University of Kansas MPA Program Manager in Lawrence, Kansas

Position Overview

Provides administrative support and advises prospective and current MPA students in the School of Public Affairs & Administration (SPAA). Provides complex and comprehensive student support and guidance throughout the information-gathering, application, enrollment, and program completion milestones of the student’s academic program. Advises on policies and processes related to graduate education at KU. Liaisons with each College Office of Graduate Affairs (COGA), Graduate Studies, MPA students, and other key graduate offices. The MPA Program Manager reports to the SPAA Director and works closely with the MPA program director and committee members.

Job Description

Advising and Communication (50%) Program and University Policy and Procedures:Maintains current knowledge of University policies and procedures affecting graduate education at KU. Effectively communicates and explains this information to faculty and students. Advises current students on university policy and procedures including admission, enrollment, academic policies, petitions, exams, and graduation. Advises faculty on matters relating to University graduate policy and procedures, including student petitions, recruitment, and the Academic Catalog. Attends MPA committee meetings in a policy advising capacity. When appropriate, conducts training for faculty members for use of systems related to admissions (ADMIT) and advising (Advising Tool & DPR).

Admissions and Recruitment: Corresponds with prospective and active applicants to provide information about the MPA program, and advises on the application process and requirements. Works with MPA committee to develop email campaigns for prospective students. Assists with prospective student visits and recruitment activities. Communicates with applicants to ensure that all materials are received by the relevant application deadline. Maintain knowledge and understanding of academic program outcomes, and use new student conversations to ensure appropriate student-to-program matches or make appropriate program referrals. Attends admissions committee meetings as requested and serves in a policy advising capacity. Under supervision of MPA program director, processes correspondence and invitation letters from the School to prospective and new students. Organizes, attends, and presents at new student orientations. Manages recruitment and outreach email campaigns in the Prospect CRM. Attends recruitment events. Plans and leads orientation and new student onboarding events both at the Lawrence and Edwards Campuses.

Advising and Graduation: Advises MPA students regarding University requirements for degree and for graduation. Guide student progress through academic milestones, including enrollment, career exploration and graduation. Meets with students individually to ensure that documentation required for graduation is complete and submitted appropriately. Manage student records on KU student information systems and database/CRM systems. Facilitate student enrollment and approval processes including those for KU, Graduate Studies, COGA, and the School of Public Affairs and Administration including items such as petitions, enrollment changes, appeals, and applications for graduation in compliance with appropriate deadlines and approval channels; manage student records in KU student information and tracking systems; provide appropriate referrals to University offices and Student Services. Prepares departmental forms (e.g., PtD Exam Outcome forms) and advises faculty and students on the completion and submission of University forms related to graduation. Advises faculty and students regarding University requirements for exams and exam committees. Attends SPAA graduation activities.

Liaison:Serves as liaison 1) between faculty and students to address student concerns and grievances and either advise student or, as appropriate, relay concerns to MPA program director, SPAA Director, or appropriate campus organization; 2) between students, SPAA and key graduate offices, including COGA, Office of Graduate Studies, Office of Graduate Admissions, Office of the Registrar (for purposes of graduate student enrollment), International Student Services, and the Applied English Center; 3) between SPAA and the KU Edwards Campus students, faculty and administration in order to ensure that student needs are met. As departmental representative, attends all COGA, Graduate Admissions and Graduate Studies informational and policy meetings, KU Edwards Staff Meetings and Annual Program reviews, and conveys important information to the MPA program director and SPAA Director. Consults regularly with the MPA program director and committee regarding the graduate program.

Administrative Support of Graduate Programs (40%) Administrative Processes:Submits and tracks student petitions, milestones, and exam pre-approvals and outcomes in the Progress to Degree (PTD) system and corresponds with COGA and Graduate Studies for follow up. Verifies that students have fulfilled all program and University requirements for degree, and processes applications for graduation through the KU Graduation System in Enroll & Pay (KUGS). Tracks email campaigns in Prospect and processes graduate admission decisions in the ADMIT system. Tracks applicant admission responses and notifies MPA program director accordingly. Schedules and assists with prospective MPA student campus visits. Provides students with enrollment permission numbers. Submits grade change forms and enrollment forms to COGA and the Registrar’s Office. Coordinates MPA final essay process.

