Careers at UMass Amherst

Executive Assistant I - Engineering

Apply now Job no: 515396
Work type: Staff Full Time
Location: UMass Amherst
Department: Dean - Engineering
Union: Non-Unit Non-Exempt
Categories: Administrative/Office Support

About UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst, the Commonwealth's flagship campus, is a nationally ranked public research university offering a full range of undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. The University sits on nearly 1,450-acres in the scenic Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, and offers a rich cultural environment in a bucolic setting close to major urban centers. In addition, the University is part of the Five Colleges (including Amherst College, Hampshire College, Mount Holyoke College, and Smith College), which adds to the intellectual energy of the region.


Job Summary

The Executive Assistant to the Dean provides comprehensive, executive level, administrative support to the Dean of the College of Engineering. Assists in a wide range of complex and confidential matters including overseeing the Dean's schedule, coordinating meetings, screening visitors and phone calls, reading and responding to daily emails, composing or preparing other correspondence, supporting preparation of reports and presentations, and maintaining paper and electronic files.


Essential Functions

  • Provides comprehensive, confidential, executive-level administrative support to the Dean to include digital calendar management, travel arrangements, and complex meeting coordination.
  • Organizes and monitors the Dean's daily schedule and long-term calendars; evaluates meeting requests and schedule all appointments for the Dean; coordinates times and venues for meetings; proactively ensures the Dean is properly prepared for all meetings; assembles agendas and background materials as needed; and communicates quickly and effectively with the Dean regarding last minute schedule changes as they occur. Provides coordination as needed to ensure effective and productive meetings.
  • Receives and screens all visitors or phone calls; determining priority and notifying the Dean accordingly; answers and/or refers inquiries to appropriate parties for action. Screens daily correspondence, makes assessment of the importance of materials, handles and retrieves information as needed. Maintains detailed, accurate, and organized electronic and paper files on behalf of the Dean's Office.
  • Works closely with the Dean to organize, prioritize, and manage workflow for Dean's administrative tasks and projects; reviews incoming requests, establishes deadlines, follows through with calendar reminders, and interacts in-person, by phone, and via email with internal and external constituents and staff as necessary to ensure timely and accurate completion of the work. Meets regularly with Dean to provide updates on issues, review the schedule, and to plan for upcoming events.
  • Monitors the Dean's public email by reading, prioritizing, forwarding, and/or responding as needed on behalf of the Dean. Composes and prepares correspondence for Dean's signature. Edits and proofreads all correspondence intended to be mailed under the Dean's signature.
  • Prepares and maintains Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, and other materials related to the developing needs of the Dean for both internal and external constituents of the College. Works closely with other staff members in the College and community to support the Dean's initiatives.
  • Coordinates regular meetings of the College, College Leadership Team, and other College level activities to include preparing agendas, materials, correspondence, reserving meeting space, food and beverage needs, recording and distribution of meeting minutes and act as liaison between the committees and the Dean.
  • Coordinates special College events including but not limited to all-college meetings, staff luncheons, student ceremonies, and student and faculty/staff recognition celebrations. Work closely with Office of Student Affairs to coordinate and assist with large College-wide events.
  • Provides administrative support for the departmental Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) Reviews including Dean's Office correspondence with the outside evaluators, scheduling campus visit dates, and coordinating team appointments with Provost and Dean. Serves as back up with departments to ensure the review process begins and is concluded in a timely manner.
  • Plans and prepares all travel arrangements for Dean's business travel. Processes post travel expense reports.
  • Represents the Dean and the College in an appropriate manner, exercising a high level of discretion and professionalism, tact, confidentiality, and sound judgment.
  • Provides general assistance as needed to students, faculty, staff, parents, alumni, trustees, donors, and the public at large.
  • Performs independently, within the College policies and procedures, referring unusual and critical issues to the appropriate dean.
  • Serves in back-up role for other College staff as needed. Assists with special projects and perform other duties as assigned by the Dean showing adaptability and flexibility to accomplish goals. Operates motor vehicle to travel to work sites.


Other Functions

  • Performs other duties as assigned.


Minimum Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Associate’s Degree or higher with two years of full-time experience or equivalent part-time experience, involving office administrative experience and/or executive level administrative support experience. One (1) year of relevant experience may be substituted for each year of required academia.
  • Excellent ability to work both independently and to be a part of an effective team with a highly cooperative and collaborative work style.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in English. Strong verbal and written communication skills (including proper grammar, structure, punctuation, spelling, and word usage) with the ability to write clear and effective reports, letters, emails, or web-based information for internal and external audiences.
  • Experience writing and editing correspondence, publications, and/or reports.
  • Expert computer usage skills including spreadsheet, word processing, database, and presentation software with the ability to quickly learn and adapt to new software programs as needed for position duties. Strong keyboarding ability (type rapidly and accurately).
  • Exceptional organizational skills and the ability to prioritize and balance tasks in a demanding, interruption-filled, ever-changing and often deadline-oriented environment.
  • Experience organizing multiple, concurrent projects successfully.
  • Exceptional level of accuracy and attention to detail.
  • Ability to exercise sound and independent judgment, particularly related to confidential materials and the prioritization of the Dean's communications and calendar.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills allowing smooth and effective interactions with and between different constituents from a diverse population.
  • Positive attitude, resiliency, tact, and discretion.
  • Ability to understand and follow complex oral and written instructions.
  • Ability to excel in a self-directed atmosphere; self-motivated, responsive, with the ability to take initiative and determine priorities in performance of duties. Must have the ability to stay on task and work productively with a minimum of supervision.
  • Knowledge of appropriate office etiquette required.
  • Significant experience maintaining a busy calendar, arranging all aspects of travel, and organizing meetings and events.


Preferred Qualifications (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, Education, Experience, Certifications, Licensure)

  • Prior experience in an administrative higher education environment.
  • Bachelor's Degree (or higher).


Physical Demands/Working Conditions

  • Typical office environment.


Additional Details

  • Reports directly to the Dean of the College and receives functional supervision from the Director of Human Resources.


Work Schedule

  • Standard work week is Monday – Friday (37.5 hours per week).
  • Occasionally required to work some evenings and weekends.
  • May be required to work extra hours with little or no advance notice.
  • Travels to off-site locations by air or car for events or meetings.


Salary Information

Grade 17

Non Unit Salary Schedule


Special Instructions to Applicants

Please apply online and submit a resume, cover letter, diversity statement* and contact information for three professional references. Search will remain open until filled.

*The College of Engineering is committed to an atmosphere of diversity and inclusion between faculty, staff, and students alike.  To advance the College’s mission of furthering social justice, this position will require a diversity statement to be included with each candidate’s application materials.  The diversity statement is intended to clarify how a candidate will support a culture of equity and fairness at all levels of the organization, and may highlight prior advocacy efforts or intended contributions to the College of Engineering. 


UMass Amherst is committed to a policy of equal opportunity without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, or genetic information in employment, admission to and participation in academic programs, activities, and services, and the selection of vendors who provide services or products to the University.  To fulfill that policy, UMass Amherst is further committed to a program of affirmative action to eliminate or mitigate artificial barriers and to increase opportunities for the recruitment and advancement of qualified minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and covered veterans.  It is the policy of the UMass Amherst to comply with the applicable federal and state statutes, rules, and regulations concerning equal opportunity and affirmative action.

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