Providence, Rhode Island

The mission of Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), through its college and museum, is to educate students and the public in the creation and appreciation of works of art and design, to discover and transmit knowledge, and to make lasting contributions to a global society through critical thinking, scholarship and innovation.

Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) seeks an outstanding Provost to serve as the academic leader of a premiere art and design institution. The Provost will lead and support the evolution of innovative, student-driven programs in academic and student affairs and represent a stellar faculty that is increasingly diverse. This position offers the rare opportunity to build on a strong legacy and further advance a dynamic institution with a global reach, an appetite for big ideas, and an optimistic outlook. Working closely with faculty, administration, staff, and the student body, the Provost will ensure that RISD maintains its record of excellence and will set the vision for the academic future of its unique model of education.

Founded in 1877, RISD is known for its phenomenal faculty of artists and designers, the breadth of its specialized facilities, its high admissions selectivity, and the intensity of its studio-based approach to learning – an approach where critical thinking and immersive making co-inform learning and research. Approximately 2,500 students from around the world study at RISD, pursuing full-time bachelor’s or master’s degree programs in a choice of 19 studio majors rigorously informed by essential study in the liberal arts. The RISD Museum, with the third largest college or university museum collection in the country (over 100,000 works of fine and decorative art), is an integral part of the institution and a resource for the college and the larger community. RISD has played a vital role in preparing students for leadership roles in all sectors, as demonstrated through the outstanding and varied accomplishments of its 27,000 alumni.

After concluding a five-year strategic plan in 2017, the RISD community is actively engaged in identifying themes for the next strategic plan. The Provost will have the opportunity to shape and lead strategic initiatives that will expand the definition of excellence in education in a global and interconnected world; enrich the academic, social, and co-curricular experiences of young artists and scholars at RISD; and build upon the extraordinary cluster of assets that are available to support students and faculty in making, research, and scholarship.

RISD seeks a Provost with a clear vision, a collaborative style, a deep understanding of contemporary values of equity and inclusion, and a commitment to advancing communities of students, scholars, artists, and designers. Demonstrated leadership experience in a higher education setting, sound organizational management experience, and the willingness and appetite to serve as a thought leader in arts and design education are essential qualifications for the position.

A search committee composed of faculty, staff, and students has been formed to conduct the search, assisted by the executive search firm Isaacson, Miller. Confidential inquiries, nominations/referrals, and/or resumes with cover letters may be sent electronically to:

Sheryl Ash, Vice President
Ben Tobin, Managing Associate
Laura Mariani, Associate
Isaacson, Miller
263 Summer Street
Boston, Massachusetts  02210
Rhode Island School of Design is an equal employment institution.