Associate Director of Student Support Services

Updated: 5 months ago


Harvard Graduate School of Education


Position Description

The Harvard Graduate School of Education seeks an Associate Director of Student Support Serviceswho will focus on providing specialized services to HGSE residential and online master’s and doctoral students. A member of the Academic Affairs and Student Services team, the Associate Director will report to the Director of Student Affairs and will closely collaborate with the degree program Associate and Assistant Directors to provide support for individual graduate students to meet the unique challenges that make it difficult to navigate through graduate school and/or that affect their ability to complete their studies. The Associate Director serves as a resource to other team members and faculty, to advise on best practices to support students in academic and/or personal crisis. This position also serves graduate students experiencing an academic or personal crisis. The Associate Director will both assist students and direct them to appropriate school and/or university resources for further support. This position will work in close partnership with the Assistant Director for Accessibility, the Registrar, the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid, the Chief Diversity Officer, the Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Student Services, the programs, faculty, and key student groups. The Associate Director will develop and offer trainings, workshops, and programming that enable a supportive and inclusive environment that keeps student well-being at the forefront. This position will also oversee academic support services by supervising two Academic Coaches, whose roles provide coaching support to students throughout the academic year.

Specific Duties :

Oversight and management of a caseload of students who have been referred by another staff and/or a faculty member or who have self-identified to ensure they are fully aware of the HGSE and Harvard resources available to best address their presenting issue(s).

Leverage knowledge, experience, and research to identify key issues of concern for students’ well-being and develop and implement tools, resources, and programming to educate and advise all members of the community in supporting students, particularly in times of crisis or significant health concern.

Act as liaison with HGSE leaders, relevant faculty and other staff members to help students navigate options and next steps based on their academic course of study and school affiliations.

Develop mutually respectful and open working relationships with HGSE staff, faculty, students, and student groups to establish and maintain open lines of communication.

Serve as a liaison to the University’s Counseling and Mental Health Services team to assist in case management of individual student mental health crises.

Assess campus student mental health climate, establish and deliver an annual suite of mental health and wellness workshops and trainings for students and student groups.

Provide one-on-one advising to master’s students on a full range of academic and quality of life issues, communicating and collaborating with others as appropriate.

Partner with relevant student groups to develop a deep understanding of the student experience and issues.

Basic Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent work experience required
  • Minimum of 7 years’ relevant work experience

Additional Qualifications and Skills

Experience supporting individuals in crisis is required.

Ability to be on call 24/7 for student emergencies required.

Any candidate wishing to be considered must supply a cover letter in addition to their resume.

Additional Qualifications

Master’s level degree in psychology, social work, or related field; Massachusetts Mental Health licensure (LMHC, MSW, LICSW, PH.D.) strongly preferred. 

Must have excellent oral and written communication skills, as well as the ability to present in large and small group settings; strong interpersonal skills with demonstrated ability to collaborate with students as well as other members of the professional community.

A successful candidate must be collaborative, have an open-minded approach to challenges and be flexible to change.

Has experience handling private information with the utmost discretion and confidentiality.

Minimum 7 years of experience working with graduate students/ adult learners in a higher education setting.

Physical Requirements

  • Sitting using near vision use for reading and computer use for extended periods of time
  • Lifting (approximately 20 to 30 pounds), bending, and other physical exertion

Working Conditions

HGSE is currently developing dynamic workplace models which will actively support a combination of on-campus and remote work (within a state in which Harvard is registered to do business) where business and operational needs allow. You and your manager will discuss the best schedule based on your role and operational need. If your role allows for remote work, please note that all remote work must be performed within a state in which Harvard is registered to do business (CA (Only Exempt), CT, GA, IL, MA, MD, ME, NH, NJ, NY, RI, VA, VT, and WA). Please also note that Harvard will withhold each applicable state’s required tax and other withholdings from your paycheck for the time you work there.

The health of our workforce is a priority for Harvard University. With that in mind, we strongly encourage all employees to be up-to-date on CDC-recommended vaccines.

We regret that the Harvard Graduate School of Education does not provide Visa sponsorship

Additional Information

HGSE is a diverse community of learners, teachers, and employees who are passionate about changing the world through education and striving for maximum impact in the field of education.

HGSE Human Resources values diversity in all forms and believes that each employee brings a set of diverse experiences and identities to the workplace that makes us stronger, encourages innovation, and enhances our collective contributions.  We continue to develop and support a workforce that reflects the diversity of those we serve; fosters an environment that allows everyone to belong and to bring their best self to work; and creates the conditions that empower employees to contribute their full potential to advancing the work of the school.

We do this by:

· Hiring and retaining staff reflecting the diversity of those we serve

· Providing employees opportunities to learn, grow, and be challenged

· Reviewing and ensuring fairness and equity in HR practices and policies including but not limited to hiring, promotion, and compensation

· Developing strong relationships and partnerships internal and external to our community to advance diversity and inclusion

· Communicating transparently and respectfully; and

· Fostering an inclusive, respectful, and professional work environment.

About the Harvard Graduate School of Education

Many choose to work at the Harvard Graduate School of Education because they believe in our mission and are excited by our vision for the future. We have a reputation as a great place to work, for our excellent leadership, and we are a strong community that values diversity. For more information about HGSE, its programs, research, and faculty, please visit:

Work Format Details

This is a hybrid position that is based in Massachusetts. Additional details will be discussed during the interview process. All remote work must be performed within one of the Harvard Registered Payroll States, which currently includes Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Virginia, Washington, and California (CA for exempt positions only). Certain visa types and funding sources may limit work location. Individuals must meet work location sponsorship requirements prior to employment.


We invite you to visit Harvard's Total Rewards website ( ) to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:

  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.
  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.
  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.
  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.
  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.
  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.
  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.
  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.
  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

Job Function

Faculty & Student Services

Department Office Location

USA - MA - Cambridge

Job Code

S0358M FSS Student Service Mgt IV

Work Format

Hybrid (partially on-site, partially remote)


00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary

Pre-Employment Screening

Education, Identity

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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