Job Listings

Director of Strategic Initiatives

University of Michigan
Job Location:
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Student Affairs and Services



DEPARTMENT: Office of VP Student Life

SALARY: $150,000.00 - $165,000.00

How to Apply

A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and should be attached as the first page of your resume. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position.


The Director of Strategic Initiatives, reporting to the Vice President for Student Life, will be focused on developing infrastructure that fosters increased capacity for partnership across core work and current divisional priorities, engaging in the co-development and collaborative implementation of Student Life's strategic objectives. You will lead cross-functional teams in the development, planning, and implementation of key strategic initiatives including but not limited to areas of partnership, student engagement & wellbeing and diversity, equity and inclusion.


Strategic Leadership (60%)
  • Coordinate and support multiple cross-unit work teams devoted to Student Life strategic initiatives and priorities on behalf of the Vice President for Student Life (VPSL) and in collaboration with partners within the OVPSL team supporting the division's leadership agenda and organizational development.
  • Facilitate action and accountability for divisional strategic efforts by supporting existing and developing new cross-unit work teams and by identifying complementary objectives, integration of work plans, and sustained communication.
  • Stay closely aware of progress on projects, high-level initiatives, and emerging issues across the division; and pro-actively help to adjust approaches based on changes in direction, priorities, and resources.
  • As needs arise, identify, develop, implement and oversee committees and task forces to bring relevant unit leaders/teams together to address and close gaps in cross-unit divisional priorities and core work.
  • Support relevant units and leaders in the sustainable integration of strategic initiatives and effective practices within their units and work teams.
  • Consult with Student Life leadership to determine when to sunset temporary teams once alignment is achieved and work is successfully integrated and embraced by partner units. Key contributor on ongoing communication around divisional strategic priorities and goals, working closely with the Director of Student Life Research, the Senior Director of Strategic Communications and Marketing, and the Organizational Development Lead.
Project Management (30%)
  • Develop overall project strategy and clear, specific, and ambitious performance measures for multiple projects and operational priorities.
  • Work with relevant Student Life staff to develop appropriate metrics to measure impact and convene periodic check-ins to evaluate progress throughout the year.
  • Lead the implementation of project strategy; track project progress regularly using various tools; and drive project completion holding others accountable for responsibilities.
  • Help manage the analysis and presentation of impact of priorities for divisional and institutional leadership; communicate progress to key stakeholder groups; and incorporate their input.
  • Build relationships and liaise with various units and departments to drive collaboration and project success; and interact with and respond effectively to requests from multiple stakeholders.
  • Identifies and systematizes successful operational and project management methods; and develops and strengthens resources for evaluation and support.
  • Share progress through mid-year and year-end reporting and collaborate with relevant staff to effectively tell the story of Student Life's strategic progress and impact.
  • Support relevant coordinating teams to maximize impact through reinforced communication, marketing, collaborative programming, and common assessment.
  • Serve as the Student Life Lead for University of Michigan's central DEI strategic plan:
    • Review current plans and evaluation efforts in the co-creation of Student Life's next five-year DEI plan.
    • Partner with Student Life unit and program leadership, to surface DEI vision across the organization and implement strategy, assess outcomes, and lead continuous improvement efforts.
    • Integrate diversity, equity and inclusion best practices into decision-making and educational programs.
    • Align our efforts to the broader work being done at the university by partnering with the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and serving on project teams and committees.
    • Co-create communications regarding DEI efforts and goals; lead or deliver executive-level content, presentations, and briefings.
    • Utilize project management skills to manage deadlines and report to leadership.
Supervision (10%)
  • Supervise staff supporting the logistical and organizational needs for relevant strategic objectives, including:
    • Project Associate Manager supporting DEI and other strategic objectives.
    • Program Director for the Educational Theater Company (shared position with the Office of New Student Programs).
Required Qualifications*
  • Master's degree in higher education administration, or the liberal arts and sciences, or a related field such as business, organizational development, and project management
  • Minimum of seven years of professional experience in an educational environment, and/or strategic planning, organizational development, or progressively responsible operations
  • Demonstrated experience leading student engagement initiatives
  • Demonstrated experience and investment in issues of equity, access, and inclusion
  • Ability to manage complex projects, and communicate cross-functionally across teams
  • Experience working with senior-level leadership
  • Demonstrated experience supervising staff
Additional Information

This role may have reporting obligations under Title IX and Clery.

Authorization to work in the U.S. is a precondition of employment and applicants for this position will not be sponsored for work visas.

Salary Range: $150,000-$165,000. Salary may vary depending on qualifications, experience, and education of the selected candidate.


Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days. The review and selection process maybegin as early as the eighth day after posting.Thisopening may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

U-M COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

COVID-19 vaccinations, including boosters when eligible, are required for all University of Michigan students, faculty and staff across all campuses, including Michigan Medicine. This includes those working remotely. More information on this new policy is available on the Campus Blueprint website or the UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint websites.

Job Detail

Job Opening ID


Working Title

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Job Title

Strategic Planning Director

Work Location

Ann Arbor Campus

Ann Arbor, MI

Full/Part Time




FLSA Status


Organizational Group

Dsa Central Administ


Office of VP Student Life

Posting Begin/End Date

5/09/2022 - 5/23/2022


$150,000.00 - $165,000.00

Career Interest

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