I am writing to share that Abigail Panter will conclude her second term as senior associate dean for undergraduate education at the end of the academic year next June, and the time has come to launch the search for her successor.
There will be a national search for this position. Jaye Cable, senior associate dean for natural sciences and mathematics, has my gratitude for chairing the search committee.
I’m indebted to Abigail for all she has done in over a decade of service in support of the Office of Undergraduate Education. Foremost, she led the effort to create, develop and implement our new IDEAs in Action general education curriculum, which launched last year after years of planning. She would be the first to credit the legions of others who made significant contributions, but she spearheaded the process.
As the leader of the “Strengthen Student Success” pillar in the University’s Carolina Next strategic plan, she helped redesign Academic Advising into a hub model in which advisors work with students from the moment they receive their acceptance letter through graduation. The Thrive Hubs model is a collaborative approach for optimizing holistic student support.
She led several large grants related to first-generation college student success, course redesign to enhance learning in STEM, student academic pathways and improved methods for teaching assessment. She was committed to creating data visualization tools that helped key stakeholders better understand students’ degree pathways and academic performance. More recently, she evaluated different university-considered race-neutral options in undergraduate admissions.
During the pandemic, she and her colleagues in undergraduate education played a major part in the College’s efforts to support both our faculty and students during the unexpected transition to teaching and learning online, and the return to campus.
Over the years, she has assembled an A-team of student-centered, data-driven associate deans and directors in the offices and centers in the Office of Undergraduate Education, which her successor will appreciate. After a well-deserved research and study leave, she will return to the L.L. Thurstone Psychometric Laboratory in the department of psychology and neuroscience, where she will teach and mentor in quantitative methods, research design and higher education. She will be missed, but her contributions to the University will live on.
The Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education job description is posted below, and it is also posted here. (Please note that the job description below and online has more detailed information than the formal posting on the Human Resources website, which faced space restrictions. However, applicants will need to access the formal HR posting to apply for the position.)
James W.C. White
Craver Family Dean
College of Arts and Sciences
Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education,
College of Arts and Sciences, UNC-Chapel Hill
At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, we pride ourselves on our tradition of academic excellence and our dedication to cultivating a diverse and inclusive learning environment. As a global public research university, we are seeking a dynamic and forward-thinking individual to join our faculty as a Tenured advanced associate or Full Professor, specialization open. This professor appointment may be in any field where tenure may be approved in one of our more than forty college departments. This tenured faculty position will also hold a term-limited secondary appointment as the Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education. We seek applicants with well-established records of research, teaching, and leadership experience, especially in undergraduate curricula. We are interested in the understanding of effective strategies for teaching, mentoring, and/or fostering student success.
Responsibilities and expectations of this role include, but are not limited to, the following:
Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education
At UNC-Chapel Hill, 87% of all undergraduate students graduate from the College of Arts and Sciences, and the senior associate dean oversees the academic curricula, progress, and support of Carolina’s >20,000 undergraduate students across the University. The senior associate dean for undergraduate education reports to the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.
Working in close partnership with the College dean, as well as University leadership including the chancellor, provost, other senior associate deans, and deans from professional schools, the senior associate dean plays an integral role in shaping the strategy and advancement of undergraduate education. This collaborative approach extends to engaging with faculty members from various academic departments, the Graduate School, and dedicated professional staff. This position is the point of contact for departments during enrollment growth and as we manage enrollment in the general education curriculum.
The senior associate dean for undergraduate education is a key member of the University’s leadership team, responsible for guiding, enhancing and overseeing all aspects of the undergraduate educational experience. This position collaborates with faculty members, administrators and students to develop and implement strategic initiatives that align with our institution’s mission and educational goals as driven by the strategy plan (see below). Key responsibilities include:
- Providing visionary leadership to develop and execute innovative strategies for enhancing student learning and undergraduate education.
- Fostering a student-centered approach, ensuring all academic programs and support services meet the diverse needs of our student population.
- Forging collaborations with academic departments to support members of their faculty as they assess student learning within their curricula, ensuring academic rigor and relevance.
- Advocating for the seamless integration of technology and pedagogy, fostering dynamic and effective learning experiences.
