Senior Staff Director, Africana Studies -SAS

Senior Staff Director, Africana Studies -SAS

University Overview

The University of Pennsylvania, the largest private employer in Philadelphia, is a world-renowned leader in education, research, and innovation. This historic, Ivy League school consistently ranks among the top 10 universities in the annual U.S. News & World Report survey. Penn has 12 highly-regarded schools that provide opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and continuing education, all influenced by Penn's distinctive interdisciplinary approach to scholarship and learning. As an employer Penn has been ranked nationally on many occasions with the most recent award from Forbes who named Penn one of America's Best Employers By State in 2021.

Penn offers a unique working environment within the city of Philadelphia. The University is situated on a beautiful urban campus, with easy access to a range of educational, cultural, and recreational activities. With its historical significance and landmarks, lively cultural offerings, and wide variety of atmospheres, Philadelphia is the perfect place to call home for work and play.

The University offers a competitive benefits package that includes excellent healthcare and tuition benefits for employees and their families, generous retirement benefits, a wide variety of professional development opportunities, supportive work and family benefits, a wealth of health and wellness programs and resources, and much more.

COVID-19 vaccination is a requirement for all positions at the University of Pennsylvania. New hires are expected to be fully vaccinated before beginning work at the University. For more information about Penn's vaccine requirements and the use of Penn Open Pass, visit the Penn COVID-19 Response website for the latest information.

Posted Job Title
Senior Staff Director, Africana Studies -SAS

Job Profile Title
Director B

Job Description Summary
The University of Pennsylvania is looking to hire a Senior Staff Director for the Center for Africana Studies. This position will work under the leadership of the Faulty Director to facilitate and support co-curricular programming, research, and scholarship on people of African descent.

Job Description

Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania is comprised of two entities-the Department of Africana Studies and the Center for Africana Studies-each with distinct, yet complementary function. The Department oversees undergraduate and graduate teaching, including an undergraduate major and minor and a graduate certificate and doctoral program. The Center provides an array of public programming and support for various research projects. Both the Center and the Department focus on the experiences and history of African American, African, and African-descended peoples as a model for global black studies.


Under the direction of the Faculty Director, the Senior Staff Director will facilitate and support co-curricular programming as well as faculty and student scholarship on people of African descent (Africa, the US, and the Diaspora), assessing research/scholarly needs, and developing programs and activities to meet those needs. The Senior Staff Director will support the Faculty Director in building and maintaining strong working relationships with a wide variety of university units. The Senior Staff Director will participate in the development, planning implementation, and analysis of the long-term programmatic goals. They will support continued development of existing faculty and student programs and initiatives. The Senior Staff Director will work with the Faculty Director on administrative, budgetary, research, and academic support. They will also work closely with the Faculty Director in developing/expanding fundraising, coordinating research on foundation and corporate funding opportunities, and oversee the Center's overall communications strategy. They will have regular communication with the Center's advisory group, and act as the main driver (in conjunction with the Faculty Director) in the development of a strategic plan. They will support the Faculty Director as a liaison to University administration, faculty, and all sources involved in administrative protocol. The Senior Staff Director will manage support and train the Assistant Director/Operations Manager, participate in the selection and review of staff as needed, and identify opportunities for training/professional development. They will also draft communications/correspondence for the Faculty Director and, when required, on behalf of faculty (e.g., formal statements on behalf of faculty tied to important sociopolitical events). They will also perform additional duties as assigned


A Bachelor's degree and five to seven years of experience or an equivalent combination of education and experience is required. A Ph.D. or Ed.D. in Africana Studies or a related field is preferred. Strong written and oral communication skills, and the ability to work independently and collaboratively are required. Familiarity with the academic research and publication processes and experience with budgets and project management software are a plus.

Job Location - City, State
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Department / School
School of Arts and Sciences

Pay Range
$61,046.00 - $95,972.00
Salary offers are made based on the candidate's qualifications, experience, skills, and education as they directly relate to the requirements of the position, as well as internal and market factors and grade profile.

Affirmative Action Statement
Penn adheres to a policy that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, creed, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, age, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected class.

Special Requirements
Background check required after a conditional job offer is made. Consideration of the background check will be tailored to the requirements of the job.

University Benefits
  • Health, Life, and Flexible Spending Accounts: Penn offers comprehensive medical, prescription, behavioral health, dental, vision, and life insurance benefits to protect you and your family's health and welfare. You can also use flexible spending accounts to pay for eligible health care and dependent care expenses with pre-tax dollars.
  • Tuition: Take advantage of Penn's exceptional tuition benefits. You, your spouse, and your dependent children can get tuition assistance here at Penn. Your dependent children are also eligible for tuition assistance at other institutions.
  • Retirement: Penn offers generous retirement plans to help you save for your future. Penn's Basic, Matching, and Supplemental retirement plans allow you to save for retirement on a pre-tax or Roth basis. Choose from a wide variety of investment options through TIAA and Vanguard.
  • Time Away from Work: Penn provides you with a substantial amount of time away from work during the course of the year. This allows you to relax, take vacations, attend to personal affairs, recover from illness or injury, spend time with family-whatever your personal needs may be.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: In partnership with Genworth Financial, Penn offers faculty and staff (and your eligible family members) long-term care insurance to help you cover some of the costs of long-term care services received at home, in the community or in a nursing facility. If you apply when you're newly hired, you won't have to provide proof of good health or be subject to underwriting requirements. Eligible family members must always provide proof of good health and are subject to underwriting.
  • Wellness and Work-life Resources: Penn is committed to supporting our faculty and staff as they balance the competing demands of work and personal life. That's why we offer a wide variety of programs and resources to help you care for your health, your family, and your work-life balance.
  • Professional and Personal Development: Penn provides an array of resources to help you advance yourself personally and professionally.
  • University Resources: As a member of the Penn community, you have access to a wide range of University resources as well as cultural and recreational activities. Take advantage of the University's libraries and athletic facilities, or visit our arboretum and art galleries. There's always something going on at Penn, whether it's a new exhibit at the Penn Museum, the latest music or theater presentation at the Annenberg Center, or the Penn Relays at Franklin Field to name just a few examples. As a member of the Penn community, you're right in the middle of the excitement-and you and your family can enjoy many of these activities for free.
  • Discounts and Special Services: From arts and entertainment to transportation and mortgages, you'll find great deals for University faculty and staff. Not only do Penn arts and cultural centers and museums offer free and discounted admission and memberships to faculty and staff. You can also enjoy substantial savings on other goods and services such as new cars from Ford and General Motors, cellular phone service plans, movie tickets, and admission to theme parks.
  • Flexible Work Hours: Flexible work options offer creative approaches for completing work while promoting balance between work and personal commitments. These approaches involve use of non-traditional work hours, locations, and/or job structures.
  • Penn Home Ownership Services: Penn offers a forgivable loan for eligible employees interested in buying a home or currently residing in West Philadelphia, which can be used for closing costs or home improvements.
  • Adoption Assistance: Penn will reimburse eligible employees on qualified expenses in connection with the legal adoption of an eligible child, such as travel or court fees, for up to two adoptions in your household.

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