Western Kentucky University (www.wku.edu) invites applications and nominations for Associate Provost for Research and Graduate Education.


The mission of Western Kentucky University (WKU) is to prepare students of all backgrounds to be productive, engaged, and socially responsible citizen-leaders of a global society. The University provides research, service, and lifelong learning opportunities for its students, faculty, and other constituents. The University enriches the quality of life for those within its reach. 

Western Kentucky University was founded in 1906 and is located in Bowling Green, Kentucky; the fastest growing city in the Commonwealth.  Bowling Green, located about 110 miles south of Louisville and 65 miles north of Nashville, is a refugee resettlement site, creating an ethnically and racially diverse city of 67,000 people. More than 50 different languages are spoken in and around Bowling Green and people from 35 nationalities call the area home. The university's population of approximately 18,000 students includes 35% first-generation university/college, 15% underrepresented minority and 3% international students.  The Carol Martin Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science is located on the campus of WKU.  Established in 2007, the innovative Gatton Academy was Kentucky’s first residential 2-year STEM program for gifted and talented junior and senior high school students. WKU is student-centered and focuses on applied research that expands knowledge, improves learning, and serves the region, state and nation. SACSCOC reaffirmed the University's accreditation for 10 years in 2015. The next scheduled reaffirmation is 2025.

In the 2018 Carnegie Classification, Western Kentucky University is listed as a Doctoral – Professional University.  WKU offers programs leading to a doctorate (4 programs), master (51 programs), or specialist (2 programs) degree as well as certificates (46 programs) and a joint undergraduate-master’s program (24 programs). Graduate students account for approximately 12.5% of the student population. Externally funded grants and awards total approximately $15-18M annually. WKU is a NIH-KBRIN (Kentucky Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network) and NSF-EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research) eligible institution with a strong Applied Research & Technology Program (ARTP) that includes 18 scientific and service-oriented Centers and Institutes.


The Associate Provost for Research and Graduate Education will advance the university vision, mission, and strategic plan by elevating and expanding scholarship, research, creative activity, and graduate education. In particular, this individual will promote and stimulate academic research, grant writing, and funding for research and graduate education.  Reporting to the Provost, the Associate Provost will fully align research, sponsored activities, and graduate education with the overall academic mission of the University.  Oversight for scholarship and graduate education includes the development and implementation of a vision, mission, and strategic plan, in addition to recruitment initiatives, curricular initiatives, program assessment, budget and funding allocations, and supervision of staff. 


  • Earned Ph.D. from an accredited institution with academic and scholarly accomplishments commensurate with full professor rank in one of the University’s academic programs.
  • Established success in acquiring and managing external funding.
  • Recognized scholar with a record of achievements in research or creative activity.
  • Demonstrated abilities in creating a culture of research and/or creative activity among faculty, staff and graduate students.


  • Extensive knowledge of and experience with grant-funded research and creative activity, graduate education, and research compliance.
  • Proven leadership and personnel management experience as well as being a collegial, team player.
  • Sound understanding of university processes, organizational and governance structures, and higher education policies and regulations.
  • Ability to create, implement, and sustain interdisciplinary partnerships across the university.
  • Established knowledge and skills in graduate program planning, recruitment, retention, and project management.
  • Demonstrated commitment to elevating diversity and inclusion as well as affirmative action and equal opportunity procedures and principles.


The Search Committee invites nominations, applications (a letter of interest, resume/CV, and the names and contact information of five or more references) or expressions of interest to be submitted to the search firm assisting Western Kentucky University. Review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.  It is preferred, however, that all nominations and applications be submitted to the search firm by February 2, 2020.  For additional information, please contact:

Porsha L. Williams, Vice President
Rich McNeal, Associate
Parker Executive Search
Five Concourse Parkway, Suite 2900
Atlanta, GA 30328
Phone: 770-804-1996 x109 or x112
pwilliams@parkersearch.com | rmcneal@parkersearch.com

Applications will be considered in confidence, but the name and curriculum vitae of finalists will be released prior to on-campus meetings with key constituency groups as part of the final interview process.

University policy and state law require a thorough background investigation of finalists.

Western Kentucky University (WKU) is committed to a policy of providing equal employment and educational opportunities to all candidates. Western Kentucky University will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, marital status, age, uniformed services, veteran status, genetic information, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, or physical or mental disability in admission to career and technical education programs and/or activities, or employment practices in accordance with Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Revised 1992, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

Persons with disabilities, who need reasonable accommodations to participate in the application and/or selection process, should notify the office of Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action/University ADA Services (EEO) at (270) 745-5121.

Submit Application

* Indicates required field


Files must be less than 8 MB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png pdf doc docx ppt pptx xls xlsx.


Files must be less than 8 MB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png pdf doc docx ppt pptx xls xlsx.


Files must be less than 8 MB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png pdf doc docx ppt pptx xls xlsx.

Supplemental Materials

Files must be less than 8 MB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png pdf doc docx ppt pptx xls xlsx.

Please click the submit button only once.