Job Center > Department Chair - Music - Wayne State University

Department Chair - Music - Wayne State University

This is a Permanent, Full-time position.

Category: College/University
State/Province (or you can select Remote): Detroit, MI
Position: Department Chair - Music
Deadline: December 31, 2023
Posted: October 10, 2023

Job Description / Duties

Located in the heart of Detroit’s Cultural Center, Wayne State University seeks a candidate to serve as Chair for the Department of Music. Wayne State University’s distinct characteristic is our Detroit location and the reason why the arts are crucial to the university’s identity.

The ideal candidate is, first, excited to come to Detroit — a city of musical invention and reinvention. This person understands Detroit is a city of makers and a city of arts and culture, where our core identity is rooted in innovation and creativity. Whether that is in the recordings from Motown and United Sound Systems (both around the corner from campus) to hip-hop, techno, jazz, gospel, punk, rock and roll, or any other genre rooted in American culture — it all comes back to Detroit.

The university is investing heavily in the Department of Music and the performing arts, building a $65 million complex that houses the Hilberry Gateway, the Gretchen C. Valade Jazz Center, and our own underground jazz club, Dee Dee Bridgewater’s. The university has a long-standing relationship with the Detroit Jazz Festival (300,000+ in-person attendees) with students and faculty on full display for the annual Labor Day weekend festivity, while Mondays at the Max with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra seats WSU student ensembles at the world-renowned Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center. The Department of Music also participates in innovative community programming such as workshops for K-12 students and educators.

In recent years, the university has bestowed honorary doctorates to Detroit music luminaries such as Stevie Wonder, Sixto Rodriguez, and Jack White. When compared to other higher education institutions, Wayne State has a distinct competitive advantage: There is no other public research university in the country positioned in the middle of a city, serving the city, creating and continuing to shape American culture as its core identity.

This Chair position is a perfect opportunity for the right person to be excited and ready to shape the Department of Music while also building on its rich legacy. It is for someone who understands what came before and also embodies a vision of what music schools will look like in the future.

Job Duties to include:

Leadership of the faculty in developing, maintaining, and enhancing undergraduate and graduate curricula.
Leading departmental efforts in recruitment and retention of faculty and students.
Leadership in enhancing faculty productivity, creativity, and research.
Implementation of departmental budget, personnel policies and goals.
Participation in faculty, student, and community affairs.
Continued professional scholarly and/or creative activity.
Work alongside college and university colleagues on development opportunities.

Qualifications / Required Skills

The College seeks candidates who possess the following required qualification:

An appropriate terminal degree in Music or a related field or substantial professional record with national/international recognition.
Active record of recognized professional activity and creative research.
Teaching and professional activity to warrant appointment to a tenured rank.
Experience working with a diverse population.

Rank and salary will be competitive and dependent on the experience and qualifications of the successful candidate.

Contact Information

Michael J Barnes, Chair, Department of Music Chair Search Committee
College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts
Wayne State University
4841 Cass Avenue, Suite 3226
Detroit, MI 48201

Employer Profile

Wayne State is a premier, public, urban research university located in the heart of Detroit, Michigan where students from all backgrounds are offered a rich, high-quality education. Our deep-rooted commitment to excellence, collaboration, integrity, diversity and inclusion creates exceptional educational opportunities which prepare students for success in a global society.

THE DEPARTMENT OF MUSIC: Founded in 1918, the Department of Music has a rich and storied history. Our alumni have earned positions in major American symphony and opera orchestras, along with composing music for television and film. In 1955, we graduated George Shirley, the first African American tenor to perform in a leading role with the New York Metropolitan Opera. In 1963, the Wayne State Band was invited to participate at the presidential inauguration of John F. Kennedy. In the years since, our faculty have performed in bands with Miles Davis, Quincy Jones, Rosemary Clooney, Peggy Lee, Dizzy Gillespie, Sammy Davis, Jr., Phil Collins, and Barbra Streisand.

Our faculty members are active in professional musical organizations as officers and members, and frequently present at national and international conferences. Our recent faculty activities range from performing at the White House in front of President Biden to travelling the world bringing Detroit jazz to the masses, playing packed venues along the way. In partnership with Save The Music Foundation, our music technology faculty host the J Dilla Music Tech Teaching workshop professional development program for K-12 music teachers focused on electronic music production in the classroom.

The Department of Music offers a wide variety of degrees: Bachelor of Arts in Music; Bachelor of Music degrees in vocal performance, instrumental performance, jazz studies, music education, music business, music technology, and composition; a Master of Arts in Music; and Masters of Music degrees in composition and theory, conducting, instrumental performance, jazz performance, music industry studies, and vocal performance.

THE COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY: As a university, we have a responsibility to uphold diversity as a value, and demonstrate commitment, through our policies and actions. Through our everyday activities and interactions, creative and scholarly practices, curricular design and teaching, and service and community engagement, we seek to create an inclusive institutional atmosphere that recognizes and celebrates the inherent value of a diverse campus community.

We are a university of access and opportunity, and we have a responsibility to demonstrate a commitment to our mission of providing access to an excellent and affordable college education. We are here to make our students’ lives and futures better. Financial aid avenues that help support this commitment are the Michigan Achievement Scholarship and Wayne State Guarantee (a tuition-free program open to all Pell Grant-eligible Michigan residents, as well as most families who earn less than $70,000) for first time students, and Michigan Reconnect for transfer pathways. In addition, the Detroit Promise award ensures any eligible Detroit-resident student graduating from a high school in the city will have a tuition-free path to a bachelor's degree.

The Department of Music, is one of four departments in the College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts; the other constituent units are the Department of Communication, the Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance, and the James Pearson Duffy Department of Art, Art History, and Design. The college offers 17 undergraduate programs, 10 graduate programs and three graduate certificate programs. It is home to today’s aspiring artists, performers, scholars, dancers, debaters, entrepreneurs and communication professionals who all represent the college’s legacy of excellence in our respective fields. From debate to dance, jazz to journalism, and fashion design to center stage, our students create captivating performances, inspire artistic and academic excellence, and conduct innovative research on behalf of our Detroit community. The college’s alumni include a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and winners of and nominees for the Grammy, Emmy, Tony, Golden Globe, Obie, Screen Actors Guild and Caldecott awards.

Wayne State University is a Carnegie Tier 1 Research (R1) university enrolling more than 24,000 students in 350 undergraduate and graduate programs offered through the University’s 13 schools and colleges. Wayne State’s immediate neighbors in our Midtown Cultural Center include the Detroit Public Library, Detroit Institute of Arts, Michigan Science Center, Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, Detroit Historical Museum, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and Detroit Opera Theatre. The vibrant Midtown and Downtown areas are also home to active theatres, galleries, professional sports stadiums, and entertainment venues ranging from Detroit Artist Market and the Fox and Fisher Theatres.