Leadership Opportunity Profile
Search for Dean of the College of Public Health and Human Sciences
Oregon State University, Oregon’s largest university and the state’s only institution to hold both the Carnegie Foundation’s top designation for research institutions and its prestigious Community Engagement classification, invites inquiries, nominations, and applications for the role of Dean of the College of Public Health and Human Sciences. This is a rare opportunity for a gifted and experienced leader to join a dynamic community of scholars, faculty, staff, and students at one of the nation’s leading land-grant research universities.
The faculty and staff of CPHHS seek solutions to society’s greatest health challenges, using science and community engagement to ensure health and well-being for individuals, families, and communities in Oregon and beyond. The College also trains the next generation of public health and human sciences professionals in a world in which three times the number of current public health graduates is needed to meet the needs of the future. The new Dean will lead a values-driven college in an innovative public research university that prioritizes operating beyond functional silos, spanning disciplinary boundaries, and deeply integrating research, teaching, and public engagement.
In addition to the College’s growth and interdisciplinary focus on health across the lifespan, CPHHS is a standout among other schools and colleges of public health and human sciences because of its community outreach – in the form of the integrated Family and Community Health, part of the statewide OSU Extension Service, and the connection to 4H Youth Development programming. In addition to being one of only a handful of schools of public health at a land-grant institution, CPHHS is one of only a select few with this level of connection to communities. CPHHS believes in local solutions and is committed to the University’s land grant mission of hands-on service to communities across the state. The College’s faculty work hand in hand with community members in every Oregon county to address challenges affecting health and well-being; its students engage in learning beyond the classroom; and its researchers partner with communities and share discoveries that improve health for all.
OSU’s main campus is located on 400 acres in Corvallis, Oregon, about 90 miles south of Portland. Oregon State has a growing second campus—OSU-Cascades—in Bend, Oregon, as well as the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, a new facility in downtown Portland, 14 Agricultural Experiment Station sites, and 36 county Extension offices. Its presence extends to all of Oregon’s 36 counties, and it provides online education worldwide through its highly ranked Ecampus. Oregon State continues to experience steady enrollment growth. The university enrolls approximately 33,000 students, over 23,000 of which are enrolled at the main campus in Corvallis. OSU is one of only two universities in the country to hold the Land, Sea, Space, and Sun Grant designations.
The Dean works closely with university leaders, other college deans, faculty, students, staff, and internal and external stakeholders to shape the excellence and success of the College. The Dean's responsibilities include:
- Overall leadership of the College;
- Strategic planning and analysis of College operations;
- Academic program development;
- Budget development;
- Advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion;
- Faculty recruitment and retention;
- Liaising between school heads and College staff;
- Representing the College to University administration; and
- Alumni relations.
The Dean will have the unique opportunity to continue expanding and nurturing the strong interdisciplinary research, teaching, engagement, and service taking place within the College.
To be successful, the ideal candidate will be qualified to address a set of key opportunities and challenges, listed below, and detailed in this document. The Dean will:
- Establish and execute a vision to raise the prominence and impact of CPHHS nationally and around the world;
- Further research and scholarship across the College’s various disciplines;
- Integrate all disciplines across the College while balancing program accreditation;
- Center issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion in the College’s culture;
- Continue to ensure transparency and accountability in budget management and resource allocation;
- Prioritize enrollment growth and student success to bolster enrollment and graduation rates;
- Partner with the OSU Foundation and OSU Alumni Association to develop fundraising and engagement initiatives that contribute to the mission of the College and University; and
- Further integrate OSU Extension and OSU-Cascades programs and goals to support the success of those units and to advance the reputation and success of the College.
A list of the desired qualifications and characteristics of the Dean can be found at the conclusion of this document, which was prepared by the search advisory committee with the assistance of Parker Executive Search, a national executive search firm. All confidential applications, inquiries, and nominations should be directed to the parties listed at the conclusion of this document.
About the College of Public Health and Human Sciences
The College of Public Health and Human Sciences (CPHHS) was formed in 2002 upon the merger of the College of Home Economics and the College of Health and Human Performance. In 2014, the College became the first in Oregon to receive CEPH national accreditation as a college of public health. CPHHS uniquely combines public health disciplines with the human sciences (of nutritional sciences, kinesiology, and human development and family sciences), which in other universities often reside in colleges of agriculture, education, or human ecology. Combined with the broad opportunities for interdisciplinary collaborations across campus and Extension faculty, CPHHS has the unique potential to realize its vision of lifelong health and well-being for every person, every family, every community.
