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Associate Dean of Students for Inclusion and Belonging

Harvard University
Cambridge, Massachusetts

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Executive Administration Jobs
Employment Type
Full Time
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
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Harvard University invites inquiries, nominations, and applications for the newly created position of Associate Dean of Students for Inclusion and Belonging. The Associate Dean will lead Harvard College’s efforts to promote student body diversity and inclusion. This leader will have a unique opportunity to serve as an architect in designing a new office that will embed principles of diversity, inclusion, and belonging in the co-curricular and residential experience of all students.


Harvard College is a vibrant and diverse academic community. It is a close-knit undergraduate program located within Harvard University, and is the oldest and most prestigious institution of higher education in the United States. With world-class faculty, a dedication to affordability, and groundbreaking research opportunities, committed scholars have the resources they need to fulfill their academic and personal potential. The breadth and depth of Harvard’s resources, from library and museum collections to engagement in the arts and athletics, remain unparalleled in higher education. Situated in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard is one of more than 50 local institutions serving more than 200,000 students, making the Boston area America’s premier college town. Yet with an intellectually stimulating environment that is steeped in tradition, Harvard is unlike anywhere else in the world.


An integrated office focused on inclusion and belonging—yet to be named—will be a new entity within the Dean of Students Office which structurally integrates the work and missions of the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations and the Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (which includes the Office of BGLTQ Student Life, the Office of Diversity Education and Support, Title IX, and the Harvard College Women’s Center). These two offices have been structurally separate within Harvard College, yet they share synergies and principles of diversity and inclusion with a focus on the student experience. This new, integrated office will serve as a central clearinghouse for diversity-related issues, and the staff within the area will work with departments and offices throughout the College to infuse principles of diversity, belonging, and inclusion in the co-curricular and residential student experience.


Reporting to the Dean of Students, the Associate Dean will serve as a senior strategic leader within the Dean of Students Office and Harvard College. The Associate Dean will lead the development of a structure that both serves students of today and orients toward the future, ensuring that programs and services are responsive to the changing demographics and needs of the Harvard College student body. This person will advance efforts that build a diverse and welcoming learning environment and culture, infuse belonging and inclusion efforts in all aspects of the student experience, and attend to the issues of intersectionality within and among students. The Associate Dean will have a strong presence on campus, engaging with students across differences and in the residential and co-curricular realm where students find community at Harvard College. The Associate Dean will serve on the senior leadership team in the Dean of Students Office, collaborate closely with senior leaders across the College and University, and provide expert vision and direction for initiatives related to belonging and inclusion at Harvard College.


The Associate Dean will be an experienced and successful strategic leader, manager, and effective communicator with a proven record of bringing diverse communities together. The Associate Dean will have demonstrated experience in ensuring that principles of belonging and inclusion are embedded within all areas of student affairs. The Associate Dean will have outstanding supervisory, management, and budget experience.


The position requires a thoughtful, collaborative leader who can forge partnerships across departments, who has a proven record of responding effectively to challenging student and community issues, and who understands how to approach issues and situations with students. The new Associate Dean will possess an understanding of and experience with effective assessment practices with a focus on student learning and the ability to guide data-driven efforts across a large department. Knowledge of professional development modalities and needs within student affairs/student life is required, as is experience developing professional development activities for staff and student leaders. The successful candidate will have demonstrated success in working across traditional boundaries with a diverse group of people, including students, faculty, administrators, and alumni, and will have a track record of strong presence on campus with students, student organizations, and campus events.


An earned doctorate or comparable educational background is strongly preferred; a master’s degree is required along with a minimum of 10 years of progressive experience in a complex, student-centered environment or similarly complex organization with expertise in the functions and purpose of diversity and inclusion efforts within communities; evidence of innovation and organizational design; a keen political acumen; and deep theoretical and practical knowledge of issues of inclusion and equity and the role of diversity within a residential liberal arts environment.


Harvard has retained Spelman Johnson to assist with this search. Review of applications will continue until the position is filled; complete applications received by March 22, 2019, will be assured full consideration. A resume with an accompanying cover letter may be submitted via the Spelman Johnson website at Confidential inquiries and nominations for this position may be emailed to Jim Norfleet at [email protected] Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.


Visit the Harvard website at


Harvard University values diversity and is committed to equal opportunity for all persons regardless of age, color, disability, ethnicity, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other status protected by law.

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