Director, School of Music

College of Visual and Performing Arts at Northern Illinois University - DeKalb, Illinois

Job Category: Admin (other)

Type: Paid

Term: Full Time

Post Date: November 16, 2018

About Our Organization

The College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA) at Northern Illinois University (NIU) announces a search for the position of Director of the School of Music. The School seeks a dynamic leader with a proven record of principled engagement with both traditional and experimental approaches to music instruction, research, and creative activity. The next Director will work with faculty and staff, building on the School’s accomplishments to discover new and sustaining possibilities for music’s role in 21st century arts, education, scholarship, and social engagement.

Chartered in 1895, NIU is a student-centered, regional public research institution with a diverse, international student body. The University is located approximately 65 miles from downtown Chicago and is a short drive from the vibrant western suburbs and Rockford metropolitan area. The vision of NIU is to be a premier student-centered, research-focused public university, contributing to the advancement of knowledge for the benefit of the people of the region, the state, the nation, and the world. With this vision, the mission of the University is to promote excellence and engagement in teaching and learning, research and scholarship, creativity and artistry, and outreach and service. NIU is classified by the Carnegie Foundation as an R2: Higher research activity institution as well as an institution of community engagement.

The School of Music (SoM) is one of three schools within the CVPA, alongside the School of Art and the School of Theatre and Dance. New incentives from the Dean’s Office have resulted in collaborative projects between students and faculty of all three schools. The addition of Marketing and Development staff to the Dean’s Office has reignited relationships with the College’s large base of alumni and patrons.

The SoM is a vibrant facet of the NIU campus which prides itself on strong support of first-generation undergraduate students in their studies, providing readily available resources for faculty-directed study and research opportunities. The next Director will begin with a collection of strong resources. The School’s distinguished faculty consists of Fulbright Scholars, Grammy Award Winners, Chamber Music America and MacArthur Foundation Grants recipients, residencies at Jazz at Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, guest conductors at Avery Fisher Hall, and commercial recording artists who perform regularly in significant international and national venues. Through their excellent teaching and research, the faculty collectively creates a dynamic, collaborative institution that yields a record of excellence in student solo and ensemble performances and scholarship in musical idioms and practices from around the globe. Some unique features include our nationally recognized world music program, the M.M. with an individualized specialization in Recording Arts, and our long tradition of excellence in jazz.

Alumni and student successes include the ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Young Composer Award, first prize award at the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Trumpet competition, multiple appearances at national conventions, semi-finalist rankings for the Grammy Music Educator Award, and an EdTPA passing rate of 100% and successful teaching placements throughout the state by our Music Education majors.


Reporting to the Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts, the successful candidate will:

  • Provide strong, collaborative, and visionary leadership for the School within the context of artistry and research
  • Recruit, support and retain a diverse body of excellent faculty and students
  • Expand student recruitment efforts, with special emphasis on under-served and first-generation students
  • Create and lead a mission/vision through a strategic planning process that aligns with the university
  • Guide curricular innovation and transformation in collaboration with faculty
  • Manage School finances, human resources, and facilities
  • Advance the reputation of the School of Music locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally
  • Foster and facilitate professional development initiatives and opportunities for the faculty in an entrepreneurial environment
  • Represent and advocate for the School at community and school events and in official business with University administration, students, and the public
  • Engage in donor relationships and funds development in collaboration with the College Dean and Director of Advancement
  • Collaborate with the Schools of the College of Visual and Performing Arts in developing interdisciplinary initiatives

For further responsibilities see NIU's Academic Policies and Procedures Manual, Section II, item 20.  

Required Qualifications

The successful candidate must have:

  • Credentials and qualifications for appointment as tenured associate or full professor in the School of Music, and evidence of recent artistry/scholarship
  • Three (3) years of progressive administrative experience and resource management in a university or not-for-profit environment
  • Evidence of strong, visionary leadership with excellent interpersonal and communication skills
  • Demonstrates strong, ethical organizational and financial skills

Preferred Qualifications

The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability and willingness to:

  • Advance innovative practices and pedagogy within the School of Music
  • Lead successful collaborations between School of Music and Schools within CVPA, and across the university
  • Engage and strengthen connections with community stakeholders, and regional, national, and international arts organizations

How to Apply

Required applicant documents:

  1. Resume/Curriculum Vitae
  2. Cover Letter – addressing the responsibilities and qualifications noted
  3. Transcripts (unofficial with official required at hire)
  4. List of three references
  5. Statement of Teaching Philosophy

Please submit application and documents through NIU online employment system at For additional information see Review of completed applications will begin on 12/13/2018; however, applications will be accepted until the position is filled. For questions regarding this position, contact Jay Monteiro at Application materials received by Wednesday, December 13, 2018 will receive priority; however, applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

EEO Statement and Visa Policy

In accordance with applicable statutes and regulations, NIU is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, religion, age, physical and mental disability, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, political affiliation, or any other factor unrelated to professional qualifications, and will comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations and orders pertaining to nondiscrimination, equal opportunity and affirmative action.

In compliance with federal law, all persons hired will be required to verify identity and eligibility to work in the United States and to complete the required employment eligibility verification document form upon hire.