Student Records Management and Tracking: Maintains and interprets current and historical departmental data relating to the graduate program or individual student enrollment, milestones, time to degree, appointments, evaluations, and awards. Maintains and updates the MPA Student Handbook, Academic Catalog, and graduate pages of the department/program website (including, but not limited to, the tracking and updating of program and University policy changes as they occur). Checks GPA and number of incompletes of graduate students at the end of every semester, and notifies MPA program director and SPAA Director accordingly. Tracks student enrollment and corresponds with students regarding enrollment requirements based on status in program. Prepares comparative statistical reports upon request. Utilizes University data resources as needed. Gathers information and updates unit databases for current and prospective MPA students and alumni. Tracks course needs by semester and advises the SPAA scheduling officer regarding MPA course offerings.

MPA Alumni Relations (10%) Maintains MPA alumni records.Coordinates with SPAA director and the communications team on fundraising efforts related to MPA initiatives. Coordinates with SPAA director and the communications team on marketing efforts towards MPA alumni including, but not limited to website, social media, electronic and print materials. Staffs alumni advisory boards and coordinates activities as needed. Facilitates alumni engagement with SPAA’s academic and professional development programs, MPA student recruitment, and internship opportunities for MPA students. Attends alumni events including, but not limited to, the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) annual conference, the Kansas City/County Management (KCCM) annual conference, and local/regional/national alumni events. Liaisons with the KU Alumni Association on resources available through their organization.

Required Qualifications

Evaluation of the following requirements will be made through (1) descriptions of work experiences and educational experiences in cover letter, (2) record of accomplishments and productivity addressed in resume, and (3) information provided from professional references:

  1. Master's degree in a liberal arts and sciences field and one year related experience OR bachelor's degree with 3 years related experience.
  2. Demonstrated effective written communication skills as evidenced by application materials.
  3. Previous experience that required organizational skills and attention to detail.
  4. Previous experience using databases or other electronic systems for tracking and managing information (e.g., accounts, data, forms).
  5. Previous experience investigating, interpreting and communicating guidelines, regulations, policies, and procedures.
  6. Previous experience collaborating and communicating with individuals from varying cultures, backgrounds, or levels of experience.
  7. Previous work experience that required independently organizing and tracking tasks/projects and to meet deadlines.
Preferred Qualifications
  1. Master's degree in public administration
  2. Experience working with students and/or faculty in an academic setting.
  3. Knowledge of KU and the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences' requirements, policies, procedures and information systems.
  4. Experience training others on procedures and/or electronic systems.
  5. Experience providing customer service.
  6. Professional experience handling sensitive information and/or situations requiring discretion and conformity to confidentiality and security protocols.
Contact Information to Applicants

SPAA Administrative Officer Diana Koslowsky

Additional Candidate Instruction

A complete on-line application includes the following materials:

  1. Cover letter
  2. Resume
  3. Names and contact information for three references, including email addresses

The initial review of applications begins on 11/01/2018. Please apply on or before this date.

Work Schedule

40 hours week/ full time


The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information and retaliation in the University's programs and activities. Access to information regarding equal opportunity and diversity worksite posters is available at or you may contact 785-864-4946 or for alternate access options. Any inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies should be directed to: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity and Access,, 1246 W. Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS, 66045, (785)864-6414, 711 TTY

Advertised Salary Range: 53,547

Application Review Begins: 01-Nov-2018

Work Location: University of Kansas - Lawrence

FTE: 1.0

Reg/Temp: Regular

FLSA Status: Administrative (Salaried)

Employee Class: U-Unclassified Professional Staff

Anticipated Start Date: 07-Jan-2019

Job Family: Advising,Career&StudentSrv-KUL;