Dean, School of Social Work

Boston University in Massachusetts

Date Posted December 21, 2016
Type Administrative
Employment Type Full-time

Dean, School of Social Work

Boston University seeks a visionary, dynamic leader and distinguished scholar to become the next Dean of its School of Social Work. The Dean provides academic, intellectual, and administrative leadership of the School of Social Work and promotes excellence in all aspects of the School’s teaching, research and practice missions. We invite inquiries, nominations, and applications.

The Dean will lead the ongoing development of the School of Social Work’s social justice vision and goals and effectively communicate these to constituencies within and external to Boston University. The city of Boston and Boston University, the fourth largest private university in the nation with 17 schools and colleges (e.g. Communication, Education, Medicine, Public Health), offer exciting opportunities for the Dean to lead the School in its efforts to solve the human problems of the 21st century through effective multidisciplinary collaborations and partnerships, locally, nationally, and globally.  

The Dean promotes the School of Social Work as the source of scientific advances and best practices in social work and will build on the momentum of recent advances, such as marked increases in the School’s externally-funded research portfolio and the creation of the Center for Innovation in Social Work and Health. The Dean is responsible for effectively managing numerous programs and activities within the School, including the encouragement and enhancement of research and scholarship, promotion of pedagogical excellence in teaching and curriculum, and the encouragement of innovative clinical and community-based practice models. The Dean establishes the appropriate mechanisms to select, support, and retain highly qualified faculty, department chairs, administrators and staff as well as to recruit, attract, and support cohorts of highly qualified, diverse MSW and PhD students. The Dean is responsible for promoting equity, diversity and inclusion throughout the School. The Dean must have impeccable interpersonal skills to effectively communicate with students, faculty, administrators, alumni, community members and potential benefactors, and engage in fundraising as part of the University’s comprehensive campaign.

The successful candidate will have substantial administrative leadership and strong scholarly visibility within the social work research community. The Dean will have a deep commitment to excellence in research, teaching and practice and lead the School in continuing its mission to advance a just and compassionate society that promotes health and well-being and the empowerment of all oppressed groups, especially those affected by racial, social, and economic inequities.

Boston University (BU), a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), is one of the leading private research and teaching universities in the world, with two primary campuses in the heart of Boston and programs around the globe. Chartered in 1869, the University today enrolls over 33,000 students including over 16,000 undergraduates and employs nearly 4,000 faculty members. The BU School of Social Work is located in the heart of BU’s Charles River Campus and is ranked #12 among graduate schools of social work by U.S. News & World Report. In fiscal year 2016, external sponsored research awards to the BU School of Social Work reached $ 5.1 million. With over 750 MSW and PhD students from across the U.S. and abroad, 30 full-time faculty and 24 part-time lecturers participating in the main campus, satellite, and national online programs, the BU School of Social Work is a vibrant and diverse community. 

Additional information about this search is available at:

Applications and confidential inquiries are welcome until a new Dean is selected. Those interested are encouraged to submit their materials to Professor Judith Gonyea (Chair) and sent to or to: 

SSW Dean Search Advisory Committee
c/o Office of the University Provost
Boston University
One Silber Way, 8th Floor
Boston, Massachusetts 02215

Prospective candidates should include a letter expressing interest and current curriculum vitae. Candidates will be asked to provide references after preliminary review and screening. Confidentiality will be maintained in the search process; references will be contacted only with the explicit consent of the applicant. While nominations and applications will be accepted until a new Dean is selected, interested parties are encouraged to submit their materials before January 30, 2016, to ensure full consideration.

Boston University is committed to fostering a diverse University community within a supportive and respectful environment. We believe that the diversity of our faculty, students, and staff is essential to our success as a leading research university with a global reach, and that diversity is an integral component of institutional excellence.

Boston University prohibits discrimination against any individual on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, or because of marital, parental, or veteran status. Boston University strongly encourages minority group members, veterans, disabled individuals, and women to apply for positions for which they are qualified and that are of interest to them.

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