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Administrative Assistant II

Swarthmore College Swarthmore Full-time

Swarthmore College is a highly selective liberal arts college located in the suburbs of Philadelphia, whose mission combines academic rigor with social responsibility. Swarthmore has a strong institutional commitment to inclusive excellence and nondiscrimination in its educational program and employment practices and encourages candidates who will further advance the goal of fostering a diverse and inclusive community. As one of the nation’s finest institutions of higher learning, Swarthmore College is global in outlook and draws students from around the nation and world. The 425‐acre campus is a designated arboretum, complete with gardens, rolling lawns, a creek, wooded hills, and hiking trails in the Crum Woods.

Who We Are:

The Spanish and Modern Languages and Literatures Departments of Swarthmore College together host faculty and instructional staff teaching a combined total of seven languages (Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, and Russian), as well as courses in literature, cultural studies, and media studies connected to global languages and cultures. We aim to help students develop culturally nuanced communications skills to prepare them to become engaged global citizens.

The opportunity:

The Administrative Assistant II coordinates the administrative activities of the Department of Spanish and the Arabic and French/Francophone sections of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures (MLL).

The Administrative Assistant II provides administrative support to the Spanish department chair and the Arabic and French/Francophone section heads to ensure the smooth and efficient operation of these academic units. Closely collaborates with the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures’ Administrative Assistant, who is primarily responsible for supporting the Chinese, German, Japanese, and Russian sections.

Tasks include: preparing and creating correspondence, reports, lists, and other documents; providing data management support; equipment, supply, and facility coordination; mail and delivery support for all active department members and emeriti in the Spanish Department and French and Arabic sections of MLL; processing expense requests for all departmental members; processing invoices for all vendors including honorariums and events; class scheduling and course catalog support; telephone, social media and email support; professional interactions with staff within the College and outside callers; greeting job candidates, guest lecturers, and honors examiners to the departments; providing professional email and telephone interactions with other members of the College community and outside collaborators.

Essential Responsibilities

Office Management
  • Plans and organizes office support operations for the department, ensuring smooth and effective services and operations.
  • Provides receptionist duties greeting all visitors. Answers phone and responds to inquiries and other requests in a timely manner. When relevant, direct requests to faculty members.
  • Writes and edits various correspondence on behalf of the department and faculty. Edits and proofs materials for accuracy and compliance with guidelines: determines and uses correct format, grammar, punctuation, and spelling, to support the work of departments.
  • Compiles information and data, summarizes information and creates graphs and reports using word processing and spreadsheet software (including Adobe and Microsoft Office Suite and Google suite applications).
  • Performs routine clerical responsibilities, including but not limited to:
    • Prepares and maintains the service areas of the Spanish and MLL departments, including printers and fax machine/copier.
    • Maintains inventory for departmental supplies, materials, and forms.
    • Calls for service of departmental machinery as necessary.
    • Reports maintenance issues/repairs, cleaning/housekeeping requests of classrooms and office spaces on Kohlberg’s third floor with Facilities Management and EVS.
    • Coordinates and distributes incoming and outgoing mail and packages.

Records and Information Management

  • Maintains, coordinates, and regularly updates effective digital file management systems (Google Drive; Excel/Google Sheets) to ensure efficient access to relevant records and information.
  • Administers Spanish Departmental file database (syllabi, CVs, enrollment data, etc). Administers French/Francophone and Arabic file databases within larger MLL systems.
  • During times of internal or external department/sectional reviews, collects lists of majors and minors, copies of syllabi, description of the department/section, and other information as requested in order to prepare packets for outside accrediting faculty in advance of their visits; arranges all aspects of the visit in conjunction with the Provost’s Office, including meetings with the chairs and sections heads.
  • Prepares enrollment data reports as needed.

