Assistant Professor - Religious Ethics & Social Justice

Job Details

Position OverviewThe Department of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas invites applications for a tenure track Assistant Professor with a concentration in Religious Ethics and Social Justice to begin 8/18/2023. This position is a full-time, academic-year appointment.

The Religious Studies department seeks a tenure-track, Assistant Professor in Religious Ethics and Social Justice. Areas of research specialty could include one or more of the following: African American religions; ethics and race in American Christianity; ethics and identity in American religions; Black religions in the Americas; African American religions and the construction of gender; race and religion; the intersection of religion, sexuality and gender; the intersection of religion, ethics and disability studies.

The University of Kansas is the state’s flagship university, an R-1 institution and one of just 66 invited members of the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU). Our university consistently earns high rankings for academics and recognition as a premier research university (engaging in $275 million of externally funded research annually).

KU has 21 programs ranked in the U.S. News & World Report top 25 among public universities, including #1 rankings for graduate programs in public administration and special education. KU has 65 ranked graduate programs and is ranked 24th in best value among public institutions in 2022. KU offers 5,000 courses, 400 degree and certificate programs, and more than 200 fields of study. The University values global engagement with more than 150 programs of international study and cooperative research and offers more than 130 study abroad programs. Student enrollment for the Lawrence-Edwards was 23,958 representing all 50 states and 112 countries.

At KU we make it our mission to educate leaders, build healthy communities, and make discoveries that change the world. We aspire to be an exceptional learning community that lifts each other and advances society. KU’s strategic plan Jayhawks Rising is focused on objectives to accomplish this vision through three mission-based priorities of student success, healthy and vibrant communities, research, and discovery.

KU’s research residential campus is in the center of a vibrant and culturally-rich community — a quintessential college town. Visitors, students and new employees from outside the area enjoy discovering the many wonders of Lawrence, including a thriving downtown, diverse local and regional events, area lakes, vibrant arts and music scenes, and an indelible history. Home to nearly 95,000 people, Lawrence is located 45 minutes west of Kansas City and 30 minutes east of Topeka, the state capital. Along with the music, arts, culture and sports experiences offered at KU and in Lawrence, the short drive to Kansas City provides quick access to historic jazz clubs, museums, world-class music and theatre venues, and professional sports teams.

At the University of Kansas, diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging are an important part of our culture and university strategic plan. Applications from members of underrepresented groups are encouraged, noting the value that differences bring to our organization, students, staff, faculty, and community. The successful candidate must be eligible to work in the U.S. by the effective date of the appointment.
Job DescriptionPosition Overview continued:

The College emphasizes interdisciplinary, experiential learning and global awareness, houses a vibrant university wide Honors Program that highlights undergraduate research and service activities, and has created strong affiliations with outstanding cross-disciplinary research centers. Faculty and academic staff have emphasized the importance of continuing and expanding on relationships with centers and entities including the Biodiversity Institute, Kansas Biological Survey, Kansas Geological Survey, the Hall Center for the Humanities, the Life Span Institute, the Institute for Policy and Social Research, the Spencer Museum of Art and the Natural History Museum. These relationships have brought a broad range of disciplines together to pursue and conduct sponsored research and education at the international, national, state, regional and local levels, and have created employment structures in which faculty and academic staff share appointments to emphasize collaboration. College faculty and research staff are welcomed as members in all KU’s designated research centers and institutes. The College is home to internationally recognized scholars and scientists who brought in $44M in research funding in FY 2021, nearly 30% of the total funded research at KU Lawrence.

Job Duties:
Tenure track positions at the University of Kansas are 40/40/20 Teaching/Research/Service.

40% TEACHING
1) Teach undergraduate courses in Religious Studies. Load is 4 courses per academic year, a 2:2 load.
3) Hold regular office hours for students.
4) Participate in the academic advising of undergraduate students.
5) Mentor students in research.

40% RESEARCH
1) Maintain an active and productive research program.
2) Publish monograph for tenure.
3) Publish in peer reviewed journals and edited volumes.
4) Attend professional conferences.

20% SERVICE
1) Serve on committees at the departmental, College, and University levels as opportunities arise.
2) Participate in professional service.
3) Participate in broader interdisciplinary initiatives relating to ethics and social justice in the University and in the Lawrence community.
4) Participate in departmental meetings.Faculty Code
Faculty members are expected to carry out their responsibilities in accordance with the Faculty Code of Rights, Responsibilities, and Conduct, currently viewable at: http://policy.ku.edu/FacultyCodeKULawrence/faculty-code-of-rights

Required QualificationsCandidates are expected to demonstrate the following qualifications in their applications:
  1. Ph.D. or ABD in the field of Religious Ethics or related field, expected by the start date of appointment.
  2. Competence in the field of religious ethics generally, including competence in diverse religious perspectives as evidenced by educational, teaching and research experience.
  3. Capacity to teach courses on ethics at the undergraduate level including an introductory course as demonstrated by educational background and statement of teaching philosophy.
  4. Evidence of teaching excellence provided in statement of teaching philosophy.
  5. Knowledge of approaches and methods central to the academic study of religion as evidenced by educational experience and in statement of teaching philosophy.
  6. A clear program of present and continuing research and publication provided in cover letter and other application materials.
  7. Commitment to the value of diversity in the academic community as described in DEI statement.
Additional Candidate InstructionsFor complete information and to apply, go to https://employment.ku.edu/academic/23374BR. A complete application file will include a (1) cover letter which summarizes the candidate’s existing research, future research goals, and teaching experience and interests; (2) a curriculum vitae; (3) research agenda; (4) teaching philosophy statement; and (5) the names, emails and contact information for 3 professional references. Please have your three confidential letters of reference sent by separate email to [email protected].

