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The Business of Student Affairs

Virtual Short Courses Career and Workforce Development Supporting the Profession AVP or "Number Two" Mid-Level Senior Level VP for Student Affairs

Based on the new NASPA publication of the same title, this short course is a primer on the fundamental business-related aspects of student affairs that all practitioners need to know. Topics include financing and budgeting; organizational design; human resources; facilities management; technology; auxiliary operations; legal issues and risk management; crisis management; strategic planning; and communications.

Registration includes access to all course content, as well as the full e-book, The Business of Student Affairs: Fundamental Skills for Student Affairs Professionals. Course registrants will also benefit from four opportunities to engage with the instructor and each other in live sessions. The final live session will include an interactive panel with college and university presidents!

Presented By

Course Sessions

Week 1: Planning and Money

July 11-17, 2022

Video Modules and Readings:

  • Student Affairs Financing and Budgeting
  • Strategic Planning, Assessment, and a Culture of Evidence

Learning Components:

The strategic planning process

  • Conducting a self-study - SWOT analysis
  • Engaging outside reviewers
  • Participatory planning and reactions

Assessment opportunities and challenges

  • Sources and uses of data

Adopting and marketing a strategic plan

  • Internal and external audiences

Sources of funds for Student Affairs operations

  • Institutional allocation
  • Fees
  • Gifts and investment income
  • Business operations
  • Internal recharges

Uses of funds

  • Annual expenditures
  • Capital expenditures
  • Reserves

Budget Development

  • Multi-year projections

Alignment with strategic planning processes

Week 2: People and Places

July 18-24, 2022

Video Modules and Readings:

  • Organizational Design and Models
  • Human Resources
  • Real Estate and Facilities Management

Learning Components:

Management and supervisory skills

  • Assessment of performance
  • Rewards and recognition
  • Value of professional development
  • Managing up and down

Organizational and leadership skills

  • Conceiving of organizational models
  • Leadership frameworks, hierarchies and pitfalls
  • Politics and navigational skills

Campus as environment and infrastructure

  • Long-term facility planning: Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of a campus environment
  • Facilities development and financing models
  • Public vs private models 
Week 3: Partners and Support

July 25-31, 2022

VIdeo Modules and Readings:

  • Technology
  • Auxiliary and Other Operations
  • Legal Issues and Risk Management

Learning Components:

Variety and scope of technological applications for student affairs

  • Enterprise applications
  • Departmental specific uses of technology
  • Technological competencies for student affairs practitioners
  • Future implications for AI and other emerging innovations

Understanding the scope of related operations that serve students (and others)

  • Housing and dining; Event management, Arts management; Public safety  and police; etc.
  • Revenue generation options and consequences; Tax implications

Risk mitigation strategies and obligations

Why and how to work with General Counsel and other lawyers

  • Public and private distinctions and responsibilities
  • Pertinent legal environments essential to know


Week 4: The Expected, Unexpected, and Future Considerations

August 1-5, 2022

Video Modules and Readings:

  • Crisis Response and Management
  • Communications
  • Student Affairs-An Uncertain Future

Learning Components:

Anticipating the worst and reacting to worse than expected

  • Crisis preparation planning and training exercises
  • Information dissemination, management and inevitable loss of control

Student affairs communications planning

  • Internal and external, to various stakeholders; in calm and in crisis; public vs. confidential informational; anticipatory and reactionary.
  • Communications tools and techniques
  • Working with campus and public media
  • Social media as bane and benefit

Scenario planning for uncertain futures of student affairs and higher education



During the duration of the course, participants can expect to spend approximately 6.5 hours in live sessions with the instructor and guest panelists, and approximately 15 hours viewing recorded content and completing related readings. (The schedule presented here is subject to changes.)
 Live Session Dates and Times
  • Wednesday, July 13, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. ET
  • Wednesday, July 20, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. ET
  • Wednesday, July 27, 3:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. ET
  • Wednesday August 3, 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. ET (Note: This last live session is two hours in length given the panel of presidents.)
Prior to, and between these real-time, live sessions, participants will access other course content (e.g., videos, readings, and scenarios) at their convenience via the NASPA Online Learning Community. 

Instructor and Guest Speakers

This unique course is designed and instructed by Dr. Larry Moneta--author of The Business of Student Affairs: Fundamental Skills for Student Affairs Professionals. Dr. Moneta is joined by numerous higher education and student affairs executives and professionals within the following course video modules:

  • Tammara Durham, Vice Provost for Student Affairs, The University of Kansas (Session: Student Affairs Financing and Budgeting)
  • Dan Harder, Vice Chancellor for IT and CIO, The University of Tennessee Health Science Center (Session: Technology)
  • Tom Hier, Founder, Biddison-Hier (Session: Real Estate and Facilities Management)
  • Erin Hoffmann Harding, Management Consultant, McKinsey & Co. (Session: Legal Issues and Risk Management)
  • Blanche Hughes, Vice President for Student Affairs, Colorado State University (Session: Auxiliary and Other Operations)
  • Ryan Lombardi, Vice President for Student & Campus Life, Cornell University (Session: Organizational Design and Models)
  • Caroline Nisbet, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, Duke University, Retired (Session: Human Resources)
  • Julie Payne-Kirchmeier, Vice President of Student Affairs, Northwestern University (Session: Student Affairs-An Uncertain Future)
  • Baishakhi Taylor, Dean of the College and Vice President for Campus Life, Smith College (Session: Communications)
  • Michele Toppe, Vice Provost for Student Affairs, Portland State University (Session: Crisis Response and Management)
  • Victor Wilson, Vice President for Student Affairs, University of Georgia (Session: Strategic Planning, Assessment, and a Culture of Evidence)

The closing live session panel of presidents is currently being updated. Details will be shared on the course webpage at a later date.



NASPA individual members and Voting Delegates have access to member pricing for all NASPA events. If you are not a NASPA individual member, please visit our membership section to learn more about membership types and benefits. In many cases, an annual NASPA membership plus the event member registration fee are still less than the event non-member registration fee. We hope you’ll consider joining today!

Registration for this course includes access to all short course content and a downloadable copy of The Business of Student Affairs: Fundamental Skills for Student Affairs Professionals e-book. The e-book will be available as part of the course in NASPA's online learning community.

Registration Fees
  Early-Bird (by June 17, 2022) Regular (after June 17, 2022)
NASPA Individual Member $459 $500
NASPA Individual Non-Member $559 $600


Policies and Contact Information

Contact Information
Registration Issues/Questions:  
NASPA Main Office | (202) 265-7500
Program Questions/General Information:
NASPA Online Professional Development
[email protected] | (202) 903-0654


Payment Policies

To view NASPA's complete payment policies and procedures, click here.

Captioning Requests

Text Captioning Support: NASPA kindly requests that text captioning requests for course videos and live sessions be shared no later than June 17, 2022 at 11:59 pm (ET). Captioning can be requested within online registration.