The University of Central Asia (UCA) is a private (not for profit), secular University whose charter has been signed by the Presidents of Tajikistan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Kazakhstan, and His Highness the Aga Khan, ratified by the parliaments of the founding states and registered with the United Nations. UCA is the first internationally chartered university in the world. UCA’s mission is to foster the socio-economic development of Central Asia, particularly its mountain societies, while helping the peoples of the region preserve and draw upon their rich cultural heritages as assets for the future.
Summary of Position and Key Responsibilities
The University of Central Asia is seeking a full-time Campus Counsellor to provide a student-centered, inclusive and proactive support system for students of UCA under the general direction of the Manager of Student Affairs, who is part of the Dean’s Management Team. The position will be based on the Naryn campus in Kyrgyzstan/Khorog campus in Tajikistan, and starts in early March 2017. However, the start date is flexible. The successful candidate is primarily responsible for the provision of counselling services to students who are seeking solutions to personal concerns, but the Counsellor will also provide career and academic services to students in both individual, group and class settings.
Counselling Services directly support the mission of the University of Central Asia by engaging in activities that facilitate the student learning experience, increase student engagement and success. The Counsellor will also assist with residence life, recreation programs, student orientations and other student activities; liaise and work with staff and administration on behalf of students through committees and on an individual basis; deliver student support courses such as job search training, school life balance, peer mentorship and related activities. The Counsellor will oversee a series of programme interventions with an emphasis on prevention and catching issues early on that address the needs and pre-existing issues faced at a remote university campus in Central Asia. The Counsellor will need to be the kind of individual who can develop and deliver innovative programmes and support structures that are responsive to the needs of Central Asian students.
Additional Duties and Responsibilities
Health and Psychological Counselling Services
- Offer mental health assessment and counselling to students on a wide variety of issues including suspected or confirmed mental health problems.
- Create awareness among students, faculty and staff regarding mental health and diversity issues
- Develop and manage support programs for on campus crises
- Offer personal counselling to students adjusting to post-secondary studies and living away from home.
Desired Qualities and Capacities
- Strong interpersonal and communication skills, and the ability to work effectively with a diverse student body, preferably with experience in the developing world and/or in a rural community
- A capacity to handle sensitive situations and confidential information with discretion and a genuine concern for student success
- An understanding of issues and cultural norms experienced by Central Asian students and the appropriate support structures and coping mechanisms that are needed
- An ability to establish a cooperative work environment and create strong collaborative relationships
- Proven ability engage students, staff and faculty in developing a healthy campus culture that support student well-being
- Experience working with health care professionals to offer integrated mental and health services such as critical incident training.
- Proven ability to work collaboratively with academic personnel and leadership
- Willingness to build expertise in career counselling
- Strong computer skills in Microsoft Office
Minimum Qualifications and Relevant Experience
- Graduate Degree in Counselling Psychology from a reputable graduate program
- One year of supervised clinical counselling training
- Minimum of one year psychological counselling experience
- Preference will be given to applicants with two years of personal, mental health, crisis and student success counselling at a post-secondary institution within the past five years
- Professionalism, tact, accuracy, timeliness, and sensitivity are required to effectively advise students and to maintain and enhance relationships with students
- Experience with group and/or workshop facilitation including development of seminars
- Specialized training and credentials in any areas of critical incident training, mental health training, and/or diversity training is an asset
- Advanced English and Russian is required; however, for very experienced counsellors Russian may be considered optional
- Working knowledge of Kyrgyz, Tajik, and Kazakh would be an attractive asset
Reports to the University Counsellor and works closely with the Manager of Student Affairs, Cooperative Education Office, Faculty and Staff.
Salary and Package: Salary and package to attract the best candidate.