Postsecondary education administrators essential career information:
- 2011 median pay: $86,490
- 2011, number of jobs: 122,930
- Employment growth forecast, 2010-2020: 19 percent
- Entry-level education requirements: Master’s degree
Postsecondary education administrators; what they do:
Postsecondary education administrators have a monumental job of keeping colleges and universities running smoothly through overseeing student services, academics, and research. They generally work in one specific area of a college, thus job responsibilities may vary.
Postsecondary education administrators working in admissions determine which students receive acceptance. They typically travel to specific areas of the country and speak with high school counselors and students about their college, urging qualified students to apply.
Postsecondary education administrator careers include determining how many available spots there are for admission, meeting with prospective students and answering their questions about the school.
A postsecondary education administrator career may include reviewing all applications in a process deciding who receives admission letters. A postsecondary education administrator career may also include preparing the promotional materials for new and prospective students and frequently working with the financial aid department.
A higher education administrator working in the registrar’s office maintains student and course records. These administrators have a great deal of student interaction, as they schedule and register students for classes, help students ensure they are meeting, or on track to meet graduation requirements.
A higher education administrator career may include preparing the students’ transcripts and diplomas. Postsecondary education administrators in the registrar office also plan the commencement ceremonies.
Postsecondary education administrators working in the student affairs department create and oversee multiple different nonacademic school functions, such as student athletics, activities, and multicultural affairs. Students often visit the student’s affairs offices for advice on issues such as housing issues, personal issues, or academic issues. A Postsecondary education administrator in the student’s affairs office also creates and maintains student records.
Some postsecondary education administrators are called provosts and work with college presidents, helping them develop academic policies. Provosts may also have a part in making faculty appointments, tenure decisions, and managing budgets.
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Postsecondary education administrator job titles:
- Academic Affairs Vice President
- Academic Dean
- Chief Academic Officer
- College President
- Admissions Director
- Dean of Students
- Financial Aid Director
- Higher Education Administrator
- Education Administrator
- Director of Student Activities
- Athletic Director
Postsecondary Education Administrators Education, Certification and License Requirements
Most postsecondary education administrator positions require at least a master’s degree from a variety of fields, including social work, accounting, or marketing. Postsecondary education administrators seeking a high-level position typically need a Ph.D. either in higher education or perhaps, if they were previously a professor, in the subject they taught.
Postsecondary education administrator programs cover subjects such as:
- Educational law
- Data analysis
- Organizational behavior
- School finance
- Policy implementation
Although no specific certifications or licenses are required for postsecondary education administrators, many employers – particularly in the registrar’s office – require work experience.
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Career Advancement Opportunities
Higher education administrators may move up within their department of college, while some obtain a college president position.
Postsecondary Education Administrators Job Outlook
Forecast: 19 percent employment growth from 2010 to 2020 for postsecondary education administrators, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Increases in student enrollments increases the demand for higher education administrators.
The primary limiting factor in employment growth for postsecondary education administrators is budgeting for public colleges and universities depending on state and local government.
Postsecondary Education Administrators Salary
- 2011 median annual wage: $86,490
- 2011, workers at the 75th percentile annual wage: $119,890
- 2011, workers at the 25% percentile annual wage: $63,820
Postsecondary Education Administrators Major Employers
- Public and private colleges
- Public and private universities
- Community colleges
- Technical and trade schools