CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies)

www.ciis.edu
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CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) Reviews

Updated November 29, 2014
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3.1
6 Reviews
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Joseph L. Subbiondo
4 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. Rigorously academic while very transformational.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - "Fellow" With Center for Writing and Scholarshi in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - "Fellow" With Center for Writing and Scholarshi in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) part-time (less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    compassion, commitment, supportive, personal growth, community

    Cons

    As a Fellow, the number of hours one works each week varies, and therefore is hard to plan on monthly income when it fluctuates like this.

  2. A Nice Place to Study, but a Non-Living Wage and Dead End Job for Staff

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

    I worked at CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) full-time (more than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Flexible work schedule options, really nice people, politically left of center, free yoga if you can get the time off, generous time off after a few years.

    Cons

    Extremely low, unrealistic payscale which equals a non-living wage to anyone who lives locally. No COLA. No raises. No 401K. Limited and expensive employee contribution to benefits. Promises but offers lack of opportunity for advancement. No support from upper management or HR. Staff structure does not support long-term career path which results in continual staff turnover and more work put on staff that stays. Staff morale is in the toilet.

    Advice to Management

    If you are interested in a creating a staff culture that matches your institutional mission, step up and pay a professional wage, offer incentives and a respectful, professional, positive work environment. Value your employees versus and help them to thrive, versus maintaining a "be happy you work here", cult-ish environment.

  3. Wonderful place to expand your horizons! We have an opportunity to create new and innovative approaches to higher ed.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Career and Community Engagement Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Career and Community Engagement Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) full-time (less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Meaningful conversations. Amazing, dynamic students. Important social perspectives. Critical education for social justice. Open access to opportunities to address my skill development gaps. Ability to work with senior leadership.

    Cons

    It's true, the salary isn't great. But the benefits are pretty good. If you are here full-time for a year, you have access to tuition remission, major benefit if you want an advanced degree.

    Advice to Management

    We need a lot more staff development and support. Training for supervisors on management and leadership of a team. Smooth out processes and systems so we don't get stuck with the details and can keep working on our vision for the future. More administrative support. How can we work smarter, not harder?

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  5. Helpful (3)

    Great culture horrible pay

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

    I worked at CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) full-time (more than a year)

    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Wonderful free thinking environment. Excellent vacation time benefits. If you are not driven by a need to make a living wage this is an amazing place to work.

    Cons

    Low pay and little opportunity to advance.

    Advice to Management

    Pay levels are at least 20% below what should be paid in SF, even if you maintain comparison just to education based employers. The culture here is absolutely amazing but it isn't enough if you can't afford to work here.

  6. Helpful (3)

    CIIS--a great place to work, but you won't get rich

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies)

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    CIIS provides an amazing community of people to work with, has an open style of leadership that values all employees, and does a great job in allowing that you have a life outside of work--you can bring your whole self to work here. It is more democratic than other places I have worked in that you have access to all levels of the leadership structure, and they will at least listen to you ideas. They do provide a very generous benefits package, and provide a more generous vacation package than you will find elsewhere. The benefits plan includes chiropractic and massage, and staff get additional time off over the winter holidays as the Institute closes for at least one week (and pays employees for those days).

    Cons

    Because it is a non-profit, the salaries at CIIS are not on par with those of the private sector, including other educational institutions. It is also difficult to move up because the staffing is structured with a lot of dead-ends. Although almost everyone working at CIIS is a fascinating person with a rich life outside of work, sometimes they are TOO interesting and lack the advanced professional skills necessary to make such a lean operation run smoothly. Too many times one person can derail an entire project because they "don't get it" or don't agree. The flip-side of a very democratic structure is that one person or a few people can stall things, and this keeps the organization from progressing.

    Advice to Management

    Keep working to professionalize staff with additional technology training. Rethink the staffing structure so that it will allow for some upward movement. Be willing to make tough decisions when it comes to staffing--although someone may be a perfectly lovely person, do they have the skills necessary to ensure that the operation runs smoothly? If not, then they need to be retrained, moved to a job that better suits their abilities, or simply let go. It holds the entire institute back when a few positions that are not clearly defined and don't have clear productivity objectives are allowed to exist.

  7. Helpful (3)

    Work/Life Balance or job satisfaction?

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

    I have been working at CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Its a place where diversity is embraced. Truly a melting pot of different cultures in one building. Work-life balance is awesome. The school closes its doors the last week of the year...

    Cons

    Highly political which makes it hard for managers to do their job. There are lots of inefficiencies that could be improved with existing technology.

    Advice to Management

    Management needs to learn to make the hard decisions and run the institute as a business in addition to their mission.

CIIS (California Institute of Integral Studies) Photos

Collaborative Team Environment
Dynamic, Meaningful Conversations
Thought Provoking Knowledge Creation

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