Smith College


Northampton, Massachusetts


Smith College, one of the oldest and most prestigious women’s colleges in the country, seeks a strategic, entrepreneurial leader to serve as its Executive Director for Non-Degree Programs. In this newly created role, the Executive Director will be responsible for transforming Smith’s existing pre-college, professional, and executive education programs into a new strategic venture focused on the rapidly growing non-degree program market. In launching this new endeavor, Smith aims to bring its unique perspective on women’s education and leadership to a broader audience of learners and launch new continuing education initiatives tied to core institutional programs. To that end, the non-degree program organization is positioned as one of the college’s primary strategic investments, central to its mission, and integral to the achievement of its long-term strategic and financial objectives.

The Executive Director for Non-Degree Programs reports directly to the Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration. The incumbent will lead a newly reorganized office responsible for the promotion and administration of the existing non-degree program offerings, and the development and implementation of a multi-year strategic plan to expand Smith College’s portfolio of programs across pre-college, executive, professional, and life-long learning markets.

The successful candidate will possess a deep interest in and commitment to women’s leadership and education and will have strong experience in business development, marketing, strategic partnerships, and curriculum development for a range of non-degree programs and modalities. The incumbent will possess excellent leadership and entrepreneurial skills, with demonstrable experience growing new revenue-generating programs or start-up initiatives within higher education or corporate or for-profit education space. In addition, the candidate will have the ability to collaborate and connect with a broad internal and external audience, including corporate clients, faculty, staff, prospective students, and alumnae. Candidates must have a master’s degree plus five to ten years of experience in executive education or non-degree programs or an equivalent combination of education and experience. 

The college has named a search committee which will be assisted by the executive search firm Isaacson, Miller. Inquiries, nominations, and applications, which will remain confidential, should be directed to the search firm as indicated below.


Founded in 1871 as a private college with a mission to provide women with an excellent liberal arts education, Smith is widely considered to be one of the top liberal arts institutions in the country. Primarily an undergraduate residential college, Smith stands alone in many ways. With an endowment of $1.8 billion, it has the substantial resources of a university, yet is small enough to be an intimate community. Among Smith’s many distinctions are being the first women’s college with an engineering program, producing high numbers of Fulbright Fellows, and serving as a notable leader in education access. Smith alumnae are leaders nationally in business, government, and not-for-profit enterprises.

Led by President Kathleen McCartney, an internationally recognized authority on child development and early education who is in her fifth year at the college, Smith has recently completed an ambitious strategic plan that includes the reimagining of non-degree programs. Michael Howard, Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration, oversees major administrative functions of the college, including the recently reorganized non-degree programs office. 


Smith College has engaged Isaacson, Miller, a national executive search firm, to assist with this search. Inquiries, nominations, and applications should be directed in confidence to the firm via the link below:

Rebecca Kennedy, Principal

Kaden Stearns, Associate

Isaacson, Miller


Smith College is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, age, color, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or veteran status in the recruitment and admission of students, the recruitment and employment of faculty and staff, and the operation of any of its programs and activities, as specified by all applicable laws and regulations.