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A cover letter is required for consideration for this position and must be attached as the first page of your resume. The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experience that directly relate to this position. Candidates who fail to meet this requirement will not be considered for the position.

Job Summary

The Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts is seeking a motivated, enthusiastic, friendly, and skilled administrative professional for the role of Assistant to the Chair. This position serves as a critical member of the German Chair’s administrative team. This role has two main components: 1) providing high-level administrative support to the Chair, Associate Chair, Executive Committee, and Chief Administrator, and 2) coordinating for the department’s most important initiatives.

This position is 100% (40 hrs per week), 40 weeks per year and 80% (32 hrs per week) 12 weeks between mid-May and Mid-August.

Mission Statement

The mission of the University of Michigan is to serve the people of Michigan and the world through preeminence in creating, communicating, preserving and applying knowledge, art, and academic values, and in developing leaders and citizens who will challenge the present and enrich the future.


Key responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:

Administrative Support

  • Compose and initiate original correspondence requiring interpretation of policies; prepare, edit, and type confidential and sensitive reports and correspondence for the Chair. Proofread materials for meetings, letters, and announcements
  • Assist Chair with faculty service assignments – managing communication and dissemination of information.
  • Effectively schedule and proactively update the Chair’s calendar and avoid conflicts in the schedule, coordinating meetings on his/her behalf.
  • Manage communication and dissemination of information, including event information, within the administrative team, as well as to the department and community at large.
  • Provide hosting and administrative support for meetings, conferences, lectures, etc. as required, including but not limited to meeting room reservations, logistic/travel arrangements and coordinating, setting up room arrangements and food as needed. 
  • Prepare agendas and distribute monthly executive committee and departmental faculty meeting agendas; take minutes and ensure minutes are approved and filed as appropriate; follow-up on discussions and/or directives from those meetings to see that appropriate actions are initiated.
  • Act as general receptionist to the department providing a welcoming environment.
  • Perform general administrative duties such as ordering office supplies, assisting departmental personnel with printer and copier difficulties, making general updates to the German website, maintaining email groups, processing honorariums for visitors, reconciling one’s Pcard, sorting and distributing mail, maintaining the floor kitchens, acting as point person for facility needs and requests to Facilities, ensuring departmental offices are vacated as required and prepared for new occupants, as well as other duties as needed and assigned.


  • Process development gifts as received by the department. Coordinate and track thank you letters from the Chair for donor gifts.  Coordinate and send the annual solicitation letters to alumni and friends.  Update and track student awards and specific alumni information in the departmental database, work with LSA Advancement as needed for addresses and donor information.
  • Coordinate and prepare mailings for the bi-annual newsletter and intra-departmental electronic newsletters.
  • Manage and coordinate faculty recruitment and promotions with the administrative team. Manage and coordinate lecturer reviews. Manage, coordinate and submit complete and accurate dossiers for tenure and promotion casesto the LSA Executive Committee in accordance with LSA and UM policy and procedures. 
  • Work with committees and Chair in preparing and submitting faculty and lecturer award nominations.

Required Qualifications*

This position requires at least five years of high level administrative support with the successful candidate possessing an extremely high level of organizational skills and to think and work proactively on a consistent basis.  Outstanding interpersonal as well as communication skills (written and verbal) are required. Must be a fluid/excellent writer able to draft and edit multiple forms of documents for the Chair. The successful candidate will have the ability to work effectively and sensitively with a diverse group of students, faculty and staff and to handle sensitive and confidential materials and situations as well as value differences. The successful candidate will possess the ability to work independently as well as part of a team, the ability to handle a wide variety of diverse tasks, able to meet multiple deadlines simultaneously and to maintain confidentiality in all areas.

We require a high level of demonstrated critical thinking, problem solving, and decision-making skills. The successful candidate must be a self-starter; must be able to set priorities and handle varied assignments and deadlines; must learn quickly and stay calm in the face of concurrent tasks; must be able to independently prioritize tasks and must possess evidence of successful adaptation to change while operating in a highly professional manner. The department depends on our staff to work successfully in a team environment, as well as work independently with minimal supervision and to manage time efficiently and effectively. Because this position regularly sends out official documents on behalf of the Chair and department, a high degree of attention to detail and accuracy is a must. We are looking for someone who shows the desire to identify efficiency opportunities for changes to processes, procedures and duties, as well as a willingness to assume additional responsibilities. A successful candidate will be proactive in all aspects of the position—at once imaginative and able to think outside the box. At the same time, we require a demonstrated ability to exercise a positive service-oriented attitude; exercise solid judgment; and handle challenging situations with tact and diplomacy. The successful candidate must be able to synthesize the big picture/goals of the Department in to the specific tasks required to reach the objectives, as well as having laser-focus for details.  

Because much of this work now moves through digital environments, we require a high level of proficiency with information technology applications. We seek expertise in all Microsoft Suite software, Adobe Acrobat, Google applications, web editing, Zoom, and demonstrated motivation to find and use new software to enhance our major projects. The ideal candidate will consistently seek innovation and collaboration with original thinking and risk-taking to find fresh solutions.

This job requires the ability to move materials up to 20 pounds to a height of 3-4 feet and set them on tables, carts, or other surfaces.

Desired Qualifications*

A bachelor's degree or equivalent combination of education and experience is highly desired. Three to five years of administrative support experience in an academic setting is highly preferred.  Experience working in FileMaker Pro. Knowledge and experience working with MailChimp is a plus.  At least three years of experience and knowledge of  University and LSA policies and procedures is highly preferred.

Additional Information

The College of Literature, Science, and the Arts seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitments to serve the diverse people of Michigan, fulfill the College’s Guiding Principles, and sustain the excellence of LSA. 

To learn more about diversity, equity, and inclusion visit

To learn more about LSA’s Guiding Principles visit


Additional Information

Salary range: $52,000 - $62,000

Higher salary possible for exceptionally qualified candidate.

Background Screening

The University of Michigan conducts background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer and may use a third party administrator to conduct background checks.  Background checks are performed in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days.  The review and selection process may begin as early as the eighth day after posting. This opening may be removed from posting boards and filled anytime after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.


U-M COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

COVID-19 vaccinations are now required for all University of Michigan students, faculty and staff across all three campuses, including Michigan Medicine, by the start of the fall term on August 30, 2021.  This includes those working or learning remotely.  More information on this policy is available on the Campus Blueprint website or the U-M Dearborn and U-M Flint websites.