Retention Specialist for At-Risk Students
Walla Walla Community College - Walla Walla, WA

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Walla Walla Community College (WWCC) invites applications to fill the role of Retention Specialist for At-Risk students in the TRiO Program. The TRiO program is designed to provide supportive services to students who are first generation (neither parent graduated with a bachelor’s degree), low income, and/or disabled. The TRiO program is federally funded through a competitive grant. General Responsibilities The Retention Specialist works with a cohesive, creative staff in developing relationships of influence with students. This professional builds positive, working relationships with a variety of students who face multiple challenges in achieving academic success. The Retention Specialist assists with providing many programs and activities designed to promote student retention and completion. Essential Functions · Utilize interpersonal skills toward the development of positive, trustful, influential relationships with students · Contribute creatively in program development to a group of highly committed professional staff · Assist with the recruitment, screening, and selection of eligible participants, obtaining appropriate documentation. · Assist with the organization and instruction, both face to face and online, of workshops/presentations for the college experience/learning community course for participants. Topics may include study skills, college and career planning, financial aid processes, scholarship searches, test preparation, and self-esteem. Provide access to and instruction on technological resources to investigate career and college options. · Teach college retention courses as designated by the grant for participants. · Assist participants with the completion of retention assessments and disseminate reports. · Track student progress; implement retention strategies; analyze record and report all retention and follow-up data on project participants. · Establish and facilitate a cooperative relationship with college personnel, community agencies, industry partners and community educating them about the grant program and its objectives. · Serve as a liaison and advocate for students in their relationship with teachers, administrators, and community partners. · Coordinate with instructional support services to meet academic needs of program participants. · Attend professional meetings, conferences and workshops approved by the supervisor and participate in advisory, college, and community meetings as requested as well as department and college activities, and committees as appropriate. · Provide intensive, comprehensive educational advising, including assistance in developing a detailed educational plan, and direction in course selection. Provide academic early warning intervention strategies. Monitor financial aid and student needs on an ongoing basis. · Assist in recordkeeping, program evaluation and ongoing program improvement within the guidelines of the grant. · Coordinate and facilitate participant transfer to four-year institutions through transfer planning, campus visits and maintaining contacts with advisors at other colleges and universities. · Assist with new student orientations in coordination with other departments on campus.

Competencies & Requirements:
Competencies · Develop innovative ideas that provide solutions to all types of workplace challenges. · Demonstrate an ongoing commitment to learning and self-improvement. · Actively contribute to a work environment that embraces diversity and uses diverse perspectives to enhance the attainment of program and organizational goals. · Plan and manage time effectively. Identify and handle competing case priorities. Make effective decisions within short timeframes, and take appropriate action. Remain acutely aware of timeframes and successfully meet deadlines to ensure continued delivery of services. · Help students identify needs, explore options, and create and achieve meaningful goals; provide motivation through support, encouragement, and assistance. · Actively take steps to build cohesive and results-oriented team; recognize and encourage the behaviors that contribute to teamwork. Qualifications · Bachelor’s degree required; masters degree in education, guidance and counseling, or a related field desired · Excellent interpersonal skills required · Demonstrated ability to responding to the needs of students with disabilities and economically or educationally disadvantaged students. · Teaching, educational planning and/or counseling experience desired · Experience working with under-prepared students in higher education environment or equivalent experience desired · Experience working with community partner agencies desired.

Conditions/Terms of Employment:
Conditions/Terms of Employment This 215-day professional position is exempt from the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act. In accordance with the provisions of the Federal Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, Walla Walla Community College hires only United States citizens and aliens authorized to work in the United States. Persons hired must be able to provide acceptable documentation of lawful authorization to work in the United States within three (3) days of employment and official college transcripts. Candidate may be subject to a criminal history background check as a condition for consideration of employment.

Required Application Materials:
Required Application Materials This position will remain open until filled with the first screening of applications on January 2, 2013. To qualify for consideration, applicants must meet required qualifications and competencies and submit a complete application packet, which includes the following: · On-line application · Letter of interest detailing how you meet the qualifications and competencies for this position · Comprehensive resume or curriculum vitae · List names, addresses, and telephone numbers of three professional references · Unofficial transcripts WWCC reserves the right to not fill this position, reject all applicants, reopen the position or make a direct appointment. Applications received during this recruitment may be used to fill future vacancies at the College's discretion.