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University Planner

  • Industry: Facilities Management
  • Location: State College, Pennsylvania
  • Client: Institution - Higher Education
  • Search ID: 17-1005-17

Pennsylvania State University (PSU) has retained Helbling to conduct an executive search to secure a University Planner within the Division of Campus Planning and Design. The scope of responsibilities includes University Park and the 19 Commonwealth Campuses, the Hershey Medical Center, and the Dickinson School of Law. The Division of Campus Planning and Design, within the Office of Physical Plant, is responsible for maintaining the highest standards of design quality for all buildings and civic spaces throughout the university system. This position reports to the Director of Campus Planning & Design and works with Senior Administration, Academic Units, Auxiliary Units, Physical Plant leadership, municipal officials, in-house and consultant project managers and designers, and a wide variety of university customers. A strong commitment to diversity and inclusion is required.

Responsibilities include:

  • Leads the planning process to develop, revise, and update campus master plans (UP, Campuses, Sub-districts).
  • Assures that site development plans adhere to the principles, guidelines, and requirements of the master plans.
  • Facilitates site selection and evaluation processes for new buildings and facilities; participates in site and building feasibility studies and conceptual plans.
  • Reviews and critiques planning studies prepared by consultants to the university.
  • Serves as the university authority on zoning and land development approval processes and assists Project Managers with site planning and municipal approval issues.
  • Works closely and communicates effectively with a diverse range of internal and external groups.
  • Provides input and reviews on consultant planning, design, and transportation studies.
  • Serves as Representative on the Centre Regional Planning Commission.
  • Supports and serves on various university committees and assists with the development of presentations to attain design approvals including: Public Art, Class Gift, Parking Gang, Master Plan Transportation Committee, Source Water Protection, Lighting Survey, Football Parking, and a variety of community committees.
  • Prepares ad hoc design and communication products.

PSU, founded in 1855, is the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s sole land-grant institution and its largest public university. PSU's land-grant mission embraces teaching, research, and public service in order to support the citizens of the Commonwealth, collaborating with industrial, educational, and agricultural partners to create, disseminate, integrate, and apply knowledge that is valuable to society. The university generates approximately $8.5B in direct and indirect economic impact annually within Pennsylvania. The institution has over 500,000 active alumni.

PSU has 24 campuses across the Commonwealth employing 17,000 faculty and staff and serving 100,000 students. Most campuses offer the first two years of baccalaureate instruction as well as a limited number of four-year degree programs. More than half of the undergraduates who complete studies at the main campus in University Park start at another Penn State campus. The university includes Penn State Great Valley School of Graduate Professional Studies, Penn State College of Medicine at The Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Penn State Law (University Park), Dickinson Law (Carlisle), Penn State World Campus (online programs), and the Pennsylvania College of Technology. The university encompasses more than 23,000 acres and more than 1,784 buildings statewide, including 7,343 acres and 947 buildings at University Park.

PSU, ranked the 14th best public university by U.S. News and World Report (2017), receives $801M in total research support, of which $510M comes from federal sources. It consistently ranks near the top nationally in annual spending on science and engineering research. It generates nearly $2B into Pennsylvania’s economy each year in new technologies, jobs, taxes, and other impacts.

  • Bachelor's Degree or higher in Landscape Architecture, Architecture, or related discipline.
  • Ten (10) years of related experience, or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience with delivering projects for higher education.
  • Demonstrated track record of delivering design and planning excellence.
  • Proficiency in AutoCAD, Adobe suite, and GIS software is preferred.
  • Registration as a design professional is required.
  • A valid driver's license and successful completion of a motor vehicle records check will be required in addition to standard background checks.

Search Consultant: Rob Dible

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