding careers, responsible global citizenship, and lifelong learning.

https://www.tamusa.edu/about/index.html

San Antonio, TX

Once a frontier settlement in the Wild West, San Antonio has become a city full of modern amenities. As one of the top shopping destinations in the nation, San Antonio offers upscale boutiques, multiple shopping malls, and the largest Mexican market in the USA. The city is also famous for its scenic River Walk, which makes getting around downtown a breeze. Stretching more than 24 kilometers from start to finish, the River Walk’s shaded pathways connect hundreds of shops, restaurants, hotels, historic landmarks, museums, and attractions. It is also the setting for many of the city’s annual festivals and events featuring food, wine, live music, and more.

With a unique culture stemming from its Spanish, German, and American roots, San Antonio offers an abundance of history, arts, and exciting cuisine. Take the River Walk to the north and you will find museums filled with everything from Picassos to Western memorabilia and the Pearl, an exciting culinary and shopping destination. To the south, the River Walk leads to four Spanish missions that once provided shelter for frontier settlers and still provide some of the best bird watching spots around. Perhaps most notable of all San Antonio’s missions is the Alamo in the heart of downtown. The Missions and the Alamo have been named a World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Just a short way outside of downtown, you will find five theme parks, more than 50 golf courses, one of the largest zoos in the USA, the largest caverns in Texas, and hiking and biking trails stretching into the Texas Hill Country, a region quickly gaining recognition for its wineries. All in all, San Antonio is one unforgettable city where you will never run out of things to do. If you ever need a suggestion, just ask one of the friendly locals.

https://www.visittheusa.com/destination/san-antonio

Mission, Vision & Values

Mission

As a proud Hispanic-Serving and Military-Embracing Institution with a predominantly first-generation student population, Texas A&M University-San Antonio transforms lives and our community by delivering a quality higher education experience that is accessible and inclusive, and by empowering students for academic success, rewarding careers, and engaged global citizenship.

Vision

Texas A&M University-San Antonio will be a rising doctoral-granting university with a robust research portfolio, a national reputation for fostering equitable learning experiences and outcomes, and increasing influence as a catalyst for social, cultural, and economic impact.

Values

We are student centered.

We exist, first and foremost, to serve our students and support their academic success, professional development, and personal growth. We meet our students where they are and are intentional in understanding and serving their needs.

We are equity-minded, inclusive, and respectful.

We embrace individual and cultural differences as a strength of our diverse community, and share in the responsibility to co-create a culture and shared mindset in which each member is accepted, valued, safe, and can thrive.

We are Visionary.

We reject the status quo and take an “all things are possible” approach to building a university of the future, embracing innovative ways of thinking and doing.

We are a catalyst for opportunity.

We create transformative, equitable experiences and outcomes for our students, employees, and community. We engage in and support teaching, learning, and research that advance the creation of knowledge, improve our understanding of the world, and effect positive change.

We are collaborative.

We understand the value of working together across disciplinary and organizational lines, and embrace a spirit of collaboration, both within the University and with our community partners.

We are committed to excellence.

We foster a culture of holistic wellbeing, achievement, and excellence, grounded in the honor, integrity, and traditions that are the hallmarks of the Texas A&M University System

https://www.tamusa.edu/strategic-plan/mission-vision-values-goals/

Strategic Vision for 2040

A Strategic Vision for 2040 – Outlook to A Foreseeable Future. Talent is universal; opportunity is not.

When the late Texas State Senator Frank Madla proposed legislation to establish an institution of higher education on the south side of San Antonio, he acted on this sentiment, which has since become a popular aphorism. Senator Madla envisioned a thriving urban university, reflective of its diverse, heritage-rich community that would enhance neighborhoods and create pathways for economic mobility. Many voices and community leaders banded together to make Texas A&M University-San Antonio a reality and in so doing, launched boundless opportunities for a rising metropolitan university and the community it serves, inspiring everyone to think big and catalyze large-scale, equity-minded progress.

Now in the second decade—and looking forward at the next 20 years—the audacious spirit of its founding is more necessary for the future of Texas A&M University-San Antonio than ever before. Already one of the nation’s fastest growing cities, San Antonio’s population is forecasted to increase by approximately one million people by 2040, and the continued growth of Texas A&M University-San Antonio is essential to ensuring the city meets the educational and professional workforce needs of the future. The University is an anchor for the continued development of South Bexar County and the spark for research activities and economic and social mobility. The academic enterprise drives innovation and knowledge production that will improve students’ quality of life and the surrounding community for generations to come. Twenty years from now, the University will have continued to evolve to meet the emergent needs of the region, and will enjoy a reputation for excellence, grounded in the accomplishments of faculty, staff, students, and alumni.

