10 Jobs That Keep Colleges and Universities Functioning

People say college is the best time of your life. For some, it's the thrill of being in a basketball arena or football stadium surrounded by tens of thousands of rabid comrades ready to scream their way through a rivalry game. And for a few others still, it's that meal plan that lets them gobble down 5 slices of pizza, 7 cookies, and 2 fruit cups, all with a swipe of their student ID. But everyone has one common memory: classes, where they could join their peers in learning from great professors.

Perhaps you are considering returning to college as your own career progresses. People may think college is all about professors, but there is so much more that is necessary so teachers can do their jobs, and students can continue their learning. From archivists to financial aid counselors, these behind-the-scenes employees keep college campuses functioning day in and day out.

Here are 10 jobs at a college or university worth looking at. We've included the average entry-level salaries and ranges based on Salary.com data

1) Admissions Representative - Higher Ed.

Average: $40,488

Salary Range: $36,084-$45,427

What you’ll do: Recruit and transfer prospective students. This person leads college or university information, coordinates campus tours, and serves as a liaison for students and parents. This role typically requires a bachelor's degree or its equivalent.

2) Alumni Relations Officer

Average: $52,486

Salary Range: $45,000-$60,420

What you’ll do: Develop alumni interest and support of the university or college. This person assists in creating and broadening alumni programs and in planning large reunion and/or homecoming events. This role typically requires a bachelor's degree.

3) Annual Gift Coordinator - Higher Ed.

Average: $54,057

Salary Range: $44,018-$64,346

What you’ll do: Aid in the planning and implementation of annual gift programs. Supervises, evaluates, and restructures assigned campaigns and membership programs and oversees special events. Responsible for attracting and retaining prospective donors, monitoring mailings, and analyzing past donations. This role typically requires a bachelor's degree and 2 to 4 years of related experience.

4) Archivist - Higher Ed.

Average: $69,511

Salary Range: $58,594-$83,439

What you’ll do: Establish policies and procedures for university special collections, archives, digitization, preservation, and conservation. This person collaborates with other college offices in identifying potential donors and materials that support university collection. This role typically requires a master's degree and 4 -7 years of related experience.

 5) Conference Coordinator - Higher Ed.

Average: $49,700

Salary Range: $43,790-$56,250

What you’ll do: Coordinate conferences and workshops for the university or college. This person is responsible for most aspects of the conference programs including the budget, selection and design, as well as the registration and payment processes. This job typically requires a bachelor's degree in area of specialty and 2 to 4 years of related experience.

6) Laboratory Coordinator - Higher Ed. 

Average: $52,111

Salary Range: $45,270-$58,995

What you’ll do: Coordinate the daily activities in a research laboratory and supp


orts the work of researchers and technicians. This person ensures adherence to lab standards and practices to maximize safety and operational effectiveness, and coordinates the lab inventory management and maintains supplies, lab ware, and instruments. This role typically requires a bachelor's degree and 2 to 4 years of related experience.

7) Financial Aid Counselor - Higher Ed.

Average: $42,202

Salary Range: $37,286-$48,238

What you’ll do: Administer the financial aid program and provide application counseling. This person decides to award scholarships, grants, and other monetary rewards. This role typically requires a a bachelor's degree and 2 to 4 years of related experience.

8) Museum Curator - Higher Ed.

Average: $58,053

Salary Range: $49,542-$69,689

What you’ll do: Determine the level of care for the museum's entire collection. This person evaluates and catalogs new collections according to department and library procedures, maintains the environment and security of the collection storage and research facilities, and contacts benefactors and writes grant proposals to increase museum funding. This role typically requires a bachelor's degree an d 5 years experience in the related area as an individual contributor. 1 - 3 years supervisory experience may be required.

9) Bursar 

Average: $70,633

Salary Range: $57,022-$84,337

What you’ll do: Manage and oversee operations of student, faculty, and staff accounts. This person provides leadership and direction for tuition and fee structure, financial aid resources, billing and receivables, petty cash, and payments. This role typically requires a bachelor's degree and 3+ years of managerial experience.

10) Assistant Coach (Minor Sport)

Average: $43,946

Salary Range: $35,144-$53,870

What you’ll do: Coach and train minor sport athletic team with skills, techniques, and strategies for maximum athletic performance. Advising the head coach, this person analyzes team performance and determines improvement plans for the group or individual player. This job typically requires a bachelor's degree and 4 -7 years of related experience.


Looking for your next job in higher education leadership, or something else entirely? Find out your worth.

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