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Associate Director, Family Engagement (17360)

Date: Jun 17, 2022

Location: Washington, DC, US, 20016

Company: American University

Get to Know American University

At American University we value open and honest inquiry, servant leadership, and the affirmation of the human dignity of all. We envision a thriving AU community where individuals of all identities and experiences are understood, appreciated, and fully included, and where equitable treatment, opportunities, and outcomes prevail. 


Our diverse community of students, faculty, and staff represent every state and more than 150 countries. Our internationally recognized faculty are today's thought leaders in the areas of public policy, law, the arts, communications, international development, and more. Our staff are innovative, service-oriented, and dedicated to moving the university towards achieving its strategic goals. We are committed to an excellent experience for all of our students, faculty and staff and share a passion for creating change through our knowledge and our work. 


Learn more about American University by clicking here.  

About the Department/Unit

New Student & Family Programs designs and coordinates programs for first-year, transfer and graduate students. It also provides a single point of contact for parents and families, works to keep families informed, and helps them find answers and guidance to support their students. 


As a part of the New Student and Family Programs team, the Associate Director for Family Engagement plays a critical role in fulfilling the department’s work by focusing on the needs of parents and families throughout their experience with AU. The Associate Director develops and provides resources, services, and programs for parents and family members of undergraduate students that promote successful student transitions, retention, and success. As a department in the Office of Campus Life, we work to intentionally guide, challenge and support students as they grow and thrive as members of the AU Community on campus and beyond. The Associate Director, Family Engagement engages ‘parents as partners’ in this work. This requires effective collaboration, program management, case management and strategic communication efforts.
This position contributes to the training, supervision and professional development of student and para-professional staff members on the New Student and Family Programs team. Family Engagement work is supported by the team’s resources which includes a dedicated budget for events and programming. This position supports more than 2,000 students and 15,000+ families each year with an annual budget of more than $500,000.

Note: we use “families” in a broad sense to also include anyone that a student considers a supporter or champion regardless of relationship.

Essential Functions

  1. Parent & Family Program Development and Administration (35% of Time) Coordinate day-to-day operations for parent and family focused orientation and transition activities and programs. In collaboration with the New Student and Family Programs team, develop orientation resources and programming for parents and families including, but not limited to summer, fall, and spring sessions for first year or transfer students and families, Welcome Week activities, Family Weekend, and Commencement. 
  2. Case Management (35% of Time) Serve as centralized point of contact for parent and family inquiries and case management needs. Provide timely and accurate responses, referrals and follow-up in ways that cultivate partnerships with families in supporting students. Coordinate efforts with the Dean of Students to evaluate student needs and implement corrective interventions, submitting CARE reports on behalf of parents and families as appropriate.
  3. Communications (20% of Time) Execute a communications plan to serve the families of undergraduate students that includes both web and hard copy publications. Develop and curate “just in time” content that anticipates and meets the needs of families supporting their students such as: preparing for transitions, managing key dates and deadlines, identifying support services, celebrating milestones.
  4. Volunteer Management (10% of Time) Develop a family volunteer program to support positive peer-to-peer engagement, assist with family events and equip family members to serve as ambassadors for the university. Create appropriate roles, select, train and acknowledge volunteers. Collaborate with colleagues in Parent and Family Philanthropy to engage the Parent Leadership Council.

Position Type/Expected Hours of Work

  • Full-Time: 35 hours/week
  • FLSA Exempt
  • Project Leader/Advisor B

Salary Range

  • $68K - $71K

Required Education and Experience

  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent
  • 3-5 years of relevant experience
  • Ability to provide high levels of customer service and exercise tact and diplomacy while interacting with parents/ families, students, university staff and faculty on sensitive matters.
  • Ability to develop effective communication strategies and deliver content through multiple forms and channels including newsletters, websites, podcasts, social media, training materials and general correspondence.
  • Proven record of successful experience in student-oriented service environment.
  • Proven record in working successfully with diverse populations.
  • Proven ability to work cross functionally, influence others and problem solve.
  • Exemplary written and verbal communication skills, including careful attention to accuracy and detail.
  • Strong interpersonal and self-management skills.
  • Skill using Microsoft Office suite including Word, PowerPoint and Excel to develop briefings, presentations and reports and conduct data analysis.

Preferred Education and Experience

  • Master's degree
  • 4-6 years of relevant experience

Additional Eligibility Qualifications


  • Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities and activities may change at any time with or without notice. 


AU offers a competitive benefits package including a 200% matching retirement plan, tuition benefits for full-time staff and their families, several leadership development certificates, and has been recognized by the American Heart Association as a fit-friendly worksite. Click here to learn about American University's unique benefit options.


Current American University Employees

If you are a current employee at American University, please log into AsuccessfulU through the myAU portal. Once in AsuccessfulU, please select the Careers tile which will take you to our internal career page. 


Contact Us

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American University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution that operates in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The university does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including pregnancy), age, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, personal appearance, gender identity and expression, family responsibilities, political affiliation, source of income, veteran status, an individual’s genetic information or any other bases under federal or local laws (collectively "Protected Bases") in its programs and activities.

Nearest Major Market: Washington DC