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The University of the Arts seeks a proactive and customer-focused professional to support the work of our CEO and President in achieving the strategic goals of the University. Reporting directly to the President, the Assistant to the President serves as the primary support to the President and his extended office. Through exemplary administrative, operational and communications excellence, this position owns and ensures the seamless functioning of the Office of the President with tact, courtesy and efficiency. The Assistant to the President plays a critical role in the success of the President, and subsequently the university, by upholding the highest standards of customer service and overseeing how stakeholders, staff, faculty, students and general visitors engage with the Office of the President.

The Assistant to the President will have the ability to work and think independently and must be able to handle a wide variety of activities and confidential matters with the utmost discretion. This role will be privy to all the mission-critical goals and objectives of this 140-year-old institution, and will support all of the President’s projects, most of which engage high-level stakeholders, including the Board of Trustees, Senior Staff, donors, alumni, VIP visitors, and government and business leaders.  

Also critical to the success of this position is supporting presidential initiatives delegated to members of senior leadership. This position will staff senior leadership and board of trustee’s meetings and liaise, communicate and support, as appropriate, presidential initiatives stewarded by vice presidents, assistant vice presidents, deans and trustees, among others.

It is expected that the incumbent will have a genuine understanding of, and appreciation for, protocol, discretion, respect, diplomacy and professionalism, is able to accept and assume responsibility, and has the ability to interpret and make decisions in accordance with prescribed procedures and practices of the institution.



Maximizes the President’s Time by Managing the President’s Calendar

•    Manages access to the President by proactively owning the President’s schedule and calendar, serving as “gatekeeper" to create win-win situations for direct access to the President's time.
•    Schedules all meetings and appointments, and ensures the President is prepared for all engagements, identifying objectives and soliciting content as needed; briefs President daily.
•    Owns the operational and short- and long-range follow-up for key meetings at the direction of the President.
•    Anticipates schedule conflicts and works to resolve them promptly, following up with all parties as needed.
•    Makes travel arrangements for the President as required, including booking flights, hotel accommodations, car rentals, and offsite and/or restaurant meetings as needed.

Leads Customer Service Excellence within the Office of the President
•    Upholds, cultivates and ensures the highest standards of customer service are met for the office of the president, overseeing the reception of, and overall experience of, all visitors to the office – in person as well as via email and phone.
•    Receives, reviews and responds, and/or directs reception staff to respond, appropriately to all requests made of the President and his staff, ensuring each request is handled promptly and courteously.
•    Oversees, trains and inspires the administrative and reception staff, which currently consists of one administrative assistant and part-time student workers.
•    Ensures all preparations for meetings hosted by the President’s Office are met and communicated, including space reservations, agendas / handouts and catering when required.
•    Responds to routine inquiries without need for consultation with the President.
•    Regularly reviews, maintains and leverages the President’s Office web and portal pages as communication tools to further the transparency and communication of presidential and institutional goals.
•    Ensures resources, amenities and appearance of the office are maintained and stocked appropriately, including office supplies, waiting area, kitchen / catering supplies; liaises with facilities and other departments as needed.

Serves as Intermediary and Correspondent for the President

•    Reviews, analyzes and prioritizes correspondence, including phone, mail and email – providing information and referring inquiries to appropriate sources based on a broad knowledge of the University’s procedures, protocols and personnel. This includes the review and preliminary synthesis of any document requiring the President’s signature. Follows up with senders to correct errors or omissions. Reads and edits the President’s correspondence.
•    Writes on behalf of the President and in his/her voice, as requested.
•    Maintains confidentiality, tact and respect at all times.
•    Clarifies issues for the President based on proactive management of facts, actions and directions.
•    Serves as liaison with University and community leaders. Collaborates with the University’s Communications department on all speeches for the President.

Serves as Board of Trustees Support and Liaison

•    Provides support to the Board of Trustees by drafting agendas in collaboration with the President and others as directed.
•    Prepares and produces hardcopy materials on an as-needed basis to support meetings
•    Schedules, communicates and maintains all Board of Trustees calendars, including meeting dates, times and locations.
•    Ensures all event-related setup needs are met, including catering and tech setup as needed
•    Staffs all Board of Trustees meetings, and is responsible for transcribing minutes.
•    Owns the creation, archiving, referencing and action-items for all Board Meeting minutes.
•    Maintains records regarding the Board of Trustees membership, including but not limited to Trustee terms of service, committee assignments, bylaws and other board record-keeping as assigned.
•    Prepares, posts and distributes Board of Trustees materials on wiki/collaboration sites, email and in print as necessary or required.

