Chair, Department of Art - Howard University

District of Columbia, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Dec 02, 2020
Employment Level
Tenured/Tenured Track
Employment Type
Full Time

Howard University, Division of Fine Arts, College of Arts and Sciences 

Chair, Department of Art 

Howard University’s mission, vision, and core values speak to providing an exceptional world-class global educational experience; attract and sustain a cadre of faculty committed to excellence, leadership, and service; and a pedagogy which advances and engages scholars and professionals in impactful solutions and innovations to contemporary global issues. The University’s prestigious visual arts program has senior level vacancy and invites applications and nominations for the position of Chair of the Department of Art.  The search comes at an exciting time, as the Board of Trustees has approved the re-establishment of the College of Fine Arts.

As the Department of Art prepares for its centennial celebration, it seeks a dynamic, energetic leader with a demonstrated track record of excellence in research, creative production, and instruction in studio arts as well as historically contextualizing visual culture to effectively engage university faculty, staff, students, and external constituencies. The growth of the department anticipates the advancement of the visual art programs — art history, ceramics, design, electronic studio, fashion design, interior design, painting, photography, and sculpture — and its overall academic impact for the next one hundred years and beyond.  The Chair position serves as the department administrator as well as a member of the faculty expected to be an artist and/or visual arts scholar engaged in creative production and/or scholarship, committed to teaching and learning, professional development, and service. In additions to having a strong record of excellence in academic leadership, the prospective Chair shall possess experience and/or knowledge in staff/faculty evaluation and development, and budgetary and fiscal management, fundraising/grant writing, and navigating facilities operations and maintenance in accordance with OSHA regulations.  

The Chair represents the Department as part of the college’s leadership team and is responsible for but not limited to faculty and staff recruitment, development, retention, resource attainment, financial management, and creating and maintaining strategic management with stakeholders.

An active intellectual leader, the Chair must be adept at building and supporting multi-disciplinary partnerships within a diverse community, knowledgeable in higher education issues, collaborative in developing team-focused, data-driven approaches to problem solving, and possess strong interpersonal and communication-skills.

The successful candidate shall work in partnership with the senior administration of the College of Fine Arts and the University to embrace as well as contribute to the mission, vision, and values of the Department, College, and University. 

The Department is NASAD accredited and consists of 17 tenured, tenure-track, master teacher, and adjunct faculty members. It offers the B.A., B.F.A. and M.F.A. degrees with concentrations in Art History, Ceramics, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Electronic Studio, Painting, Photography, and Sculpture.

Desired Qualifications

  • Earned doctorate or terminal degree from an accredited institution: Ph.D. or M.F.A. from an accredited institution, in one of, or a combination of, any of the concentration areas offered by the Department, but allied disciplines will be considered;
  • Knowledge of, experience in, and critical appreciation of all areas and concentrations offered by the Department and of the technologies that support new modes of teaching and learning;
  • National recognition for creative and/or scholarly expertise;
  • A strong and sustained record of professional accomplishments and scholarship that meet the qualifications for appointment to the rank of professor in the college;
  • A strong and sustained record of teaching excellence and interdisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary initiatives;
  • Experience in the development and management of in-person, online, and hybrid academic programs in the visual arts, including administrative, personnel, and budgetary experience at the department level;
  • Demonstrated ability to manage a complex academic organization and work effectively with colleagues across schools, colleges, research centers and other unites on campus in person and remotely;
  • Evidence of a commitment to and success securing external funding through grants and fundraising;
  • Evidence of strong interpersonal and communication skills with faculty, staff, students, alumni, and community members to foster and maintain a healthy, creative, and productive environment among faculty, staff, and students and positive relationships with partners;
  • Evidence of recruitment and retention of a diverse faculty and staff, as well as teambuilding, supervision, and staff support for professional development;
  • Commitment to shared governance;
  • Evidence in curriculum development, including a commitment to collaboration and innovative pedagogies;
  • Demonstrated commitment to student centeredness and optimization of student learning; and
  • Evidence of effective community involvement, outreach, leadership, and demonstrated ability to forge partnerships and build productive relationships with both campus and external constituencies including alumni.

Established in 1867, Howard University is a federally chartered, private, doctoral/research extensive university located in Washington, D.C., and is widely recognized as one of the world's most prestigious institutions of higher learning. This renowned urban research university offers a world-class curriculum that includes undergraduate degrees in 80 subject areas, master's degrees in 75 majors, doctoral degrees in 31 disciplines and professional certification in 5 fields. The only comprehensive American university with a predominantly African-American constituency, Howard University is committed to preparing its students to not only be respected leaders in the national and global communities, but to also promote social justice and democracy the world over. Howard has historically educated more African-American PhD’s than any other university. It has a track record, for more than a century as the home to the single, largest concentration of Black scholars in the world.

Procedure for Candidacy

This is an outstanding opportunity for a creative leader at an exciting time in the continued growth of the Department, College, and University.  The position is a 12-month appointment with a three-year term. The salary is competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Complete applications consist of a single PDF file containing the following:

  • Cover letter;
  • Current curriculum vitae;
  • Statement of creative research accomplishments, interests, and goals, with samples or URL of scholarship, including creative production and research;
  • Statement of teaching experience; and
  • Names and contact information for at least three references who will provide letters upon request from the search committee.

Please direct all queries and submit all application materials electronically to the attention of the Search Committee at

Applications and nominations will be accepted until the position is filled. Review of materials and screening of candidates will begin immediately and continue until position is filled.  The desired starting date is July 1, 2021, pending final budget approval.

Thank you for your interest in joining the Department of Art at Howard University.

The University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender or gender identity, marital status, religion, disability or protected veteran status. Veterans and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply. Inquiries regarding provisions for persons with disabilities or veteran status, Equal Employment Opportunity and Title IX should be directed to the Office of Employee Relations and Equal Employment Opportunity at 202-806-1280.

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