Transition and Orientation Specialist

Job Information
Author ahnationtalk
Date November 16, 2017
Type Full Time
Company Wilfrid Laurier University
Salary $33.33 to $39.23 - Per Hour
Location Waterloo, ON
Category Business / Management
Client Wilfrid Laurier University
Contact Information
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Posting ID : 8514
Apply By : 11/22/2017
Position Title : Transition and Orientation Specialist
Department : Retention and Learning
Job Type : Full-time, Limited Term
Campus : Waterloo
Reports To : Manager, Transition and Learning Services
Position Summary : At Laurier, we are a community. It’s what brings our students here and what keeps our people here.

As an educational institution, we inspire lives of leadership and purpose in our student community. As an employer, we seek, foster and value the same qualities of leadership and purpose in our employee community.

We currently have an opportunity to join the Laurier community as a Transition and Orientation Specialist.

The incumbent will provide programs, services, assessment and initiatives to support student transition, retention, and success initiatives to enhance the student experience at the Waterloo campus. Reporting to the Manager, Transition & Learning Services, this position will support the delivery of the Transition and Orientation programs including the uStart Academic Success Program, while participating and supporting other department initiatives.

The primary accountability of the incumbent is to support the assessment and planning of Laurier’s transition and retention programs. This will include the Summer Online Orientation, Headstart Transition Program, uStart Academic Success Program, and Orientation Week.

The incumbent will support the development of the Online Summer Orientation program and Orientation Week activities as well as the Headstart Transition Program. Summer Online Orientation will provide directed information to various cohorts of incoming students to help with their transition to Laurier. Topics may include, living in Waterloo, inside & outside the classroom opportunities, academic integrity, and student success strategies. Orientation week activities will focus on introducing students to the academic culture at Laurier and preparing them for university level studies.

The Headstart transition program introduces students and their parents or guardians to life and learning at Laurier, including: an opportunity to learn about their program; academic expectations and strategies for academic success; the differences between high school and university; and, campus services and resources. The incumbent will provide assistance with logistics, planning, marketing, delivery, and assessment of the all transition programs.

uStart is for new students that have been admitted to Laurier with an average that is slightly below entrance requirements. The program provides support through workshops, individual uStart advising and coaching appointments, and peer mentor groups to assist participants in their transition to Laurier and to university studies. The incumbent will assist with providing advising and coaching appointments; referring participants to campus resources; and, collaborating with campus partners to provide further enrichment activities for participants.

The incumbent will also support Transition & Learning Services programs including providing learning strategy appointments to help students develop the necessary learning and study skills to be successful with their studies as well as providing contentualized study skills workshops as with various campus partners and student groups.

Lastly, the incumbent will participate in department meetings, programs, and initiatives to further promote the objectives of the department and the institution.

The normal hours of work are 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday. Flexibility in hours will be required, including evening and/or weekend work to accommodate student appointments, workshop facilitation, and participating in events. When possible, the manager will adjust the work schedule so that no more than 35 hours are worked in a week.

Accountabilities: Primary Accountability: Summer Online Orientation & Orientation Week Activities (Waterloo Campus)

  • Coordinates with the Students’ Union, Student Affairs representatives and campus partners to evaluate Laurier’s current transition and orientation programs.
  • Assists the Manager, Transition & Learning Services in:
      • determining appropriate content for online orientation modules;
      • coordinating with the educational technologies department to determine appropriate delivery methods;
      • connecting with faculties to determine faculty-specific content and online resources;
      • creating study strategy modules to help students learn the differences between high school and university level learning;
      • in coordination with Recruitment & Admission and Enrolment Services, developing a summer communication plan for connecting with incoming students.
  • Participates in online discussions and interactions with incoming student cohorts.
  • Participates in the updating and delivering of online webinars for registration and transition programs.

