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Assistant Professor in West African Dance (66980)

University of Florida
Florida, United States
Salary Not Specified
Posted date
Nov 13, 2020

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Arts, Art, Other Arts, Performing Arts, Humanities, Ethnic & Multicultural Studies, Administrative, Academic Affairs, Arts Administration
Employment Type
Full Time
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Position: Full-time, 9 month, tenure accruing faculty position
Date of Expected Hire: August 16, 2021
Salary: Competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience.

The School of Theatre and Dance and Center for African Studies seek an Assistant Professor in West African Dance. The successful candidate will have expertise in West African Dance and a secondary expertise in one or more of the following: other contemporary dance practices stemming from African and African Diasporic experiences; improvisation; drumming; interdisciplinary approaches to teaching composition, technology, pedagogy, anatomy, dancer wellness, dance studies, and/or others. The candidate will maintain an active research profile, demonstrate a commitment to teaching excellence and creative collaboration, and show evidence of effective student guidance and mentoring. Responsibilities include contributing to the BA and BFA Dance curricula and the development of a future graduate program in Dance; offering curricular and programmatic events sponsored by the Center for African Studies; and other responsibilities as assigned.

The University of Florida College of the Arts intends to be a transformative community, responding to and generating paradigmatic shifts in the arts and beyond. As artists and scholars, we embrace the complexity of our evolving human experience and seek to empower our students and faculty to shape that experience fearlessly through critical study, creative practice, and provocation. We seek a colleague who identifies as a change-maker. We seek a colleague who will prepare students to access and unsettle centers of power in a radically changing world. We seek a colleague who will position emerging artists and researchers as catalysts for equity on local and global levels.

The University of Florida is an equal opportunity institution dedicated to building a broadly diverse and inclusive faculty, seeking faculty of all races, ethnicities, genders, backgrounds, experiences and perspectives.


  • Primary responsibilities will be to develop, revise, and deliver curriculum that is currently delivered in “West African Dance” and “World Dance and Intercultural Performance" in the School of Theatre + Dance. Additional contemporary dance practices stemming from African and African Diasporic experiences are also welcome. 

  • Maintain creative and/or scholarly research agenda that leads to publication and/or performance via appropriate platforms. Scholarly research may also be practice-as-research and/or community-engaged research.

  • Contribute to the Center for African Studies mission through service activities that include substantial, public-facing events or engagements (on average of one per semester) that could include artistic direction of a public dance concert that prioritizes West African dance and African Diasporic dance, choreography and or mentorship of student performances in a community setting, and/or K-12 or Community College teaching residencies and teacher training.

  • Contribute to annual production calendar, which may include setting an original composition as part of the annual faculty dance concert, student ensemble performances, and/or guest artist/student showcases.

  • Participate in audition and recruitment activities.

  • Mentor senior projects and foster the agency and rigor of choreographic / interdisciplinary thought.

  • Contribute to shared governance and the advancement of the vision and mission of the College of the Arts.

  • Serve on School, College, and University committees as assigned.

  • Other specific service and outreach assignments would be based on the needs of the School of Theater + Dance, the Colleges of the Arts and Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the Center for African Studies.

SCHOOL OF THEATRE + DANCE: The light-filled, state-of-the-art Nadine McGuire Theatre and Dance Pavilion is home to the School of Theatre + Dance (SoTD). The School’s international full-time faculty of 27 recognized artists and researchers, complemented by adjunct and guest faculty and staff, including full- and part-time professionals. The School offers MFA curricula in acting and in design/technology, which includes scene design, lighting design and costume technology; BFA programs in acting, musical theatre, scene design, lighting design and costume design; and a BA in general theatre. The School features two degree programs in dance designed to develop the individual voice of the dance artist, a BFA and a BA. Approximately 200 students major in the artistically diverse curricula of the School of Theatre + Dance. Through its production program, outreach and innovative programming, the School of Theatre + Dance provides multiple cultural opportunities annually to thousands of members of the University and the greater community. The University of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Dance and the National Association of Schools of Theatre. For more information, visit .

CENTER FOR AFRICAN STUDIES: The Center for African Studies is in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences at the University of Florida. As a National Resource Center for African Studies, our mission is to promote excellence in teaching and research on Africa in all the disciplines at the University of Florida. The Center also disseminates knowledge about Africa to the wider community through an integrated outreach program to schools, colleges, community groups, and businesses. Central to this mission is sustaining contacts and expanding interactive linkages with individuals and institutions on the African continent. In addition to undergraduate education, the Center promotes and supports graduate studies as essential for the development of a continuing community of Africanist scholars. The Center has over 100 affiliated teaching and research faculty in a wide variety of fields, including: languages, the humanities, the social sciences, agriculture, business, engineering, education, fine arts, environmental studies and conservation, journalism, and law. A number of faculty members with appointments wholly or partially within the Center have facilitated the development of a core curriculum in African Studies in support of the undergraduate minor and graduate certificate programs.

