SMU invites inquiries, applications, and nominations for the position of Executive Director for the Hegi Family Career Development Center. This is a tremendous opportunity for an experienced career services professional to work closely with colleagues across campus to provide an integrated, engaging, and inclusive student experience.
About the University
A nationally ranked private university with seven degree-granting schools, SMU is a distinguished center for teaching and research located near the heart of Dallas. SMU's 11,600 students benefit from small classes, research opportunities, leadership development, international study, and innovative programs. The University is strengthened by its partnership with the Dallas region, a global center of commerce and culture. SMU students, faculty and alumni are changing the world through their chosen fields, civic engagement, and service to society. SMU’s progress in the last 20 years includes a near tripling of applications, an increase of more than 165 points in the student SAT average scores, an increase in underrepresented student population enrollment to 25 percent, and a more than doubling of the University endowment, currently valued at $1.5 billion.
The Division of Student Affairs provides guidance, support services, educational programs, and social activities intended to complement the academic pursuits of students. The Division’s commitment to the holistic development of students is evident in its signature Residential Commons program, a living-learning community housing all first- and second-year students as well as faculty-in-residence. This program, among many other initiatives, demonstrates the Division’s critical role as educators, advisors, and mentors dedicated to assisting students in realizing their full potential.
Situated on 234 acres, SMU’s University Park/Highland Park campus is one of the most beautiful in the nation. The University is located just five minutes north of downtown Dallas, in one of the nation’s fastest-growing regions, offering unique learning, research, social, and career opportunities to students, faculty, and staff. SMU also operates campuses in Plano, Texas, and Taos, New Mexico.
With a population exceeding 6.8 million, greater Dallas is the fourth-largest and fifth-most diverse metropolitan area in the nation. It offers access to all of the cultural, athletic, and recreational opportunities of a major urban center as well as an enviably low cost of living. One of the most dynamic business communities in the nation, North Texas is home to nearly 20 Fortune 500 companies and one of the world’s busiest international airports. Dallas also boasts the nation’s largest urban arts district, consisting of world-class museums and a luminous array of performing arts spaces. It is home to four professional sports teams and offers easy access to a range of outdoor activities throughout the region. SMU students and faculty benefit from proximity to the Dallas metropolitan area as an extension of the classroom, characterized by engaged learning projects and community partnerships. (SMU Community and Economic Impact Report: https://smu.edu/impact/)
About the Position
The Executive Director for the Hegi Family Career Development Center, reporting to the Vice President for Student Affairs, is responsible for the strategic direction and vision of the centralized career development center providing services to all undergraduate and designated graduate students and alumni from SMU’s four undergraduate schools. The role requires strategic planning, goal setting, management, budgetary responsibility, marketing, and all aspects of the center as it continues to evolve into a nationally leading career center. The Executive Director is responsible for expansion efforts and fundraising initiatives as well as program growth and evaluation. The position requires a strong leader who provides long-term direction and is responsible for meeting milestones as approved by the Hegi Family Career Development Center Advisory Board and the Division of Student Affairs, in which he or she will serve on the senior leadership team of the Vice President for Student Affairs.
The Hegi Family Career Development Center promotes and demonstrates a student-centered engagement model of career development with a focus on liberal arts students in the Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences and the Meadows School of the Arts. "Start early. Visit often," is the message the Hegi Center staff imparts to SMU students. The Executive Director will possess a robust approach to engaging first- and second-year students with the goal of an increased early usage of the Hegi Center. The Executive Director will utilize benchmarking and metrics to assess potential scaling of career services balanced with a high-touch counseling approach and capacity challenges on staffing. Destinations, outcomes, evaluation, and accountability focused metrics will also be utilized in this position as essential decision making and messaging tools, particularly related to admissions, retention, fundraising, and employer development efforts. The Executive Director will oversee hiring, coaching, training, supervising, and evaluating of eight Hegi Center staff members as well as managing a budget of approximately $1 M.
The Executive Director must exhibit collaborative leadership working with both campus and external stakeholders to extend the reach of the Hegi Center and success of SMU students. Partnering with SMU faculty and staff is crucial in this role in creating a campus culture that includes career and reaching students through the classroom and SMU community. The Executive Director will also actively interact with top level executives of corporations and organizations as well as campus recruiters in the Dallas area and nationwide. In addition, he or she will build targeted partnerships with alumni and parents individually and in groups to mobilize these valuable resources for SMU students and to create employment and mentoring opportunities.