Director of Guidance

Shawnigan Lake School is a leading independent co-educational boarding school for ages 13-18 (grades 8-12) on Canada’s beautiful west coast. Our world-class facilities situated on a stunning 270-acre campus include eleven boarding houses, an observatory, salmon hatchery, rowing crew house on the lake, state of the art Learning Commons and Library, recording studio, and robotics lab. Our diverse, inter-disciplinary and innovative programming helps shape the next generation of global leaders.

For more information, explore our Shawnigan at a Glance.

Shawnigan provides academic ambition to develop a culture of collaboration, independence, and resilience in our students through educators and peers who inspire our students to embrace a love of learning by challenging them to solve problems critically and creatively.

Staff endorse our School’s values (Curiosity, Compassion, Community and Courage) and are deeply committed to our mission: Spark Minds, Kindle Hearts, Forge Futures.

Shawnigan is always looking for outstanding, worldly, world-class, diverse, and ambitious educators to inspire our students and to model our three pillars of Academic Excellence, Co-Curricular Distinction and Student Life Unparalleled. You will contribute to all facets of life on an international boarding school campus with 85% of our students as full-time boarders, representing thirty different countries from around the world.

This is a full-time, permanent opportunity. We offer a competitive salary range of 103-115k CAD, full benefits package, excellent RRSP contributions, tuition discount for day students, a flexible work environment, and a nurturing, family-friendly workplace.



Shawnigan is seeking a highly motivated and talented Director of University Guidance to start as soon as possible.

The role of the Director of University Guidance is to help prepare, guide and support Shawnigan Lake School students for their future academic and personal plans after graduation. To this end, this position will work with all aspects of the School to ensure that our students have the information, resources and opportunities to create a post-secondary plan that is suited to each student’s needs, wants and future goals. As the Director of University Guidance, the successful candidate will take on the leadership of a team of University Guidance counsellors while also managing a portfolio of students.

The Director of Guidance holds a key position on the Academic Strategy Team and the Academic Council to ensure that the education that students are receiving best prepares them for the competitive post-secondary environment. Ensuring the alignment of the Guidance Office’s vision with Project Future, this inspiring team leader will take the lead on a key element of the “Inspire Academic Excellence” Pillar: Encourage students to seek innovative, personally challenging and engaging post-secondary opportunities both nationally and internationally.


Reporting to the Assistant Head – Academics, the Director of University Guidance is expected to:

• Help develop the university application process for Shawnigan students;

• Provide to students and families advice, assistance, and resources relating to university and scholarship applications;

• Support students with holistic applications including testing, essays and references;

• Help determine the passions, values, and interests of students to provide a well-balanced approach to academic and university planning;

• Organize and implement workshops, written materials, and website information throughout the year on topics relating to university admissions;

• Communicate with families on a regular basis to ensure their involvement in the post-secondary planning process;

• Meet with university admission representatives and facilitate meetings with representatives and students;

• Work closely with other Guidance staff and academic teachers across departments to design and deliver content that challenges our students and prepares them for their post-secondary pathways;

• Be involved in the full Shawnigan program and the delivery of “The Shawnigan Journey” and SOUL Seeking as they relate to the strategic initiative of: Innovate, design and articulate the unique remarkable of “The Shawnigan Academic Journey”, building from grade 8 towards post-secondary with emphasis on developing the values of Shawnigan and future proofing skills;

• Spearhead work across all departments that aim to achieve the strategic initiative of: Develop a provincial and global reputation for distinctive academic education at Shawnigan where universities, colleges and employers actively seek Shawnigan students to enrich their programs;

• Oversee student course portfolios to ensure that graduation requirements are met, and appropriate transfer credits are assigned when transitioning to British Columbia;

• Collaborate with the Careers / Shawnigan Journey Department to develop and implement a program that best future proofs students;

• Support students whose post-secondary pathways include academic, artistic and athletic scholarships;

• Oversee the work and atmosphere of the Guidance Office team to ensure it is a welcoming and inspiring environment for students, parents, visitors, and post-secondary reps;

• Present to staff, Senior Leadership and the Board of Governors when appropriate on programming, post-secondary pathways and student successes;

• Collaborate with the Advancement Department to maintain connections to alumni in order to use their experiences to influence departmental and school programming;

• Guidance staff are expected to be involved in the full Shawnigan program outside of the classroom, including a weekly evening of duty and a roster of advisees. Being a boarding school, all Shawnigan education staff are expected to be available and accessible on campus to students Saturday mornings;

• Provide individual guidance and support to the assigned portfolio of students through all stages of the application through one-on-one and group meetings.

• Be involved in analysis of assessment and exam results during the summer;

• Be available for key dates and an on-call basis for a portion of the summer to assist graduating students with their transition and new students with course selection.


• Hold a post-secondary degree in Education or related discipline that aligns with the Shawnigan academic program. Graduate degree preferred;

• Experience with Canadian, US and UK university admission policies and practices an asset;

• Specialising in US university admissions policies and processes an advantage;

• Experience assisting high school students with university and scholarship applications;

• Administrative experience working directly with students at a university or high school environment;

• BC teaching certification or the ability to gain certification by September 2023, will be an asset;

• Strong interpersonal and communication skills and the ability to build relationships with students, families, colleagues and university representatives;

• Ability to facilitate delicate conversations with honesty, tact, and a positive perspective;

• Strong research and organizational skills and a commitment to on-going professional development;

• Excellent writing skills;

• Knowledge of application processes/systems.


To apply, please send a resume and cover letter expressing your interest to the attention of Wendy Milne, Assistant Head – Academics, via email.

Only applications with a resume and Shawnigan specific cover letter will be considered. Please be specific about your suitability to take on this leadership position. Those who are brought forward into the interview process will receive further details about compensation, benefits and the duties and expectations of a full-time Shawnigan staff member.

We ask you to please provide references at the shortlist stage of the recruitment process.

Shawnigan Lake School is an equal opportunity employer committed to establishing an inclusive, equitable, and accessible environment for all. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status or any other basis protected by applicable law.

We express our appreciation to all applicants for their interest in this position. However, only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Competition closes when filled.

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