Searches Announced: Director of the Center for Teaching Excellence and Innovation, and Director of the Writing Center and Writing Intensive Program

It’s my pleasure to share the news that we will be reorganizing some of the units that support teaching excellence and innovation at UMW, bringing them together under the guidance of a new founding Director for the Center for Teaching Excellence and Innovation. The search will commence in the near future, and the goal is to bring the new Director on board as soon as possible after the start of the new fiscal year.

The position will be a 12-month administrative faculty position. The following staff members would report to the Director: the Division of Teaching and Learning Technology (DTLT) staff, the Director of Distance and Blended Learning, the Writing Center Director, and the Director of the Speaking Intensive Program.   Each of the units being connected under this plan currently have individual operating budgets to support their separate activities, and these budgets will continue.  We will also explore the possibility of providing additional funding to support new programmatic collaborations.

The goal of the arrangement described above is to promote and sustain excellence in teaching, advance student learning, and explore and develop innovative pedagogy and curriculum. The Center Director will lead the units reporting to her or him in the pursuit of the following collaborative goals:

* Support and further the understanding of teaching and learning by helping faculty to analyze and reflect on their own teaching, and to explore and experiment with new models and tools

* Foster opportunities to experiment with and develop innovative teaching and learning approaches and technologies

* Provide information and other resources on best teaching practices, innovative curriculum, teaching technologies, and tools

* Serve as an advocate for high quality and innovative teaching

* Provide opportunities for faculty to engage in discussions and collaborative projects, and to research, study, and utilize resources that will enhance UMW courses and programs

* Offer a variety of faculty development activities

* Develop meaningful collaborations among the various units reporting to the Center Director

* Forge relationships and meet regularly with key constituencies that have important roles to play with respect to the Center’s mission, such as the Teaching Center Advisory Committee, the Library staff, and Information Technology Support Services staff.

The organization chart for this new Center shows the relationships being proposed.  A search committee has been formed, and they will gather together in the very near future to begin work.  A draft position description is here. The committee includes:

* Anand Rao, Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication (chair)

* Steve Greenlaw, Department of Economics (and current acting Teaching Center Director)

* Ernie Ackermann, Department of Computer Science (and last year’s acting Teaching Center Director)

* Alan Griffith, Department of Biological Sciences

* Gayle Brooks, Department of Accounting and Information Systems

* Kavatus Newell, Department of Curriculum and Instruction

* Laurie Abeel, Department of Foundations, Leadership, and Special Populations

* Jerry Slezak, Director of Information Technology User Support Services

* Martha Burtis, Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies

As a related search development, we are also launching a search for a new Director of the Writing Center and the Director of the Writing Program. With Jane Gatewood’s impending retirement after many years of long and productive service, and the evolution of the university’s organization into three colleges, we took a long look at a number of factors and decided that our next Writing Center Director would be in charge of both locations of the Writing Center.  To support this transition, we will also be searching for a Writing Center Assistant for the Fredericksburg campus center, a position that has been frozen since it was vacated.  There is currently a Center Assistant at the Stafford campus location.

We hope to launch this search very soon, and will need a new Director to start in August.  Cheryl Hawkinson-Melkun, who currently directs the Stafford center, is transitioning to a new position in the Department of Management and Marketing in the College of Business.  She has agreed to chair the search for the new Writing Center Director.  The draft position description is here. The following persons have agreed to serve on the search committee:

* Cheryl Hawkinson-Melkun, Department of Management and Marketing (chair)

* Warren Rochelle, Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication

* Terry Kennedy, Department of English, Linguistics, and Communication

* Claudine Ferrell, Department of History and American Studies

* Angie Pitts, Department of Classics, Philosophy, and Religion

* Smita Oxford, Department of Management and Marketing

* Tamie Pratt-Fartro, Department of Curriculum and Instruction

* Courtney Clayton, Department of Curriculum and Instruction

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