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Director and Full Professor with Tenure, School of Oceanography

University of Washington School of Oceanography
University of Washington, Seattle, WA
$10,500-$22,000 per month
Date posted
Jan 26, 2024

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Position Type
Faculty Positions
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

The School of Oceanography at the University of Washington invites applications for the position of Full Professor and Director of the School. The next Director will lead the School at the campus and national level to enrich our research and education programs, inspire our students, faculty and staff, and enhance the School’s reputation and position as an international leader in oceanography.

The mission of the School is to foster continued advancement of the ocean sciences, solutions to problems of societal relevance, and public awareness of the marine environment. It is at the forefront of creating knowledge and understanding about the ocean through observation, theory, modeling and technological innovation. The School focuses on learning and discovery, equipping students with knowledge and insights, scholarly methods, scientific tools and communication skills. The School is committed to providing students with access to the sea. Degrees offered include B.A., B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. in all aspects of ocean sciences and multi-disciplinary themes.

The research infrastructure managed by the School includes two UNOLS ships, the R/V Thomas G. Thompson and the R/V Rachel Carson, and the Regional Cabled Array, part of the NSF-funded Ocean Observatories Initiative. A total of 31 core faculty currently operate 120 active research grants in excess of $30M per annum, supporting 60 graduate students, 450 undergraduate majors (oceanography & marine biology), 20 post-docs and 40 research staff. Research programs in the School span a wide range of oceanographic research, including computational, laboratory, and observational efforts, with significant contributions to the large international programs from the air-sea interface to the ocean floor, and from the Arctic Ocean to the Antarctic. 

The College of the Environment, of which the School is a core unit, brings together academic schools and departments focused on the geosciences and natural resources, as well as several units focused on external engagement. The recently developed strategic plan for the College focuses on building a stronger, more interconnected college community and catalyzing understanding of and solutions to environmental challenges through a systems-based approach. As part of a large R-1 university, faculty, staff, and students have the opportunity to collaborate with those from other academic programs both within the College of the Environment and across the University, including the Program on Climate Change, Engineering, Arts and Sciences, the Medical School, and the Applied Physics Laboratory. The School also has strong ties to the NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory.  

The UW is located in the greater Seattle metropolitan area, with a dynamic, multicultural community of 4 million people and a range of ecosystems from alpine mountaintops to the Salish Sea and the Pacific Ocean. The UW hosts a diverse population of 80,000 students, faculty and staff, including 25% first-generation college students, over 25% Pell Grant students, and faculty from over 70 countries. The UW is a recipient of a National Science Foundation ADVANCE Institutional Transformation Award to increase the advancement of women faculty in science, engineering, and math.


Through leadership and engagement in shared governance, the Director galvanizes the School mission of the integration of teaching and research, builds consensus around academic institutional goals, and provides vision for and leads the implementation of long-range programs, plans, goals, and policies. The Director is supported by an administrative team of twelve who manage grants, contracts, buildings, ships and day-to-day operations. 

The Director provides oversight of annual budgets of ~$30 million in external funds and ~$7.5 million in state funds. The Director works with the College Advancement Office to enhance philanthropic funding for the School. They will be expected to articulate a clear vision for the role and opportunities for graduate and undergraduate programs in oceanography.

The Director leads all matters of faculty recruitment, appointment, promotion, and tenure which are crucial to the continued success of the School. They play an important role in recruitment and retention of faculty, staff, postdocs, and students from all backgrounds, and work to ensure the School centers diversity, equity and inclusion in its work. The Director will be expected to lead efforts to expand the field of oceanography, advance diversity, equity, and inclusion, and encourage inclusive and active teaching while managing the School’s degree programs and teaching efforts.

The successful applicant will be appointed as a tenured professor in the School and will report to the Dean of the College of the Environment. All University of Washington faculty engage in teaching, research/scholarship, and service. The Professor appointment is a tenured, nine-month, full-time (100% FTE) indefinite position. The Director appointment is for a five-year term, includes two summer months of salary, and is renewable at the discretion of the Dean of the College of the Environment. The anticipated start date is September 16, 2024.


The base salary range for this position will be $10,500-$22,000 per month, commensurate with experience and qualifications, or as mandated by a U.S. Department of Labor prevailing wage determination. Other compensation associated with this position may include a moving allowance, a relocation incentive, administrative supplement, and/or commitment of summer salary.

Applicants must hold a PhD or foreign equivalent in Oceanography or closely related field, and will have a record of internationally recognized ocean research in major publications, grant success, and documented record of service in support of, or leading, coordinated national-level or international research efforts. We seek a Director whose research program complements the strengths and resources of the School and University.

The applicant should have a demonstrated history of effective and inclusive leadership as evidenced by success in positions with responsibility for management of fiscal, physical, and human resources in support of academic and/or research program activities. We seek a Director who has successfully mentored students, post-docs, peers, and/or junior faculty. The successful candidate will have demonstrated evidence of previous efforts to expand the field of oceanography through teaching, mentoring, research, programmatic leadership, and/or curriculum development. 

Application Instructions
Applications must be submitted electronically via Interfolio. Completed applications received by March 15, 2024 will be given priority consideration. The position will remain open until filled.

Applicants should submit the following materials for consideration by the committee:

  • Cover letter outlining the candidate's interest in the position, initial vision for the field of oceanography and the role of the school in it, and the candidate's experience and approach to scholarship/research, teaching, and academic leadership of no more than three pages, single spaced.
  • CV including all published articles, evidence of teaching and other educational experience, and a list of awarded grants and leadership positions.
  • DEI Statement of no more than 600 words describing previous efforts and new opportunities to advance DEI, outreach, and community engagement through research, teaching, service, and leadership.
  • Name/contact info of five professional references. References will only be contacted with the candidate's permission.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement
University of Washington is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, pregnancy, genetic information, gender identity or expression, age, disability, or protected veteran status.

Benefits Information

A summary of benefits associated with this title/rank can be found at Appointees solely employed and paid directly by a non-UW entity are not UW employees and are not eligible for UW or Washington State employee benefits.

Commitment to Diversity

The University of Washington is committed to building diversity among its faculty, librarian, staff, and student communities, and articulates that commitment in the UW Diversity Blueprint ( Additionally, the University’s Faculty Code recognizes faculty efforts in research, teaching and/or service that address diversity and equal opportunity as important contributions to a faculty member’s academic profile and responsibilities (

Privacy Notice

Review the University of Washington Privacy Notice for Demographic Data of Job Applicants and University Personnel to learn how your demographic data are protected, when the data may be used, and your rights.

Disability Services

To request disability accommodation in the application process, contact the Disability Services Office at 206-543-6450 or

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