Executive Director of Admissions and Financial Aid
The Darden School of Business seeks an Executive Director of Admissions and Financial Aid (ED) for all degree programs. With strong momentum in the executive MBA and residential MBA formats, the ED joins Darden at an exciting time. Darden's residential MBA is ranked number 3 in the world, and best educational experience in the world for 6 consecutive years, by the Economist magazine. It has almost forty percent women and just over one-third international students, and an average GMAT score of 712 (class of 2018). The recent Washington, D.C. EMBA and GEMBA program has been highly successful with robust demand and an outstanding class, to build on the already well-established Charlottesville EMBA program. The Executive Director will develop the strategy and direct the recruitment, evaluation, and selection of prospective students. The ED will exercise leadership and final decision-making authority over admissions strategies, finances, staff, and operations for degree programs. Working closely with the Director of Financial Aid, the ED will ensure strong financial support and service is provided to admitted students, and to ensure proper protocols and compliance regulations are scrupulously followed. As a key representative for the School, the Executive Director will serve on the Darden Student Services Group comprised of student affairs, career development, admissions, the registrar's office and financial aid, and may be called on to serve as the convener. The Executive Director will be passionate about students and be an inspiring spokesperson for the critical role of business education in society.
Working with the dean, and the senior associate dean of degree programs to advance Darden's mission and standing.
Yield a class (for all formats) that meets the School's goals with respect to high potential, fit with the School's educational approach, and diversity that enhances the development experience for all.
Admitting classes for each degree format that are consistent with a top ten global business school.
Developing, innovating, and scaling new programs (e.g., future year), and using analytical tools to make processes and outcomes better.
Providing oversight to the financial aid department and director, ensuring strong financial aid programs, processes and service are provided to students while ensuring the financial aid director/department manages and adheres to compliance and regulatory processes.
Monitoring the competitive landscape and adapting processes and value propositions accordingly.
Optimizing financial aid, scholarships and budget for impact, including adhering to donor intent.
Managing application review processes to ensure effectiveness and efficiency.
Improve the selectivity of Darden's entering classes through marketing/outreach and yield activities and the effective use of financial aid.
Overseeing and monitoring operational budgets, and ensuring confidentiality is respected.
Keeping School leadership apprised of the current status of admissions results for students and abreast of important developments in the graduate management admissions field.
Working to ensure compliance with the needs of third parties that track MBA admissions activity and thereby comprise an important external constituency.
Collaborating with constituencies within the School outside Admissions to (1) enhance the effectiveness of Admissions services, programs and events and (2) align Admissions activities with all other aspects of the degree programs and the School.
Developing strong relationships with alumni and other external constituencies that enhance departmental services and programs.
Helping with fund-raising initiatives as appropriate.
Establishing partnerships with other top global institutions of higher education, nongovernmental and public organizations and professional organizations.
Partnering with corporations and other entities that sponsor or support graduate management education for their employees or members.
Preparing and delivering presentations to Darden boards, the enterprise team, and UVA constituents.
Supervising the department's administrative, professional and support staff in ways that produce outstanding results and creates and sustains an environment that fosters high engagement.
Providing necessary data to the manager overseeing all aspects of key third-party evaluations of School performance.
Professional Experience & Leadership Competencies:
Highly experienced and honed analytical capability to optimize scholarships, financial aid, and budget while balancing the various dimensions along which a class is evaluated to produce the best overall result.
Substantial admissions and managerial experience at a high quality higher education institution, or an equivalent relevant recruiting or HR/talent experience in a top corporation or preeminent boarding school.
A belief in the mission of Darden and UVA, and a student-centered mindset.
Global awareness and understanding.
An ability to create, develop and sustain a high performing team that delivers results and can effectively manage a complex and diverse organization.
Understanding of graduate management education, and more generally admissions, recruiting, and financial aid issues.
Ability to manage budget and audit/compliance processes and procedures.
Marketing acumen and ability to use advanced analytics to target candidates and analyze outcomes.
Skill at interviewing potential applicants and training others to do so.
Relevant managerial and practitioner based expertise in the business world (e.g., professional services, marketing, etc.) at a high quality institution a plus.
Ability to engender trust among internal stakeholders (the dean, faculty, senior leadership, and key professional staff), and work highly effectively with stakeholders across Grounds.
Ability to develop and build consensus around a clear and persuasive strategic plan to achieve excellence.
Initiative to execute high quality actions using judgment and discretion.
Innovative and forward thinking to develop and implement strategies to address the changing educational landscape.
Poise, tact, and emotional intelligence to deal with people and sensitive issues.
Attention to detail and ability to follow up.
High energy and an ability to make compelling presentations.
Willingness and capability to travel extensively.
Advanced degree (MBA preferred) or terminal degree.
Procedure for Candidacy:
To express interest in this opportunity, please prepare and upload a cover letter stating your interest in the position, along with a CV and three references, directed to Melissa Hurst at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The position will be carried out with full confidentiality; candidates will be notified before references are contacted. If nominating an individual for this opportunity, please include the nominee's contact information and send to Melissa Hurst at email@example.com.
The University of Virginia is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. Women, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.