The College is organized into two schools: the School of Biological and Population Health Sciences, housing Biostatistics, Environmental and Occupational Health, Epidemiology, Global Health, Kinesiology, and Nutrition; and the School of Social and Behavioral Health Sciences, housing Health Promotion and Health Behavior, Health Management and Policy, and Human Development and Family Sciences.
The College offers four undergraduate programs, three MS programs, six MPH programs, and seven PhD programs to its more than 1,800 undergraduate and approximately 250 graduate students on the Corvallis campus. Approximately 145 students are located at OSU-Cascades, and there are over 350 Ecampus students. Research funding for FY2020 reached $21.8M, the highest ever received by the College.
Role of the Dean
The Dean serves as the senior administrator of the College of Public Health and Human Sciences, charged with leading the College to achievement of its own goals and in alignment with the University’s strategic plan. Reporting to the Provost and Executive Vice President, overseeing more than 150 members of faculty and staff (with 15 direct reports), and managing a budget of nearly $52 million, the Dean will be a visible and creative thinker who builds on OSU’s strengths as a land-grant research university seeking high state, national, and global impact.
The Dean will appreciate the College’s intellectual diversity; continue to enhance its reputation for teaching, research, outreach, and service; and provide leadership that positions the College at the forefront of public health in service to the people of Oregon and the world. The Dean will be a proactive member of the Provost’s Council of Deans and a productive contributor to university-wide planning and policy development. The Dean will contribute to OSU’s strong culture of cross-college collaboration.
The Dean will provide visionary leadership and strengthen a sense of common purpose across the College. The Dean will nurture outstanding academic programs; assess and evolve the structure of the College as it continues to grow; and foster the development of connections and lasting institutional relationships with federal agencies, national and international public health organizations, and state partners and organizations.
The Dean will leverage the College’s centers, research, and Extension programs as key contributors to its academic and scholarly excellence. CPHHS centers include the Hallie Ford Center for Healthy Children and Families, the Center for Health Innovation, the Center for Global Health, the Center for Healthy Aging Research, and the Moore Family Center for Whole Grain Foods, Nutrition, and Preventative Health.
The Dean will be at the forefront of communicating the College’s vision and unique assets widely to raise the visibility of the College and its work. The Dean will be the face and voice to deliver the message of the breadth, strength, and academic quality of public health and human sciences programs at OSU nationally and internationally.
The Dean must be a financially astute leader who provides strategic management of the College’s current resources, works to generate and diversify new revenue streams, encourages and facilitates interdisciplinary research to expand externally funded research, and provides vision and leadership in development and fundraising.
The Dean will work in partnership with faculty, federal agencies, and other organizations, as well as other potential external partners, including public health programs at Oregon Health & Science University and Portland State University.
Key Opportunities and Challenges for the Dean
In carrying out these broad duties, the Dean will be expected to address several key opportunities and challenges, as detailed below:
Establish and execute a vision to raise the prominence and impact of CPHHS
The Dean will examine the effectiveness of the current strategic plan (2018-2023) and chart a complementary short, medium, and long-term CPHHS vision appropriate for a land-grant research university, identifying gaps and actualizing solutions. The Dean will also ensure that the vision for the College fits with that of the larger university and that the College’s needs are represented effectively and collegially at the university level. The Dean will provide direction for the College as it moves into a post-COVID world, with public interest in public health at an all-time high.
Further research and scholarship across the College’s various disciplines
The Dean will foster continued growth in research and scholarship across the variety of disciplines represented within the College. The Dean must appreciate the breadth of research across disciplines and the differences in which scholarship is evaluated – from bench science to community engagement and extension in Oregon and globally.
Integrate disciplines across the College while balancing program accreditatio
The Dean will inspire synergies and facilitate interdisciplinary work while also understanding that the College is home to three separately accredited programs that require distinct areas of emphasis to maintain accreditation.
Center issues of equity, diversity, and inclusion in the College’s culture
The Dean will work to ensure that issues of diversity, equity, inclusion, fairness, and justice are central to the mission of the College and that the organization supports the university’s broader diversity, equity, and inclusion goals. The Dean will take steps to recruit and retain a diverse workforce including faculty, staff, and student employees, and to ensure the community is welcoming and inclusive.
