The Position

ROLE OF THE POSITION

The Saint Michael’s College (“College”) director of admission provides exemplary leadership and vision for effective prospective student search, recruitment, communication, evaluation, admission, and yield outreach for a diverse student body. The director will support an enrollment management culture characterized by ethical decision-making, sincere commitment to diversity and access, strategic risk-taking, and creativity.
Reporting to the vice president for enrollment and marketing, the director will manage prospective student recruitment strategy, allocating human and budgetary resources to provide a range of outreach activities for the department. The director will lead a holistic application review process, maintaining clear and ethical admission standards and fair evaluation while ensuring timely notification of applicants. The department comprises ten employees with a budget of $2.5 million. The director will support Saint Michael’s College’s mission and its Edmundite Catholic heritage. The director will collaborate closely with the directors of marketing communication and student financial services to articulate the College’s distinctive character and value proposition and to recruit and enroll a class that meets the College’s goals.

Essential duties and responsibilities as outlined in the college position description include:

  • Manages prospective student recruitment strategy, allocating human and budgetary resources to reach prospective students through a range of outreach activities
  • Leads a holistic application review process, maintaining staff adherence to clear and ethical admission standards
  • Oversees the fair evaluation and timely notification of applicants for admission each year. Conducts regular anti-bias training with the admission committee
  • Leads yield and summer melt mitigation strategies to enroll a class of admitted students who match the characteristics prioritized by college leadership, using a mixture of counseling and sales techniques
  • Collaborates with Enrollment Leadership Team to develop strategies in the annual enrollment plan
  • Collaborates with the Director of Student Financial Services on the financial aid optimization strategy and leads efforts to package merit-based aid. Sits on the financial aid appeal committee
  • Makes presentations about the college and the admission process
  • Supervise, direct the actions of, provide feedback to, and evaluate the performance of all counseling staff; lead, motivate, and empower talented and hardworking professionals. Develops Admission staff to work with and support prospective students and families with minoritized identities inclusively and equitably
  • Provides various statistical reports regarding admission trends
  • Works with College partners and executes innovative strategies to achieve College enrollment, diversity, and financial goals
  • Monitors budget and annual admission office expenditures, including approval of staff expense report
  • Participates in developing print and electronic communications for prospective students, their families, and others with an intentional focus on inclusivity and belonging
  • Collaborates with the Director of Admission Systems to prepare an annual profile of applicants and enrolled students, as well as admission-related data for a variety of constituents throughout the recruitment cycle
  • Participates in a range of standing and ad hoc campus-wide committees, including the Enrollment Marketing & Communication Committee, Retention Committee, and Technology Steering Committee
  • Provides advice, guidance, feedback, and training for Admission staff members and others (ex., faculty reviewing graduate applications) involved in the admission process
  • Remains current on best practices, legal and regulatory requirements, and current issues in the enrollment and admission profession. Examines and addresses policies and processes that create access barriers and/or support exclusionary practices
  • Participates in learning and development opportunities to build awareness and inclusive approaches to working with colleagues, students, and families of various backgrounds and identities
  • Takes an innovative approach to the development of strategic partnerships for the purposes of lead generation, broadening enrollment pipelines, and managing vendor relationships
  • Publicly networks on behalf of Saint Michael’s College through a range of professional associations and committees.
  • Develops and demonstrates a multicultural awareness and contributes to cultivating an inclusive, diverse, and respectful college community. Demonstrates fair and inclusive behavior when interacting with staff, faculty, students, and visitors to the college. Promotes a flexible, collaborative, and inclusive work and living environment and engages in educational opportunities to increase awareness and understanding of diversity and inclusion
  • Recruits and hires candidates for open Admission positions as needed
  • Executes responsibilities in a manner consistent with the service philosophy and orientation of the Office of Admission
  • Supports the Mission of Saint Michael’s College and the Edmundite Catholic heritage. Eloquently articulates the value of a liberal arts education grounded in the Catholic intellectual tradition.

The full position description may be found here.

