University of Wisconsin-Madison — Associate Dean of Students

The University of Wisconsin-Madison is a major land-grant university committed to excellence in teaching, research, and public service. As the flagship campus of the University of Wisconsin system, UW-Madison boasts $2.9 billion in revenues, a cross-disciplinary and collaborative approach to research, about 44,000 students, and approximately 22,000 faculty and staff.

The Division of Student Life is made up of nine (9) departments and one (1) shared program staffed by 103 permanent FTE and 475 student employees. Its budgetary resources include $3.7 million in state funding, $2.5 million in UW Foundation accounts and an allocable segregated fee budget of $6 million. The division is part of a newly created group led by the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs that includes the Student Union, Recreational Sports, and University Health Services.

Reporting to the Dean of Students, the Associate Dean of Students’ divisional responsibilities and leadership include developing the division’s mission and vision, strategic planning, supervision, administration, problem solving and fiscal accountability. In addition, the associate dean develops and implements strategies that enhance student life programs, student success, retention and a vibrant student life to complement the academic experience while establishing strong and collaborative campus and community relationships to fulfill the vision of creating a Wisconsin Experience where every student thrives. This position works collaboratively to coordinate support for complex student issues with intersecting areas of conduct, health, academics, and mental illness. A highly visible campus leader, the associate dean is also a member of the division’s Central Leadership Team and actively collaborates with a wide variety of campus and community stakeholders; participates in administrative responses to students’ health and safety incidents; responds to campus emergencies; and oversees personnel issues including hiring, coaching, mentoring and evaluation of direct reports and department staff members. The associate dean provides leadership in accountability and institutional effectiveness by developing, implementing, and assessing processes and procedures that foster student success.

Oversight of the Division of Student Life’s departments are divided between this position and another Associate Dean. The specific portfolios change with the needs of the division. Departments include:

Associated Students of Madison staff and programs (Madison’s student government)

  • Center for Leadership and Involvement
  • Center for the First-Year Experience
  • Dean of Students Office
  • International Student Services
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Campus Center
  • Multicultural Student Center
  • McBurney Disability Resource Center
  • Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards


  • A master’s degree in student development, college student personnel, higher education administration, counseling or a related field from an accredited college or university.
  • Nine (9) years of professional and progressively more responsible experience in the field of student affairs in higher education with at least five (5) years at the department director level or above.
  • At least five (5) years of experience supervising full time professional staff.
  • Budget and financial management experience.
  • Demonstrated success collaborating with campus stakeholders.
  • Development and implementation of department, division or campus initiatives.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills and the maturity to make wise choices in ambiguous situations.
  • Considerable knowledge of current issues and trends in student life programs and services.
  • Ability to engage, train, and motivate staff to employ their diverse talents in supporting the goals of the Division, and the University.
  • Student-centered attitude and behaviors.
  • Experience responding to and managing student incidents and campus crises.
  • Knowledge of student learning outcomes development and assessment.
  • Willingness to work evenings or weekends as needed.


  • Doctorate degree in student development, college student personnel, counseling or a related field of study.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with others to create an enriched academic and social environment where each student thrives.
  • Ability to be flexible and work with ambiguity in a fast paced and dynamic environment.
  • Ability to manage in a style that is imaginative, decisive, innovative and proactive while remaining collegial, consultative, and open.
  • Personal and professional integrity and superb speaking and listening skills.
  • Solid problem-solving abilities, creative thinking and nimbleness with constantly changing priorities.
  • Positive attitude, energy, competence, and good humor.
  • Exceptional ability to coalesce groups of people around progressive missions, visions and initiatives.
  • Understanding of large research-intensive higher education settings with strong shared-governance orientation.
  • Experience with threat assessment.

Review of applications will begin April 18, 2018, and continue until the position is filled. A resume with an accompanying cover letter may be submitted via the Spelman Johnson website at Nominations for this position may be emailed to Heather Larabee at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Spelman Johnson
University of Wisconsin-Madison – Associate Dean of Students
Heather J. Larabee, Search Associate

Visit the University of Wisconsin-Madison website at 

The University of Wisconsin-Madison (university) is committed to providing equal opportunity in employment and advancement to all qualified individuals and, in accordance with applicable federal and state statutes and regulations, to prohibit discrimination in employment on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, pregnancy, genetic information, disability, military service, protected veteran status, honesty testing, arrest record, or conviction record. The equal employment opportunity policy covers all aspects of the employment relationship including, but not limited to, recruitment, interviewing, screening, testing, selection, placement, evaluation, transfer, promotion, tenure, compensation, benefits, training, layoff, and/or dismissal in all job titles.