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Retention Specialist

Montana State University Bozeman, MT

  • Employment Type Other
Position Details

Position Information

Announcement Number
STAFF - VA - 19369

For questions regarding this position, please contact:

Julian Collins at 406-994-7480 or

Classification Title
Program Mgr

Working Title
Retention Specialist

Brief Position Overview

The purpose of the position is to support and meet the proposed outcomes for the US Department of Education TRIO SSS grant. Specifically, the Retention Specialist will serve as a case manager, regularly and where appropriate "intrusively" interacting and advising 140 MSU TRIO SSS student scholars to ensure they retain and graduate at levels higher than their peer population group as specified in the grant. In addition to regular student meetings, the Retention Specialist will also host, in conjunction with other TRIO SSS staff, the Summer Smart Start Program, the Semester Kickoffs, and other workshops and events. The Retention Specialist will also work closely with other departments and offices to ensure MSU TRIO SSS student scholars follow, complete and gain value from the MSU Academic Success & Career Plan.

Position Number

TRiO/Student Support Services

Division of Student Success

Appointment Type

Contract Term
Fiscal Year


If other, specify From date

If other, specify End date


Union Affiliation
Exempt from Collective Bargaining


Benefits Eligible

Salary range of $16.716 to $20.895 hourly, commensurate with experience, education, and qualifications

Contract Type
Classified Salary

If other, please specify

Recruitment Type

Position Details

General Statement

The over-arching goal of TRIOS SSS is to advance student retention and graduation outcomes for 140 low income, first generation an/or disabled college students by providing access, resources, solutions, and expertise to promote student success through career maturity, learning support, engagement and financial acumen.

The Division of Student Success is comprised of a number of offices, people, and programs working together to foster a holistic collegiate experience at Montana State University. We encompass every facet of the student experience. Each unit in the division supports students in their academic goals and personal journeys while they work to become graduates of Montana State University. In support of the Montana State University mission, the mission of Student Success is to enhance the learning environment of the University; support students in the attainment of their educational objectives; foster in students a sense of responsibility, self-directedness, community, and a positive identity with Montana State University.

Duties and Responsibilities

The successful candidate will be responsible for:

+ Developing an intervention strategy for at-risk students or those with a low career maturity profile based on the evidence from the student intake, BCCSE, Strong Interest Inventory, Student Engagement (ChampChange), class attendance, course outcomes, etc. Then using this information to successfully implement the terms and requirements of the US Department of Education TRIO SSS grant submitted by MSU.

+ Using a case management model, develop, implement and maintain the MSU Academic Success & Career Plan for each of the TRIO SSS student scholars.

+ Oversee the production of large-scale events to promote TRIO SSS scholar retention/graduation, affinity and career development.

+ Where appropriate, coordinate the development and graphic design for print, web and digital media as it relates to the respective program, within the parameters of the retention communication plan.

+ Work with various constituents (academic advisors, faculty, career coaches, financial coaches, success advisors, health promotions, learning strategist, activities, and engagement, etc.) to promote student success and individual professional development.

+ Maintain accurate records and appropriate data management practices to ensure evidence of effort and outcomes are properly recorded to demonstrate grant outcomes.

+ Where appropriate, assist with formative and summative assessment of the program. Incorporate suggestions from assessment to improve program and student support.

Required Qualifications - Experience, Education, Knowledge & Skills

+ Bachelor's degree in education, communication, sociology, psychology, or related field, with emphasis in higher education and experience working with "disadvantaged students" in need of academic support and socialization to a campus environment or an equivalent combination of relevant experience and education;

+ Demonstrated professional experience with progressive program management responsibility;

+ Experience in student advising at the post-secondary level or experience with career/professional coaching;

+ Excellent organizational and communication skills;

+ Demonstrated competence in information systems (e.g. word processing, excel, access, PowerPoint);

+ Demonstrated excellence in program development, implementation, and delivery assessment.

Preferred Qualifications - Experience, Education, Knowledge & Skills

+ Master's degree in Higher Education Administration; Student Affairs; Communication; Education; Sociology;

+ Ability to coordinate multiple initiatives while working with various constituents bringing a project to a successful completion;

+ Familiarity with US Department of Education TRIO SSS grant guidelines and expectations.

+ Familiarity with employment trends and/or student recruitment, retention, and enrollment management issues.

+ Knowledge of trends in higher education.

The Successful Candidate Will

The successful candidate will have the opportunity to regularly exercise independent authority, judgment, and discretion to improve student retention on campus. They will be required to understand and work within a strategic retention framework, but will have the autonomy to make decisions with the intention of improving student success to ensure US Department of Education TRIO SSS grant outcomes are met.

Position Special Requirements/Additional Information

Must be able to work a flexible schedule which may include days, nights, and occasional weekends.

This job description should not be construed as an exhaustive statement of duties, responsibilities or requirements, but a general description of the job. Nothing contained herein restricts Montana State University's rights to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time.

Continuation of this position is dependent upon continued funding.

+ Operate standard office equipment;
establish and maintain effective working relationships with co-workers and the public;

+ Represent the TRIO SSS program to others in a professional and courteous manner.

Physical Demands

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily with or without reasonable accommodations. The requirements listed above are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.

This position has supervisory duties?

Posting Detail Information

Number of Vacancies

Desired Start Date
Upon completion of a successful search.

Position End Date (if temporary)

Open Date

Close Date

Applications will be:

Screening of applications will begin on June 21, 2019, however, applications will continue to be accepted until an adequate applicant pool has been established.

Special Instructions

Diversity Statement

Montana State University values diverse perspectives and is committed to continually supporting, promoting and building an inclusive and culturally diverse campus environment. MSU recognizes the importance of work-life integration and strives to be responsive to the needs of dual career couples.

Montana State University is committed to providing a working and learning environment free from discrimination. As such, the University does not discriminate in the admission, access to or conduct of its educational programs and activities nor in its employment policies and practices on the basis of an individual's race, color, religion, national origin, creed, service in the uniformed services (as defined in state and federal law), veteran's status, sex, age, political ideas, marital or family status, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation. In support of the University's mission to be inclusive and diverse, applications from qualified minorities, women, veterans and persons with disabilities are highly encouraged.

Montana State University makes accommodation for any known disability that may interfere with an applicant's ability to compete in the hiring process or an employee's ability to perform the duties of the job. To request an accommodation, contact the Human Resources Office, PO Box 172520, Montana State University, Bozeman MT 59717-2520; 406-994-3651; .

In compliance with the Montana Veteran's Employment Preference Act, MSU provides preference in employment to veterans, disabled veterans, and certain eligible relatives of veterans. To claim veteran's preference please complete the veteran's preference information located in the Demographics section of your profile.

MSU's Non-Discrimination Policy and Discrimination Grievance Procedures can be located on the MSU Website: .

Montana State University

Posted: over a month ago