Tenure-Track Assistant Professor

Fairfax, Virginia
Sep 23, 2020
Position Type
Tenured & Tenure-Track
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Tenure-Track Assistant Professor

Public Relations, Political Communication, and Reputation Politics

The Department of Communication at George Mason University seeks a Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Public Relations and Political Communication for a January 2021 appointment. George Mason University has a strong institutional commitment to the achievement of excellence and diversity among its faculty and staff, and strongly encourages candidates to apply who will enrich Mason’s academic and culturally inclusive environment.

About the position

Applicants should have a Ph.D. in Communication or a related field, a record of research, an ongoing research agenda, a record of teaching excellence, a commitment to department and university service, and experience teaching a diverse student population. Specific areas of research must include the intersection of PR and political communication. A focus on reputation politics and character assassination is preferred. Potential for meaningful participation in our innovative, international, and interdisciplinary Character Assassination and Reputation Politics Research (CARP) Lab is desirable. Secondary areas of scholarship may also include other traditional areas of communication studies, especially those that contribute to departmental research missions in strategic communication, risk and crisis communication, health communication, or science communication.

About the Department

Mason’s Communication Department has a diverse and collegial faculty committed to excellence, innovation, community and public service, inclusion, and social equity. All department faculty participate in the life of our campus community, including career fairs, faculty functions, recruiting sessions and other events). We offer a broad undergraduate program with more than 500 majors; five minor programs; a large M.A. program including strategic, health, and science communication specialties; and a focused Ph.D. program emphasizing health, strategic, and science communication. The department also offers a graduate certificate in science communication. We enjoy robust student diversity in all our academic programs, serving students who bring a wide variety of cultures and backgrounds to our classrooms. Additionally, the department supports several co-curricular activities, including debate, forensics, Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), Society for Professional Journalists, and a comprehensive student media organization (newspaper, radio, television, sports announcing, magazine and journal editing, etc.).

The research life of the department includes both undergraduate and graduate research, and is reflected in the activities and outreach of its faculty, including those of the Center for Climate Change Communication, the Center for Media and Public Affairs, the Center for Health and Risk Communication, and the Character Assassination and Reputation Politics research lab.


Responsibilities of the position include developing a research program, contributing to the teaching needs of the department at the graduate and undergraduate levels, mentoring students, and service to the department commensurate with the entry-level assistant professor role.

Required Qualifications

  • PhD in Communication, or related field, completed prior to appointment;
  • Research approach grounded in strategic communication theoretical perspective;
  • Demonstrated potential to establish an independent research program at the intersection of PR and political communication;
  • Record of teaching excellence;
  • Commitment to and interest in teaching courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels;
  • Commitment to teaching and mentoring a diverse student community.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • PhD in Communication;
  • Research in reputation politics and character assassination;
  • History of active participation in PRSA and/or PRSSA, or interest in fostering this affiliation;
  • Interest in developing successful funded research collaborations;
  • Commitment to service to the department, school and discipline;
  • Teaching and/or research interest in international public relations;
  • Commitment to fostering an international scholarly network in PR and political communication;
  • Interest in undergraduate mentoring and in graduate-level teaching/mentoring;
  • Potential for contribution to the CARP Lab.

Special Instructions to Applicants      

In a continuing effort to enrich GMU’s academic environment and provide equal educational and employment opportunities, we actively encourage applications from all job seekers including members of all ethnic groups underrepresented in higher education.

For full consideration, applicants must apply for position number F6938Z at https://jobs.gmu.edu/; complete and submit the online application; and upload a CV, a cover letter that includes a description of how you will contribute to the university’s mission as a diverse public university, and a list of three professional references with contact information.

George Mason University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, committed to promoting inclusion and equity in its community. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability or veteran status, or any characteristic protected by law.