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Arizona Western College
Yuma, Arizona

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Full Time
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Four-Year Institution
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Arizona Western College is a community college known for serving its 10,000 square miles with robust offerings in degrees and certifications in academic and career technical programs, professional development, customized training, and personal enrichment across twelve locations.  Arizona Western College has been transforming lives through education and partnerships to create thriving communities in higher education since 1963.  The College serves over 11,000 students annually with over 100 degrees and certificates and offers over 60 student clubs and organizations.  With more than 300 students residing on the Yuma campus, and fielding 7 competitive athletic teams, students participate in over 50 campus clubs, and AWC is home to a challenging Honors Program and curriculum, and a world-class International Program, representing over 30 countries from around the globe. The College is dedicated to providing affordable and flexible educational opportunities to meet the needs of today’s students.  As one of Arizona’s Hispanic Serving Institutes, AWC leadership is proud to serve on the newly formed Arizona HSI Consortium which seeks to create a strongly networked cohort of HSIs that are committed to thoughtfully and intentionally advancing educational success, degree and certificate attainment, and workforce readiness among Hispanic college students.


Yuma resides near the borders of California and the Mexican states of Sonora and Baja California, and near the convergence of the Colorado and Gila rivers. Known as one of the sunniest places on Earth, Yuma offers residents a year-round vista of surrounding mountains and valleys with lush agricultural fields. Agriculture is the largest segment of Yuma’s economy, along with military and tourism.  Yuma is Arizona's warmest winter city, and the sunniest year-round spot in the nation. With extremely low relative humidity, "It's not the heat, it's the humidity!" is no error.  Year-round records show that Yuma receives an average of 93% of the possible 4,400 hours of sunshine yearly. Yuma's climate is spectacular. The sun shines nearly every day. The air is clean and the vistas, sunrises and sunsets are majestic. 


The Vice President for Learning Services (VPLS) is the Chief Academic Officer of the College and reports to the President. The Vice President for Learning Services is responsible for the scope, sequence, and integrity of the academic programs of the college and creates and sustains excellence in all aspects of educational offerings district wide.  The VPLS provides dynamic leadership and administrative oversight to the college academic departments and academic support services with the members of the Cabinet in the leadership, planning, policy and budget development, and management for a comprehensive academic affairs program to meet the needs of a diverse student body. The Vice President is an active participant in partnerships with local, regional and statewide industries including growth in Bachelor programming with Northern Arizona University, University of Arizona, and Arizona State University. This position oversees all aspects of Learning Services resources, including Faculty, Faculty Instruction and Development, Academic Library Resources, Student Success Center, program assessment and operational relationships to maintain Higher Learning Commission (HLC) Accreditation and compliance. Student Success metrics and maintenance of degree completion are crucial to this role. The position leads 5-6 direct reports, and a robust department of over 30 staff.  In addition, the position administers a budget of approximately $15 million.

The Mission of the College is to “transform lives through education and partnerships to create thriving communities” which is why another key constituency in this search is students. “Serve Students” is the first line in every job description as a reminder for our commitment and service to the active community of learners we support. 


●    Earned Master’s degree from a regionally accredited post-secondary institution 
●    Five (5) years of direct responsibility for instructional, administrative leadership experience in a higher education institution, including the supervision and evaluation of faculty 
●    Five (5) or more years of post-secondary teaching experience 
●    Budget management experience, including resource allocation, strategic planning and 
●    Experience in accreditation, curriculum development and delivery formats, assessment, and instructional program evaluation 
●    Experience with transfer education and career and technical/occupational education programs 


●    Earned doctorate in higher education leadership or related field from a regionally accredited post- secondary institution 
●    Five (5) or more years of progressive experience at the Dean’s level or higher in academic affairs at a comprehensive community college
●    Five (5) or more years of full-time teaching experience at a community college 
●    Leadership experience in starting new, or expanding, academic certificate programs
●    Successful leadership experience establishing and maintaining effective relationships with K-12 to grow dual enrollment offerings, 4-year universities (articulation agreements), community, and business and industry partnerships 
●    Demonstrated experience with and support of Shared Governance as a college-wide decision-making model, accustomed to data-informed decisions and fostering a culture of collaboration with a diverse campus constituency emphasizing consensus building, conflict resolution, and problem solving
●    Demonstrated evidence of effective collaboration with community involvement, interaction and active listening
●    Organizational planning skills, systems thinker, ability to prioritize initiatives 
●    Administrative experience in a complex, district, multicampus environment
●    Visionary, transformational leadership that is innovative, believes in measured risk taking, is motivating, ethical, high integrity, authentic, and collaborative 
●    Track record of supporting team and professional development 
●    A visible and engaging leader 
●    Proven excellent communication skills, interpersonal skills, and a demonstrated commitment to student success
●    Demonstrated commitment to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging; proactively embrace DEIB
●    Experience working in an HSI (Hispanic Serving Institution)
●    Oversees processes that assess academic effectiveness, incorporates the principles and practices of curriculum development, evaluates student-learning objectives, and improves student learning outcomes attainment.


Academic Leadership, Program Review and Accreditation. Provides oversight to the college’s academic programs and assessment activities including the academic master plan that aligns with the strategic plan of the college. Plans and monitors division and academic support center actions plans, program review and facilities and technology planning for general education, developmental education, counseling, dual enrollment, business and information systems, performing and fine arts, science, mathematics, English, reading, social sciences, communication, and fitness and wellness.  Provides leadership for consistency, accountability and collaboration with the academic council to grow and sustain academic programs, including Dual Enrollment in local High School Districts 

Build collaborative, effective, and humble relationships through breaking down barriers, real or perceived, in the college and community gaining trust and appreciation of cultures and politics.  Listen, translate and form or enhance programs based on the surrounding community need and support.  Work to a collaborative and collegial leadership with faculty, administration and staff and students and gain buy-in with authentic, transparent and honest communication while working through the reorganization pieces.

Collaborate with the Vice President of Advancement and other constituents on  new initiatives with community and business leaders, leveraging community partnerships and business relationships to maximize learning opportunities for all learners. Work collectively to build and maintain relationships with community partners, K-12 school districts and business and university leaders for the fundamental success of students. 

Serving as the Chief Academic Officer, the Vice President of Learning Services provides support and supervision of the college’s faculty including, hiring, faculty load assignments, monitoring projects, evaluation and dismissal of faculty, and other personnel oversight. Articulates the long-term vision/strategic plan to guide the development of academic programs. Promotes and leads planning for the integration of innovative approaches to teaching and learning. Champions shared governance, faculty professional and growth development opportunities. Supports conflict resolution including instructional grievances and complex issues. Serve and demonstrate as a leader who will empower employees and teams to peak effectiveness by reinforcing employees’ attainment of core competencies, enhancing professional development strategies across all employee groups, encouraging employees’ knowledge and implementation of the college’s culture and building communication processes and strategies that support an atmosphere of inclusiveness and engagement.


The position is open until filled. Materials received by January 8, 2023 will receive priority consideration.

[email protected] (email applications are strongly encouraged) 
ATTN: Sheila Lehker, President
Cizek Associates, Inc.
2415 East Camelback Road, Suite 700, Phoenix, AZ 85016
602-553-1066 office | 602-553-1166 fax

Application materials include:
●    A letter of interest that aligns experience and skills with the position requirements (not to exceed 5 pages)
●    A resume (chronological preferred)
●    Contact information including email and direct telephone number for a range of at least 6 professional references 

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