Continue to ensure transparency and accountability in budget management and resource allocation
The Dean will manage the budget through a lens of shared governance and transparency, seeking appropriate input from university and community partners. The Dean will assume ultimate responsibility for budget and management decisions, delegate as appropriate, optimize space and other limited resources, and serve as an effective advocate for the College in the context of OSU’s overall strategic goals and plans.
Prioritize enrollment growth and student persistence to bolster enrollment and graduation trends
The Dean will examine recent enrollment and student persistence trends across all College programs and work to develop innovative solutions to address challenges that have led to limited undergraduate and graduate growth in both onsite and Ecampus environments. The Dean will be a champion of high-quality learning and student success. The Dean will work collaboratively with faculty, staff, and students to ensure that programs and experiences meet the needs of students, faculty, and external stakeholders.
Partner with the OSU Foundation and OSU Alumni Association to develop fundraising and engagement initiatives that contribute to the mission of the College and University
The Dean will emphasize interactions and relationship building with alumni, donors, and supporters of the College. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the world is increasingly thinking about health and population health sciences, and it is an opportune time to demonstrate the value of the College to external stakeholders and community members. The Dean has an opportunity to build on the broader awareness of the importance of the public health and human sciences into the future.
Further integrate extension and OSU-Cascades to impact the reputation and success of the College
As one of the few Colleges of Public Health and Human Sciences in the country with a land-grant mission and deep involvement in Extension programming, the College is uniquely positioned to leverage outreach and engagement into the community to differentiate their programs and impact. OSU-Cascades also plays an integral role in the overall College and the Dean will work to expand OSU-Cascades programs while further integrating them into the mission and vision of the College.
Qualifications and Characteristics
In addition to a record of academic and professional achievement appropriate for tenure and appointment at the rank of full professor, the successful candidate will bring a blend of the following professional qualifications, skills, experiences, and personal qualities:
- Prior administrative and leadership experience in a complex environment including budget and financial management processes, public relations and development, strategic planning, policy formation, and personnel management;
- A demonstrated understanding of and commitment to the mission of a land-grant research university;
- An understanding of the importance of, knowledge of current scholarship about, and demonstrated success in leading, initiatives that promote diversity and inclusion among faculty, staff, students, and others;
- A demonstrated contribution to high-quality learning, student success at the undergraduate and graduate levels, and interdisciplinary education;
- A track record of high-quality research and leadership of research programs;
- Evidence of ability to work with alumni and donors to achieve fundraising success;
- A nuanced understanding of and firm commitment to shared governance;
- Evidence of the ability to advocate for the College and for the University;
- Evidence of the ability to partner with others in order to secure internal and external programmatic support for instruction, research, service, and outreach;
- Leadership skills with the demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with colleagues across the University in order to set and prioritize challenging and attainable goals, to achieve desirable outcomes, and to work with and inspire others to higher levels of performance;
- Ability to provide strategic direction for the College’s programmatic initiatives;
- Demonstrated depth of understanding of current and emerging issues in public health and human sciences research, education, and outreach of importance to the state, nation, and the world;
- Experience in advancing innovation in academic programs and the student experience;
- Evidence of collaboration and relationship building skills and commitment to facilitating the development of a positive and collegial organizational culture within the college;
- Demonstrated highest degree of personal integrity.
OSU’s main campus is in Corvallis, a community of 58,000 people located in the heart of western Oregon's Willamette Valley. Corvallis is 90 miles south of Portland and 36 miles south of Salem, the state capital. The Pacific Coast and the Cascade Mountains are nearby. Corvallis is a vibrant college town—WalletHub recently ranked it as the fourth best overall college city in America. The Corvallis Imagine 2040 campaign demonstrates Corvallis’s commitment to making itself a livable, diverse community. Known for prioritizing environmental responsibility, Corvallis sits within easy access to Oregon’s finest natural recreational and scenic areas: ocean beaches, lakes, rivers, forests, high desert, wine country, and the rugged Cascade Mountain and Coast ranges. OSU has a presence in every county of the state, including through OSU-Cascades in Bend, 14 Agricultural Experiment Station sites, 36 county Extension offices, the OSU Portland Center in downtown Portland, and the Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport.
