Your work as search committee members and chairs is a valuable service to the university. Faculty excellence is foundational to organizational excellence and is rooted in the dedicated work of individual search committee members and chairs, and the committee as a whole, to attract the best possible applicant pool.
- Required for all members of search committees seeking to fill any academic, research and administrative positions
- Focuses on compliance and legal issues
More information about EOCR Training and Education.
Inclusion of Students in Faculty Searches
As a new faculty recruiting season begins, we want to remind you about the benefits of including your students in the search process. Students offer a different perspective than faculty because they experience faculty in the classroom and as advisers. They sometimes understand how fields are changing—even before faculty do. Faculty from all backgrounds often say that developing strong mentoring relationships with students is important to them, and introducing them to students during the recruitment process can make an enormous difference in their decision to join UVA.
There are many ways in which you can involve students in the recruitment process. Here are some suggestions that we’ve seen work well in the past. If you haven’t tried them, we strongly suggest you include some of them in your process this year. To make this easy for you, we have attached as a Word document a list of questions that you could share with students to help them to guide their discussions with faculty candidates.
During the Interview Process:
Include a student or students (graduate or undergraduate or both) on your search committee. Some committees give the students full voting rights; others ask the students to participate in meetings and give feedback but do not permit them to vote. Participation on a search committee helps students to understand the complexity of the search process from start to finish. It also gives the committee unmediated access to a student perspective. For students interested in an academic career, serving on a committee can be an invaluable experience in helping them to see the process from the “other side” and lead to better outcomes when they go on the academic market.
Appoint a student or group of students to advise your search committee. The students can interview all finalists and then report their recommendations back to the search committee. This option is not as time-intensive for the students as the first one but still allows them to see a range of candidates, provide feedback to the committee, and have the experience of participating on a faculty search.
Have each finalist meet with a group of students as part of the interview process. This option is less formal than the first two, because the group of students might change with each visitor, but there can still be an opportunity to survey the students. Many departments use web-based surveys to collect and manage student feedback.
Invite advanced graduate students to job talks. We recommend this for all searches, regardless of whether you have included students on the committee. Solicit their feedback, both on the substance of the talk and their impressions of how the prospective faculty member would be as an advisor and mentor.
Offer all finalists the opportunity to meet with specific affinity groups of students as part of the interview process. For consistency, it’s important to make the same offer to all candidates, regardless of whether they choose to meet with a student group. You can simply give the candidates a list of student groups and ask if there are any they’d like to meet with while on Grounds. The Minority Rights Coalition has offered to make the contact information for its leadership available to you so that you can schedule meetings with prospective faculty.
Once an offer has been made: Once you have made an offer, you can tailor your recruiting strategy more specifically. If you think a candidate would like to meet with a particular student group or talk with graduate students in their area, you can facilitate these meetings or phone calls.
Please let us know if you have any questions about these recommendations. Our students are very enthusiastic about the extensive faculty recruiting we are undergoing and want to help.
Kerry Abrams, Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs
Archie Holmes, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
Legal Resources to Help Promote Effective Diversity Programs in the Sciences and Other Disciplines
- Article: AAU and AAAS Release Comprehensive Handbook for Building Legally Sustainable Campus Diversity Programs
- Download handbook: Navigating a Complex Landscape to Foster Greater Faculty and Student Diversity in Higher Education This "guide offers 'replicable, effective, and lawful' practices for increasing student and faculty diversity. It also builds a compelling case for vigorously developing diversity in the science and technology fields as a national asset."
Hiring International Faculty
UVA's office of Compliance and Immigration Services in Human Resources (HR-CIS) is the best source of information and assistance for departments and search committees at UVA that are thinking about hiring a foreign national. It is important to contact Compliance and Immigration Services as early as possible in the process.
The Center for American English Language and Culture (CAELC) "provides an array of services to help members of the University of Virginia community attain the level of linguistic and cultural proficiency required for success at a research university in the United States."