Assistant Director for Emergency Preparedness

New Jersey, United States
15 Nov 2020
End of advertisement period
15 Jan 2021
Contract Type
Full Time

Department   Environmental Health & Safety

Category   Public Safety, Security, and Emergency Services

Full-Time / Part-Time   Full-Time


Princeton University seeks a dynamic and highly skilled emergency management professional to lead its Emergency Preparedness Program. This new position is responsible for the development, management, implementation, and continuous improvement of emergency preparedness for the campus community. The Assistant Director (AD) establishes and maintains vigorous and continuing efforts to identify strategic and operational vulnerabilities; the need for response or continuity planning through exercises, surveys, and operational reviews; opportunities to engage with faculty, staff and students to develop a campus-wide culture of emergency preparedness; and best practices in the industry for application to our University approach. The AD is responsible for reviewing and maintaining all of the University's departmental mission continuity plans.

This position reports to the Executive Director of Environmental Health and Safety, with a dotted line to the Assistant Vice President of Public Safety – both of whom are jointly responsible for the University’s Emergency Response and Preparedness – and coordinates and supports the work of the inter-departmental Emergency Management Group (EMG).


Project Management and Leadership 

  • Sets strategic goals and prioritizes emergency preparedness program elements, including ensuring compliance with federal, state and local emergency preparedness and management regulations.
  • Leads cross-functional teams with senior representation from major departments on campus to identify and reduce risk, implement effective training and emergency procedures, and provide input into University policies related to emergency preparedness and emergency management.
  • Develops and tests specific emergency preparedness plans, including campus-wide shelter and evacuation plans and for special events such as reunions and commencement.
  • Collaborates with external partners on special drills and exercises, include with FEMA, Mercer County agencies, etc.
  • Ensures Continuity of Operations Plans (COOPs) for all University departments exist and are reviewed and updated on a regular schedule. Assists departments in testing their plans. 
  • Assesses COOPs for vulnerabilities and cross-reliances using a risk-based approach. Reviews and improves templates at least annually.
  • Identifies and enables the effective use of technology to support the emergency preparedness program, including upgrades to the emergency management website, management of the TigerSafe app, management of the Veoci emergency management platform, and mass communications platforms such as TigerAlerts.
  • Acts as a catalyzing agent to build an ethos of preparedness across the University. Leverages and directs the membership of the EMG and other campus partners to make progress on the priorities of the emergency preparedness program.

Program Administration

  • Implements and maintains a virtual emergency operations center. Ensures all EMG members receive appropriate training and use the system as appropriate.
  • Prepares presentations and reports on overall emergency preparedness strategy, planning, and initiatives, to be shared with various constituents (e.g., CPUC, University working groups and committees, federal or local reporting agencies, and Trustees).
  • Maintains contracts and day-to-day operation of the emergency notification system, emergency management technologies, and other external vendors.
  • Supports appropriate emergency-related committees as the secretary, which includes scheduling meetings, drafting agendas, writing minutes, and communicating with committee members.
  • Maintains various plans, lists, and documentation related to emergency management. Tracks progress toward goals.
  • Manages overall operating and administrative budgets and resources related to emergency preparedness.
  • Supports the EMG co-chairs through regular updates and status reports.
  • Monitors the campus emergency preparedness supply inventory: anticipates needs and sources replacements.
  • Attends emergency related meetings and calls both during and outside actual emergencies, which requires being available after regular working hours.

Program Evaluation and Improvement 

  • Reviews all emergency preparedness and response plans, assesses need for updates, coordinates activities for updating, brings plans to final form, maintains plans in an easily retrievable manner, ensures stakeholders understand their roles in the plans, tests the plans, and continuously improves the plans.
  • Identifies gaps in emergency response plans: recommends, updates, or develops new emergency processes and procedures.
  • Develops and records after-action and lessons-learned reports following significant incidents on campus. Tracks action items to completion. Identifies and leads process improvement efforts.
  • Keeps abreast of national and collegiate best practices and recommendations for emergency preparedness. Participates in national or regional organizations focused on emergency preparedness and management, such as the international Association of Emergency Managers (iAEM).

Training and Communications 

  • Improves awareness of emergency response and planning by developing and disseminating educational materials through written communication, social media, training programs, etc.
  • Develops and oversees emergency-preparedness training program(s) including programs for the broad University community, targeted curricula for smaller groups, online training, etc.
  • Develops and implements internal communications plans regarding emergency preparedness, including messaging to campus community through a variety of means, including web, mobile apps, etc.
  • Facilitates tabletop and functional drills, with at least one larger-scale drill each year.


  • Bachelor's degree required, master's degree preferred
  • 5-7 years work experience in emergency preparedness or emergency management, preferably in higher education
  • 10 years of work experience in complex, group settings
  • Familiarity with emergency management plans and procedures
  • Excellent organizational and project management skills; demonstrated ability to prioritize and manage multiple complex initiatives and projects simultaneously.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills. Ability to clearly and effectively communicate to a diverse community.   Able to perform public speaking.
  • Ability to work with others in a team environment and to follow work rules and procedures, and to work independently.
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills and the ability to balance multiple assignments by more than one supervisor.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to identify mutual interests and create consensus
  • Familiarity with or aptitude for process improvement techniques
  • Experience with building and/or facilitating training programs across all levels of staff, faculty, and students.
  • Demonstrated ability for MS Office, Adobe, web management software, file sharing platforms
  • Must be available during campus emergencies that may occur after regular working hours

Preferred qualifications:

  • Experience with Veoci, Drupal or similar program.
  • Certified Emergency Manager or ability to obtain certification within one year.
  • Experience with budgets
  • Familiarity with using social media

Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. EEO IS THE LAW.

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