Art Center College of Design | Pasadena, California | Learn to Create. Influence Change.

Title: Chair, Humanities & Sciences Department

Department - Humanities & Sciences

Type - Full-time staff


Art Center College of Design is seeking a Chair for the Humanities & Sciences Department. The Chair provides academic vision and leadership in learning, teaching and research across all eleven undergraduate departments of the college, has broad knowledge of design and visual arts histories and practices, and fosters a culture that encourages excellence in all of the knowledge domains overseen by the department.  

The H&S Chair reports to the Provost, and as a member of the senior educational leadership of the college and Chairs council, is expected to be fully conversant with all key college academic policies and the institutional goals of the strategic plan, and to actively participate in the mission of the college.  

The capacity to provide leadership, and facilitate responsive change in a complex and dynamic environment while working collaboratively with a full-time H&S Faculty, Directors, and colleagues in other departments and institutional organizations, will be critical to the success of the role.


  • Provide academic leadership for the Humanities & Sciences Department so as to enhance its learning, teaching and faculty development with a focus on student-centric pedagogical strategies that serve a diverse body of undergraduate students in various studio disciplines.  
  • Create a curricular framework in partnership with other departments so that undergraduate education supports, informs, and enriches students’ intellectual development, critical thinking and communication skills in relationship to their studio practice.  
  • Promote an environment in which inquiry and academic work flourishes in the context of a rapidly changing professional world. Foster a culture that embraces excellence and encourages trans-disciplinary education and research, integrating relevant Humanities & Sciences curricula into studio practice.  
  • Ensure effective recruitment, development and recognition of a multidisciplinary staff. Manage the department’s administrative and shared governance protocols, and promote and maintain an atmosphere of collegiality to achieve the department and college’s academic goals.


Throughout its 85-year history, Art Center has distinguished itself as a center of innovation, educating professionals who are also creative thinkers capable of inspiring change in society by solving problems through art and design. Looking to the future, Art Center continues to develop its educational curricula, enhance its facilities and contribute to bettering our society. The strategic plan outlines the community vision for the future of Art Center College of Design (www.artcenter.edu/createchange/).  

In a year-round, three-semester program Art Center College of Design (www.artcenter.edu) offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in a wide variety of art and design disciplines: BFA degrees in Advertising Design, Film, Fine Art, Graphic Design, Illustration, and Photography & Imaging; and BS degrees in Entertainment Design, Environmental Design, Interaction Design, Product Design and Transportation Design; as well as Public Programs offering design education to students of all ages and levels of experience. Integral to Art Center’s core curricula is a commitment to providing its students with the skills to embrace change and address real-world issues.  

The Humanities & Sciences department consists of over 10 full-time faculty (many of whom teach in other disciplines) and approximately 60 adjunct faculty members. A department governance structure consisting of a rotating group of Faculty Directors representing the areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Sciences & Technologies, Professional & Research Practices, Business Practices, and Writing (including ESL). These individuals, along with the Director of the department, help to craft curriculum and determine department initiatives. The chair has the sole responsibility for budget, hiring and assignment of new courses to faculty. The chair also participates in the shared governance of the college through the Chairs Council and other committees they may be asked to sit on.


Nominations: Please forward nominee name and contact information to HR@artcenter.edu with “H&S Chair Nomination” in subject line.

Applications: At this time, qualified applicants are asked to include a cover letter with their resume, state salary history or salary requirements, and a one-page statement that answers these two questions:  

  • Why are you interested in the opportunity to chair the Humanities & Sciences department at Art Center College of Design?  
  • In your view, what is the role of the humanities and sciences in art and design education and practice?    

For those candidates who advance in the process, other materials may be requested for review in preparation for or at the time of the interview. Depending upon the needs of the final candidates, constituent interviews may be held in either a public or private format. All requests for confidentiality will be considered and honored. Please indicate in your cover letter if confidentiality is required.  

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by the employee assigned to this job; they do not purport to describe all functions. Employees may be assigned other duties, and the essential functions may be changed from time to time as necessary.  

Initial Application Deadline: January 21, 2014 or until position is filled.  

Art Center College of Design, Employment Department H&S, 1700 Lida Street, Pasadena, California 91103, U.S.A. 


Please provide examples of your experience in these areas:

  • Hold a terminal degree from an accredited institution (PhD preferred).
  • Minimum ten years as an accomplished administrator/educator.
  • Demonstrate outstanding academic leadership in areas relevant to the Humanities & Sciences with evidence of a deep understanding of the contemporary role of Humanities & Sciences in art and design education and practice.
  • An excellent record of research, publications and/or practice in a relevant discipline.
  • Extensive experience in the fields of art and design.
  • Demonstrated ability to plan and implement strategies to meet organizational goals, including the ability to collaborate, and develop creative solutions and practical implementation strategies for assessment best practices.
  • Experience in various outreach functions to community, peer institutions, professional partners and sponsors.
  • Participation in national and international humanities, art, design and sciences community.
  • Proven ability to facilitate and advocate for departmental and institutional goals.
  • Strong verbal, written and visual presentation and communication skills. Outstanding record of ability to work as a member of a leadership team, as well as to function independently.


See Application/Nomination Process above in the Description section.


















Art Center College of Design is committed to excellence through the establishment of a diverse faculty and staff that best represents our student body and its surrounding communities.

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