Inaugural Chair, Department of Statistics and Data Science
Location: St. Louis , Missouri
Type: Full Time
Salary: Not Specified
Statistical organization & administration
The inaugural Chair will lead the effort to build a world-class department with outstanding data scientists who will transform the university intellectual community not only through their own activities and achievements but also through synergistic collaborations with existing faculty and departments across Arts & Sciences, as well as the McKelvey School of Engineering, the worldrenowned School of Medicine, and other Schools across campus. The Chair, who will be appointed a tenured member of the department, is expected to serve for an initial term of five years with the opportunity for reappointment. The Chair is expected to be a role model and provide leadership in all matters of department policy, structure, and function including strategic planning, appointments, promotions, instruction, mentorship, research, and administration and will conduct research, publish in peer-reviewed journals, teach relevant courses, advise students, and participate in university and national service. The Chair is expected to cultivate a supportive and collegial nurturing environment for faculty, staff, and students to achieve the highest possible level of excellence in research, teaching, and learning. The Chair will work with and inspire the SDS faculty, staff, and students to fulfill the following opportunities: • Sustain and shape a shared vision: This is not simply an opportunity to lead a department but an opportunity to shape it from the ground up. The ideal candidate will be a distinguished scholar with a compelling intellectual vision to create a department for the 21st century and someone with the professional profile to attract and persuade the best thought leaders of the day to join in the co-creation of this new venture. Fundamental to this task will be to identify what elements of Statistics and Data Science align with other strengths at WashU and can be the basis by which to make the department truly distinctive in the context of the rapidly expanding academic landscape of Data Science. • Provide leadership for critical academic decisions: The Chair will be asked to provide leadership for and build consensus around critical academic issues, including faculty hiring within the department, the nature and extent of interdisciplinary programs, the configuration of curricular offerings, and enrollment across academic areas. • Foster diversity, equity, and inclusion: Diversity is key to academic innovation and institutional strength. The Chair will need to foster and sustain efforts to enhance Chair, Statistics and Data Science 4 Washington University in St. Louis diversity, equity, and inclusion amongst faculty, staff, and students in alignment with the University mission. • Provide leadership for undergraduate education: Washington University has invested for over two decades in improving the co-curricular and life experience of undergraduates. The Chair needs to sustain and augment existing efforts to provide students with an academic experience of the highest caliber. • Foster excellence in graduate education: The Chair must work with the faculty to support and nurture graduate and doctoral programs of the greatest national and international distinction with transformational research outcomes. • Manage resources to ensure a strong financial future: The Chair must continue to manage resources wisely, maintaining sound budgetary controls and principled resource allocation. • Build collaboration across units: There continue to be important opportunities for collaboration across the departments within Arts & Sciences, amongst other Schools within the University including the McKelvey School of Engineering and the School of Medicine, and through transdisciplinary initiatives (e.g. the Division for Computational and Data Sciences and TRIADS); the Chair should foster curiosity and dialogue throughout the campus community, strengthen existing collaborations, seek out new opportunities and facilitate their exploration and establishment, effectively leveraging the excellence in the University’s other Schools. • Increase resources through fundraising: Fundraising at Washington University has always had a strong focus on the Schools led by the Deans. With a greater emphasis on collaboration across schools, there is a greater role for University leaders whose programs reach across School traditional boundaries. Department chairs will play an increasing role in supporting their Deans and others in fundraising especially for resources aimed at the specific departments.
Ideal candidates will have the following professional qualifications and personal characteristics: • Academic stature: Distinguished academic accomplishments, commensurate with appointment at the rank of professor, and appropriate to the leadership of a department with a tradition of excellence in research, teaching, and service; • Academic leadership: Proven ability in fostering continued excellence of research and educational programs, and demonstrated commitment to mentorship and collegiality; Chair, Statistics and Data Science 5 Washington University in St. Louis • Collaborative skill: Experience in fostering collaborations, bringing people and entities together, creating synergies within and across joint initiatives; • Financial acumen: Experience in financial management of budgets involving personnel, facilities, and programmatic resources; • Effective communication: Excellent organizational and interpersonal skills, and the ability to communicate effectively with faculty, staff, students, and alumni.