Position Description

Reporting to the Provost, the Dean serves as the chief academic and administrative officer of ECS and as a member of the Provost’s Council of Deans. The Dean is accountable for the quality of the School’s academic programs and faculty, and for aligning the priorities of the School and the University, thereby enabling the School and University to flourish. The Dean will be an advocate for the full array of disciplines and programs, employees, and students, and for the development of an overarching vision that will pull these components into an integrated whole.

The Dean is expected to provide visionary leadership to align with the Four Pillars and Five Academic Strategic Initiatives articulated in Illuminate, the university’s academic strategic plan, Illuminate. The Dean is expected to recruit and retain strong, research active and teaching faculty and excellent staff, enhance undergraduates’ educational experience, strengthen graduate programs – with particular emphasis on doctoral programs – and elevate research activity in pursuit of Baylor’s stated goal to join the ranks of elite research universities nationwide.

The Dean has general administrative responsibility for ECS including its compliance with accreditation standards, research standards, and Baylor policies and procedures; community outreach; fundraising; marketing and enrollment; interdisciplinary initiatives; global outreach; and the effective management of its administrative and financial affairs. The Dean consults with faculty in designing the School’s strategic plan and sets the tone for the School in encouraging excellence, recognizing achievement, and supporting appointments and promotions based on merit. The Dean is responsible for increasing research, growing entrepreneurial activity, establishing external partnerships to support faculty and student needs, creating opportunities for students, fostering a collaborative spirit within the School, defining the School’s strategic priorities, and securing resources to fulfill those priorities.

The Dean oversees an office staff consisting of two associate deans – for undergraduate programs and for research and faculty development, a financial information manager, an assistant director of student engagement, a director of marketing and communications, a director of technology and facilities, and a career services professional. The Dean oversees the three department chairs and leads the School’s Executive Committee, consisting of the chairs and other senior leadership. The Dean also works closely with the Director of Development and Corporate Relations assigned to ECS by the central University Advancement office, who works in collaboration with a national team of eight development officers. The Dean works closely with a 30-member Board of Advocates (Advisory Board), comprised of alumni and key business and community leaders, who provide support in strategic planning, fundraising and special projects, opportunities for students, and enhancing the profile of the School.

Opportunities Ahead

The new Dean will inherit a healthy School that is well-positioned for continued progress and yet poised for change. ECS offers an array of assets upon which to build:

  • A committed, loyal, and caring faculty working to balance efforts in the areas of teaching, research, and service to best serve the interests of all stakeholders;
  • A student body that is well-grounded in values and demonstrates a strong work ethic;
  • A reputation for excellent teaching, growing graduate programs, and developing strength in research;
  • A close-knit community characterized by collegiality and camaraderie;
  • A loyal and diverse base of Baylor alumni and friends who are interested in the success of the School and are actively engaged in giving their time and resources;
  • A supportive central administration and collaborative academic leadership environment with a cadre of collegial dean colleagues; and
  • Baylor University’s strong institutional ethos and commitment to a heritage of servant leadership, health care, and the integration of Christian values and high academic standards.

Within this context, the new Dean will have the opportunity to:

  • Continue to support and grow high quality research in support of Baylor’s role as a premier Christian research university: The new Dean and faculty will continue to promote R1-level research with an increased commitment to extramural funding, publication in high-quality journals, and growth in other research metrics, such as increased rates of doctoral graduates. To achieve this, the Dean must assess faculty workload to align with the University’s research aspirations and must work with faculty to increase:
  1. Research collaborations;
  2. Focused development of faculty research agendas;
  3. Publication in high-quality journals;
  4. External funding for research;
  5. Doctoral production;
  6. Postdoctoral fellowships and research staff.

These efforts will be supported by the hiring of three new endowed professors to support growth in research and mentorship of junior faculty.

  • Build recognition and philanthropic support for ECS: The new Dean will work to ensure the School and the faculty have the resources they need as well as recognition for their impactful work. To achieve this, the Dean must:
    1. Serve as a compelling advocate and spokesperson for the School, building its brand both nationally and internationally;
    2. Lead the School’s development operation to align with Give Light and complete the goals of the campaign;
    3. Ensure that faculty and students have the financial and staff support, space, and facilities they need to succeed;
    4. Work with the Dean’s Advisory Board to support the School and its initiatives.
  • Strengthen programmatic diversity of engineering programs: Working with the faculty and the Provost, the new Dean will need to give strategic consideration to the creation of new engineering departments that leverage existing Baylor strengths and offer attractive new interdisciplinary and research opportunities for faculty and students.
  • Build a culture of community, collaboration, and entrepreneurship: The new Dean must be a collaborative leader who promotes a common direction and purpose, communication, and collaboration throughout the School, and strong ties between ECS and Baylor’s other schools. To achieve this, the new Dean must:
    1. Provide entrepreneurial and innovative skills in identifying opportunities to create and implement new initiatives and to build stronger relationships with other programs across the university;
    2. Engage with alumni and interested stakeholders to leverage their expertise and commitment;
    3. Continue the creation of new graduate and professional programs utilizing new technologies;
    4. Work with Provost Brickhouse and the Council of Deans in collaborative efforts to set and achieve goals related to Illuminate, the academic strategic plan;
  • Promote diversity, equity, and inclusion: ECS has made progress in increasing the diversity of the student body (about 40% students of color and 25% female), and the new Dean will need to demonstrate a similar commitment to increasing the diversity of the faculty and the leadership of the School. The new Dean should bring a mindset of access and equity for all students, faculty, and staff and demonstrate a commitment to diversity and inclusion as an important dimension of academic and institutional excellence.
  • Lead the faculty in creating a shared vision for the future of ECS: The new Dean and the faculty must be collaborative, interdisciplinary, international, multicultural, and technology-enhanced, as they boldly pursue Baylor’s mission. To achieve this, the Dean must lead in:
    1. Working with faculty on a distinct and strategic vision for the future;
    2. Assuring that the School is attracting the best and brightest students;
    3. Building a robust reputation;
    4. Shepherding the development of faculty who produce new knowledge;
    5. Offering innovative, market-responsive programs recognized by employers for producing highly valued graduates;
    6. Ensuring a commitment to transformational undergraduate and graduate education;
    7. Ensuring a Dean’s office infrastructure that supports the School’s research ambitions and goals;
    8. Promoting and supporting diversity of students, faculty, staff, and ideas;
    9. Rethinking engineering and computer science education in a manner distinctive to Baylor and the mission of ECS.

    Addressing these opportunities will require a Dean with long-term vision, broad intellectual interests, energy and creativity, an open-minded approach, an innovative spirit, the ability to form collaborative partnerships within and beyond the university at all levels, and the willingness to take on challenges that will affect the future of the university.

    School of Engineering
    & Computer Science
    One Bear Place #97356
    Waco, TX 76798-7356
    Computer Science
    One Bear Place #97141
    Waco, TX 76798-7141