Head, School of Music

Carnegie Mellon University
Pennsylvania, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Posted date
Oct 22, 2021

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Position Type
Faculty Positions, Arts, Music
Employment Level
Tenured/Tenured Track
Employment Type
Full Time

The College of Fine Arts at Carnegie Mellon University invites applications for the position of Head of the School of Music.

The heart of the Carnegie Mellon School of Music remains an integrated foundation of individual artistic development in the studio, collaborative music making in rehearsal and performance, and intellectual challenge of the classroom. There is more to the study of music at Carnegie Mellon than these crucial elements, however.

Since its founding in 1900, CMU has been at the forefront of thinking and practice in technology and the arts. Our students demonstrate not only serious achievement in their musical preparation but show strong aptitudes for diverse forms of learning and inquiry. Since 1912, the Carnegie Mellon School of Music has been a leader in integrating today’s technology in performance, theory, history, and composition.

CMU’s core mission has always been the creation of new knowledge as well as finding innovative ways to make it useful in practice. The School of Music proudly advances this mission with a commitment that every member of the community should be significantly involved in the creation and performance of new music. Our approach to the music of the past is to invigorate it with the freshness and vitality of the best performance practices of our own time.

Reporting to the Dean of the College of Fine Arts, the new Head of the School of Music will articulate a compelling view of music’s role in society as well as the relevance of its study in higher education. They will demonstrate a record of strengthening diversity, equity, inclusion and access and outline a clear vision of the pragmatic steps needed to remove the structural barriers that remain. They will appreciate, celebrate, and nurture the particularity of the CMU blend of science, technology, and the arts—and the type of student it attracts. They will support, encourage, participate in, and remove obstacles to collaborative ideas and projects across the College and University. They will foster an atmosphere of curiosity and exploration, and possess high levels of emotional intelligence, courage, integrity, and good judgment. They will have successfully cultivated and stewarded donors, identified new sources of revenue, and demonstrated skill and tough-mindedness as a budget manager.

The Head’s leadership will include mentoring a faculty, staff, and student body of diverse cultures, backgrounds, and identities. The School of Music currently comprises 95 faculty (tenure-track, teaching track, and adjunct, of whom 20 are members of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra), 13 staff members, 183 undergraduates and 133 graduate students. Our community also includes alumni, supporters, audience members, the families of our students, the residents of Pittsburgh, industry leaders, and our peer institutions.

The School of Music offers the BFA in Performance, Composition, and Electronic Music and the MM in Performance, Composition, and Music Education. Collaborative degrees include the BS and MS in Music and Technology, the BXA Intercollege Programs (combining the strengths of CFA with computer science, engineering, humanities, or science), the Master of Arts Management, and the Master of Entertainment Industry Management.  For more information about the School of Music, please visit:  https://www.cmu.edu/cfa/music/  

The College of Fine Arts encompasses Architecture, Art, Design, and Drama as well as Music. Centers include the Miller Institute for Contemporary Art and the Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry. Numerous music students and faculty are also involved in the Integrative Design, Arts and Technology Network (IDeATe),and the Center for Arts in Society.

Carnegie Mellon is a private, top-ranked global research university with more than 15,000 students, recognized for its excellence in the arts, technology, transdisciplinary programs, and research. It is located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a thriving post-industrial city, which has been cited as being the “Best Arts Destination” among mid-size cities and one of the country’s most affordable and livable metropolitan areas. Pittsburgh offers a thriving restaurant scene, a vibrant performing arts community, three professional sports teams, one of the largest urban forests in the country, and four-season recreational opportunities.

Send any additional questions regarding the position to: MusicHeadSearch@andrew.cmu.edu.


  • A record of progressive, collaborative, and thoughtful leadership in higher education; candidates from non-academic backgrounds will be given serious consideration providing they explain how their experience is analogous to the qualifications outlined here.
  • Demonstrated leadership in fostering inclusive excellence through practices of justice, diversity, equity, and access.
  • A record of success in recruiting, retaining, and developing a superb faculty and staff
  • Dedication to enhancing the student experience and to ensuring their success
  • A clear vision of music’s role in society as well as the relevance of its study in higher education
  • Willingness to encourage and leverage the expertise of faculty, staff, and students to explore new technological opportunities unique to CMU and the Pittsburgh region
  • Distinguished professional achievements commensurate with appointment at the level of Full Professor with tenure at Carnegie Mellon University
  • A terminal degree in music or demonstrated equivalent artistic and/or scholarly accomplishments

Application Instructions:

All applications to be submitted through Interfolio: http://apply.interfolio.com/97340

Review of applicants will begin December 1, 2021 and will continue until the position is filled. The appointment begins on July 1, 2022.

Interested candidates should submit the following:

  • a letter of interest addressing the list of qualifications above; 
  • a current CV;
  • complete contact information for five references, including name, position, employer, email address, phone number, and your professional relationship with them. 

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