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Position Detail - Executive Director, Career Development Center

Executive Director, Career Development Center

Apply now Job no: 493512
Work type: Staff Full-time
Location: South Hadley, MA
Categories: Career Development Services

Position Type: Staff Full-time

Hours per week: 37.5   

Weeks per year: 52

Work Schedule: Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Department Summary & Job Purpose:

Mount Holyoke College seeks candidates for the next Executive Director of the Career Development Center (CDC). This is a tremendous opportunity for an experienced career service professional to work closely with faculty, colleagues across campus, students, and alums to provide an engaging and inclusive student experience.

The next Executive Director of the Career Development Center (CDC) will lead a dynamic staff committed to student development, success, and career readiness. The Executive Director will report directly to the Vice President of Student Success (VPSS) and Dean of the College and lead an office of 11 professional staff. The Executive Director contributes to and supports the ongoing mission to support students in the development and realization of career aspirations through the support of leadership development, career exploration, reflection, and self-assessment. The Executive Director will continue to foster a culture of responsiveness, accountability, and support among staff for students’ career needs and initiatives. This leader will bring a facility with data, using it to inform decisions both with the team and about the populations the CDC supports.


Core Job Duties and Responsibilities: 

  • In leading the CDC, the next Executive Director will be expected to:
    • Provides executive leadership to the College’s Career Development Center and programs. In collaboration with members of the CDC team, determines annual and ongoing priorities, working diligently to bring these priorities to fruition. Forms and actively participates in committees charged with moving key priorities forward including, but not limited to diversity, equity, and inclusion, evidenced-based and data informed practices and new partnerships. Leads office in strategic planning retreats. Encourages and plans professional development activities. Establishes and implements departmental policies.
    • Strengthen and revitalize existing relationships with faculty and alumnae associations to further the goals of students and recent alums in their career aspirations and goals.
    • Uses data to make informed decisions at both strategic and operational levels.
    • Identifies student needs for information and advising on career planning, employment, graduate schools, and scholarships. In collaboration with staff, creates programs, services, and publications to meet those needs.
    • Develops innovative collaborations with academic departments in the assessment of student needs to strengthen curriculum to career initiatives and investments.
    • Collaborates with the Alumnae Association around opportunities for alum engagement in recruitment, mentoring, and supporting students.
    • Engages in problem-solving with staff, students, alums, and occasional parents in response to challenging situations.
    • Engages in problem-solving with staff, students, alums, and occasional parents in response to challenging situations.
    • Develop a strong understanding of and ability to articulate the vision, mission, and values of the center, of student success, and of the College.
    • Provide effective career services for Mount Holyoke’s diverse communities and understand the unique challenges of each population and create new and innovative ways for the CDC to respond to their needs.
    • Develop a team that communicates critical information clearly and cultivates relationships across campus.
    • Lead from a framework that embraces diversity, equity, and inclusion.
    • Engage staff and campus stakeholders in strategic thinking and planning.
    • Champion and advocate for the student experience and the personal and professional development of staff in equal measure.
    • Bring an entrepreneurial and innovative spirit to the center.
    • Create vibrant and engaging programs, activities, and student support within the center.
    • Demonstrate a capacity to communicate broadly across audiences, cultivate and sustain collegial relationships, and build unity.
    • Convey a strong operational, administrative, programmatic, and student success philosophy.


  • Master's degree in counseling or education or other relevant fields.
  • Five or more years of experience in career development and/or employment counseling or the equivalent.
  • Supervisory, management, and relationship-building skills.
  • Genuine interest in building strong relationships with campus partners to support experiential learning, internships, career preparation, development, and placement for students.
  • Experience with strategic planning/visioning aptitude.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills.
  • Strong commitment to working with a diverse student population.
  • Value high-impact practices and continue to cultivate and nurture academic partnerships and programming leading to a philosophy of shared investment.
  • Bring flexibility and creativity to continuous improvement and shifting institutional priorities.
  • Understand the political acumen necessary to navigate a private liberal arts institution.
  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion.
  • Understanding and appreciation of liberal arts.
  • Budget management background/fundraising.
  • Understanding and appreciation of the growing role technology plays in the delivery of career services.
  • Demonstrated success in collaborative leadership, personality integrity, and building strong relationships within an office and across an institution
  • Experience managing high functioning teams.
  • Experience with fiscal planning and management of a career center.
  • Collaborative leadership experience, integrity, and a sense of vision for the strategic direction of the center.
  • High degree of initiative, judgment, discretion, and decision-making and an ability to analyze situations accurately and take effective action as needed.
  • Proven ability to lead with direct authority and through influence.
  • Demonstrated adaptability to meet changing demands, including the ability to be flexible and available to leadership, faculty, and staff on an as-needed basis.
  • Proven accuracy and attention to detail in managing multiple initiatives and priorities, along with experience in simultaneously implementing projects and events across multiple timeframes.
  • Experience managing teams, including hiring, developing, evaluating, and retaining high-performing professional teams.
  • Experience with outcomes-based assessment; technology platform evaluation and implementation.
  • Deep understanding and knowledge of National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) standards for professional ethical practice in career services and recruiting.

Preferred Qualifications:


Compliance Requirements: 

Physical Demands: 

• Sedentary
• Talking: Sufficient clarity of speech required includes those which permit the employee to discern verbal instructions and communicate effectively in person and by telephone.
• Hearing: Perceiving the nature of sounds at normal speaking levels with or without correction. Ability to receive detailed information through oral communication, and to make the discriminations in sound.
• Visual acuity: The employee is required to have close visual acuity to perform an activity such as: preparing and analyzing data and figures; viewing a computer terminal, and reading.

Working Conditions: 

  • The employee is not substantially exposed to adverse environmental conditions (such as in a typical office or administrative work)  

Background Checks:

Mount Holyoke College is committed to providing a safe and secure environment, supported by qualified employees that will allow all of its students, faculty, staff and those associated with them to successfully carry out the mission of the college. As a condition of employment, the College will conduct appropriate background checks for all new hires. Mount Holyoke has designated the Office of Human Resources as the office responsible for ensuring that background checks (CORI, SORI, Credit History, & Driver Credential) are completed and utilized in the hiring process and Five College Office of Compliance and Risk Management as the office responsible for facilitating background checks as articulated in this policy.

Special Instructions for Applicants: 

Apply online; application materials must include:

  1. A cover letter summarizing interests and qualifications
  2. A complete resume or curriculum vitae
  3. Contact information for 3 professional references

Mount Holyoke College is a women’s college that is gender diverse. The College is committed to providing equal access and opportunity in employment and education to all employees and students. In compliance with state and federal law, Mount Holyoke College does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, genetic information, sex, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy, gender identity or expression, ancestry, veteran or military status, or any other legally protected status under federal, state or local law. The College does not discriminate on the basis of gender in the recruitment and admission of students to its graduate program.

Mount Holyoke College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 

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