To read more: https://www.tamusa.edu/strategic-plan/documents/a-strategic-vision-for-2040.pdf

Leadership

Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson, President

Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson is the President of Texas A&M University-San Antonio and is a San Antonio native with over 30 years of higher education experience in Alaska, California, and Texas. In 2016, she led the University’s transformation from upper division to a comprehensive master’s university in addition to achieving the U.S. Department of Education Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) designation.

Dr. Teniente-Matson has led strategic initiatives and partnerships including the creation of the Mays Center for Experiential Learning and Community Engagement, Cisneros Institute for Emerging Leaders, Institute of Water Resource Science and Technology, Cyber Engineering Technology/Cyber Security Research Center, and the University’s first Facebook CyberSecurity University Program. She has led the redevelopment of the campus’ 694-acre masterplan to support its accelerated growth including approximately $200 million in new facilities, infrastructure improvements, and P3 partnerships, and developed support from elected officials to build an economic regional hub for south Bexar County.

Dr. Teniente-Matson created the President’s Commission on Equity (PCOE) to advance equity and inclusion. She has created leadership development competency models for Chief Business Officers in Higher Education, is a former board chair of the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO), and currently serves as a faculty member for its Fellows Program and New Business Officer Programs.

Dr. Teniente-Matson has been recognized world-wide and nationally for her leadership and service. In 2020, she was awarded the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership’s 2020 US-Japan Public Intellectual, and in 2019 she was recognized as a Network for Change and Continuous Innovation’s (NCCI) top 20 Thought Leaders in Change and Innovation. She has also received the NACUBO Professional Development Award, Making a Mark on the World Innovation Award from the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber, the Top 10 Professional Woman of the Year Award from the Marjoree Mason Center, the Women’s Leadership Award from the SA Business Journal, the Comet Award from the SA Women’s Chamber, the Hope Award from the Hispanic Organization for Public Employees, the Civil Leader Award from La Prensa, and The Top 40 under 40 from the Alaska Journal of Commerce.

Dr. Teniente-Matson serves on numerous national educational-governing and local civic boards. She is currently the Treasurer for the board of directors for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), and Treasurer for Higher Education Resource Services (HERS). She is also a member of TIAA’s Inclusion and Diversity Council, and currently serves on the City of San Antonio Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women. Dr. Teniente-Matson was also a mayoral appointee and President of the San Antonio 2018 Tricentennial Commission.

An advocate for continuing education, Dr. Teniente-Matson earned her Bachelor of Arts in Management from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, her Master of Business Administration from the University of Alaska Anchorage, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Fresno State. Dr. Teniente-Matson is a sought-after author, speaker, and mentor on traditional and contemporary issues in higher education leadership. She and her husband Mike have two sons: Phillip and Wyatt.

https://www.tamusa.edu/officeofthepresident/about-the-president/biography.html

Academic Programs and Faculty

With over 30 degree programs and affordable options, Texas A&M University-San Antonio is San Antonio’s premier 4-year university.

Texas A&M University-San Antonio provides every student the opportunity to learn in an accessible and collaborative environment.

Departments and Programs

  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • College of Business
  • College of Education and Human Development
  • Graduate Studies

https://www.tamusa.edu/academics/index.html

The Student Body

 

Fall 2021 Race/Ethnicity

American Indian/Alaskan Native – 16

Asian – 80

Black or African American – 393

Hispanic – 5329

Multiracial – 117

Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander – 7

Non-Resident Aliens/Foreign Nationals – 16

Not Reported – 31

White/Non-Hispanic – 921

 

TOTAL – 6910

Benefits Overview

  • Medical and Prescription
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Life Insurance
  • Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D)
  • Long Term Disability
  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Worker’s Compensation
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Holiday Schedule
  • Employee Designated Tuition and Fee Assistance Waiver

For more information: https://www.tamusa.edu/humanresources/benefits/index.html

Application & Nomination

Application and Nomination
Review of applications will begin immediately 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 Quincy Martin III at qm3@spelmanjohnson. Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Texas A&M-San Antonio website at https://www.tamusa.edu/.

Texas A&M University-San Antonio is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Veterans/Disability Employer.