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  • Full Time
  • St. Louis County
  • Salary: $64,700 - $77,000
  • Organization Type: Education

Washington University in St. Louis

Position Summary
Reports to the Senior Director, Academic Ceremonies and Celebrations (ACC). The role of the Senior Associate Director, ACC is to plan and implement key university ceremonies designed to cultivate, maintain and strengthen student, alumni, parent, and friend ties to the University. Oversee or assist with all aspects project management and planning for assigned events (including all-University Commencement).

Job Description
Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  • Work with school and unit liaisons to plan university ceremonies, including but not limited to: Commencement school ceremonies and all-University and Convocation events. Work with selected internal and external vendors to coordinate event arrangements and manage the planning and logistical details for assigned university ceremonies. Make decisions on event specifics including menu, audio-visual, program, décor, etc. Investigate and resolve discrepancies with terms of the contract. Perform these tasks simultaneously for multiple events.
  • Work with the Senior Director, ACC to provide expert oversight and management to create or assist with the communications related to the ceremonies (including school ceremonies), determining appropriate communication lists, working to outline programs and speakers, overseeing logistics including locations, rooms, tents, AV, catering, outside vendors, etc., handling communications with university leadership (Chancellor, Deans, Provost, Executive Vice Chancellor), speakers, and providing other assistance as necessary.
  • Provide university leadership and planning committees with cost estimates and budget parameters. Manage cost control for university and cross department events, in collaboration with the Senior Director, ACC, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Special Events and University Ceremonies, and school partners. Make purchasing decisions based on experience with previous events and under the guidance of the Director. This includes performing analysis and making recommendations on event related decisions.
  • Research potential new vendors to determine suitability for the event at hand, and present recommendations to Senior Director. Negotiate contract terms with vendors and investigate and resolve any found discrepancies within the terms and agreements of the contract.
  • Work closely with Senior Director, ACC to ensure that protocols and standards are met.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by the Senior Director, ACC, and Assistant Vice Chancellor of Special Events and University Ceremonies. Provide on-site support for University Advancement Special Events

Preferred Qualifications

  • Minimum of three years of event management and financial management experience.
  • Prior experience in budgeting and forecasting.
  • Prior experience working with a nonprofit organization, preferably in development/advancement for an institution of higher education.
  • Strong interpersonal and organizational skills, preferably in event logistics. Ability to resolve conflicts with vendors and partners regarding logistical details of events.
  • Possess problem-solving skills in dealing with a fast-paced, complex organization with the ability to be flexible and adapt to a changing environment.
  • Enthusiasm for the mission of Washington University, matched by a desire to reflect its excellence.
  • Superior written and oral communication skills.
  • Strong proofing skills and excellent attention to detail.
  • Possess the ability to adapt to a fast-paced, changing environment.
  • Ability to effectively work fairly independently, within a larger, team-oriented environment.
  • Ability to work collegially and build effective relationships with University Advancement staff and across the University.
  • Ability to listen and learn.
  • Ability to prioritize and balance multiple projects at once.
  • Mature individual with knowledge of university systems and personnel.
  • Strong work ethic, a sense of commitment, and personal initiative are integral to this role.
  • Ability to handle sensitive, confidential information appropriately.
  • Proficiency with computer applications such as Microsoft Office Suite and FileMaker Pro.

Required Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree.
  • Minimum of three to five years of related experience.

Please apply via and enter job #JR80556

Salary Range
The salary range reflects base salaries paid for positions in a given job grade across the University. Individual rates within the range will be determined by factors including one’s qualifications and performance, equity with others in the department, market rates for positions within the same grade and department budget.

For frequently asked questions about the application process, please refer to our External Applicant FAQ.

If you are unable to use our online application system and would like an accommodation, please email or call the dedicated accommodation inquiry number at 314-935-1149 and leave a voicemail with the nature of your request.

Pre-Employment Screening
All external candidates receiving an offer for employment will be required to submit to pre-employment screening for this position. The screenings will include criminal background check and, as applicable for the position, other background checks, drug screen, an employment and education or licensure/certification verification, physical examination, certain vaccinations and/or governmental registry checks. All offers are contingent upon successful completion of required screening.

Benefits Statement

  • Up to 22 days of vacation, 10 recognized holidays, and sick time.
    Competitive health insurance packages with priority appointments and lower copays/coinsurance.
    Want to Live Near Your Work and/or improve your commute? Take advantage of our free Metro transit U-Pass for eligible employees. We also offer a forgivable home loan of up to $12,500 for closing costs and a down payment for homes in eligible neighborhoods.
    WashU provides eligible employees with a defined contribution (403(b)) Retirement Savings Plan, which combines employee contributions and university contributions starting at 7%.


  • Wellness challenges, annual health screenings, mental health resources, mindfulness programs and courses, employee assistance program (EAP), financial resources, access to dietitians, and more!


  • We offer 4 weeks of caregiver leave to bond with your new child. Family care resources are also available for your continued childcare needs. Need adult care? We’ve got you covered.
    WashU covers the cost of tuition for you and your family, including dependent undergraduate-level college tuition up to 100% at WashU and 40% elsewhere after seven years with us.

For policies, detailed benefits, and eligibility, please visit:

EEO/AA Statement
Washington University in St. Louis is committed to the principles and practices of equal employment opportunity and especially encourages applications by those from underrepresented groups. It is the University’s policy to provide equal opportunity and access to persons in all job titles without regard to race, ethnicity, color, national origin, age, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, protected veteran status, or genetic information.

Diversity Statement
Washington University is dedicated to building a diverse community of individuals who are committed to contributing to an inclusive environment – fostering respect for all and welcoming individuals from diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives. Individuals with a commitment to these values are encouraged to apply.

Please apply via and enter job #JR80556