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Academic Success Coordinator

Florence, Italy
ROLE OVERVIEW

Location: Florence, Italy

Reports to: Sr. Associate Director of Academic Success and In-Country Director      

Type: Seasonal Employment       

Min. Experience: Mid to Experienced

Department: Academic Affairs 

Division: Student Success/Academic Advising



Verto Education was founded to introduce every participant to different ideas, cultures, values, and beliefs. We feel that this is the best path to a better, more just world, which is why we have decided to make travel the path of least resistance to a college education and degree through our Academic Provider, Richard Bland College. We offer the only international freshman year experience that partners with colleges towards earning full class credits, issued by Richard Bland College, so participants can graduate in four years. We provide a flexible and enjoyable work environment that values inclusion, equity, diversity, and global citizenship. While completing 1 or 2 semesters with their Verto, participants become more mature, empathetic global citizens who have a greater sense of purpose and direction for their lives. 

At Verto Education we value voices of all backgrounds and experiences.  We prioritize hiring staff who reflect the diversity and wide range of identities and experiences of our participants.  We know that creating a diverse environment takes dedication and intentional hiring practices. 

 

Department Overview

Academic Success and Advising is part of Verto’s Academic Affairs Department. The Academic Affairs department directs all teaching and learning, academic operations, and academic success initiatives across the organization. The Academic Success and Advising division is committed to supporting future and current organizational objectives through the design, implementation, and execution of strategic, innovative, and research-based practices in support of academic success for all participants. All members of the academic team serve as champions across the organization to ensure each and every practice creates an impact towards our participants' learning outcomes and post-Verto plans, and aligns with the Mission and Vision of Verto Education.

Basic Expectations for the ASC Role

Academic Success Coordinators (ASC) proactively establish relationships with their assigned participants. As part of this process, the ASCs provide participants with assessment tools like the Academic Success Survey, College-level Study Skills Inventory, and other college and career instruments during participant orientations or throughout the Verto Study Abroad Experience (semester/year). ASCs act as the first line of communication for all assigned participants regarding academic advising, course mapping, Verto Academic Policies, calendars, and academic status changes. They provide clarity on coursework, administer interventions/retention strategies, and support holistic semester success. ASCs also collaborate closely with Academic Provider faculty (to ensure each participant is sufficiently supported in class), with SLCs (to provide tiaged support and increased participant engagement) and with College Counselors (to ensure participants remain on track with college transfer and/or career plans). ASCs also track participant data (e.g. attendance, class engagement, assignment completion and overall academic performance) and escalate challenges to the academic success leadership team. 

The ideal candidate will be a highly motivated self-starter who can operate at start-up speed and is not afraid to work hard, long hours, and with endless enthusiasm. This role requires an ability to create and maintain efficient, scalable systems and processes and experiences with mentoring and supervising staff. 

 

Responsibilities are described below and may include other duties as assigned. 

Pre-departure Advising (mid-May to mid-August)

  • Works with participants to submit their Final Transcripts for review (i.e Official High School Transcripts, Dual Enrollment Transcripts, Final AP Exam scores) and to complete prerequisite assessment tests issued by the Academic Provider 
  • Communicates with participants on available course offerings and enrollment options based on academic history, academic goals, and Post-Verto plans.
  • Ensures all participants understand expectations related to academic prerequisites, co-requisites and assessment tests (i.e. for Summer Bridge, Math, English, Language placement options).  
  • Ensures participants' understanding of policies, schedules and processes, such as add/drop and course withdrawals. 

In-Country: Academic Success Program Implementation 

ASCs meet 1:1 with each of their assigned participants a minimum of 3 times during the semester. Meeting Sequence (adaptable to individual participant needs):

  1. Success Survey/Plan (SSP) or College-level Study Skills Inventory (CSSI): review the participant’s Success Plan or College Skills Developmental targets (no later than wk 3)
  2. Personal and Academic Goals: discuss the participant’s academic growth/needs mid-term and review progress towards SSP and #CollegeStrong “grab and grow” outcomes (no later than week 6)
  3. College,Career and Life Advising: work with participants and College Counselors to complete college and career plan inventories that explore post-Verto options, values, and participant “best fit” interests (no later than week 10)

ASCs also meet 1:1 with participants upon request and proactively seek additional 1:1 meetings as needed (determined by faculty feedback and/or participant academic performance) to provide effective academic intervention and student success support. ASCs collaborate with participants to establish Academic Success Plans (ASPs), #CollegeStrong growth strategies, and Incident Reports as needed, and hold those participants accountable for weekly action items (as mutually agreed upon).

The Care Team

Each Care Team consists of Student Life Coordinators (SLCs) and ASCs who share the same participant caseload.  They dedicate time regularly to support participant engagement in the Verto community and identify strategies to increase engagement as needed. The goal of this care team is to provide pro-active, strengths-based and holistic support for participants. 

Data Management 

ASCs carefully track, monitor and respond to key data from the learning management system (Canvas Roll Call, Dropout Detective, Salesforce) and other tools as needed, in alignment with FERPA educational privacy standards. ASCs identify key trends and data, and their supervisor will provide guidance as needed. ASCs also bring urgent participant issues and concerns immediately to their academic supervisor whenever deemed necessary.

