Vice President for Enrollment Management at Emerson College

Emerson supports innovation, rewards imagination, and is a place where bold ideas should be celebrated and tested.

-Dr. Jay Bernhardt, 13th president of Emerson College

 Emerson College is internationally recognized as the premier liberal arts institution devoted to communication and the arts.  Emerson is seeking a Vice President for Enrollment Management with the skills, experience and mindset to recruit and enroll independent minds searching for new ways to learn, to share, to engage with the world, and to pursue daring ideas to make it better.

The Vice President for Enrollment Management will be a crucial member of the President’s Council and will advise and guide the president, colleagues, and the Board of Trustees in all matters related to student recruitment, enrollment, financial aid, and the strategic positioning of Emerson amid the rapidly evolving landscape.  In addition to overseeing the efforts of undergraduate admission, graduate admission, enrollment systems and planning, and financial aid services, the Vice President will partner closely with colleagues across the institution on student success, retention, strategic planning, organizational excellence, and diversity, equity and inclusion.

The primary duties and responsibilities for the Vice President for Enrollment Management are as follows:

  • Using best practices and data-informed strategies, oversee and coordinate the efforts of about 27 professionals serving both prospective and current students, in the offices of undergraduate and graduate admission, financial services (financial aid and student accounts), enrollment systems and planning, and student success.
  • Lead the Emerson community in developing and implementing a strategic enrollment plan, while executing and evaluating innovative initiatives reflecting the College’s strategic plan.
  • Encourage and coordinate the collective participation of the campus community including faculty, staff, alumni, and students in a wide variety of strategic enrollment activities.
  • Direct and ensure optimum levels of enrollment growth across each of the College’s populations, academic programs, and disciplines.
  • In partnership with other senior leaders, establish annual rates for tuition and fees; and design strategic financial aid packaging of talent-based awards and need-based financial aid in order to maximize enrollment and net tuition revenue goals at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
  • Bring significant higher education experience and a body of enrollment knowledge to Emerson College, building on the considerable strength of the institution and raising the visibility of the College.
  • Partner with the Office of Communications & Marketing to highlight Emerson’s unique educational brand, utilizing best practices and current technology for information dissemination for student recruitment and retention purposes.
  • Develop strong cross-divisional relationships to support the enrollment, retention, and success of a diverse student body.
  • Engage with the President’s Council on all issues pertaining to the health, vitality, and well-being of Emerson College.
  • Lead the enrollment management division in developing systems, procedures, policies, and practices that facilitate strategic and data driven decision making, transparency and sharing of information across the institution, and support an exceptional experience for prospective and current students and families.
  • Design goals for graduate enrollment in conjunction with faculty and using an intentional mindset for relationship building
  • Maintain the superb academic quality of the student body and extend the geographic and socioeconomic reach of the recruitment efforts.
  • Nurture the collegial community of Emerson College to inspire a culture of enrollment, emphasizing the important role faculty, staff, students, and alumni play in recruiting, enrolling, and retaining students through graduation and beyond.
  • Mentor, empower, and lead a hard-working staff and support professional development opportunities.
  • Serve as a college leader and energetically inspire others to support enrollment strategies.

As a member of Emerson’s senior leadership team, the Vice President for Enrollment Management will be a strategic, creative, and communicative leader with a demonstrated track record of success in recruitment and enrollment. The successful candidate must have a bachelor’s degree, and a minimum of eight years of experience in positions of progressively increasing responsibility in enrollment management. An advanced degree, as well as previous experience in a senior leadership role, is preferred.

  • Passion and experience with recruitment for programs in communication, the arts, and the liberal arts
  • Demonstrated knowledge of demographics, best practices in enrollment, financial aid policies, market trends, and innovative thinking
  • Demonstrated success in the recruitment of undergraduate and graduate students, including domestic, international, transfer, diverse, and online populations; evidence of past experience in achieving sustainable results
  • A contemporary approach to enrollment management; transparent with impeccable ethical standards, possessing optimism and confidence.
  • Data savvy, strategically deft, with the ability to analyze, interpret, and articulate information in a manner that educates, informs and engages others.
  • Experience in the market assessment, development, and promotion of new academic programs
  • Intense interest and ability to collaborate across campus
  • Institutional view of challenges, opportunities, resources, and problem solving
  • Able to discern the nuanced needs of a community of professionals, listening deeply to the thoughts and ideas of others
  • Experience leading organizational change and ability to offer a compelling vision, while engaging a campus community in the development, adoption, and implementation of a strategic enrollment plan
  • Demonstrated ability to build, lead, motivate, and retain an outstanding staff with an open mind and creative and generous spirit
  • Experienced and supportive management skills to advocate for, motivate, and mentor a hard-working division, promoting a culture of transparency, consistency, and trust among the various offices of enrollment management
  • Outstanding communication skills; ability to make a compelling case to students and their families, illustrating the powerful impact and outcomes of an Emerson education
  • Experienced change manager with the ability to unify teams, foster relationships, and address institutional barriers
  • Possess an understanding of NCAA regulations for Division III athletics and the ability to build partnerships with coaches and athletic administrators to facilitate the strategic recruitment of student athletes
  • A demonstrated commitment to social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Positioned to influence national organizations and participate in national conversations on admissions, financial aid and enrollment.