QUALIFICATIONS AND CHARACTERISTICS

A bachelor’s degree with at least seven years of directly related experience is required. Related experience must include an enrollment planning position at a college/university with knowledge in strategic planning, educational testing and transcripts, budgeting, management, staff leadership, and a demonstrated interest in and commitment to students. Candidates must have excellent written and verbal communication skills and demonstrate experience working effectively with diverse students, faculty, and staff. Preferred knowledge includes experience with higher education and issues surrounding private higher education. Successful candidates should show an unwavering commitment to diversity and equity and promote an inclusive campus climate.

In addition to the above qualification requirements, institutional stakeholders indicated that the following personal characteristics and experience would be sought in candidates to ensure their opportunity for success:

  • Visionary
  • Excellent communicator
  • Good listener
  • A “go-getter”
  • Coaching ability
  • Collaborator
  • Servant leader
  • Experience working closely with faculty
  • Display emotional intelligence
  • Organized and excellent with details and logistics
  • Flexible and nimble
  • Creative problem solver
  • One who can pivot quickly and seamlessly
  • Technologically savvy and able to make data-derived decisions
  • Innovative
  • Ability to balance multiple and competing priorities
  • Strategic thinker
  • Sense of humor
  • Confident leadership
  • Commitment to and expertise in diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Previous experience working within liberal arts education
  • Composure and ability to remain calm under pressure
  • Ability to make difficult decisions in the moment
  • A relationship builder
  • Ability to delegate and support a strong team

HISTORY OF THE POSITION

The position has been vacant since June 2022. The previous director served at St. Michael’s for 17 years in various roles and as the director of admissions for the past ten years. He left the college for the opportunity to be a vice president for enrollment at another institution. Allison Sherlock, regional associate director, is serving in the director position until a new director is hired.

OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES OF THE ROLE

Change management. The director will be courageous in advancing new ideas, thinking outside the box, and addressing enrollment challenges with creativity and innovation.

Content expertise. The director will possess an understanding of the challenges for private institutions in the rapidly changing landscape of higher education. They will be abreast of current trends and the forecasted demographic changes in the population of college-bound students through the next decade.

Collaboration with all academic partners. The new director will forge significant partnerships with academic units through leadership, collaborations, and community engagement.

Strong retention and graduation rates. Saint Michael’s College has strong retention and graduation rates resulting from robust academic support and other programs. A newly developed “Purposeful Learning” initiative for students based on identifying a clarity of purpose, developing academic success skills, and exploring career preparation supports the overall success of students.

Strategic planning. The director must demonstrate a leadership style that is credible and collegial while being highly effective. The director is expected to develop plans that create success with increased enrollment numbers.

Trust and confidence of the campus community. The new director will be charged with relationship-building with internal and external stakeholders.

Staff management and development. The director will need experience supervising, training, and supporting staff in various stages of their careers. The staff ranges from those individuals with 20+ years of experience to newer staff in their first professional jobs. They must possess management experience to motivate and lead a complex organization effectively.

Location. The Burlington area is featured annually as a best place to live, with attractions to outdoor activities and cultural events, strong schools, and a vibrant community.

MEASURES OF SUCCESS

At an appropriate interval after joining Saint Michael’s College, the following will initially define success for the director of admission:

  • The director has introduced programs and initiatives to address enrollment concerns and trends.
  • The director has demonstrated that they are a valuable thought leader, joining the president and other senior leaders in advancing strategic priorities on behalf of the College and its students.
  • The director has established significant relationships with faculty, campus leadership, alums, and community members to enhance student recruiting opportunities.
  • The director has demonstrated strength in telling the Saint Michael’s College story to prospective students and families.
  • The director has cultivated an atmosphere conducive to rethinking admission strategy and innovation throughout the campus.

Institution & Location

OVERVIEW OF ENROLLMENT AND MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS

Mission: Engage prospective students and their families, alums, donors, and friends with the college in ways that generate positive interest, applications, gifts, pride, and support for the college.

