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Assistant Director, Financial Aid

Apply now Job no: 495381
Work type: Full Time
Location: Swarthmore
Categories: Salary (Exempt), On Campus

Swarthmore College is a highly selective liberal arts college located in the suburbs of Philadelphia, whose mission combines academic rigor with social responsibility. Swarthmore has a strong institutional commitment to inclusive excellence and nondiscrimination in its educational program and employment practices and encourages candidates who will further advance the goal of fostering a diverse and inclusive community. As one of the nation’s finest institutions of higher learning, Swarthmore College is global in outlook and draws students from around the nation and world. The 425‐acre campus is a designated arboretum, complete with gardens, rolling lawns, a creek, wooded hills, and hiking trails in the Crum Woods.

Who We Are:

We are the Financial Aid Office at Swarthmore College - the office charged with providing need-based financial aid from various sources, and primarily from the College itself, to more than half of the student body at Swarthmore College.  Aligning with the College’s newly released strategic plan, “Swarthmore Forward,” the Financial Aid Office, and financial aid as a concept, ensures that all students at Swarthmore, regardless of their family’s financial position, are able to afford a Swarthmore education and can take full advantage of the opportunities offered by the College. 

Utilizing a holistic financial need review process and methodologies rooted in horizontal and vertical equity, the Financial Aid Office team carefully steers the College’s financial resources toward students determined to have a need for financial assistance in covering the annual costs to attend Swarthmore College.  Additionally, the Financial Aid Office partners with the Admissions Office through four rounds each year of the admission application process, assisting thousands of prospective students and their families through the financial aid process. The Financial Aid Office team provides responsive and empathetic service to all prospective and admitted Swarthmore College students.

The opportunity:

The Assistant Director of Financial Aid reports to the Director of Financial Aid.  The Financial Aid Office consists of seven (7) full-time professional staff, including the Director of Financial Aid.  The Financial Aid Office is recruiting in advance of the planned retirement of a team member at the end of the calendar year.  The anticipated start date of this role is September 2, 2024, prior to this staff member’s retirement, to allow for an overlapping training period for this new hire.

Essential Responsibilities

  • In depth analyses of US federal income tax forms and other financial documentation.
  • Review and verify financial aid applications.
  • Award prospective and current students of Swarthmore College with federal, state, and institutional financial aid funds using federal and institutional need-based analysis methodologies.
  • Manage a caseload of students and their parents and guardians, serving as their point of contact and advisement from initial application to graduation.
  • Determine student eligibility for Federal Title IV aid.
  • Remain current with regulatory changes and professional best practices.
  • Follow and implement policies and procedures.
  • Work with other campus offices (Admissions, Student Accounts Office, Registrar, etc.).
  • Help maintain a positive, customer service-oriented office atmosphere while providing administrative support and oversight of the daily operations of the Office.
  • Interact with students, parents and guardians, and campus personnel in a positive, professional, and highly confidential manner.
  • During heavy volume periods, assist with coverage of front line office duties such as answering phone calls, emails, and drop-in visits.
  • Actively take part in financial aid committee work (appeals, special circumstances).
  • Provide special oversight and management for internal or external aid programs.
  • Participate in Admissions events, including selected evening and weekend events.
  • Make financial aid presentations to students, families, and counselors on campus and at high schools and community based organizations.
  • Performs other job-related duties as assigned.

Who you are:

Reporting to the Director of Financial Aid, and working with a seasoned team of professionals, the Assistant Director of Financial Aid assists in upholding the highest levels of customer service to all Swarthmore College students as it relates to financial aid processes, timelines, and communication. 

The Assistant Director manages a caseload of prospective and current students, counsels students and parents/guardians, reviews financial aid applications, and utilizes knowledge of relevant rules and regulations for the awarding of financial aid funds for the Financial Aid Office.  The Assistant Director is a key member of the Financial Aid Office team.

Applicants with financial aid experience, a strong background in federal methodology, and an aptitude for technology and administrative systems are encouraged to apply.  Applicants with experience in institutional methodology, or in learning institutional methodology are preferred. 

This position is a campus-based in-person position with the potential for some hybrid work upon becoming fully installed after at least a full annual cycle of peak performance.

What you bring:

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree
  • Three or more years of experience either working in financial aid at a college or university setting, or in a document-based, analytical, or financial organizational setting.
  • Desire and ability to learn the financial aid need analysis and review process.
  • Attention to detail with strong analytical and quantitative reasoning skills.
  • Exceptional written and oral communication skills.
  • Counseling or customer service experience.
  • Commitment to the principles of access and diversity, exceptional customer service, and unquestioned personal and professional ethical standards.
  • Drive to thrive in a fast paced environment with high expectations for performance and productivity.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Knowledge of Federal Methodology and federal aid principles and processing.
  • Experience working with Institutional Methodology.
  • Detailed knowledge of federal, state, and institutional financial aid regulations.
  • Experience managing/stewarding agency sponsored scholarship programs.
  • Demonstrated experience in analyzing and recommending significant improvements in departmental operations.
  • Ability to work without direct supervision.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish and meet objectives within limited time frames and under tight deadlines.
  • Proven leadership skills.
  • Familiarity with highly selective college or university settings.
  • Innovative thinking and technological vision.
  • Experience working with Banner and/or PowerFAIDS.
  • Familiarity with SQL.

What You Will Get:

You’ll work at one of the world's most renowned liberal arts Colleges, with incredible benefits, a stunning 420-acre campus, and a collaborative work environment. Join a team of passionate, creative people who work hard and have fun supporting the College students, faculty, and staff.  We want to hear from you if you are excited about this opportunity.  For full consideration, submit an application with pay expectations, including a resume and (optional) cover letter. Applications will be reviewed starting June 1, 2024.

PA Criminal Required

Swarthmore College requires a PA Criminal background check for all staff positions prior to the start of employment.

Education Verification Required by Position

An education verification is required for this position because a college degree is a required qualification for this position.

Review the 2024 Benefits Flyer. We offer benefit plans starting at zero cost! Upon benefit eligibility, the College contributes 10% of an employee’s salary to their retirement account. Employees are 100% vested in their accounts on the date participation begins.

Financial Aid Office

Swarthmore Benefits Guidebook

Retirement Plans

Tuition Grant Program

Tuition Reimbursement Program

Paid Time Off (Staff)

Holiday Schedule

Swarthmore College actively seeks and welcomes applications from candidates with exceptional qualifications, particularly those with demonstrable commitments to a more inclusive society and world. Swarthmore College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

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