Serves as Senior Leadership Support and Liaison

•    Drafts agendas for President’s Council and Senior Staff meetings as directed by the President
•    Solicits and circulates updates from President’s Council and Senior Staff members prior to each meeting.
•    Prepares and produces hardcopy materials on an as-needed basis to support meetings
•    Schedules, communicates and maintains all schedules of meetings.
•    Ensures all event-related setup needs are met, including catering and tech setup as needed
•    Staffs President’s Council and Senior Staff meetings, and is responsible for transcribing and circulating minutes.
•    Owns the creation, archiving, referencing and circulation of all minutes.
•    Maintains records regarding the membership and invited guests of President’s Council and Staff Council.

Supports Special Projects  

•    Collaborates and supports presidential priorities managed by the AVP of Special Projects, VP for Advancement and/or other members of senior leadership.
•    Proactively anticipates the administrative and logistical needs of projects, and facilitates assistance as appropriate; consistently provides follow-up and communication on action items.
•    Works with relevant members of senior leadership to identify priorities for the President relative to a given project.

Manages and Facilitates HR & Budget-Related Responsibilities

•    Retains receipts and reconciles the President’s credit card statements in compliance with the University’s policies and guidelines. Completes and submits the President’s expense claims as required following the respective policies and guidelines.   
•    Codes all invoices received for payment in the President’s office in compliance with University policies and guidelines.  
•    Maintains records regarding vacation and leaves for staff reporting to the President, including verifying dates and posting on the President’s calendar.  
•    Maintains logically-organized, comprehensive paper and electronic filing systems for the President’s Office.
•    Manages the President’s Office budget, collaborating continually with the University’s CFO and Senior Staff.

Occasional early morning and late evening work is required.

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by the incumbent; they do not purport to describe all functions.  Incumbent may be assigned other duties, and the essential functions may change from time to time as necessary.


•    The ideal candidate will possess one of the following combinations:

  • Bachelor’s degree AND 7- 10 years of progressively responsible executive administrative experience, preferably in a higher education setting; OR
  • Master’s degree AND at least 5 -years of progressively responsible executive administrative experience, preferably in a higher education setting

•    Exceptional communication skills, as in executive-level speaking, writing and strategic/public relations communications.
•    Excellent computer and technology skills.


•    Maintains the highest level of confidentiality, political acumen and discretion
•    Exemplary interpersonal skills; high degree of emotional intelligence
•    Possesses a customer-focused attitude
•    Exemplary oral and written communication skills including tonality when speaking; ability to speak publicly with poise and confidence; ability to clearly, accurately and appropriately express oneself in oral and written communications; ability to interact effectively and appropriately with university administrators, faculty, staff and students
•    Excellent time management, planning and organizational skills; detail oriented
•    Exercises sound independent judgment and thinks strategically
•    Problem-solver able to deftly triage situations; demonstrates critical thinking skills
•    Understands and manages complex and sensitive situations while exercising diplomacy
•    Possesses keen awareness of organizational politics and policies; strategic insight and tactical foresight
•    Possesses business acumen including financial/budget administration
•    Readily adapts to changing priorities
•    Proactive and a team player
•    Possesses knowledge and understanding of program services, policies, procedures, rules, laws, etc.
•    Working knowledge of diverse cultures and demonstrated ability to work effectively with diverse interest groups at all levels of the University, and with diverse external constituencies and agency representatives.
•    Effective in managing change; familiar with current organizational and management theories.


The University of the Arts—a leader in developing visual and performing artists and designers since 1876—is the only university in the United States that allows its students to collaborate across traditional lines. With more than 30 majors, 30 minors and 13 graduate programs in visual arts, performing arts, design and liberal studies, UArts develops alumni who are not only leaders in their disciplines, but also creative thinkers able to succeed in any path they choose. Our nearly 1,900 students study and create on our campus in the heart of Philadelphia’s Avenue of the Arts, the city’s cultural center, within walking distance of hundreds of galleries, museums, theaters and other performing arts venues.

TO APPLY: Interested, qualified applicants should submit letters of application, resumes and samples of communications to assistant-to-the-president@uarts.edu.   Please ensure job title is in the subject line.

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