Professor and Department Head, Department of Sustainable Biomaterials – Virginia Tech

The Department of Sustainable Biomaterials at Virginia Tech is seeking applicants for professor and department head. This is a full-time, 12-month, 100 percent administrative, tenure-track position with a start date of January 1, 2020.

Position description
The Department of Sustainable Biomaterials in the College of Natural Resources and Environment at Virginia Tech is seeking a visionary and energetic leader to serve as professor and department head. The successful candidate will have proven leadership, administrative, and management potential and an exemplary record of teaching, discovery, and engagement in sustainable biomaterials, such as wood and other plant products, or a closely related field, such as forestry, packaging science, pulp and paper science, materials science, or engineering. The department head is responsible for the human, fiscal, and physical resources of the department and must be dedicated to providing leadership and vision in teaching, discovery, and engagement while actively promoting diversity and inclusion. The department head is responsible for strategic planning, student recruiting, fund raising, and growing interactions with industry as well as federal and state agencies. The department head will build departmental infrastructure (staff and facilities), develop mutually beneficial collaborations with academic units on campus, develop and sustain strong ties with the industry, and market and promote the department on campus, within the Commonwealth of Virginia, and around the globe. The department head will manage departmental policies and procedures; revitalize, implement, and maintain a staff management program; and create energy among faculty, staff, and students. The department boasts a collegial team of 20 full-time faculty, five staff, approximately 200 undergraduate students, and 25 graduate students. The department head reports to the Dean of the College of Natural Resources and Environment, and serves on the Dean’s College Leadership Team.

Required qualifications
• Ph.D. in a discipline related to existing and future departmental opportunities.
• Demonstrated ability in the following areas:
o Teaching, discovery, and engagement accomplishments commensurate with tenure at the rank of full professor.
o Experience or demonstrated potential with vision in managing vibrant teaching, discovery, and engagement programs.
o A broad view and appreciation of the field of sustainable biomaterials and packaging.
o A vision for increasing diversity and inclusion.
o Excellent writing and speaking skills that foster open, transparent communication with many different groups.
o An understanding of current and emerging trends in the fields represented in the department.
Preferred qualifications
• A record of success in program administration, management, leadership, and visioning.
• Management and supervision experience with faculty having diverse areas of expertise.
• Evidence of successful interaction with stakeholder groups, including collaborations fostering private support for departmental programs.
• Experience with long-range planning, faculty succession planning, and facilities planning.
• Familiarity working within the context of the three-part mission of a land-grant university.
Application process
All application materials must be submitted online at Refer to the posting number TR0190021.
Applications should include the following:
• Curriculum vitae.
• A brief cover letter expressing a statement of interest and application for the position.
• A maximum two-page description of the candidate’s administrative and leadership philosophy and vision as it relates to the Department of Sustainable Biomaterials and position responsibilities described above.
• The names, titles, and complete contact information for five references. References will not be contacted until the later stages of the screening process. Semi-finalists will be notified before references are contacted.

Review of applications will begin on April 18, 2019, and continue until the position is filled. All candidate information will be held in strict confidence. Once campus interviews are scheduled, the names of those being interviewed will become public information.

Nominations, as well as questions and inquiries, are welcome and can be forwarded to:
Dr. Charles E. Frazier
Chair, Sustainable Biomaterials Head Search Committee
Department of Sustainable Biomaterials
College of Natural Resources and Environment
230 Cheatham Hall
310 West Campus Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061
Phone: 540-231-8318

About the Department of Sustainable Biomaterials
The Department of Sustainable Biomaterials was established in 1979 and is one of the largest programs of its type in North America. The department has grown rapidly in recent years, in terms of faculty, students, and programs, and is poised for strategic growth and future opportunities for faculty and staff hiring that will profoundly affect the department, college, and university missions for service. The department currently has nearly 200 undergraduate students, and its 20 faculty average nearly $2 million in research dollars annually. In 2012, the department adopted its current name to better reflect the faculty’s expertise, and, in 2014, established two separate degree programs. The sustainable biomaterials degree (which reflects our past wood science program) continues to focus on teaching the fundamentals of the processing, manufacturing, drying, and marketing of wood and other biomaterials. The packaging systems and design degree emphasizes the importance of the sustainable use of packaging materials (packaging and pallets remain the largest use of wood fiber in the country), how packaging can enhance product performance and markets, and how new uses of wood fiber can be used to replace petroleum-based plastics. The department also offers graduate programs, including a master’s and doctoral degree in the interdisciplinary Macromolecular Science and Engineering program. The department houses two major industrial-affiliated research centers: the Wood-Based Composite Center and the Center for Packaging and Unit Load Design. The department has one of the largest wood products extension programs in the country, and extension specialists cover all aspects of wood manufacturing, drying, secondary processing, business

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