Organizational Chart for Enrollment and Marketing Communications

ENROLLMENT AND MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS LEADERSHIP

Kristin McAndrew – Vice President for Enrollment and Marketing

Kristin McAndrew is the College’s vice president for enrollment and marketing. McAndrew previously served as director of admission for graduate programs at the University of Notre Dame. She has over twenty-five years of experience in enrollment and a highly successful record of meeting and exceeding enrollment goals. Before serving at Notre Dame, she was at Saint Mary’s College, a private, Catholic, liberal arts institution in Notre Dame, Indiana, where she served as director of admission until 2014. She also served as the director of admission at Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts. McAndrew holds a Master of Arts degree in integrated marketing from Emerson College and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature and humanistic studies from Saint Mary’s College.

INSTITUTIONAL OVERVIEW

Saint Michael’s College delivers a world-class education in a beautiful Vermont setting. A fully residential college located minutes from Burlington, Saint Michael’s offers an unparalleled mix of academic, spiritual, cultural, service, and wilderness experiences while granting bachelor’s and master’s degrees in over 40 majors to their 1450 students. Saint Michael’s is among the elite ranks of only 286 colleges and universities nationwide allowed to host a Phi Beta Kappa national honor society chapter on campus and is ranked 3rd in Best Colleges in Vermont by Niche. In 2022, Saint Michael’s was again named by The Princeton Review as one of the Best 388 Colleges, one of the Best Green Colleges, and one of the Best Northeastern Colleges. Situated next to Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains, nearby Burlington, Vermont consistently ranks as one of the best places in America to live.

Enrollment
Undergraduate: ~1,450
Graduate and International: 170
Female: 55%
Male: 45%
International Demographics: 22 States and 15 Countries

Saint Michael’s College Mission and Vision

Saint Michael’s College Strategic Planning

Saint Michael’s College Magazine

DIVERSITY STATEMENT

Saint Michael’s College is a multicultural community that values each individual, celebrates diversity, encourages high ethical standards, instills a passion for justice, and shapes a campus-wide environment of responsibility, and compassion. Through the efforts of various groups on campus, the College provides ongoing educational opportunities, events, and programs to increase awareness of and appreciation for the rich diversity of humankind.

INSTITUTIONAL LEADERSHIP

Dr. Lorraine Sterritt – President

Dr. Lorraine Sterritt, a national leader in higher education with experience at some of America’s finest institutions, is the 17th president of Saint Michael’s College and is the first woman to hold the position in the College’s history.
Sterritt has a career of nearly 30 years in education in the U.S., starting at Chatham Hall, an all-girls college-preparatory boarding school in Chatham, Virginia, where she was director of school and taught French and Latin from 1985 to 1991. From 2004 to 2010, she was an administrator with teaching roles at Stanford University and served as associate dean for graduate and undergraduate studies for the School of Humanities and Sciences. From there, she moved to Harvard, where she was a member of the faculty of arts and sciences at Harvard University and dean for administration at Harvard College. Prior to joining the Saint Michael’s College community in 2018, Sterritt served as president of Salem Academy and College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Benefits Overview

Employee benefits are a key component of the compensation program at Saint Michael’s College. Benefits include medical, dental, 401k, tuition remission, life, and disability insurance, community service, an employee assistance program, paid time off, and much more. Saint Michael’s College employees enjoy a beautiful campus setting, access to athletic facilities, and special campus events such as lectures, concerts, and theater productions.

Click here for the 2022 benefits guide.

Application & Nomination

The review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. The anticipated start date for the position is February 1, 2023. 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 and details about the status of this search may be emailed to Laura Puckett-Boler at lpb@spelmanjohnson.com. Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895 or email info@spelmanjohnson.com.

Visit the Saint Michael’s College website at http://www.smcvt.edu

Saint Michael’s College is committed to equal opportunity. It does not discriminate against students, employees, or applicants for admission or employment, on the basis of race, color, gender, age, national origin, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, or physical characteristics.

Saint Michael’s College is a multicultural community which values each individual, celebrates diversity, encourages high ethical standards, instills a passion for justice, and shapes a campus-wide environment of responsibility, and compassion. Through the efforts of various groups on campus, such as the Multicultural Committee, which is composed of staff and faculty, the College provides ongoing educational opportunities, events, and programs for personnel and students to increase awareness of and appreciation for the rich diversity of humankind.