Applications, Inquiries, and Nominations
Screening of complete applications will begin immediately and continue until the completion of the search process. Inquiries, nominations, referrals, and CVs with cover letters should be sent directly to Parker Executive Search prior to August 31, 2021.
Porsha L. Williams, Vice President
Jacob C. Anderson, Principal
Julie Palmer Johnson, Associate
OSU commits to inclusive excellence by advancing equity and diversity in all that we do. We are an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer and particularly encourage applications from members of historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, LGBTQ community members, and others who demonstrate the ability to help us achieve our vision of a diverse and inclusive community.
Appendix I: About Oregon State University
Founded in 1868, Oregon State University serves as Oregon’s land-grant university and is the largest university in the state, serving approximately 33,000 students, with more than 8,200 faculty, staff, and graduate assistant employees and a $1.3 billion annual budget. OSU promotes a collaborative, inclusive, and caring community that strives for equity and equal opportunity; creates a welcoming environment and enables success for people from all walks of life; and shares common, fundamental values grounded in justice, civility, and respect. The University is fully committed to ethnic, gender, and cultural diversity and believes in providing high quality, affordable access to an inquiry-based education for all qualified students.
OSU offers more than 200 undergraduate and approximately 80 graduate degree programs through its 11 colleges—Agricultural Sciences; Business; Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences; Education; Engineering; Forestry; Liberal Arts; Pharmacy; Public Health and Human Sciences; Science; and the Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine. In addition, OSU offers more than 50 degree programs through its online education program, Ecampus, which is ranked No. 5 in the nation for best online Bachelor's programs in the 2020 edition of U.S. News and World Report.
Oregon State has a talented faculty producing top scholarship across various academic disciplines. Year after year, OSU receives more external research funding than any other university in Oregon. In line with the University’s strategic plan, OSU’s shared research agenda guides faculty inquiry in three signature areas: advancing the science of sustainable earth ecosystems, improving human health and wellness, and promoting economic growth and social progress.
The University launched a series of systematic five-year plans in 2004. That planning has guided a decade and a half of transformational progress at OSU. In 2019, the university launched Strategic Plan (SP) 4.0: Transformation, Excellence, and Impact to build upon fifteen years of momentum and to anticipate OSU’s unique contributions on the higher education landscape. Twenty actions in SP4.0 guide OSU’s four goals:
- Preeminence in research, scholarship, and innovation;
- Transformative education that is accessible to all learners;
- Significant and visible impact in Oregon and beyond;
- A culture of belonging, collaboration, and innovation.
In addition to its main Corvallis campus, OSU offers 18 undergraduate majors and three graduate degrees at its branch campus in Bend, OSU-Cascades. OSU is developing OSU-Cascades as a highly innovative branch campus that provides access to a land-grant research university education in central Oregon while also serving students from Oregon and beyond who are seeking a small research university learning experience. OSU-Cascades is working towards an enrollment of 3,000-5,000 students by the year 2035.
Oregon State also offers over 70 degree and certificate programs through its Ecampus, as well as hybrid learning experiences through its Portland Center. In 2020, Oregon State had the highest fall enrollment of any university in Oregon for the sixth consecutive year, including increased enrollment among graduate and transfer students, military veterans, and students of color. The increase in enrollment is being driven primarily by growth in OSU’s online programs and branch campus in Bend.
Oregon State University is led by interim president Dr. Rebecca “Becky” Johnson. President Johnson previously served as OSU-Cascades’ vice president. Under her leadership, OSU-Cascades became known as one of the most innovative, new residential university campuses in the nation, awarding more than 4,400 degrees since its creation in 2001. Before leading OSU-Cascades, President Johnson served as professor and associate dean the College of Forestry and as OSU’s vice provost for academic affairs and international programs. President Johnson received a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and master’s and doctoral degrees in agricultural economics from Michigan State University.
Edward Feser has served as Oregon State University’s provost and executive vice president since 2017. Prior to joining Oregon State, he held several leadership roles at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, including Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Dean of the College of Fine and Applied Arts, and Head of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning. He has also served as Davies Chair of Entrepreneurship and Head of the Division of Innovation, Management and Policy at the Manchester Business School, University of Manchester, UK; Assistant and Associate Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and Assistant Secretary for Policy, Research, and Strategic Planning in the North Carolina Department of Commerce. He holds PhD and master’s degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a bachelor’s degree from the University of San Francisco.