Associate Provost for Online Strategy

Associate Provost for Online Strategy

About SMC:

Spartanburg Methodist College, located in Spartanburg, South Carolina, seeks candidates for positions in a new Student and Professional Development Program. Spartanburg Methodist College, founded in 1911, is a private residential liberal arts institution serving a diverse student population (38% first generation, 50% minority, 59% Pell) within the United Methodist Connection. Since its founding as the first co-op school in the nation, SMC has remained dedicated to its mission to connect education and employment. After over 100 years as an Associate Degree granting institution, the college launched its first bachelor’s degree in 2019. Today, the college’s emphasis on education and employment includes a unique professional development concentration comprised of eight required courses for students seeking associate and bachelor’s degrees.

Organizational Responsibilities: 

The Associate Provost for Online Strategy reports to the Provost & Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Job Summary:     

Spartanburg Methodist College seeks an experienced educator and administrator for the inaugural position of Associate Provost for Online Strategy (APOS). The APOS will be responsible for developing a college-wide strategy for delivering high-quality online courses and degrees to both traditional and life-longer learners. The APOS will provide the leadership to ensure this important strategic area is met consistently and thoughtfully. The APOS will report directly to SMC’s Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs.

The APOS will work closely with the Provost and other college leaders to establish strategic priorities and vision for online programs and administrative oversight and coordination of all aspects of digital education, including delivery, the infrastructure and processes to support their success, and the financial foundations upon which they sit. The individual will be responsible for creating and implementing quality standards across all online offerings and developing best practices for student support and teaching in online environments. The APOS will work closely with SMC’s academic units, senior leadership and research partners to develop high-potential degree and certificate programs, grow enrollment and play a key role in the acquisition of necessary technology and infrastructure. This position is also responsible for ensuring compliance with accreditation standards, the requirements of the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), and the accessibility requirements identified by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The inaugural APOS should bring experience designing, building, and managing online programs. The individual must have strong communication and interpersonal skills, excellent judgment, and strategic vision. Several years of experience managing a cross-functional team is preferred. Experience serving on a college or university faculty or a background in instruction is strongly preferred.

Major Areas of Responsibility:

  • Working with college leaders, develops an overarching vision and strategy for new and existing online education initiatives and drives the development of new programs, including marketing, delivery, evaluation, assessment and accreditation.
  • Directs SMC’s online education policies and procedures to ensure quality online education and meeting accreditation standards.
  • Creates and administers an online learning environment that prioritizes student success and social mobility by valuing online and hybrid learning modalities as primarily pedagogical choices and student retention strategies to be infused throughout the entire curriculum.
  • Promotes SMC’s online programs by contributing to strategic marketing plans.
  • Contributes to recruitment efforts by identifying educational opportunities for military/veterans, working professionals and international students.
  • Coordinates with the leadership of the Vassey Technology Center to ensure the effective operation of the technology components for online and digital learning initiatives and recommends technological improvements and purchases for inclusion in current and future online programs and plans.
  • Ensures compliance of online programs with the Southern Association for Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the South Carolina Department of Education, the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education and other accrediting agencies.
  • Ensures compliance with all state and federal regulations.
  • Reviews, develops and administers SMC’s relevant online education governing policies and procedures, as appropriate.
  • Develops plans for continuous improvement of the colleges’ and campuses’ digital learning initiatives to maintain and increase the success of online programs.
  • Ensures sound fiscal management of online programs and any reporting units.
  • Represents online education initiatives at senior leadership and executive-level meetings.
  • In consultation with the Provost, recruits and hires qualified online program faculty.

Skills, Knowledge and Abilities:

  • Client-service orientation and ability to coordinate with multiple stakeholders
  • Nuanced understanding of student needs and preparation for online education and knowledge of orienting students to online education
  • Commitment to online academic success for students of all backgrounds
  • Understanding of Web accessibility and universal design
  • Up-to-date knowledge of effective online pedagogies
  • Understanding of unique challenges of assuring student success in online courses
  • Familiarity with the use of learning analytics to optimize online student learning and student success
  • Thorough knowledge of learning management systems and other online tools
  • Ability to analyze and redesign processes, structures, and incentives as needed to facilitate a successful and effective learning environment.
  • Understanding of the role of faculty in academic governance
  • Experience in at least one nationally recognized course quality assurance process
  • Demonstrated familiarity with distance education compliance requirements: accreditation standards, state authorization requirements and accessibility requirements
  • Demonstrated experience building a program at scale
  • Entrepreneurial spirit, unafraid to take calculated risks
  • Excellent communicator with teams, faculty and administrators
  • Ability to establish and maintain positive working relationships with college constituents and the community.

Working Conditions: 

 This work is generally performed in an office setting and will require significant contact with students, faculty, staff, and the community. Additional evening and weekend responsibilities required for campus events and as a member of the On-Call rotation.

Physical Requirements:

  • Manual and physical dexterity and visual acuity needed to operate a computer keyboard and handle paper documents.
  • Sufficient near vision acuity to read information appearing on a computer monitor, in handwritten form, and printed on paper.
  • Adequate hearing and verbal abilities to communicate effectively in person and by telephone

Education and Experience:

  • A master’s degree is required. A doctoral degree is preferred.
  • Experience developing new online courses and programs at the undergraduate level
  • Experience managing budgets and finances of online programs, preferably in a college setting. Financial and operational acumen necessary for complex budget management, enrollment planning and forecasting; capacity to conceptualize, articulate and make a business case to support online programs and the analytical ability to analyze effectiveness from both a learning and financial perspective.
  • Experience with online education marketing vendors and understanding of market data

FLSA:   Exempt

Spartanburg Methodist College does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation or any legally protected status in any personnel action regarding the recruiting, hiring, and promotion of faculty and staff members.

 This job description provides a representative summary of the nature and responsibilities of the position.  It is not intended to be a comprehensive listing of all duties and responsibilities which may be modified at any time.  The job description is not intended to imply or to create a contract of employment.

May 2020

How to Apply: 

Please send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, and unofficial graduate transcripts to: 

Jenny Dunn, Director of Human Resources
Spartanburg Methodist College
1000 Powell Mill Road, Spartanburg, SC 29301. 

Applications may be submitted electronically to: 

Position open until filled.  Review of applications begins June 5, 2020.