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Assistant Director, Graduate Communications and Postdoctoral Affairs

Department: Graduate Studies Office/Postdoctoral Office Effective Date: August, 2013

USG 12

35 hr/wk

Reports to: Director, Graduate Studies Academic Services

General Accountability

The Assistant Director, Graduate Communications and Postdoctoral Affairs develops and advances university-wide strategic communications, marketing and recruitment plans for graduate studies, in alignment with the university’s recruitment, marketing and communications strategies, institutional brand positioning and identity.  The Assistant Director manages the Postdoctoral Office.


The Assistant Director ensures effective positioning of the University of Waterloo in all Graduate Studies Office (GSO) and Postdoctoral Office (PO) communications.  S/he oversees the appropriate processes to inform and evaluate marketing, recruitment and communication plans.  The Assistant Director determines strategic positioning and messages for key audiences and provides communications, writing and editing expertise.  The incumbent leads the marketing and communication team in the GSO.


Nature and Scope

By 2017, the University of Waterloo plans to double the graduate student population. A high level of organization and management of communications and events to promote graduate studies programs and services is essential to our success. Leadership and collaboration on special projects and in day-to-day activities with academic administrators, staff in the GSO and other administrative units, and graduate students is key to meeting the goals identified in the University’s Sixth Decade Report.  The GSO mission includes leadership and guidance for the development and promotion of new programs, the successful execution of application and admissions processes, and the delivery of excellent and timely services to applicants, students, staff and the administration of the University. Between five and 10 new programs are implemented each year.


The Graduate Studies Office (GSO) provides academic service support for a number of functions including the administration of program appraisal and approval processes, graduate student recruitment, publications, on-line student and staff services, applications for admission, admissions, course enrolment, graduate student financial assistance programs, award and scholarship programs, development and application of academic policies, academic records, theses, graduation, internal and external reporting, workshops and the annual Graduate Student Research Conferences.  The GSO services are utilized by graduate students, alumni, faculty members, university administrators, external agencies, and prospective graduate students including uWaterloo undergraduate students.

The Postdoctoral Office (PO) was established July 1, 2011 to formally recognize the important and key role that postdoctoral fellows hold at the University of Waterloo. The Postdoctoral Office is managed by the Assistant Director, Graduate Communications and Postdoctoral Affairs, with academic oversight provided by the Associate Provost, Graduate Studies.


The Assistant Director’s supervisor is the Director, Graduate Academic Services who reports to the Associate Provost, Graduate Studies.  The following positions report to the Director, Graduate Academic Services:

The Assistant Director, Graduate Communications and Postdoctoral Affairs supervises:

Statistical Data

Contacts - Internal 250
Graduate Programs 184
Applications/Offers/New Students 9,000/3,500/1,950     
Enrolment 5,224
Degrees 1,500
Publications (online and print) 10+

Events (internal/external; includes education fairs,                   

                workshops, presentations)

Three Minute Thesis (students involved) 400+


Specific Accountabilities




Postdoctoral Affairs

The Assistant Director is accountable for the Postdoctoral Office (PO).  Postdoctoral fellows directly support research activities at the University of Waterloo, and require specialized resources to support their professional growth.  The Assistant Director ensures proper support is provided both to postdocs and to faculty/staff that support them.

Activities of the PO include:


The Assistant Director will undertake special projects for the Associate Provost, Associate Dean, Director, or Associate Director as required.



Significant Internal Relationships:

Significant External Relationships:

Committees/Working Groups:

 Publications and Communications:

Working Conditions