Emerson College
Founded in 1880 and spanning three distinct global campuses, Emerson College is steeped in the values of equity, access, and social justice.  Its main campus is located in the heart of Boston’s Theatre District and offers the entire Emerson community experiences that are sewn into the very fabric of Boston.  Emerson’s community is passionate and creative; its students are critical storytellers at a critical time.

Emerson College educates students to assume positions of leadership in communication and the arts and to advance scholarship and creative work that brings innovation, depth, and diversity to these disciplines.  This mission is informed by core liberal arts values that seek to promote civic engagement, encourage ethical practices, foster respect for human diversity, and inspire students to create and communicate with clarity, integrity, and conviction

Emerson College Mission Statement

Dr. Jay Bernhardt, an internationally-recognized leader in and scholar of health communication, is the 13th president of Emerson College, beginning his tenure June 1, 2023.  Under Dr. Bernhardt’s leadership, Emerson College has embarked on an inclusive, inspiring, and transformative endeavor to create and execute a new strategic plan. This six-year plan, which will coincide with Emerson’s 150th anniversary in 2030, will help Emerson update its mission, vision, values, and strategic priorities to ensure that Emerson continues to lead the way in the study and practice of communication, the arts, and the liberal arts to make a difference for society and the world.

The Vice President for Enrollment Management will serve on the President’s Council.  The executive leadership team is responsible for the overall governance of the College and the success of Emerson’s students.  Along with the President and Vice President for Enrollment Management, the Council is comprised of:

  • Vice President for Institutional Advancement
  • Vice President for Administration and Finance
  • Vice President and Dean of Campus Life
  • Vice President for Equity & Social Justice
  • Vice President for Government and Community Relations
  • Vice President and Chief of Staff
  • Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
  • Vice President for Marketing and Communications
  • Vice President and General Counsel

The College’s academic leaders are the deans of the various Emerson schools.  They are responsible for shaping curriculum and ensuring students succeed in the classroom . The Deans are:

  • Dean of the Marlboro Institute for the Liberal Arts and Interdisciplinary Studies
  • Dean of the School of the Arts
  • Dean of the School of Communication
  • Dean of Graduate and Professional Studies

The Board of Trustees is currently composed of 29 Board members, ranging from all facets of business, artistry, and industry.  Five Board members serve as officers.  The Board works closely with the President to fulfill Emerson’s mission, and to establish the College’s strategic vision and priorities.  The President serves, ex officio, as a member of all committees of the Board of Trustees.  The Board of Trustees is compelled by the Trustee Diversity Statement and Commitment.

Enrollment and Financial Aid
Emerson College enrolls over 4,100 undergraduate and 1,500 graduate students from 49 states and over 70 countries.   Emerson’s commitment to inclusive excellence is supported by a range of resources such as the Office of Internationalization & Equity, the Social Justice Collaborative, and the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning.

Approximately 79% of undergraduate students receive financial assistance in the form of scholarships and grants, low-interest loans, and part-time employment. 14.7% of students receive federal Pell Grants.  Emerson dedicates approximately $70 million for undergraduate and graduate students in merit and need-based institutional financial aid.

Academic Life
Emerson College is the nation’s only four-year institution dedicated exclusively to majors in communication and the arts in a liberal arts context. Emerson inspires generations of students to think boldly and creatively; and ensures that all students, faculty, staff, and alumni contribute powerfully to the cultural, social, political, and civic landscape.

Emerson’s main campus is located in the dynamic, multicultural city of Boston. Students can choose from 27 undergraduate majors and 16 graduate programs. Emerson’s state-of-the-art Los Angeles center stands tall on Sunset Boulevard and serves as Emerson’s home on the West Coast. Undergraduate students may spend a full fall or spring semester taking classes in the heart of Hollywood and participating in a semester-long internship at a site related to their field of study. They are able to engage with industry leaders both on and off campus, as well as positively impact the greater Los Angeles area through volunteer work and outreach.

