Founding Dean, College of Humanities & Earth and Social Sciences

The University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Founding Dean
College of Humanities & Earth and Social Sciences


The University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte) is seeking an accomplished scholar, visionary leader, and proven academic administrator to lead the new College of Humanities & Earth and Social Sciences (CHESS). The Founding Dean will have a unique opportunity to play a defining role in shaping the future of the College.

UNC Charlotte is the fastest-growing institution in the UNC System, offering 24 doctoral programs, 64 master's degree programs, and 79 bachelor's degrees across eight colleges. There are more than 1,100 full-time faculty and fall 2023 enrollment exceeded 30,000 students. UNC Charlotte has over 136,000 living alumni and 4,000 to 4,500 new alumni each year. North Carolina is known for its commitment to public higher education and UNC Charlotte exemplifies the state's commitment to post-secondary educational access.

On September 7, 2023, UNC Charlotte announced the creation of the College of Humanities & Earth and Social Sciences, one of two new colleges formed from the previous College of Liberal Arts & Sciences. The Founding Dean will be responsible for charting a vision for the reimagined College that combines a commitment to research and exploration with a dedication to student success. The transition period for the new college will span the 2023-24 academic year and beyond. Currently the Office of Academic Affairs is determining the additional resources and leadership structure for the new College.

The Founding Dean will lead the College in achieving even higher levels of interdisciplinary activities to better respond to the evolving needs of our community. Sharing in the mission to inspire thinking and transform lives through discovery, innovation and global connections, the successful candidate will be an excellent communicator, a committed collaborator, and a creative thinker who inspires others to achieve excellence in building and shaping the new college.

The academic departments forming the College are: Africana Studies, Anthropology, Communication Studies, Criminal Justice and Criminology, English, Geography and Earth Sciences, Global Studies, History, Languages and Culture Studies, Philosophy, Political Science and Public Administration, Psychological Science, Religious Studies, Sociology, and Writing, Rhetoric and Digital Studies. The College also houses the Office of Interdisciplinary Studies as well as the Aerospace Studies (Air Force ROTC) and Military Science (Army ROTC) departments.

The College is vital to the research and intellectual vibrancy of the campus, with an increased focus on interdisciplinary research and scholarly efforts. In FY23, CHESS was responsible for $9.2M in new awards, up 168% from the year before. The College enrolls more than 5,400 students, making it the University's largest college. These students are taught, mentored, and supported by over 470 full and part-time faculty.

The Dean of the College reports to the Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and works collaboratively with other deans and members of the Division of Academic Affairs leadership team. In this role, the Dean will be responsible for continuing to advance and strengthen degree programs; fostering excellence in teaching, research, and service; increasing the College's visibility and enrollment; increasing the College's financial resources; and effectively managing the College's budget in a transparent way. The Dean should promote an environment that fosters growth, collaboration, and shared governance.

The College is seeking a dynamic leader who brings an understanding of the convergent disciplines that comprise the College. The Dean must have demonstrated significant achievement in leadership and administration.

Specifically, candidates must demonstrate evidence of the following qualifications:
  • a record of scholarly and professional accomplishment to qualify for appointment at the rank of professor with tenure in a discipline represented by one of the departments in the College;
  • demonstrated leadership experience and ability to develop a shared vision through open communication and transparency;
  • a strong commitment to undergraduate and graduate teaching excellence;
  • a proven track record engaging with and fostering relationships with community and/or industry partners;
  • effective communication and public relations skills, including the ability to clearly articulate a vision, goals, and accomplishments to multiple constituencies;
  • a capacity for building relationships with prospective donors and fundraising;
  • an ability to cultivate a climate of academic cohesiveness amongst the departments; and
  • excellent listening, decision-making, and consensus-building skills.

The Search Committee will begin reviewing candidates immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Priority consideration will be given to materials received by January 2, 2024. Applications should include 1) a curriculum vitae and 2) a letter of interest that addresses the responsibilities and requirements described above, as well as the applicant's motivation to apply. To receive the full position profile, as well as to submit inquiries, nominations, and applications, please contact:
Martin M. Baker
Chelsie Whitelock
Buffkin/Baker
unccchess@buffkinbaker.com

Special Notes to Applicants: The selected candidate will be eligible for a one-time sign-on bonus of up to $5,000. This amount is dependent on candidate qualifications and will be determined by the hiring manager.

As an EOE/AA employer and an ADVANCE Institution that strives to create an academic climate in which the dignity of all individuals is respected and maintained, the University of North Carolina Charlotte encourages applications from all underrepresented groups. The candidate chosen for this position will be required to provide an official transcript of their highest earned degree and submit to a criminal background check.

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