A higher education administrator sitting with a pen

4 Higher Education Administration Career Paths You Can Pursue with an Ed.D.

Students entering an Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree program will have many career paths open to them after graduation. Whether they’d like to enter professorships or explore higher education administration, an Ed.D. provides them with the advanced knowledge and skill sets they’ll need to serve as leaders in their field. For those particularly interested in leadership positions, a career in higher education administration can hold excitement and promise that spans school districts. Higher education administrators can play a critical role in overseeing schools, faculty, educational departments, student services, research, and more. To attain this level of responsibility and impact, however, a Doctor of Education is required.

What is an Ed.D. ?
The Ed.D., or Doctor of Education, is a professional degree for educators and students who wish to become leaders in the education field. An Ed.D. program prepares students for both academic and administrative roles in K-12 or higher education institutions. Students in Ed.D. programs take courses such as Public School Finance, Curriculum Development, School Law, and Education Leadership. These courses, in addition to a dissertation, prepare students for a variety of careers in higher education administration.

So, what can you do within the field of higher education administration? Here are four of the most popular higher education administration career paths, out of many, open to those with an Ed.D. degree.

Higher Education Administration Career Possibilities
For those looking to excel in a higher education setting, there are many career options available. Those who hold an Ed.D. will be most qualified for higher education positions. Here are just a few examples of exciting careers in higher education administration.

1. Academic Dean

An academic dean establishes standards for academic departments and manages faculty members. However, there is much more that an academic dean does!

Academic deans lead specific departments or colleges within their university. They oversee both the academic and administrative aspects of their department. This may include recruiting and hiring new faculty, managing their departmental budget, and working with their faculty to develop curriculum plans. Additionally, they conduct evaluations of instructors and other academic staff members. They also take an active role in faculty committees, helping to develop curriculum.

Salary Potential
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, college and university administrators earn a median annual salary of $97,500 per year. However, many administrators can earn more than $97,000 per year, depending on the university and level of experience. In fact, the highest 10% of earners can make more than $199,400 per year.

2. Admissions Director or Dean of Admissions

A dean, or director of admissions oversees the admissions department for a whole university.

A dean of admissions oversees the admissions process for a university. They develop recruitment strategies, institute admissions guidelines and processes, and assist in the admissions decision making process when student applications are submitted. They may be tasked with overseeing promotional events, including campus tours and Q and A sessions. In addition to these responsibilities, a dean of admissions has the job of communicating statistics, changes, and general information regarding school applicants to the school registrar, department heads, and other school leadership. Finally, a dean of admissions is in charge of hiring and training admissions office staff members.

Salary Potential
According to Salary.com, the average annual salary for a college admissions director is $70,382. However, an admissions director’s salary can depend on level of education, additional skills (for example, marketing), and level of experience.

3. Provost

A school provost works directly under a college or university president. Unsurprisingly, this means that provosts have quite a few responsibilities. In fact, the academic success of a university can rely on a provost’s ability to successfully fulfill their duties.

Provosts have a variety of responsibilities and duties. They provide leadership for all academic programs at a university. They help to implement new curriculum and to set consistent curriculum standards. They also work with their university’s Strategic Planning Committee to design a plan for their school’s long-term growth. On a staffing level, they work with the deans of each college to help hire new faculty and vet faculty applicants. They may also assist in the accreditation review process and facilitate related professional development activities.

Salary Potential
According to Payscale, the average base salary for a provost is $154,184 per year. This salary may be dependent on level of experience as well as an applicant’s unique skill set. For example, those provosts who demonstrate skills in the areas of strategic planning and budget management may be paid more than their counterparts who do not.

4. Chief Academic Officer

Chief academic officers direct the academic program of a college or university.

By leading policy development and academic programs, chief academic officers ensure that their universities operate successfully and that their students are provided with a high quality education. They ensure that academic standards are met across departments. They can help to develop curriculum across their university’s departments and may meet with other educational leaders in their area to help create curricula plans. They may also be responsible for creating and implementing budgetary plans as they relate to academics.

Salary Potential
Salary.com states that the median annual salary for a college’s chief academic officer is $196,759. As with the other careers on this list, salary can depend on experience level. The top 10% of earners can expect to make more than $311,982 per year.

Higher education administrators are the glue that keep a university together. From creating a school’s curriculum plan to managing its budget, students and faculty members alike rely on the expertise of those who hold careers in higher education administration. If a position in leadership interests you, there are a number of higher education administration career paths available, especially if you hold an Ed.D.

A career as a higher education administration awaits! Learn more about University of Bridgeport’s Ed.D. program today!