Applications to fill a vacancy for the position of Associate Vice President and Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education are currently being accepted, Human Resources Manager Joseph Mattivi said.
Following Jeremy Cohen’s retirement at the end of December, the university announced the search for the executive level position on Jan. 14 and is scheduled to end on Feb. 15.
Though Cohen, who also served as a professor in the College of Communications, carried a slightly different title under associate vice president and senior associate dean for undergraduate education, the job description remains the same. The position will be financed with Cohen’s past salary, Mattivi added.
University Spokeswoman Lisa Powers said via email that the executive-level position is central to the operations of the Division of Undergraduate Studies . As a member of the vice president’s leadership team, the individual will work to create university-wide “positive working relationships” among faculty and staff in an effort to improve undergraduate academic programs and services, she said.
DUS is responsible for Penn State’s academic information network, First-Year Testing, Consulting, and Advising Program as well as the general academic advising for students, she added.
Moreover, the hire will be charged with routine exchange of information connected to undergraduate success, as well as problem-solving in the areas of student learning and academic success.
Another core role delegated to the position, Powers said, is student retention.
Mattivi said the position further entails working with associate deans of other academic colleges and campuses. The executive will also contact the administrative council of undergraduate education, report directly to the vice president and dean for undergraduate education and will work within a range of units in student affairs, he said.
A terminal degree and “a minimum of five years of experience in curricular and/or administrative matters,” as specified on the website for The Chronicle of Higher Education are required for candidates, Mattivi said. Prospective applicants must also be knowledgeable in high education topics and adept in the areas of communication, organization and problem solving, he added.
Mattivi said the university’s national search is expected to bring forth a sufficient number of candidates. While the university has not enlisted the help of a search firm, it has placed ads on websites, such as The Chronicle of Higher Education and the Penn State-Careers: Job Opportunities website for job vacancies. The announcement was also delivered internally, Mattivi said.
Hoping to “attract the widest pool of candidates,” the university is set to interview several candidates in the next week, Powers said.
“Obviously, we are hoping for someone to fill this position who has a great deal of knowledge about new models for learning and a broad understanding of higher education and student needs,” she said. “An individual who fully understands the undergraduate student experience and ways to help students achieve success in college would be a great fit.”