CUNY Academic Program Specialist - CUNY Start in Queens, New York


CUNY Start is an intensive program for incoming college students who have earned either a high school or high school equivalency diploma and need to increase their academic proficiency in reading, writing and/or mathematics prior to enrollment in college credit classes. The CUNY Office of Academic Affairs, all of the University's seven community colleges, Medgar Evers College, and the College of Staten Island work collaboratively to provide students with an innovative approach to developmental education. CUNY Start is recognized for its carefully designed curriculum and pedagogy, advisement, ongoing professional development, and mentor-based training model. CUNY Start, recognized as an important University initiative, has consistently proven to be highly effective at reducing and/or eliminating students’ remedial needs within one semester. Since 2011, CUNY Start has undergone a large-scale expansion, serving nearly 3,900 students across the system in FY15. In addition, the program is currently participating in a study led by the nationally recognized research group MDRC in partnership with the Community College Research Center at Columbia University (CCRC) to compare CUNY Start student outcomes to other remedial pathways at the college.

The CUNY Start Academic Program Specialist reports to the CUNY Start Program Manager and is responsible for coordinating all aspects of the program’s operations to ensure that the campus meets its enrollment, retention and matriculation targets. The CUNY Start Program Specialist is expected to oversee the work related to the training of staff and successful implementation of recruitment, outreach and intake. The Program Specialist is responsible also for administering the day-to-day operations that support approximately 30 teachers, advisors, tutors and writing assistants. These program responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Provides coaching, coordination, and support to the program’s team of five-to-seven advisers with issues regarding student engagement, seminar, and problem-solving and retention strategies.

  • Represents program and/or Program Director at Central Office meetings and system-wide planning events as well as at public events for the college or program as a whole.

  • Coordinates students’ needs and supports advisors to serve high-need students.

  • Works effectively with full/part-time professional, academic and office-support staff and co-defines standards for quality; encourages collaboration, teamwork and ongoing professional development among the team.

  • Works as a leading and collaborative team member on the CUNY Start Admin team, locally and University-wide. This includes participating in planning and development meetings to advance the CUNY Start program.

  • Administers departmental systems for large-scale recruitment and program function throughout the year. This includes: designing a process calendar for recruitment operations, scheduling info sessions and providing trainings, preparing fliers and online applications, organizing a system for eligibility checks, attending NSAR events, strategizing and implementing other outreach efforts, and setting up a system to register students in CUNY First and complete enrollment.

  • Analyzes program data, assists with evaluating goals, and develops measurement criteria to perform student-learning outcomes assessments and to evaluate the efficacy of our retention, engagement and matriculation efforts.

  • Develops and maintains program’s database and tracking systems to record relevant individual student data.

  • Compiles all score reports and disseminates information to staff and Central Office.

  • Generates rosters for different offices and purposes: testing, reactivation, financial aid, switching degree status, and preparation for NSAR (New Student Advisement and Registration).

  • Liaises with testing office and manages testing process for students, including: scheduling exam dates (including make-up dates) for students, providing rosters, updating scores in database.

  • Makes all room reservations, generates student schedules, and communicates changes.

  • Works regularly with the campus’ Academic Advisers to ensure accuracy throughout the advisement and registration process.

  • Leads and conducts outreach to various offices on campus and arranges visits and presentations, including with Single Stop, Career Center, ASAP, College Discovery, academic departments, alumni, and other resources on campus.

LaGuardia Community College, located in Long Island City, Queens, educates more than 50,000 New Yorkers annually through degree, certificate, and continuing education programs. Our guiding principle "Dare To Do More" reflects our belief in the transformative power of education—not just for individuals, but for our community and our country—creating pathways for achievement and safeguarding the middle class. LaGuardia is a national voice on behalf of community colleges, where half of all US college students study. Part of the City University of New York (CUNY), the College reflects the legacy of our namesake, Fiorello H. LaGuardia, the former NYC mayor beloved for his championing the underserved. Since our doors opened in 1971, our programs regularly become national models for pushing boundaries to give people of all backgrounds access to a high quality, affordable college education. We invite you to join us in imagining what our students, our community, and our country can become. Visit to learn more.


Bachelor's Degree and four years' relevant experience required.

Successful candidates will have the following professional and business core competencies:

  • Demonstrated experience in coordinating program operations to meet recruitment, retention and/or matriculation targets;

  • Experience with providing coaching to advisers in academic advising, career advising and/or student development for diverse student populations, particularly underprepared high school or college students in an educational setting or college prep program;

  • Strong presentation, verbal and interpersonal communication skills to work successfully with and present to diverse learners and audiences;

  • Knowledge of learning strategies, accommodations and accessibility services;

  • Strong work ethic, character and personal integrity, and ability to work with the utmost professionalism, discretion and confidentiality;

  • Detail oriented with strong organizational, writing, proofreading and editing skills with solid analytical, evaluative and research skills;

  • Ability to work well in a time-sensitive, multi-layered, student-centered and responsive office;

  • Experience working in collaborative settings;

  • Computer proficiency using standard office software programs/applications.


Participates in the daily coordination of academic and administrative activities of a College's specialized academic program under management direction.

  • Supports program development, student service delivery, outcome evaluation and instructor/student recruitment, enrollment, and retention.

  • Recommends, implements and evaluates strategies to expand program offerings

  • Prepares analytical and statistical reports for management

  • Develops and maintains relationships with various College offices to improve student and faculty services

  • Serves as resource expert regarding program policies and procedures

  • Oversees office recordkeeping; manages updates of program web and print materials

  • May supervise office operations and/or department budget

  • Performs related duties as assigned.

Job Title Name: Academic Program Specialist


Higher Education Assistant




Salary commensurate with education and experience.

CUNY's benefits contribute significantly to total compensation, supporting health and wellness, financial well-being, and professional development. We offer a range of health plans, competitive retirement/pension benefits and savings plans, tuition waivers for CUNY graduate study and generous paid time off. Our staff also benefits from the extensive academic, arts, and athletic programs on our campuses and the opportunity to participate in a lively, diverse academic community in one of the greatest cities in the world.


Applications should be submitted on-line as follows:

  1. Log in to CUNY Portal at
  2. Navigate to Careers at CUNY located on the left sidebar
  3. Search by Job Opening ID number
  4. Click on the Apply Now button

Current users of the site should access their established accounts; new users should click on the appropriate link to register. Please attach a cover letter, resume, and the contact information for three professional references as one document in rtf, doc or pdf format.




CUNY Job Posting: Managerial/Professional


CUNY encourages people with disabilities, minorities, veterans and women to apply. At CUNY, Italian Americans are also included among our protected groups. Applicants and employees will not be discriminated against on the basis of any legally protected category, including sexual orientation or gender identity. EEO/AA/Vet/Disability Employer.

Location: LaGuardia Community College

Job Title: Academic Program Specialist - CUNY Start

Job ID: 15702

Full/Part Time: Full-Time

Regular/Temporary: Regular