Reporting to the Assistant Dean for Student Success and Strategic Initiatives, the Strategic Retention Manager will lead and participate in campus wide projects identifying and removing barriers to students’ retention at the policy, institutional, and direct student support levels to meet MSU’s strategic goal of an 86% graduation rate with no opportunity gaps by 2030. They will work closely with other divisional staff members, student success focused areas across the institution, Enrollment Management, Institutional Research, and university leadership to analyze policies, procedures, and structures that restrict students’ progression to graduation and propose innovative solutions to support student retention and success. The incumbent will lead work through campus wide committees to map the student experience and identify opportunities to increase retention through direct student support programs, policy changes, interventions, and programs all through the lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion. The position will conduct research to understand students’ decisions around enrollment, retention, and attrition in order to propose strategies and initiatives to meet short term and long term retention and completion goals.
Lead and project manage campus wide student success initiatives related to retention and persistence in alignment with MSU’s strategic plan
Identify barriers to retention and create initiatives, policies, and programs to remove those barriers in order to support student retention and success
Serve as a key collaborator with APUE units, the colleges, Student Life and Engagement, Institutional Research, and Enrollment Management to support strategic retention efforts
Participate and coordinate with various campus and divisional level student success and care teams
Utilize disaggregated student persistence and retention data to evaluate past interventions, guide future programming, and monitor persistence and student success outcomes
Research, develop, implement, and assess innovative policies and procedures related to retention and student success
In collaboration with senior leadership, develop strategies and initiatives to meet short and long-term retention and completion goals
Conduct research and analysis to understand reasons students leave, stop out and/or return to MSU after an absence
Serve on division and campus wide committees as a subject matter expert for retention and completion initiatives
Equal Employment Opportunity Statement
All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, citizenship, disability or protected veteran status.
Masters -Student Affairs, Higher Education, Business, counseling, or related field
Doctorate -Student Affairs, Higher Education, Business, counseling, or related field
Knowledge equivalent to that which normally would be acquired by completing a master’s degree in student affairs, higher education, business, counseling or other related field and minimum of five years of work experience in higher education or a related field
Knowledge of theories and practice related to student success, retention and graduation
Evidence of a commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and experience conducting work to close opportunity gaps in higher education
Ability to manage multiple activities concurrently, to continually monitor their status and to prioritize activities so that deadlines are met with limited supervision
Ability to work with detailed information with attention to accuracy; strong skills in documentation, tracking, and data collection
Proven success in innovative thinking to develop and implement creative solutions to complex challenges
Ability to work collaboratively and constructively with people at multiple levels and with diverse perspectives
Demonstrated experience to lead or project manage within a complex organization like a higher education institution
Ability to access, understand, and interpret data from multiple sources to promote student success through data-informed and innovative practices
Evidence of the ability to build consensus across multiple divisions of a complex organization
Excellent communication skills; including an ability to work diplomatically and effectively with campus partners
Direct student advising experience (financial aid advising, academic advising, student affairs advising, disability support advising, etc.) at a large public institution
Experience with process mapping, policy analysis and/or project management
Experience implementing strategic initiatives to support the retention and success of underserved student populations
Past experience managing complex change initiatives in a collaborative and consensus building environment
Experience teaching, advising, leading, and/or mentoring diverse undergraduate students.
Experience leading a unit
Required Application Materials
Please submit a CV/Resume, cover letter and DEI statement to the attention of Chastity Gaither.
The DEI statement should include your contributions to promoting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Through this statement you can share how your lived experiences, past and future academic and professional activities have or will contribute to promoting equity and inclusion at MSU.
The university is requiring all MSU students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 with limited exceptions. Learn more at: https://msu.edu/together-we-will/
The Office of the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education and Dean of Undergraduate Studies cultivates a vibrant, multi-disciplinary community that is diverse along many dimensions, including race and ethnicity; gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity and expression; ability status; and creed or ideology.
Michigan State University has been advancing the common good with uncommon will for more than 160 years. One of the top research universities in the world, MSU pushes the boundaries of discovery and forges enduring partnerships to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community through more than 200 programs of study in 17 degree-granting colleges.
Spartans work every day to advance the common good in uncommon ways.Together, we tackle some of the world?s toughest problems to find solutions that make life better?from alternative energy to better food safety to breakthrough medical and environmental applications achieved through rare isotope research.We teach. We explore and we discover. We collaborate and lead. We innovate, inspire, and empower. We achieve our potential and create circumstances that help our students and others achieve theirs.We're good at it, and we've been at it for more than 150 years.The nation?s pioneer land-grant university, MSU began as a bold experiment that democratized higher education and helped bring science and innovation into everyday life. The revolutionary concept became a model for the nation.Today, MSU is one of the top research universities in the world?on one of the biggest, greenest campuses in the nation. Home to nationally ranked and recognized academic, residential college, and service-learning programs, we?re a diverse community of dedicated students and scholars, athletes and artists, scientists and leaders.In ways both practical and profound, we work to create a stronger, more sustainable, and more hopeful future for all.