Apr 06, 2023

Director of Online Graduate Programs

  • Saint Mary's University
  • Minneapolis, MN, USA
Full time Education: University/College

Job Description

Saint Mary's University is looking for a Director of Online Graduate Programs who is eager to contribute to its Lasallian Catholic mission of awakening, nurturing, and empowering learners to ethical lives of service and leadership. We invite individuals to help transform lives through education, inspired by the Catholic Intellectual Tradition’s quest to understand the human experience through faith and reason and its embrace of all who are dedicated to learning from one another through authentic conversations in search of the truth.

The Director of Online Graduate Programs is responsible for leading academic operations for online programs within the School of Graduate and Professional Programs (SGPP) and serves as the primary liaison for third party partnerships. This role continually seeks to improve practices and procedures to create the highest level of efficiency and quality for SGPP. These duties range from strategic planning with deans and executive leadership, project management with cross-functional campus offices, operational execution and the coordination of related communications in partnership with education service providers, as well as driving tactical solutions in collaboration with program directors and unit level leaders. Reporting directly to the Senior Director of Curriculum and Instruction, the Director of Online Graduate Programs will support the ongoing revision, new development, and delivery of high-quality programs, working in concert with academic and program leaders. 

  • Manage the development, implementation, and ongoing administration of the Saint Mary’s online graduate programs at SGPP.
  • Serve as primary liaison between third party providers and Saint Mary’s. 
  • Establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with deans and program directors for the success of their online programs.
  • Facilitate and document weekly operational meetings, monthly tactical meetings, and bi-annual strategic meetings with appropriate participants.
  • Use data to drive: 1) decision-making to proactively identify opportunities for process improvement, 2) synthesize insights into actionable recommendations and priorities, and 3) operational workflow improvements.
  • Collaborate with cross-functional teams:
    • With marketing and communications to develop and implement a comprehensive marketing and recruitment plan to attract qualified students to SGPP programs.
    • With admissions, enrollment services, registrar, and financial aid to ensure high quality service to potential students as well as monitor student retention and success rates, and implement strategies to improve outcomes as needed.
    • With Curriculum and Development and Educational Technology to to ensure that the online programs are supported by appropriate technology and infrastructure and that course content and delivery methods that are engaging, effective, and aligned with best practices in online education.
  • Work with university leadership to advocate for operational enhancements aimed at serving students and the student experience.
  • As needed, work with Accreditation and Compliance to ensure that the online programs meet accreditation standards and other relevant regulatory requirements.
  • Stay up-to-date on best practices and trends in online education, and make recommendations for program improvements as needed.

 Essential Skills and Functions:

  • An appreciation of shared governance and evidence of a strong ability to work effectively and collaboratively with university administration, faculty, students, staff, and other constituent groups and partners.
  • Strong, persuasive communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, with the ability to build and maintain relationships with faculty, staff, and external partnersy.
  • Expertise in emerging technologies and the effective application of instructional technologies to enhance student learning.
  • Understanding of contemporary issues in higher education and its impact on undergraduate, graduate, non-traditional and online learners.
  • Knowledge of strategic planning processes and project management principles.
  • Gifted as navigating differences to achieve and implement solutions across varied partners, including negotiating and administering contracts/partnerships.
  • Skilled at managing and directing resources to deliver projects/initiatives on time and on budget.


Education and Experience:


  • Master's degree in Education, Instructional/User/Learning design, or a related field.
  • 5 years of experience in online education, including experience managing and/or developing online programs.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of best practices and trends in online education, including instructional design, online course delivery, and student support services.
  • Experience working with accreditation agencies and other regulatory bodies.
  • Experience with online program marketing and recruitment, including digital marketing and social media.
  • May consider other acceptable equivalent combinations of training and experience.

 Apply online at https://hive.smumn.edu/about/offices/human-resources/employment-opportunities and please include a cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references.

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota believes inclusion and human dignity contributes to a robust academic and work environment and is critical to achieving the University's mission in an increasingly diverse society. Individuals with expertise and diverse skills from underrepresented groups are especially encouraged to apply. Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. The successful candidate must support, respect, and advance the mission of Saint Mary's University as a Lasallian Catholic institution.

 Saint Mary’s offers a comprehensive benefit package including health, dental, vision, life and disability insurance, flexible spending, retirement pension plan, and both undergraduate and graduate tuition remission plans.

 All offers of employment are contingent upon the successful completion of a criminal background check.

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