University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee — Student Affairs Program Specialist

Official Job Title
Student Affairs Program Specialist

Working Title:
Basic Needs Coordinator

Student Affairs


Position Type
Non-Teaching Academic Staff

Appointment Type
Fixed Term/Project, Non-Teaching

FLSA Status


Posting Type

Introduction (Description of School/College/Dept/Program)

As the most diverse institution in the University of Wisconsin System, we're a learning destination for nearly 26,000 students. First-generation college students arrive here straight from high school or years later – after starting families, changing careers, or serving in the military. We make learning accessible at every age, stage of life, and location. At UWM, we share motivation to learn and to excel. We value unique perspectives and possess talent and desire to nurture ideas that make global impact. The comforts and connections of a major metropolitan city meet the resources and expertise of a world-class research institution at UW-Milwaukee.

Founded over 60 years ago in the belief that Milwaukee would need a great public university to become a great city, UWM has a dual research and access mission aimed at serving the diverse needs of Wisconsin's largest metropolitan area by furthering opportunities at all levels for students who may be financially or educationally disadvantaged. More than one-third of its students are the first in their families to attend college, and 30 percent are students of color. In all, the university educates more than 27,000 students on its three campuses. It is the largest educator of veterans in Wisconsin, with more than 1,000 enrolled each year under the federal G.I. bill. The Princeton Review named UWM a 2018 Best Midwestern university based on overall academic excellence and student reviews. The UWM is committed to the full inclusion of LGBT+ campus constituents. In 2018, Campus Pride Index named UWM as one of the Best of the Best Top 30 LGBTQ-friendly postsecondary institutions in the United States. UWM was the first university in the nation to implement an inclusive housing policy.

The Dean of Students Office within the Division of Student Affairs supports students' success and well-being. The Dean of Students Office leads several functions including student support and crisis response, campus behavior intervention and support teams, student emergency grants, tuition appeals, student grievances and complaints, academic and non-academic misconduct disciplinary processes, Clery compliance, student government advising, UWM Food Center & Pantry oversight, and so on. The Dean of Students Office works collaboratively with campus and community partners to promote a healthy, safe, and inclusive learning community.

Job Summary
The Basic Needs Coordinator reports to the Associate Dean of Students. This position oversees the UWM Emergency Grant Program, Laptop and WiFi Hotspot Loan Program, and Food Center and Pantry. This person develops and implements policies, procedures, and programs to support students' basic needs and works collaboratively with students, families, staff, faculty, and community partners. Along with developing new student-based needs programs, this position will also facilitate and manage the implementation and assessment of new programs and outcomes, especially related to the needs of the UWM student population. This position also meets with students in distress to coordinate resources and interventions. This position may also assume other duties within the Dean of Students Office.

This position must be able to work both collaboratively and with a high level of discretion in a fast-paced environment to help resolve complex, sensitive matters that often involve multiple departments and have a potentially significant impact on students' wellness, finances, and enrollment. It requires the use of student-centered, asset-based approaches, sound judgment, ethical leadership, complex reasoning, strong interpersonal skills, prioritization, initiative, and deep understanding of issues related to poverty, mental health, equity, and inclusion.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree in education, counseling, psychology, social work, or related field.
  • Minimum of two (2) years of full-time experience in student affairs, advising, student advocacy, human services, social work, counseling, psychology, or related area [two (2) years working in a graduate assistantship in one of the aforementioned areas equals one (1) year of full-time experience]
  • Minimum of one (1) year of experience with a basic needs program, emergency funding, food pantry, providing basic need assistance, case management, crisis intervention, and/or working with multiple units/agencies to provide coordinated social services.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills with attention to detail as evidenced by the application documents.

    Preferred Qualifications

  • Master's degree in higher education, counseling, psychology, social work, human services, or related field.
  • Minimum of two (2) years of full-time experience in higher education with direct experience working in basic needs support, emergency grants, case management, residence life, financial aid, advising, social work, counseling, student advocacy, or related area.
  • Minimum of one (1) years of experience supervising employees or volunteers or (1) year experience managing a basic needs program.
  • Evidence of experience using person/student-centered, asset-based approaches to addressing complex personal challenges.
  • Experience developing and managing new programs.
  • Demonstrated understanding of issues, theories, and practices relate to poverty, mental health, equity, and inclusion.
  • Demonstrated ability to work with a high level of discretion with complex reasoning, sound judgment, and ethical leadership.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead others, take initiative, prioritize, and successfully manage competing demands in a fast-paced environment.

    Application Instructions
    This is a full-time fixed-term terminal academic staff (2-year) appointment.

    Completed application materials must include a letter of application addressing educational and professional level work experience and knowledge as it relates to all required and preferred qualifications as listed above; A professional resume; and A document listing the names and contact information for three professional references.

    In instances where the Search and Screen Committee is unable to ascertain from a candidate's application materials whether he/she meets any of the qualifications, he/she will be evaluated as not meeting such qualifications.

    All application materials will be further evaluated as evidence of excellent written communication skills.

    Candidates selected for hire will be required to submit official college transcripts.

    Application Deadline

    Continuous (Open Until Filled?)

    Position Contact Name
    Angela Broderick

    Contact Phone

    Contact Email

    Application Notes
    For this position, applicants are required to apply online. UWM will not consider paper, emailed or faxed applications. Additionally, applicants must complete all required fields and attach any required documents. The process is complete when the message “Your application has been submitted” is displayed and you receive a confirmation number.

    Legal Notices
    AA/EO Statement

    UWM is an AA/EO employer: All applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, disability, or protected veteran status.

    Reasonable Accommodations

    UWM provides reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities who are employees or applicants for employment. Employment opportunities will not be denied because of the need to make reasonable accommodations for a qualified individual with a disability. If you need assistance or accommodation in applying because of a disability, please contact or 414-229-4463. This job announcement and other material on this site will be made available in alternate formats upon request to an individual with a disability.

    Confidentiality of Applicant Materials

    UWM is a State agency and subject to Wisconsin's Open Records Law. UWM will not, however, reveal the identities of applicants who request confidentiality in writing except as may be required by Wisconsin's Open Records law. In certain circumstances, the identities of “final candidates” and/or the identity of the appointed applicant must be revealed upon request.

    CBC and Reference Check Policy

    Employment will require a criminal background check. UWM takes the prevention of sexual misconduct seriously. As such, you and your references will be required to answer questions regarding any past findings of sexual violence and sexual harassment or any pending allegations of sexual violence or sexual harassment.

    Annual Security and Fire Safety Report (Clery Act)

    For the UWM Annual Security and Fire Safety Reports (i.e., Clery Report), which includes statistics about reported crimes and information about campus security policies, see, or call UWM's Dean of Students Office, Student Union 345 at (414) 229-4632 for a paper copy.

    Employment Authorization

    In compliance with federal law, all persons at the time of their start date will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification form upon hire.

    Title and Total Compensation Project

    The University of Wisconsin System is engaged in a Title and Total Compensation (TTC) project to redesign job titles and compensation structures. As a result of the TTC project, official job titles on current job postings may change in 2021. Job duties and responsibilities will remain the same. For more information please visit:

    To Apply, visit: