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Merit Awards Program Coordinator (13323)

Date: Nov 25, 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

Housed administratively in the AU Career Center, the Office of Merit Awards is committed to the success of our students and alumni in their academic and career development. Our dynamic team environment provides a supportive and collegial environment and has a long history of excellence. We are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion both within our team and as applied to all aspects of our work. This position is a critical team member who contributes to the success of students competing for nationally competitive scholarships that fund a variety of endeavors, both in the U.S. and overseas.


The Office of Merit Awards oversees the mentoring of applicants for nationally competitive, merit-based scholarships that fund study abroad, graduate tuition, and summer research. The Merit Awards Program Coordinator provides essential support to the Office to further the university’s strategic goal pertaining to academic excellence. Primary responsibilities of the Program Coordinator are project management and customer service, including: organizing scholarship information sessions and workshops; supporting the Associate Director in the organization of major annual events; compiling data for the office and drafting the annual report; recruiting the university’s highest performing undergraduate and graduate students; coordinating faculty interview panels; maintaining an award database; tracking applicants and maintaining candidates’ dossiers, helping to publicize award recipients, updating the website, and managing the office’s social media accounts. The incumbent supervises and trains up to two      part-time program assistants and up to two FWS. Assists the office’s Associate Director with the Early Identification Program (EIP) for outstanding sophomores. The Program Coordinator is also responsible for managing front-line service in the form of scheduling appointments and interacting with students and alumni, parents, and other clients, either by telephone or in person, with support from one to two part-time program assistants/Federal Work Study (FWS) students. 

Essential Functions

  1. Front-desk Service, Supervision, and Scheduling: Staffs and oversees the front desk, which serves as the first point of contact for clients. These include external clients, such as students, parents, faculty members, and scholarship program representatives, and clients internal to the Career Center, such as career and internship advisors. Manages responses to student inquiries directed to the Office’s general e-mail account, 
  2. Project Management: Organizes student scholarship information sessions. Arranges faculty committees and interview panels on behalf of national finalists and applicants for multiple scholarships, such as the Truman, Rhodes, UK, and Boren scholarships. Assists the Office’s Associate Director with organizing and running large events, including the opening dinner for the Early    Identification Program (EIP) and our end-of-year events. Arranges and publicizes dozens of small-group workshops and panel presentations each year. 
  3. Marketing and Publicity: Prepares and maintains the Office’s primary calendar. Establishes the Office’s calendar of scholarship information sessions. Anticipates and publicizes campus and national competition deadlines, advertises workshops and EIP events, and reserves spaces (in-person and virtual). 
  4. Technology: Maintains the Office’s webpages. Manages the Scholarship Document Scanning Application to preserve candidates’ application materials. In consultation with the Career Center’s Systems Administrator, implements technical systems, processes and equipment that will support the mission of the Office. 
  5. General Administration and Other Duties as Assigned: On behalf of Merit Awards staff, and in coordination with the Career Center’s (CC) Budget and Personnel Coordinator, handles telecommunications requests, physical plant issues, equipment repairs, and supply purchasing. Takes part in Career Center-wide activities as needed and serves on CC committees including Handshake and Marketing. May provide backup support to the Career Center front desk at busy times. 

Supervisory Responsibility

  • This position reports directly to the Associate Director of the Office of Merit Awards and provides administrative support  to the Office’s other managers.
  • Supervises one to two part-time program assistants and one to two part-time Federal Work Study student/s.

Work Environment

  • Due to the work involved in arranging information sessions and faculty panels, this position communicates regularly with both faculty and staff members, senior administrators, and representatives of national scholarship foundations.
  • The nature of this role within the administrative unit is to ensure that the Office of Merit Awards meets its obligations to students through excellent customer service, prompt appointment scheduling, timely and accurate publicity for award opportunities, facilitated mentoring by faculty and other staff, and cultivation of    strong working relationships with and acknowledgement of faculty members and other professionals who support the work of the office.
  • May need to work one evening a week, depending upon office hours and determined each semester in coordination with other staff and office needs.

Position Type/Expected Hours of Work

  • Full Time 
  • Coordinator/Analyst B
  • Non-Exempt
  • This is a union-eligible position. 

Salary Range

  • $44,757 - $53,000

Required Education and Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in education, training, or experience
  • One to three years of relevant professional experience with an emphasis on customer service.
  • Exceptionally strong organizational, writing and editing skills
  • Ability to interact diplomatically with faculty members and scholarship foundation representatives.
  • Understanding of and desire to serve academically high-achieving students
  • Proven track record of reliability and superior attention to detail
  • Solid computer skills, including proficiency with Microsoft Word and Excel

Preferred Education and Experience

  • Experience with Outlook, Qualtrics, and learning management systems such as Canvas.
  • Experience in a higher education environment
  • Experience with social media management

Additional Eligibility Qualifications



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.


Union Eligibility

This position is part of a collective bargaining unit represented by SEIU Local 500. That means the terms and conditions of your employment are governed by university policy (including the Staff Personnel Policies Manual) and any collective bargaining agreement entered into between American University and SEIU Local 500.


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

For more information or assistance with the American University careers site, email


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