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Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

Job description

Executive Search for the

Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

at Columbia Southern University in Orange Beach, Ala.

For complete information, see the Search Profile at

Columbia Southern University, a pioneer institution of online learning in higher education, seeks a highly regarded, dynamic, and innovative leader to serve as Vice Provost for Academic Affairs. The university invites letters of application and nominations for this opportunity. 

The University - Columbia Southern University, located in Orange Beach, Ala., was founded in 1993 by Robert Mayes Sr. and has become one of the nation’s premier online universities. The privately owned distance learning university maintains a student-first philosophy within a family-oriented culture of caring and respect among staff and faculty.

While providing educational opportunities to non-traditional students through distance learning, CSU focuses on building long-term relationships while providing an exceptional student experience, affordable tuition, and a flexible learning format. CSU has more than 1,000 faculty and staff who diligently focus on continually improving CSU’s academic programs, services, and operations while maintaining an exceptional standard of student service.

Instilled in every initiative, service, and program are CSU’s core values of organizational health, humility, exceptional service, flexibility, and relationships. The university offers 27 online degree programs at the associate, bachelor, master, and doctorate levels across three colleges: Arts & Sciences, Business, and Safety & Emergency Services. Seventeen undergraduate and graduate certificate programs provide focused training in specialized areas, such as finance, human resources management, sport management, and information technology.

Recognized as one of the top universities for active-duty military members and veterans, CSU currently serves nearly 13,000 military men and women stationed in more than 30 countries, representing almost half of the university’s 28,000-member student body. Over its 25-year history, 24,837 military students have graduated from CSU.

Student satisfaction is outstanding. In a 2017 survey of all CSU graduates, 96 percent said they would recommend CSU programs or courses, and 97 percent stated they were satisfied with their studies at CSU.

An accredited member of the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), the university has maintained accreditation since it was initially granted on January 15, 2001. CSU’s most recent renewal of accreditation is through January 2021. All CSU programs have been reviewed and approved by DEAC. The DEAC is listed by the U.S. Department of Education as a nationally recognized accrediting agency and is a recognized member of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

CSU partners with various educational institutions to ensure acceptance of its credits for potential transfer. These articulation agreements allow for a smooth transition for CSU graduates seeking further education. In turn, the partnership helps graduates of other institutions transfer credits to CSU’s academic programs.

CSU is the sister university to Waldorf University, based in Iowa. Both institutions are considered subsidiaries of Columbia Southern Education Group. CSU also partners with the Center for International Training Cooperation in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, where it offers hybrid and online degree programs with its in-country partner.

More information on CSU is available at www.columbiasouthern.edu.

The Leadership Opportunity - The new Vice Provost for Academic Affairs will join CSU as it enters its 25th year of online learning. The VPAA will promote academic excellence for the institution and ensure academic quality and course content to meet the ever-changing needs of employers who hire CSU graduates. The VPAA has primary responsibility for academic programs, faculty, and faculty development.

Reporting directly to the Provost and Chief Academic Officer, Jeffrey Barksdale, Ph.D., (https://www.columbiasouthern.edu/about-csu/leadership),  the VPAA is responsible for the academic integrity of the university and supports innovation in academic program methods of online instruction and delivery that respond to a rapidly changing higher education environment. The VPAA also is tasked with analyzing program and course metrics to optimize course completion rates supporting student persistence to graduation while working with academic leadership to optimize the utilization of operational reporting, academic outcomes assessment, academic program reviews, and advisory board reviews to evaluate curricula and recommend curricula change.

Positions reporting to the VPAA include the Assistant Provost and Dean for the College of Business, Assistant Provost and Dean for the College of Safety and Emergency Services, Dean for the College of Arts and Sciences, the Director of Faculty Development, Services and Support, the Director of Curriculum Planning, and the Director of Instructional Design and Technology.  The VPAA appoints qualified individuals to faculty, academic administrative, and staff positions within the Academic Affairs division, fostering an environment of shared academic governance and ensuring a high level of substantive faculty engagement with students through an integrated faculty monitoring process. This officer will facilitate faculty and academic leadership development and training.

In addition to responding to student concerns and complaints, the VPAA will stay abreast of best practices in distance education and motivating faculty and leadership to emulate such practices.

Qualifications and Qualities - Candidates should possess an earned doctorate and a minimum of five years of experience in academic higher education leadership at the dean level or above. Candidates must have demonstrated experience in curriculum development, shared governance, accreditation and academic assessment. Experience in online education, including leading online programs and oversight of off-site faculty, is preferred.

The VPAA will model a collegial and collaborative environment through effective communication, transparent and inclusive decision-making, and faculty, staff, and student engagement. The VPAA will apply an understanding of technology and how it drives education in an online environment while guiding academic compliance with accreditation standards and other related academic regulations.

Orange Beach, Alabama - CSU’s hometown of Orange Beach, Alabama, and the neighboring city of Gulf Shores feature miles of beautiful beaches along the Gulf of Mexico. The two cities are located just east of Mobile, Alabama, and west of Pensacola, Florida, along the I-10 corridor in Baldwin County, one of the state’s fastest-growing counties. The area offers many attractions and amenities as well as quality schools and a low-cost of living with a high quality of life.

Applications & Nominations - Confidential inquiries are welcomed; nominations are invited.

 Application packet must include: a) Letter of interest, b) Current curriculum vitae, and c) At least three references with full contact and e-mail information (References will not be contacted without applicant’s consent.)


Submit application packet to [email protected] by May 14, 2018, for best consideration. 

Submit nominations to [email protected] with contact and e-mail information on the individual being nominated.

Kenny Daugherty, President of Myers McRae Executive Search and Consulting, is assisting Columbia Southern University with this search.

Myers McRae Executive Search and Consulting

515 Mulberry Street, Suite 200, Macon, Georgia 31201

478.330.6222 | www.myersmcrae.com

CSU adheres to all federal and state civil rights laws prohibiting discrimination in public institutions of higher education. CSU will not discriminate against any employee, applicant for employment, student, or applicant for admission on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, pregnancy, ethnicity, national origin (including ancestry), physical or mental disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, veteran or military status, predisposing genetic characteristics, or any other protected category under applicable local, state or federal law, including protections for those opposing discrimination or participating in any resolution process on campus or within the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or other human rights agencies.




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Job No:
Posted: 4/5/2018
Application Due: 7/4/2018
Work Type: