Metropolitan State University of Denver (MSU Denver) invites inquiries, nominations and applications for the position of Vice President/Chief Operating Officer (VP/COO). The campus community seeks an innovative, collaborative and entrepreneurial senior administrator to provide strategic direction and transformational leadership in service of the University’s mission. After years of capital investments, expansion of the faculty, and significant growth in the student population, MSU Denver is poised to accelerate its upward trajectory and create a more dramatic imprint in the City of Denver, the State of Colorado, and beyond.
The VP/COO will be a critical strategic advisor to President Janine Davidson and an indispensable partner and voice amongst MSU Denver’s senior leadership team in determining institutional priorities and objectives that promote MSU Denver’s academic vision and commitment to student success and ensure their successful and effective implementation. The VP/COO will play a key role in leveraging the University’s intellectual, fiscal, and human resources to best realize MSU Denver’s promise of becoming the model urban university for opportunity, diversity, excellence and transformation.
Established in 1965 as Colorado’s “College of Opportunity”, MSU Denver is a comprehensive, baccalaureate and master’s degree granting urban university that offers arts and sciences, professional, and business courses and programs to a diverse student population. Over the last decade, as part of its journey to become a preeminent public urban university, Metropolitan State College of Denver received legislative authority to change its name to Metropolitan State University of Denver and become a master’s-degree-granting educational institution. After years of capital investments, expansion of the faculty, and significant growth in the student population, MSU Denver is poised to accelerate its upward trajectory and create a more dramatic imprint in the City of Denver, the State of Colorado, and beyond.
Since 2005, MSU Denver has increased the number of degrees it has granted annually from 2,280 to 3,445 and in the last 10 years its first-time freshman retention rate has improved from 62 percent 65 percent (2005 – 2015). Total student headcount is 20,000, taught by 1,452 faculty members and supported by 709 staff members and over the past 12 years, the diversity of the University’s student population has increased to 42% (students of color) and with a 26% Latino undergraduate population, the institution has emerging Hispanic Serving Institution status. By strategically creating public-private partnerships in areas such as hotel management, advanced manufacturing and modern music education, MSU Denver has offered students unique opportunities to be prepared for the workplace, while also serving the workforce needs of Colorado.
Reporting directly to the President of the University, the VP/COO is a key member of the President’s executive cabinet and is responsible for providing leadership on all fiscal, operational, and administrative matters. The VP/COO will serve as a significant contributor to advancing MSU Denver’s mission and strategic direction by leading an organization responsible for the delivery and administration of the University’s wide-range of financial, administrative, and professional services. Moreover, the VP/COO will serve as a strategic partner to the President, Provost, and other members of the senior leadership team to enhance existing and develop new financial and administrative practices that will leverage MSU Denver’s strengths toward achieving its goals including its commitment to student success, academic and operational excellence, and its dedication to promoting a campus and organizational climate of inclusion and equity.
As the VP/COO oversees an administrative portfolio that includes all aspects of financial and business services, human resources, and other areas of University-wide administration and operations, the VP/COO and his/her organization will work closely with leadership in other key divisions across the University—including Academic Affairs, University Advancement, and Student Affairs. The VP/COO must partner effectively with the senior leaders across the University in order to identify best practices, policies, and procedures that will not only promote organizational excellence and the effective stewardship of university resources, but also cross-cutting relationships that will advance the University’s goals and each representative division’s contributions to achieving them.
Successful candidates for the VP/COO position will possess:
Ten years of experience in progressively responsible financial/administrative management/senior-level leadership positions in large, diverse institutions.
An in-depth knowledge of the full range of issues addressed by a COO that includes leading change in a complex and dynamic environment.
A proven ability to develop funding models that enhance efficiencies and maintain or improve funding streams.
Demonstrated ability to develop innovative initiatives, such as public private partnerships or other creative models that maximize revenue from nontraditional sources.
A Master’s degree in Business Administration, Finance, or related field is preferred.
The Search Committee will begin reviewing applications immediately and continue to accept applications and nominations until the position is filled. Applicants must submit: a current resume or curriculum vitae and a cover letter describing relevant experience and interest in the position. Nomination letters should include the name, position, address and telephone number of the nominee. All applications and nominations will be handled in confidence.
Applications and letters of nomination should be submitted by email to: