Dean of Students

Illinois, United States
Salary Not specified
Mar 01, 2021
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

Northwestern University seeks an experienced, innovative, strategic, and collaborative leader as its next Dean of Students.

Northwestern is a comprehensive research university that is interdisciplinary across multiple schools and units. Committed to excellent teaching, innovative research, and the personal and intellectual growth of its students in a diverse academic community, Northwestern provides a rigorous academic environment with a robust mixture of theory and practice and an emphasis on top-tier research, new knowledge, creative expression, and practical application. Northwestern's innovative, collaborative, and multidimensional community delivers an impact that is rare in higher education. The University's campuses are based in Evanston, and Chicago, Illinois and Doha, Qatar. One of only four U.S. universities ranked in the top 20 across all graduate education categories and in the top 10 overall, Northwestern is proud to enroll 21,000 students (8,200 of whom are undergraduates) across its 12 schools and colleges with more than 3,700 full time faculty members.

A key priority of the Northwestern Division of Student Affairs is to expand upon existing student wellness programs while delivering services and influencing policies that promote mental, physical, and emotional health, resilience, and wellbeing through inclusion, justice, and equity lenses. As such, the dean of students serves as a nexus point for the Northwestern community, strategically connecting Student Affairs to key constituencies across the campus as well as into the Evanston and Chicago communities. The dean of students will facilitate a campus-wide, collaborative approach to student wellness that will seamlessly connect proactive, on-going student support, student development needs, crisis management and post-crisis recovery. Simultaneously, the dean of students will work to create, engage in, and evaluate student-centered initiatives that support and improve the student experience. Overall, they must actively promote an institutional culture rooted in justice and equity for all Northwestern students.

Reporting directly to the vice president for student affairs, the dean of students will provide vision and leadership for the planning, development, management, and evaluation for the $2.2 million portfolio of key wellness and wellbeing functions that includes Parent and Family Programs, Community Standards, AccessibleNU, Off Campus Life, Student Assistance and Support Services, CARE, and the Dean of Students Office. The dean of students will excel at working in a decentralized institutional environment and demonstrate a deep understanding of the complexities and challenges in the daily lives of undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. The next dean of students will model leadership and bring experience advancing institutional diversity, equity, and inclusion; support the organizational health and wellness of a team in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment; and engage and inspire stakeholders across the division and campus to organize policies and services that amplify and maximize the conditions for student success. The successful candidate will have a Master’s degree in higher education administration, student affairs, or a related field.

WittKieffer is assisting Northwestern University in this search. All applications, nominations, and inquiries are invited.

Applications should include, as two separate documents, a CV or resume and a letter of interest addressing the themes in this leadership profile. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by April 26, 2021.

Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s candidate portal.

Nominations and inquiries can be directed to: Jen Meyers Pickard, Ph.D., and Jessica Herrington at

Northwestern University values diversity and is committed to equal opportunity for all persons regardless of age, color, disability, ethnicity, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, veteran status or any other status protected by law.

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