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Dean, School of the Environment

University of Massachusetts Boston

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Employment Type
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Four-Year Institution

Job Details

University of Massachusetts Boston
Dean, School of the Environment

The University of Massachusetts Boston (UMass Boston) is nationally recognized as a model of excellence for urban public universities. It is designated as an institution of "higher research activity" by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. Located on Boston Harbor in one of the most dynamic and culturally rich cities in the US, it is the metropolitan area's only public research university. UMass Boston has seven colleges and schools with programs in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, the physical and life sciences, management, education, nursing and health sciences, and public policy. UMass Boston's School for the Environment (SFE) is home to more than 400 environmental science, marine science, urban planning, sustainability, and community development faculty, post-docs, staff, and graduate and undergraduate students. SFE is also home to seven research centers and institutes, along with the pioneering work conducted in SFE's Stone Living Lab and Nantucket Field Station. Using transdisciplinary and equity-informed approaches to research, teaching, and action, the School for the Environment expands environmental knowledge and understanding and creates cutting-edge solutions to environmental and social problems in Boston and beyond. Research concentrations include climate change management, environmental studies and sustainability, coastal and marine science, ecology, coastal resilience, contaminants and conservation, urban planning and community development, and environmental policy and management.
The Position
The next dean will build on the strengths, accomplishments, and assets of U Mass Boston's School for the Environment (SFE) to ensure its status as a national and global leader in engaged education and research in planning, environmental studies, and environmental science. Taking advantage of U Mass Boston's urban location on the harbor, the dean will engage academic and community leaders to build meaningful partnerships and support that foster experiential learning and research, prepare graduates for opportunities in the blue and green economies, and create equitable, meaningful, and positive community impacts. Working closely with the campus administrative team, the dean provides intellectual and administrative leadership for academic programs and student success, research and scholarship, community engagement, and fundraising.

Minimum requirements include progressive experience leading innovative curriculum and program development, strategic planning, supporting a teacher-scholar model of interdisciplinary research and teaching, strong fiscal management skills including experience with activity-based budgeting and transparent resource allocation, and community relations. Successful candidates will have an earned doctorate and academic accomplishments appropriate for the rank of Full Professor in a discipline relevant to the SFE. Candidates must have a proven record of engaging with faculty and academic and community leaders to build meaningful partnerships and support and the ability to work effectively with the various stakeholders associated with SFE. Demonstrated ability to effectively lead and mentor in an environment in which more than 60% of our undergraduate student body are from minoritized communities, and more than half of our students are the first in their families to attend college, is also essential.

Application and Nomination
Review of applications will begin March 27, 2024, and continue until the position is filled. A resume with an accompanying cover letter may be submitted via the Spelman Johnson website at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895 or email

The annualized hiring salary, which will be commensurate with experience and qualifications, is expected to be in the $220,000-240,000 range.

Visit the University of Boston Massachusetts website at

The University of Massachusetts Boston provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, age, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, military status, genetic information, pregnancy or a pregnancy-related condition, or membership in any other protected class. The University of Massachusetts Boston complies with all applicable federal, state, and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment in every location in which the university operates. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment.

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Working at University of Massachusetts Boston

The University of Massachusetts Boston is nationally recognized as a model of excellence for urban public universities. The scenic waterfront campus is located next to the John F. Kennedy Library, with easy access to downtown Boston. 

The second-largest campus in the UMass system, UMass Boston combines a small-college experience with the vast resources of a major research university. With a 16:1 student-to-faculty ratio, students easily interact with professors because most teaching occurs in small class sizes. Ninety-three percent of full-time faculty hold the highest degree in their fields.

UMass Boston’s academic excellence is reflected by a growing student body of nearly 16,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The university’s eight colleges offer more than 100 undergraduate programs and 50 graduate programs. The University Honors Program serves 300 students who thrive on intellectual challenge. Enriched courses probe more deeply into theory or venture further into application.

UMass Boston’s diverse student body provides a global context for student learning, and its location in a major U.S. city provides connections to employers in industries such as finance, health care, technology, service, and education, offering students opportunities to gain valuable in-school experience via internships, clinicals, and other career-related placements.

More than 100 student organizations — including clubs, literary magazines, newspaperradio stationart gallery, and 16 NCAA Division III sports teams — offer a rich campus life. Students live throughout Greater Boston and in apartment communities just steps from the campus, and enjoy the rich amenities, cultural attractions, and educational opportunities that make the city the biggest and best college town in the nation.

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