International student services centers (ISSC) at postsecondary institutions in the United States are central to supporting international students’ transition and adjustment needs. As leaders of these units, ISSC directors are ‘managerial professionals’ (MPs), exhibiting characteristics of both traditional academic and administrative roles. These qualities mirror the requisite adaptiveness of their positions, required to navigate the complex international, national, and institutional factors affecting their students and departments. Using Job Crafting Theory, this qualitative study evaluates the experiences of eighteen ISSC directors to explore how, and to what extent, they adapt their jobs in ways related to the creation and integration of meaning. Findings illustrate how participants engaged in cognitive, relational, and task crafting where departmental and institutional goals, students’ needs, and personal fulfillment overlapped. The final discussion addresses how institutional leaders, as key partners in successful job crafting, can utilize this framework to support ISSC staff, international students, and promote internationalization.
- Job crafting
- higher education administration
- international student experiences
- international student services