American University

  www.american.edu
  www.american.edu

American University Reviews in Washington, DC

Updated October 4, 2014
Updated October 4, 2014
113 Reviews
4.0
113 Reviews
Rating Trends

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American University President Neil Kerwin
Neil Kerwin
36 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Work-life balance is generally good, although certain times of the year can be overwhelming (in 13 reviews)

  • American University has great benefits (even for part-time workers), and great co-workers (in 16 reviews)


Cons
  • Sometimes the work-life balance can be a challenge depending on your position (in 4 reviews)

  • Parking is expensive, and the university has too strong an orientation toward viewing students as 'customers (in 3 reviews)

More Highlights

78 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    The pay isn't great, but AU cares about employees and this is reflected in benefits, bonuses, and employee services

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Program Assistant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Program Assistant in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University part-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    As a graduate student, the pay is fairly good and they were incredible flexible, supportive and understanding. The location is great and they encourage me to take time off to study or finish exams. They also helped me look for jobs and understood that I would eventually leave the office

    Cons

    Considering the cost of tuition, the pay could be better and the parking could be more flexible.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Streamline the offices a bit-- a little too much waste.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    My time has been so-so.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate Professor in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Associate Professor in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Fantastic colleagues. Diverse, smart and motivated students. Just the right size for a higher education community.

    Cons

    Top level decisions are not as transparent as they are advertised to be. The classroom and meeting facilities are sub-par. I'm concerned about students' debt levels.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Shared governance and recruitment/retention of diverse faculty is disappointing.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Nice faculty and students

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Student Staff Assistant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Student Staff Assistant in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    AU is located in a nice area, has a quiet campus, and the faculty is friendly.

    Cons

    Most SIS professors are boring..

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get some younger professors

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    A nurturing environment for faculty, staff and students.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Administrative Assistant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Senior Administrative Assistant in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Family friendly, welcoming, great employee benefits, vested in the growth and development of its faculty, staff and students, promotes internally more often then hiring from outside.

    Cons

    Currently in campus-wide budget restraints.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    Colleagues are great, but management is terrible

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Coordinator in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Coordinator in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Work-life balance is generally good, although certain times of the year can be overwhelming. Students are engaging and faculty very interesting. There is a prevailing ethos of service and community, although this seems to be eroding. Benefits (healthcare, retirement, tuition benefits) are great, perhaps to compensate for salaries that are below market value.

    Cons

    There is little opportunity for meaningful professional development or promotion and pay is low, so there is little incentive to stay. It also seems that senior administration is out of touch with students, faculty, and staff. There is zero transparency in terms of management and communication between units is frustratingly garbled.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    working as a part-time tutor at the language center

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC

    I worked at American University part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    -Having the chance to meet co-workers from every corner of the world and getting to know different cultures
    -Relatively light work load

    Cons

    -The hourly salary is not competitive

  8.  

    Development & Alumni Relations

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Good work-life balance, people are friendly, great benefits!

    Cons

    Too much socializing during work, small salaries, promotion/growth process is very slow.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I've had great experiences with management

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    Current Employee

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Police Officer in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Police Officer in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    benefits are great and they provide you with tuition remission.

    Cons

    Work life balance is terrible. I work 10 hours on 3 days off during odd hours.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  10.  

    Good place to work but virtually no room for career adavncement

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time

    Pros

    American University is a great place to work. I love the flexibility in terms of working hours that I have been given to handle my academic and private life. Additionally, AU is very generous in supporting you with your family obligations and care. The work atmosphere is also generally calm and most co-workers are friendly. It is certainly not a high pressure environment as it can be in a corporate enterprise. The university is also advancing in size incredibly fast which is a clear sign of prosperity and growth. Job stability is also very high at AU. Micro management is generally not of concern at AU since you the existing culture expects you to act like an adult and manage your duties responsibly . I must say that it has been a great experience working at AU and I am grateful for the support I have received to advance my academic goals and support my family during hardship.

    Cons

    The biggest problem with AU is career advancement. I have seen many individuals moving up because of who they know and not because of what they know. Many of these individuals do not meet the qualifications necessary to fulfill their jobs and due to this are unable to mitigate problems or adequately handle their issues when they arise. As a result of the poor selection of candidates the entire AU community has to pay the price in terms of services. This is a huge problem in the Information Technology department. The entire community suffers because of incompetent and untalented people that are running essential services that are heavily relied on daily by the entire AU community. Moreover, the CIO gives too much weight and importance to the a single group in the Information Technology department and allows them to call all the shots. This would be fine if the group leader was competent, however, the leader you have right now is a fake and he doesn't have a clue about what he is doing and implements thing improperly that ends up affecting everyone. This individual should be fired asap. In addition, there are some legacy technologies that are still running at AU largely due to individuals who are comfortable with where they are and don't possess the knowledge, talent, or desire to move on to 21st century solutions. This results in unnecessary work for other groups and poor quality of service to the rest of the community.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There needs to be a radical change on how AU hires people. Hire people based on credibility and talent and not because you hang out and he or she buys you a drink at the bar down the street after work. Hire people that have a background in doing the work you expect them to be doing. Hire people who are ambitious, motivated, and self driven. Stop hiring fakes who pretend to care but in reality don't, these individuals are a roadblock to progress. Hire them for the right reasons. Fire those who refuse to move ahead with times or fail to keep the ship running smoothly year after year. Also, create a path for career advancement for the rest of us who are motivated, talented, and eager to take on greater responsibilities. Lastly, please give your employees more sick and vacation time. What you have now is great for single people but the bare minimum for people with families. Also, please lower the ridiculous and outrageous parking fees for employees.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11.  

    Good place to work, great benefits and community

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Director in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Director in Washington, DC

    I have been working at American University full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Great benefits, 9-5 schedule with an hour lunch break, health and fitness programs for staff, interesting and challenging work (depending on what you do and environment). People are great. It's a nice friendly community and the campus is lovely.

    Cons

    Limited growth opportunities for some positions, some people have been at the same jobs for many years and are set in their ways so younger staff may not always get their ideas heard. Culture shift from more laid back to more aggressive and almost corporate feel in some departments.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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