USM Career Opportunities

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Director of Decision Support & Institutional Research


Purpose of Position

The Director of Decision Support & Institutional Research is a dynamic leadership position responsible for overseeing the planning, development, and execution of strategic data analytics projects, data strategies, and institutional research initiatives. Reporting to the Associate Vice Chancellor for Decision Support and Chief Analytics officer, the incumbent leads a team of analysts and collaborates with various University System of Maryland (USM) stakeholders to provide data-informed insights and support evidence-based decision-making processes to enhance system effectiveness and achieve USM strategic goals.


Institutional Research Leadership and System Effectiveness:

  • Collaborates with the Associate Vice Chancellor for Decision Support and Chief Analytics Officer to foster a culture of data-informed decision-making within the System Office and across all institutions and regional centers within the University System of Maryland (USM).
  • Organizes and facilitates regular meetings with Institutional Research (IR) leaders from various system institutions to collaboratively address and strategize solutions for systemwide IR challenges.
  • Oversees the collection, analysis, and reporting of institutional data to support academic planning, accreditation, and institutional effectiveness.
  • Provides timely and accurate data to internal and external stakeholders, including government agencies and accreditation bodies.
  • Contributes to the USM’s strategic planning efforts by providing data and analysis on key performance indicators and benchmarks.
  • Stays current with best practices and trends in institutional research to enhance data quality and analysis methodologies.

Data Acquisition, Governance, and Integrity:

  • Establishes and enforces data governance policies and procedures to ensure data accuracy, security, and compliance with privacy regulations.
  • Enhances data literacy and collaborates with stakeholders to develop new data strategies.
  • Collaborates with IT and other stakeholders to maintain data infrastructure, data integrity, and data availability to ensure seamless data integration.
  • Explores and leverages emerging technologies and tools to enhance data acquisition, governance, integrity, and integration.

Analytics Solution Development:

  • Collaborates with academic and administrative units to identify data-informed opportunities and prioritize data analytics needs.
  • Designs and implements data analytics projects to extract insights and actionable recommendations from complex datasets.
  • Explores and leverages emerging technologies, methods, and tools to advance the institution’s analytics capabilities.

Project Management:

  • Efficiently manages departmental projects, allocates resources, and sets realistic timelines to ensure timely completion and high-quality work products.
  • Monitors and assesses work products generated by the team, maintaining rigorous quality standards, and addressing challenges to foster a culture of continuous improvement.


Minimum Qualifications

Required Education Level/Certifications:

Bachelor's degree in a relevant field such as statistics, data science, data analytics or other disciplines with research and quantitative analysis.

Required Experience:

1 year of experience in a leadership role managing teams and projects.

Required Knowledge/Skills/Abilities:

  • Strong leadership skills to guide a team of research analysts and foster a collaborative work environment.
  • Ability to collaborate with cross-functional teams and build strong relationships with stakeholders.
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills, with a commitment to data-driven decision-making.
  • Excellent communication skills, including the ability to effectively communicate complex data needs to a variety of stakeholders.
  • Knowledge of relevant statistical analyses, predictive modeling, and data visualizations techniques used in data analytics.
  • Demonstrated expertise in statistical analysis, predictive modeling, and data visualization.
  • Experience with data warehousing and reporting tools, such as R, SQL, Tableau, and PowerBI.
  • Experience with Microsoft Office products.


Preferred Qualifications

Preferred Education Level/Certifications:

Master’s degree in a relevant field such as statistics, data science, data analytics or other disciplines with research and quantitative analysis. 

Preferred Experience:

Leadership experience in a higher education setting.

Preferred Knowledge/Skills/Abilities:

  • Knowledge of relevant regulations and guidelines related to data collection, analysis, and reporting in higher education.
  • Demonstrated expertise in statistical analysis, predictive modeling, and data visualization for data analytics.


Classification: Regular

FLSA Status: Exempt

Hours: FT

Salary: $150,000 – $175,000

Benefits: Exempt Benefits Summary: includes full medical, dental and vision benefits, tuition remission at any of the 12 USM institutions, a generous leave plan, and the option to telework for part of the week.

Application Instructions: Please combine your cover letter, resume and list of references (at least three references with contact information) into one PDF or Microsoft Word document and send to the following email address:

The University System of Maryland is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin or ancestry, marital status, veteran status, physical or mental disability unrelated to an individual's ability to perform the job, in accordance with applicable law. As required by the 1986 Immigration Act, applicants should be prepared to present acceptable documentation showing their identities, their U.S. citizenship or alien status, and their authorization to work in the United States.

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