THE COLLEGE OF THE ARTS: The mission of the College of the Arts is to be a transformative community, responding to and generating paradigmatic shifts in the arts and beyond.  We achieve the university’s mission by training professionals and educating students as artists and scholars, while developing their capacities for critical study, creative practice, and provocation.  The College offers baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral degrees. Approximately 1,700 students are pursuing majors in degrees offered by the College of the Arts under the direction of 130 faculty members in its three accredited schools— the School of Art + Art History, the School of Music and the School of Theatre + Dance, and in the Center for Arts in Medicine, the Digital Worlds Institute and the Center for Arts, Migration and Entrepreneurship. In addition, the college comprises the University Galleries, and the University level of the New World School of the Arts in Miami.  

THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA:   The University of Florida is a comprehensive learning institution built on a land grant foundation, ranked one of the top six best public universities in the nation in U.S. News & World Report. We are The Gator Nation, a diverse community dedicated to excellence in education and research and shaping a better future for Florida, the nation and the world. Our mission is to enable our students to lead and influence the next generation and beyond for economic, cultural and societal benefit. UF is a graduate research institution with more than 50,000 students and membership in the prestigious Association of American Universities. Gainesville, which is consistently ranked as one of the nation’s most livable cities, is located midway between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. Together, the University and the community comprise the educational, medical and cultural center of North Central Florida, with outstanding resources such as the University of Florida Performing Arts (Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, the Squitieri Studio Theatre, the Baughman Center, University Auditorium), the Harn Museum of Art, the Florida Museum of Natural History and in the community, the Hippodrome State Theatre and Dance Alive National Ballet. 

Minimum Qualifications:

  • MFA, PhD, DED, DA, MA or an undergraduate degree with equivalent professional experience in dance and/or a related field, a record of creative and/or scholarly activities, and a minimum of two years prior teaching experience (part-time acceptable) at the college or university level.

  • Evidence of success in promoting an environment that advances access, equity, and inclusion.

  • Active research agenda to grow a national/international profile in creative and/or scholarly research, leading to tenure and promotion.

Preferred Qualifications: The successful candidate will bring to the position:

  • Two years teaching experience in higher education or professional dance setting beyond Graduate School with evidence of commitment to collaboration, diversity, and excellence in the arts and higher education.

  • Engagement in the field consistent with the expectations of a research-focused institution.

  • Demonstrated aptitude for working toward structural and strategic change in relationship to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

  • Strong organizational, management, and communication skills.

  • Capacity for effective engagement in recruitment.

  • Knowledge of West African languages sufficient to support the cultural and contextual integrity of the dance practices.

  • Evidence of a commitment to innovative and cross-disciplinary curricula.

Application Deadline: Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until an applicant pool is established. To ensure full consideration, all application documents must be submitted by January 4, 2021 at 11:59 EST. Applications received after this date may be considered at the discretion of the committee.

Application Process: Applications must be submitted via the University of Florida’s online application system. Online applications must include the following: (1) a detailed letter of application that explains how you match the particular qualifications of this position and how your work and perspective will contribute to and enhance our transformative community; (2) a curriculum vitae; (3) names and contact information of three professional references; (4) one page Artist Statement with three links to choreographic samples (not to exceed ten minutes per sample). The Search Committee may request additional materials at a later time, including letters of reference. (5) OPTIONAL: Sample of scholarly writing.

Nominations and Inquiries may be sent to:
Trent D. Williams, Jr.
Chair, West African Dance Asst Prof Search

Final candidate will be required to provide official transcript to the hiring department upon hire. A transcript will not be considered “official” if a designation of “Issued to Student” is visible. Degrees earned from an education institution outside of the United States are required to be evaluated by a professional credentialing service provider approved by National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES), which can be found at .

The University of Florida is an equal opportunity institution dedicated to building a broadly diverse and inclusive faculty and staff.

The University of Florida is An Equal Employment Opportunity Institution. If an accommodation due to a disability is needed to apply for this position, please call 352/392-2477 or the Florida Relay System at 800/955-8771 (TDD). Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the US. Searches are conducted in accordance with Florida's Sunshine Law.

The University of Florida is committed to non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations, genetic information and veteran status in all aspects of employment including recruitment, hiring, promotions, transfers, discipline, terminations, wage and salary administration, benefits, and training.

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