Secondary Accountability: Headstart and Transition Programs (Waterloo Campus)

  • Remains current with university course registration practices and policies.
  • Assists the Manager, Transition & Learning Services and Learning Consultant, Transition & Supplemental Instruction in:
      • determining the appropriate learning objectives and outcomes each year for the program and then developing the appropriate programming to meet these objectives and outcomes;
      • determining appropriate dates;
      • developing and implementing appropriate marketing strategies;
      • locating appropriate community sponsorship opportunities; and,
      • communicating with educational advisors and associate deans to ensure the success of the program.
  • Supports the development and facilitation of Headstart webinars, workshops, and other programming.
  • Participates in organizing logistics, including the website, the registration system, room bookings, parking solutions, and meals.
  • Supports the Headstart Assistant; participates in the supervision of the Headstart Assistant.
  • Participates in the hiring, training, and supervision of a team of student employees.
  • Ensures superior customer service and satisfaction with all aspects of Headstart programming, including de-escalating conflict when it arises.
  • Participates in developing appropriate assessment methods to assess and evaluate the program to determine and implement appropriate changes to meet changing Faculty expectations and student needs.

Secondary Accountability: Learning Consultant

  • Provides individual or group consultations for students who want assistance with identifying their learning styles and improving their coping strategies to support their growth and success in their academic studies. Time management, procrastination, effective note taking and exam preparations are a few of the popular cited concerns.
  • Develops, conducts and administers self-awareness assessment tools to help students develop the meta-cognitive skills, learning, and research skills to assist students in reaching their academic potential.
  • Identifies coping strategies to support the academic growth and development of students
  • Develops and delivers learning strategies programming in the form of presentations, workshops, seminars, and hand-outs through various mediums and tailored to various cohorts of students (incoming, first-year, senior year, graduate, athlete, international, etc.)
  • Working with the manager, develops appropriate tools and mechanisms to support data collection, analysis, assessment and dissemination to faculty and senior academic administrators

Other Duties

  • Maintains a broad knowledge of initiatives for enhancing transition, retention, and student success in both Canadian and international post-secondary environments for use in developing programs and services to enhance the student experience.
  • Maintains a broad understanding of department programs and services.
  • Participates in opportunities to educate current students, campus partners, faculty, prospective students and their parents /guardians, and the external community about the programs and services offered by the department.
  • Supports department colleagues, when required, to meet the objectives and outcomes of the department.
  • Assists the manager in the recruiting, training, and supervision of student paraprofessional employees.
  • Assists the manager in the collection and analysis of data.
  • Assists the manager in preparing reports.
  • Participates in staff meetings and strategic planning.

Qualifications :

  • Master’s degree in education, with a focus on either adult learning, higher education, or student affairs.
  • Minimum 2 years related work experience, which must include practical experience.
  • An understanding of the research and trends related to transition, retention, student success, and learning development.
  • An understanding of Laurier’s enrolment, academic advising, and retention processes.
  • An understanding of Laurier’s programs, courses, and progression requirements.
  • An understanding of adult learning theory, student development theory, metacognition, and learning strategies.
  • An understanding of a wide variety of student needs (e.g. Indigenous, International, First-Generation, Mature, College Transfer, etc … ) an asset.
  • Experience providing individual student consultations.
  • Experience developing interactive learning materials for in-person and online delivery.
  • Experience delivering presentations and facilitating interactive workshops to both small and large groups.
  • Experience applying theories to individual consultations and workshop development.
  • Experience assisting students in course selection to ensure progression requirements.
  • Experience assisting students in applying strategies to course content and requirements.
  • Experience with LORIS and BANNER an asset.
  • Experience hiring, training, and supervising student employees.
  • Ability to manage crucial conversations with developed conflict management skills.
  • Demonstrated time management, organizational, and communication skills.
  • Demonstrated problem solving skills.
  • Demonstrated interpersonal, intercultural, presentation, and writing skills.
  • Demonstrated team skills with an ability to work independently.
  • Demonstrated experience with the Microsoft Office suite of software.

Grade : WLUSA-08
Salary : $33.33 to $39.23
Salary Notes :

This is a full-time, limited term position until April 30, 2018.

This position is not eligible for education equivalencies.

This position is currently under review.
Please Note :

This position is represented by the WLU Staff Association bargaining unit.

Please submit a cover letter and resume.

Wilfrid Laurier University endeavors to fill positions with qualified candidates who have a combination of education, experience, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position while demonstrating Laurier’s Employee Success Factors.

Diversity and creating a culture of inclusion is a key pillar of Wilfrid Laurier University’s Strategic Academic Plan and is one of Laurier’s core values. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities, and from persons of any sexual identities and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at Candidates from other equity seeking groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Diversity and Equity Office at We have strived to make our application process accessible however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources at 519-884-1970 ext.2007 or

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