The Art of Search Committees: Increasing the Quality and Diversity of Kennesaw State University Faculty. Presented by: Dr. Jennifer Wade-Berg, Chief Diversity Officer Dr. Lana Wachniak, Faculty Executive Asst. to Provost, Interim Dr. Val Whittlesey, Associate Vice President, Academic Affairs.
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The Art of Search Committees:Increasing the Quality and Diversity of Kennesaw State University Faculty
Dr. Jennifer Wade-Berg, Chief Diversity Officer
Dr. Lana Wachniak, Faculty Executive Asst. to Provost, Interim
Dr. Val Whittlesey, Associate Vice President, Academic Affairs
The Art of Successful Searches:Understanding the Process
Search Committee Duties and “The Charge”
The First Meeting
Use hiring plan to describe:
Position title, position description, essential and preferred criteria, position’s scope and challenges/opportunities, dept. & college goals (incl. diversity goals), search timeframes, preferred # of finalists and form of finalist feedback (e.g., ranked, random), support for search committee (e.g., administrative, travel budget, etc.).
Big Picture Views of the Search Process
Sort thru applications.
Passive job postings.
Unoriginal, same ad in traditional posting locations.
Actively, continuously search for applicants.
Aggressive, creative, & proactive.
Three out of every five new underrepresented-minority hires went to replace underrepresented-minority faculty members who had left (4 year institutions 2000-2004). 1
Many of those who serve on search committees have never even discussed, let alone agreed upon, the institutional and departmental advantages of a diverse faculty and staff. 2
Minorities and women, even those from highly
selective institutions, do NOT have an advantage in the
job market. 1
“The qualifications of minorities alone are irrelevant in the hiring process, instead personal and political preferences, prejudices, and fears of majority faculty and inaction of administrators play a larger role in the final decisions reached.” 4
There’s an informal system of preference. 65% who benefited from special hire interventions in this study were Whites4
Faculty of color reported that this was not their hiring
Low demand/high supply argument is deceptive because even if graduation rates are considered low, the number of graduates over time should be enough to alter the low numbers of underrepresented minorities in academia.4
All faculty members, including minorities, consider multiple factors
in their employment decisions.
Lack of funding decreases the university’s ability to compete
with private sector who can afford to pay higher salaries4
Avoid Exclusionary Thinking such as:
Recruitment & Outreach Activities
Consider adding the following to job descriptions:
Ph.D. is required
Background in English required
Distinguished or nationally recognized body of research and scholarship
Terminal degree is required (Ph.D. in some disciplines)
Background in English or related fields required
Solid record of scholarship and research
A job ad can only be posted after it is approved by the following parties or their designees:
Academic Affairs Office posts ads in:
Contact the Office of Diversity and Inclusion for additional posting outlets to cast a wider net.
The Selection Process
Illegal Interview Topics:
Examples of Illegal Questions/Statements:
The following people approve the search committee’s finalists before campus visits are scheduled:
Inappropriate interview venues during campus visits:
Note: Hiring authority will meet with applicant but will not share his/her impressions with the search committee.
Completing the Search
Dr. Jennifer A. Wade-Berg Dr. Valerie Whittlesey
Chief Diversity Officer Associate VP for Academic Affairs
Faculty Search College Resources
Ms. Alicia Stignani Arts- Jane Barnet & Joe Thomas
Director of HR Services Bagwell- Maurice Wilson
firstname.lastname@example.orgColes- Randy Stuart
678-797-2337 Wellstar- Carol Holtz
HSS- Tony Grooms, & Becky Petersen
Science/Mathematics- Marla Bell
University College- Liza Davis
The Guidelines for Filling a Faculty Vacancies document can be found at:
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