Director of Financial Aid, University of Florida

March 6, 2012

The University of Florida invites nominations and applications for the position of Director of Financial Aid. This person is responsible for the overall management of all financial aid programs.

About the University
Established in 1853 The University of Florida (UF) is a major, public, comprehensive, land-grant, sea-grant and space-grant research university and the only Florida institution that is a member of  the Association of American Universities. The state’s oldest and most comprehensive university, UF is the state’s flagship university and is among the nation’s most academically diverse public universities. Located in Gainesville Florida on a magnificent 2000-acre campus, UF has a student body of approximately 50,000 with 16 colleges, 5 schools and 136 departments offering more than 100 undergraduate and 200 graduate and professional majors.

In 1853, the state-funded East Florida Seminary took over the Kingsbury Academy in Ocala. The seminary moved to Gainesville in the 1860s and later was consolidated with the state’s land-grant Florida Agricultural College, then in Lake City. In 1905, by legislative action, the college became a university and was moved to Gainesville. Classes first met with 102 students on the present site on Sept. 26, 1906.  UF officially opened its doors to women in 1947.  With more than 50,000 students, UF is now one of the largest universities in the nation

UF has a 2,000-acre campus and more than 900 buildings (including 170 with classrooms and laboratories). The northeast corner of campus is listed as a Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places. The UF residence halls have a total capacity of some 7,500 students and the five family housing villages house more than 1,000 married and graduate students.

About the position
Currently UF is seeking candidates for the position of Director of Financial Aid.  The Director reports to the Vice President for Enrollment Management and is responsible for the overall administration of all financial aid programs exceeding $500 million to over 46,000 students.

Major areas of responsibility include:

  • Formulating policy affecting the administration of all loans, scholarships, grants, and student work programs.
  • Directing the operation of the following programs: $220 million for Student Loan Programs, $16million for Student Employment, $185million for Scholarships, and $90 million for grants.
  • Interpreting and implementing all statutory, regulatory, and institutional policy requirements including compliance with all NCAA rules regarding the financial aid administration of student athletic grants-in-aid.
  • Responding to media inquiries regarding university, state, and federal financial aid issues.
  • Developing financial aid strategies that help the University fulfill its educational mission and meet the needs of a diverse student population.
  • Managing the financial aid office with an operating budget of $3.5 million with 68 FTE.

Qualifications of the successful candidate must include:

  • Must have demonstrated visionary involvement in local, state, and federal financial aid program development, oversight, and implementation.
  • Visionary ability to foresee the next steps in the field and ability to identify new financial programs
  • Demonstrated experience in conceiving, conceptualizing, and implementation of financial aid technology systems.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of federal and state regulations and ability to maintain compliance with all regulations
  • Skilled in the articulation of financial aid programs to parents, students, and senior administrators
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with campus partners and with all members of an enrollment management team
  • Demonstrated leadership experience at a large, multifaceted, complex university
  • Demonstrated ability to advocate for financial aid staff and take a successful program to the next level

A bachelor’s degree with 7-10 years of administrative financial aid experience is required. However, the preferred candidate will possess an advanced degree with experience functioning as the Director within a large complex public institution.  The successful candidate must have in-depth knowledge and experience in working with federal, state and institutional programs, a commitment to statutory and regulatory compliance and experience working with enrollment management.  Additionally, this person should bring a strong history of supervisory and management experience and have the skills necessary to work effectively and collaboratively with senior university administrators and other campus stakeholders including deans and department heads. The Director should be an accomplished speaker and comfortable in representing the University nationally as it pertains to financial aid issues.  The ideal candidate will also have extensive experience in system conversion and implementation and possess the ability to work collaboratively with university IT departments.

Interested individuals should send a letter of application that relates the applicant’s skills and experiences to the qualifications for the position, curriculum vitae that includes notable achievements, and contact information including mailing and email addresses and telephone numbers for five references who are able to speak to the candidate’s qualifications as they relate to this position.  The packet should be sent electronically (Microsoft Word attachments preferred) to  The subject line in email should be UFDFA.  Confidential inquiries will be received at (951) 201-8800.

Documents that must be mailed should be sent to William Spelman Executive Search at 667 Midship Circle, Webster, NY 14580.  Confidentiality will be maintained, and references will not be contacted without prior knowledge or approval of the candidate. Review of applications will begin on April 2, 2012 and continue until the position is filled.  The anticipated starting date is in July, 2012. The University encourages nominations of and applications from women, minorities, and persons with disabilities.

The University of Florida is an Equal Opportunity Employer