Academic Success Collaboration 

ASCs communicate frequently with key stakeholders in the community to foster academic success onsite.   Faculty are engaged to monitor participant academic performance, attendance and assignments, and are key to communicating concerns to the ASCs to provide additional support as relevant.  ASCs act as advocates for participants to request and receive accommodations from the Academic Provider and other needed support while encouraging participants to engage in their study abroad experience responsibly. ASCs also collaborate with faculty to consider interventions (inside or outside of class) that can help participants better communicate with faculty, build key academic skills and strategies to support classroom learning, and engage in out of class learning experiences led by faculty. 

Academic Accommodations Offered by Academic Provider(s)

Academic Accommodations are private, and participants who hope to receive them will only be expected to share them with those who have a legitimate need to know, which includes the ASC as an onsite student advocate. The ASC must respect each participant’s privacy while also making efforts to ensure that participants who require and seek accommodations do receive them. To do so, ASCs do the following:

  1. Offer frequent reminders regarding the accommodations application process, particularly in the weeks prior to the semester, but also throughout the semester because participants can apply anytime (in person, but also via email if necessary). 
  2. Encourage instructors to remind participants as well. Keep in mind that accommodations cannot be applied retroactively, so it is in each participant's best interest to apply for them as soon as possible.
  3. Facilitate communication to ensure instructors have up to date information to apply specific accommodations that are outlined by the Academic Provider(s).
  4. Contact the Health, Wellness and Accommodations manager as the liaison for Accommodations with the Academic Provider(s) with any questions or concerns regarding participant accommodations.

Other Roles

ASCs also provide weekly office hours and are available for academic support services as needed. This may come in the form supporting tutoring in various academic resources participants have access to such as Study Lab, Writing Center and/or during a scheduled advising time. ASCs work with SLCs to support participant development of healthy habits and executive functioning skills (i.e. organization, planning, time management, study habits, self care, healthy routines, etc.). 

ASCs may also be asked to participate in the implementation of program initiatives such as Summer Bridge, First Year College, New Student Orientation and Global Skills Development workshops. 

ASCs collaborate frequently with other ASCs globally, and Academic Success leadership to ensure continuity of services across countries. These collaborations include sharing of best practices (i.e. intervention strategies, coaching techniques, useful resources, etc.). ASCs may at times be asked to (temporarily) cover another ASC’s duties.

 

WHO WE’RE LOOKING FOR

  • Strategic Thinker: You can plot the chess moves a year ahead of time and develop a credible plan to deliver amazing value to our students.
  • Influential communicator: You are a thoughtful communicator who can sell ideas, gather resources, and rally stakeholders.
  • Strong Executor: You value getting things done and hitting deadlines. You have a track record of delivering under pressure. 
  • Humble Collaborator: You bring kindness and empathy to your working relationships and put the team’s success before your own.  
  • Mission-Driven: You deeply believe that education has the power to transform lives and you want to give more young people a chance to thrive. 

 

Qualifications:

The ideal candidate for this position will have:

  • A Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s degree preferred
  • 2+ years of experience in teaching, tutoring and/or academic advising (preferred)
  • 2+ years of experience working with high school or college students (preferred)
  • Experience working with culturally, ethnically, socioeconomically, and linguistically diverse students and demonstrated ability to foster relationships with underrepresented populations
  • Experience with experiential learning and/or education abroad programming
  • The ability to embody/model kindness, openness, flexibility, curiosity, empathy, integrity, responsibility and professionalism for students
  • A passion for learning, experiential education, diversity, inclusivity, travel, global citizenship and, most importantly, for helping students grow and succeed
  • Ability to work independently and as a team player
  • Patience, optimism, integrity, flexibility, and understanding when working with new college students.
  • Ability to have a participant-centric approach to advising by placing empathy, advocacy, and skills-building at the heart
  • Italian working proficiency is preferred; English fluency is required.
  • Applicants must be eligible to work in Italy. Preference will be given to candidates who live in Florence or who have lived in Florence for at least six months.

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES:

  • Excellent communication (oral and written) and interpersonal skills
  • Understanding of common learning differences and (dis)abilities
  • Understanding of academic accommodations, how students qualify for them and how they are applied in college settings
  • Understanding of differentiated instruction strategies and how to use them to support students academically
  • Ability to explain/recommend targeted learning interventions
  • Ability to establish and maintain positive and effective relationships with Verto students, faculty, and staff
  • Ability to coach participants to build effective habits and executive functioning skills
  • Ability to work collaboratively in a team and build strong working relationships with other faculty and Program Leaders
  • Proactively supports participants before they reach the point of needing to withdraw from a class or failing
  • Understanding of the value of experiential education and travel 
  • Able to confidentially work with participant information databases and learning management platforms
  • Able to build trust with participant and draw out participant goals through effective inquiry

REQUIREMENTS:

  •       Must be 24 years of age or older
  •       Eligibility to work in Italy/ work authorization at the time of hire.
  •       Ability to be on a Verto program (in location) August 15, to December 31, 2022  (exact dates to be confirmed during hiring)

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER

At Verto Education we value voices of all backgrounds and experiences. We know that creating a diverse environment takes dedication and intentional hiring practices. We are cognizant of the gap between our current state and our commitments. In order to bridge that gap, we have to humbly evaluate where we are today. 

Verto sincerely appreciates candidates providing anonymous answers to our EEO questions. You are helping us be better.

Verto Education is an Equal Opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex including sexual orientation and gender identity, national origin, disability, protected Veteran Status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local law.