- Spearheading initiatives to enhance undergraduate research, experiential learning, and interdisciplinary studies.
- Collaborating closely with student affairs to provide a holistic and enriching educational experience for students.
- Overseeing assessment and continuous improvement efforts related to undergraduate education outcomes, including the general education curriculum and student cohort programs.
Furthermore, this position plays a key role for the University’s “Carolina Next: Innovations for Public Good” strategic plan, specifically the “Strengthen Student Success” initiative. This effort brings campus partners together to address three primary objectives:
1) Provide a student-centered experience, strengthen success for all students and foster equity in success across student populations.
2) Facilitate learning that is experiential and collaborative, develops individual strengths and encourages the understanding, ethical use and application of data.
3) Expand digital and remote technologies to increase access and opportunities for Carolina students, as well as for all the people of North Carolina and beyond.
This position oversees five major units: Undergraduate Curricula, the Thrive Academic Advising Program, the Center for Student Success, Honors Carolina and Undergraduate Evaluation and Assessment. This role will manage approximately 140 personnel and an annual budget of $16.6M. See the Office of Undergraduate Education’s senior leadership team here.
Full (advanced associate) Professors teach broadly in the curricula of the tenure-appointing department, mentor and advise students, serve on departmental, school, and university-wide committees. Courses that any faculty member may teach varies depending on specialization and established course load. This position may be expected to maintain a significant research and publication agenda and to pursue appropriate external funding opportunities.
The College’s faculty administrative positions in the Office of Undergraduate Education are structured as a nine-month contract with two months’ summer salary and an administrative stipend.
Join us in redefining the undergraduate education landscape in a way that is consistent with the general principles of the Boyer (2030) Commission Report. Apply now to continue the drive to make transformative change for undergraduate students at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Primary Purpose of the Organizational Unit
As the largest unit on campus, the College of Arts and Sciences is the academic heart of the Carolina experience. The College consists of 43 academic departments and curricula and numerous programs, centers and institutes. It is home to more than 18,000 undergraduate students, including all of the University’s first-year and second-year students. About 2,300 graduate students study and teach in the College.
The Division of Undergraduate Education is the administrative home to many of the College’s high-impact and experiential learning opportunities, including Honors Carolina, the First-Year Seminar and First-Year Launch Program, and undergraduate research, as well as academic support resources such as the Thrive Academic Advising, the Center for Student Success (including the Writing and Learning Center, Peer Mentoring Program, Summer Bridge), and the Interdisciplinary Studies Program.
The Office also supports the work of the College’s Curriculum Committees and helps the College explore inclusive pedagogies and both curricular and co-curricular approaches to teaching and learning in the 21st century. Carolina’s IDEAs in Action general education curriculum began in fall 2022 and reflects some key directions for students – with a more structured first year, focus capacities that allow for practice of key skills, and for reflection and integration with required high-impact experiences. OUE additionally provides support for faculty and departments as the general education requirements as well as all their undergraduate degree programs and minors.
The Office serves as a resource for students, faculty and staff in other campus units engaged in various aspects of the College’s undergraduate education mission.
Minimum Education and Experience Requirements
The ideal candidate for the senior associate dean for undergraduate education should hold tenure at the associate professor rank or higher. The candidate should hold a Ph.D. or equivalent qualification in a discipline represented within the College of Arts and Sciences. They should have an outstanding professional background with national standing in their field, underscored by an outstanding track record of accomplishments in research scholarship, teaching effectiveness and service.
A noteworthy facet of the successful candidate’s profile should include significant involvement and accomplishments in undergraduate curricula, the study of effective pedagogy, teaching and mentoring effectiveness, and/or fostering student success. This candidate needs to be adept at clearly specifying an innovative and forward-looking vision for undergraduate education, tailored to the demands of the 21st century.
Demonstrated administrative acumen and the ability to come to consensus are critical skills, including the capacity to harmonize the priorities of diverse stakeholders. This candidate will have a proven history of managing administrative responsibilities effectively. Of utmost importance is an unwavering dedication to initiatives and interventions that enhance the caliber of the undergraduate student experience as they move through college to graduation.
Preferred Qualifications and Experience Requirements
Full professor with tenure.
Previous direct supervision of executive level staff.