CommitteeInternational Student and Scholar Services Knowledge Community (KC ISSS)
Position: Chair
Term Dates: January 1, 2021 – June 1, 2024. Three-year term (one year each as Chair-elect, Chair, and Past Chair)

Provide leadership for the development and dissemination of knowledge needed by professionals who provide programs and services to international students and scholars and their families. The incumbent is an elected position and is accountable to the Board of Directors through the Vice President for Professional Development and Engagement (VP PDE).

  • KC ISSS develops and disseminates quality products, programs, and services that serve the community of international student and scholar service professionals.
  • KC ISSS supports the NAFSA strategic plan and pan-NAFSA collaborations through cross-committee and regional collaborations.
  • KC ISSS engages in the development and cultivation of member-leaders and supports the NAFSA Diversity and Inclusion statement through its outreach and recruitment.

Position updated January 2020

The application period for this position has closed for 2020. It will reopen early in 2021 for the next application cycle.

Major Functions and Responsibilities
  • During the first year as Chair-elect,
    • Assist with organizational and project management duties and assume duties of Chair in his/her absence;
    • Develop and create a strategically driven work plan for following year.
  • During the second year as Chair,
    • Lead efforts to assess the interests and needs of this KC’s target audience.
    • Lead the planning of KC activities, which may include online resources, training, conference sessions and workshops.
    • Work with team members and staff to develop projects to achieve the outcomes of priorities for each year, including proposing subcommittees and forming task forces.
    • Work with team members, staff, and the VP PDE to refresh KC priorities and initiatives as needed.
    • Support NAFSA’s comprehensive internationalization strategic initiatives.
    • Assist with determining priorities for annual conference (AC) proposal priorities.
  • During the third year as Past Chair,
    • Serve as the KC ISSS Representative for the Annual Conference Committee (ACC);
    • Support the KC ISSS committee in its engagement efforts leading up to and at the Annual Conference.
  • Consult with the Leadership Development Committee (LDC) related to the nomination of potential Chairs-elect. In addition, assist with recruitment of appointed members of the KC ISSS team, as well as create opportunities for contributions from other members.

All NAFSA leaders are expected to foster an inclusive environment and seek to learn and understand the multicultural perspectives of the committee/team, our constituents, and stakeholders to align with the NAFSA Diversity and Inclusion Statement. An expression of leadership in this area includes:

  • Engaging the committee/team to identify and implement strategies for increased personal outreach, recruitment, and onboarding for all, especially diversity-focused and underrepresented groups
  • Increasing accessibility and participation from underrepresented groups, individuals, and institutions
  • Expanding educational content within the committees’ purview through intentional outreach and recruitment of diverse presenters and institutional types in partnership with various NAFSA groups

NAFSA: Association of International Educators is a professional association driven by its Strategic Plan as established by the Board of Directors.  The success of the association depends on the productive engagement of three key constituencies: the Board, member-leaders, and staff.  Member-leaders are advocates for the association’s mission, vision, values, diversity and inclusion, and ethical principles. They align their work closely with the Board through its vice presidents and with staff to carry out the Strategic Plan. Member-leader roles are guided by objectives assigned by the Strategic Plan, by outcome accountabilities outlined in the Standing Rules, and by position descriptions for specific roles.  

  • The Chair collaborates closely with the Coordinating Council and other KC and committee Chairs, as well as the VP PDE, to enhance work efforts across the association. The KC ISSS Chair will lead the KC ISSS in developing partnerships with knowledge communities, leadership committees, member groups, and regional teams. The Chair serves on Coordinating Council for one year.
  • The Chair partners closely with the NAFSA staff partner assigned to this Committee. Effective relationships reflect and include responsiveness to phone calls/e-mail correspondence, timely delivery on accountabilities and responsibilities, open communication and mutual respect among other characteristics.

It is important to note that the length of term is three years: one year each as Chair‐elect, Chair, and Past Chair.

During the Chair-elect year, the work will average two/three hours weekly and will increase during June to September for preparation of the work plan and reviewing KC ISSS session proposals. During the Chair year, the work will average three to five hours per week, but vary from month to month. Peak months are:

  • December/January: Preparing for and attending WLM, delivering orientation and onboarding new members;
  • April/May: Preparing for and attending leadership meetings right before the annual conference and organizing KC ISSS conference activities; and
  • August/September: Reviewing conference session proposals and focusing on end of year workplan report.

During the Past Chair year, the work will average one to two hours weekly for the KC and increase in June/July as conference planning work increases. From mid-August through late October, conference planning activities require three to five hours per week, when the Past Chair manages the session proposal review process and attends a weekend conference planning meeting.

It should be noted that in addition to the first year of Past Chair leadership, there is another five months, from January to the AC in May, that require the Past Chair to remain the ACC KC Liaison representative.

NAFSA Meetings

Travel, per diem, and lodging expenses are reimbursed for national NAFSA meetings, except for those surrounding the NAFSA annual conference. The travel to/from the annual conference, along with any meals and lodging for meetings before/during the conference, is not covered. Annual Conference registration is complimentary for the current Chair and Chair-elect. Lodging, travel and per diem is provided for the Washington Leadership Meeting (WLM) in January, the Summer Coordination Meeting for Chair-elects, and the Past Chair weekend conference planning meeting in October. Other operating expenses members incur in their offices/at home, such as copying, phone calls, etc. are not reimbursed. Large copying jobs should be referred to staff. Conference calls are set up by staff and covered by the association as necessary.

Please Note: KC Chairs are kindly asked to not present at Annual Conference pre-conference workshops because their attendance is necessary at the KC team’s pre-conference meetings.

  • Demonstrated expertise and leadership in the field of international student and scholar services. This includes familiarity with pertinent federal laws and regulations; knowledge of the operation of international student and scholar services offices including cultural programming; and familiarity with the adjustment issues encountered by international students and scholars and their families.
  • Ability to articulate the educational benefits of international education.
  • Willingness to adopt organization-wide perspectives and KC-specific strategic priorities.
  • Willingness to adopt association priorities and perspectives on volunteer development and management
  • High strategic planning, management, networking, and delegation experience Strong coordination, analytical, oral and written communication skills
  • Ability to work effectively with a team and with NAFSA staff in an outcomes-based environment
  • Commitment to access and respond to e-mail in a timely fashion as well as communicate using online electronic tools/systems plus the online workspace structure
  • Willingness and ability to travel for participation and representation at NAFSA meetings
  • Manage unconscious bias in the assessment and decision-making process
  • Recognized by peers for being energetic, innovative, and visionary
  • Valid NAFSA membership through the length of the leadership term (three years)
  • Ability to meet the volunteer commitment outlined and planning calendar deadlines

Desired Qualifications

  • Previous engagement with KC ISSS activities, including team activities, or other NAFSA regional or national leadership experience, preferably within the past five years.