Faculty and Academic Support

  • Assists in the scheduling and organizing of departmental and faculty meetings utilizing scheduling tools (Google Calendar, Google Doodle, etc).
  • Assists chair and section heads during the sophomore planning process; coordinates academic advisor assignments.
  • Coordinates the Spanish Honors Program in partnership with Chair, and the Honors Program of Arabic and French/Francophone with section heads, and Honors Program.
  • Coordinates the Spanish, Arabic, and French placement tests in collaboration with the Spanish department chair, the French section head, the Arabic section head, and the Dean’s Office. Works in partnership with the Registrar’s Office, Dean’s Office, department chair and section heads to compile language placement data and update students’ online information accordingly.. Fields inquiries from students regarding their score and placement.
  • Reviews student degree audits to determine AP/IB eligibility; provides an annual report to the Registrar’s Office regarding student credit for AP/IB exams in accordance with Departmental policies.
  • During the summer, and occasionally at other times of the year, promptly replies to inquiries from incoming students regarding placement tests and course offerings.
  • Coordinates the evaluation of off-campus study credit with the Off Campus Study office.
  • Coordinates the evaluation of transfer credit for the Spanish department and the Arabic and French/Francophone sections of MLL with the Registrar’s Office
  • Maintains good working knowledge of Registrar's Office, Dean’s Office, Provost’s Office, Business, and Payroll Office procedures as they relate to the Spanish and MLL departments. Ensures that accurate information about majors and minors, sophomore papers, new student orientation (language placement exams), timing of the academic calendar, etc., are communicated to faculty and staff.
  • Prepares course evaluations at the end of each semester to ensure that course surveys are sent to students before the end of each semester and that the evaluations are made available to each of the members of faculty immediately after final grades are submitted.
  • Assists department chair and section heads with determining that all requirements toward the majors and minors completion are being met.
  • Coordinates with faculty and Honors program to secure examiners and exams for Honors candidates in the Spanish Department and MLL French/Francophone and Arabic sections.
  • Prioritizes support requests by faculty, lecturers, and instructors.
  • Coordinates and advertises faculty office hours; creates/updates door signs.
  • Keeps chair and section heads on track with reminders about deadlines and ongoing tasks including End of Year Reports.
  • Coordinates, trains and supervises student workers within the Spanish department. Creates and advertises student jobs on JobX.

Financial Management

  • Assists the Spanish chair in the planning of the department budget, drawing on accurate and detailed information about past experience regarding previous year’s spending and knowledge about projected needs.
  • Assists the section heads of French/Francophone Studies and Arabic within MLL in the planning of section budgets
  • Reviews monthly income and expense statements, reconciles account activity, investigates discrepancies, and reports information to Spanish department chair and other faculty members, to ensure accurate charges and control of expenditures. Provides faculty with correct and current account balances.
  • Assists in the submission of expenses through ChromeRiver for faculty, departmental, and administrative purchases; tracks expenses and invoices through ChromeRiver and Banner financial platforms; tracks operating budgets in both the Spanish Department and French/Francophone Studies and Arabic sections of MLL.
  • Disperse award funds to students as determined by the Spanish Department, and French/Francophone and Arabic sections of the MLL Department.
  • Prepares honoraria and travel reimbursements for outside speakers.

Faculty Search and Reviews

  • Uses Interfolio and Faculty Services to organize and run job searches for temporary and tenure track positions. Advertises open positions on various higher ed websites. Schedules interviews for candidates and assists with lodging accommodations and reimbursement of candidates’ expenses.
  • Assists new faculty members with onboarding to College systems and orienting to their departments; supports the preparation of office space (including procuring keys), preparing individual schedule letters, and making necessary administrative arrangements with other College offices to facilitate the smooth and efficient entry of new departmental employees
  • Coordinates Spanish department and Arabic and French/Francophone faculty reviews (promotion, tenure/reappointment decisions) using Interfolio; prepares correspondence to former and present students, other members of the faculty and peers at other institutions requesting letters of recommendations. Sorts and compiles return letters into Interfolio and completes a highly confidential dossier to ensure the guidelines issued by the Provost's office are met.

Who you are:

  • Ability to communicate effectively, verbally and in written correspondence.
  • Strong editing and proofreading skills.
  • Excellent organization skills.
  • Must be able to handle multiple tasks, take initiative and work independently.

What you bring:

Required Qualifications

  • High school diploma with three to five years of job-related experience or an equivalent combination of education and/or experience.
  • Proficient with computers, including but not limited to MS Office Suite and Google Suite.
  • Ability to learn new computer software as necessary.
  • Strong working knowledge of Mac systems.
  • Previous budget planning experience.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s Degree or some college education.
  • Prior work experience in higher education
  • Experience with databases and setting up web pages is highly desirable.
  • Knowledge of a foreign language is highly desirable.

What You Will Get:

You’ll work at one of the world's most renowned liberal arts Colleges, with incredible benefits, a stunning 420-acre campus and collaborative work environment. Come join a team of passionate, creative people who work hard and have fun supporting the College students, faculty, and staff.

Notice to Applicants - Covid-19 Vaccination Requirement

Review the Swarthmore Benefits Guidebook , we offer benefit plans starting at $0 per month! Upon benefit eligibility, the College contributes 10% of an employee’s salary to their retirement account. Employees are 100% vested in their accounts on the date participation begins.

Swarthmore Benefits Flyer

Paid Time Off (Staff)

Holiday Schedule

For full consideration, submit applications including resume and cover letter with pay expectations by March 8, 2023. If you are excited about this role, we want to hear from you!

Swarthmore College actively seeks and welcomes applications from candidates with exceptional qualifications, particularly those with demonstrable commitments to a more inclusive society and world. Swarthmore College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

To apply for this job please visit

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