In addition to the materials above, learning about each applicant's contribution and engagement in areas of diversity is an important part of KU's mission. As a result, applicants should include a response to the following question as part of their application material:
  • Describe your experiences working with people from diverse backgrounds and explain how those experiences reflect your commitments to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).
Applicants are also encouraged to include or expand upon how they have contributed to building a culture of belonging through DEI initiatives within the required application materials provided.

Application review will begin October 15, 2022 and will continue through December 4, 2022. Preliminary interviews with select candidates will be held via Zoom.
Contact Information to ApplicantsProfessor William Lindsey
785-864-5582
[email protected] Application Review Begins15-Oct-2022 Anticipated Start Date18-Aug-2023

Organization

Working at the University of Kansas 

Join the University of Kansas, and you’ll become part of a Jayhawk family that spans the globe. Wear your KU shirt in London, Istanbul, Buenos Aires, Nairobi or anywhere else, and you will likely hear a resounding “Rock Chalk!” from a stranger. Of course, the appropriate response is an enthusiastic “Jayhawk!” Because, after all, they’re not really strangers, they’re family.

The Jayhawk community is united by more than 150 years of tradition and by our commitment to pushing the boundaries of knowledge, transforming the academic experience, and creating solutions through innovative research. KU’s mission is to lift students and society by educating leaders, building healthy communities and making discoveries that change the world.  

The University of Kansas is the state’s flagship university and one of just 66 invited members of the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU). We consistently earn high rankings for academics and recognition as a premier research university.

KU faculty and staff embrace our role as the state’s flagship university, AAU member and R1 institution that serves the state, nation and world. We celebrate the energy and compassion that infuse the Jayhawk spirit; and, we remain true to KU’s historic values: the elevating force of education, the transformative power of research and the healing power of service.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging 

The University of Kansas is committed to a learning and workplace environment that is representative of our nation and global society, accepts and values everyone, appreciates our common humanity and understands that our multiple differences are the cornerstone of academic preparation, professional excellence and distinction. KU must be a place where all people feel they belong and have access to resources and support that help them attain their educational and professional goals.

We recognize there are inequalities and privileges generated by historical and persistent intersecting differences by race, ethnicity, gender identities, gender expressions, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, abilities, religion, regional background, veteran status, citizenship status and nationality. And we hold ourselves accountable for policies, processes and programs that appreciate these and other differences and create more fair, safe and just learning, working and living environments for KU students, faculty and staff.

Instruction 

KU offers a broad array of undergraduate and graduate study programs, and we fulfill our mission through academic and research programs of international distinction, coupled with outstanding libraries, teaching museums and information technology. These resources enrich the academic experience for students from all 50 states and 112 countries, and provide enrichment resources for KU faculty and staff.

Research 

The university attains high levels of research productivity and recognizes that faculty are part of a network of scholars and academicians that shape a discipline as well as teach it. KU staff are integral to our research success, participating in and supporting discoveries that expand knowledge and improve lives.

Service 

The university and our employees serve society through research, teaching and the preservation and dissemination of knowledge. KU's academic programs, arts facilities and public programs provide cultural enrichment opportunities for the larger community. And, KU offers educational, research and service programs throughout the state. KU employees are encouraged to participate in and serve the campus and surrounding communities in a way that is meaningful to them.

International Dimension 

KU offers more than 100 programs of international study and cooperative research for KU students and faculty at sites around the world. The university offers teaching and research that draw upon and contribute to the most advanced developments throughout the United States and abroad. At the same time, KU's extensive international ties support economic development in Kansas.

Values 

The University of Kansas, our students and employees are committed to excellence. We foster a multicultural, inclusive environment in which the dignity and rights of individuals are respected. Intellectual diversity, integrity and disciplined inquiry in the search for knowledge are of paramount importance.

Our City and State 

KU sits atop Mt. Oread in the center of Lawrence, a town full of natural beauty and culture. In fact, Rolling Stone magazine named Lawrence one of the best college towns in the United States. Lawrence is home to more than 100,000 people, and has a charming, Midwestern friendliness that welcomes visitors and celebrates diversity. In addition to KU, Lawrence is home to Haskell Indian Nations University, the premiere tribal university in the United States.

Lawrence’s historic and thriving downtown features restaurants, nightlife and local shops offering unique finds that you won’t find anywhere else. The town has more than 50 parks, an encompassing mixed-use trail, and quick access to biking/hiking trails along the Kansas River and around Clinton Lake. A five-minute drive from Lawrence, Clinton Lake offers fishing, boating, beaches, camping and other outdoor activities.

Located just 40 minutes west of Kansas City, Lawrence offers the appeal of a mid-size, suburban town with quick access to the amenities of a large city, including an international airport. The Kansas City metro area is home to world-class museums and cultural activities, Jazz clubs and other nightlife venues, expansive shopping options, and exciting professional sports with the Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas City Royals and Sporting KC.

Kansas is in the center of the country, making it convenient and cost effective to fly or drive to destinations throughout the United States. Far from flat, the Flint Hills, just 90 minutes from Lawrence, offer panoramic vistas that showcase the breathtaking beauty of America.

Making KU Your Home 

Something about Lawrence is magnetic. Long-time residents are never surprised when a KU student or employee from out of state decides to make Lawrence their permanent home. And, even those who do leave often find themselves returning to “the nest” at some point in the future. In fact, Lawrence has been named by several publications as one of the best places to retire.

At the University of Kansas, you’ll join a global Jayhawk family and find a place to call home.

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