Emerson College is a campus without borders.  From Emerson’s Global Pathways Programs to its three-month program at the castle, Kasteel Well, in the Netherlands and beyond, Emerson provides access to enriching cultural experiences that will guide students on the path to becoming a global citizen. The Global Portal Programs with Paris College of Art and Franklin University Switzerland offer new flexible models for providing an Emerson education to students around the world, and Emerson is constantly looking to reach new locations around the globe. The campus is also infused with these ideals by working to advance diversity in internationalization, hosting international scholars and visitors, and internationalizing the curriculum.

Arts, Culture & Student Life
Emerson is home to a variety of cultural organizations dedicated to presenting diverse and innovative work in the fields of theatre, film, visual art, literature, and music.  Staff, faculty, and students create and execute programming and content for three theaters, a film screening room, a virtual gathering space for theatre professionals, two art galleries, a public art program, a literary journal and blog, a radio station, and a seasonal outdoor performance space.  Although the organizations have different artistic missions, they all share a steadfast commitment to civic engagement in the Greater Boston area and beyond.

  • ArtsEmerson – Groundbreaking artists from around the world perform contemporary theatre, dance, music, and opera on its stages
  • HowlRound – Facilitates the sharing of resources and expertise among theatremakers worldwide
  • Bright Lights – Hosts free film screenings for the Emerson community as well as the general public
  • Emerson Contemporary – Presents contemporary visual and media art exhibits and events in its public venues and public art spaces
  • Ploughshares – Publishes an award-winning literary journal four times a year and posts new writing daily on its blog
  • Public Art Think Tank – PATT supports artworks that involve audiences in discourse about important societal issues such as those related to social justice
  • UnCommon Stage – In partnership with the City of Boston and Trillium Brewing, a community outdoor space for daily entertainment at Boston Common
  • WERS (88.9 FM) – Emerson’s student-run and professionally managed radio station

Undergraduate students, particularly those in the first and second year, have the opportunity to live on campus in one of five residence halls. Housing assistance is offered for those wishing to venture out into the city to live. More than 100 student organizations exist to truly shape the Emerson community, and 200 students compete in 14 NCAA Division III sports.  The College makes students’ health and well-being a priority. Wellness Center staff assist students in creating healthy habits and promote a culture of wellness in the Emerson community.

Emerson Life in Boston, MA
Emerson is knit into the fabric of Boston, and, in turn, the city powers Emerson. In a metropolitan area with more than 300,000 students and more than 80 colleges and universities, the urban Emerson community thrives on the energy of the best college town in the US.

With the main campus located in the heart of the Theatre District, you’ll be steps away from world-class performances at venues, such as: Boch Center Wang Theatre, Citizens Bank Opera House, Charles Playhouse; and Emerson’s very own Cutler Majestic Theatre, Emerson Colonial Theatre, and Paramount Center.  Walk or ride the T to some of the nation’s best art, science, and cultural museums, including: Institute of Contemporary Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Museum of Science; John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, and more.

NES is assisting Emerson College in identifying the College’s next Vice President for Enrollment Management.  For more information, or to nominate someone for this position, contact Catherine Capolupo, Robin Reynders or Mary Napier.  All conversations will remain confidential unless otherwise stated.

Interested candidates should submit a CV/resume and a letter of interest describing their unique qualifications for this position.  Candidates should also provide five names and contact information of professional references.  For confidentiality, references will not be contacted without permission.  For best consideration, all application materials should be submitted electronically to: by March 20, 2024.  The position is campus-based, with a hybrid work environment.  The preferred start date is Summer or Fall 2024.  To discuss details of the search including salary, benefits, and more, reach the NES search consultants.

Emerson College believes diversity enriches every experience by providing the opportunity to learn from individuals who may have different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives.  Engagement with diversity, equity, and inclusion in all aspects of the College enhances the personal and intellectual growth of all members of our campus community.  Emerson is committed to strengthening communities, including our workplace, by fostering the development of the intercultural competencies necessary for meaningful citizenship in an increasingly complex, pluralistic society.  Emerson College embraces and encourages differences in age, color, disability, ethnicity, family or marital status, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, physical and mental ability, political affiliation, pregnancy, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, veteran status, and other characteristics that make each of us unique.