Dean of Nursing
University of California Irvine
United States

Dean of the Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing

Job #JPF06589
  • Deans and Vice Chancellors / Academic Affairs / UC Irvine

Application Window

Open March 29th, 2021 through Wednesday, Apr 28, 2021 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)

Position description

University of California, Irvine (UC Irvine or UCI) seeks an innovative, strategic leader committed to promoting and fostering excellence in teaching, research, professional practice and service for the position of dean of the Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing (School). This is an exciting opportunity for a creative, visionary leader to play a pivotal role in advancing a compelling vision that will define what it means to be a forward-thinking nursing school and address the critical needs of the profession.
Reporting to the vice chancellor of health affairs and the provost, the dean will provide academic and strategic leadership within an established framework of shared governance and foster a positive and productive work environment that promotes excellence in teaching, practice and scholarship. Building upon the current success of the School and its faculty, the dean will capitalize on the opportunities for interdisciplinary and interprofessional programs and research within the Susan & Henry Samueli College of Health Sciences and across the university. Working with the School's faculty, staff, students and alumni, as well as with partners throughout UCI, the new dean will provide intellectual leadership to prepare the School for the future of health care where technology and new teaching methodologies are changing the landscape of higher education. Furthermore, the incoming dean will make contributions that significantly increase diversity in the nursing workforce, and address the state’s health care needs, especially health care disparities and their negative impact on various populations.

UCI seeks a dean with high academic standards, an outstanding record of scholarship and a demonstrated commitment to diversity. The dean will serve as a strong advocate for the School, advancing its reputation and visibility locally, nationally and internationally. UCI’s leadership team, especially its senior leaders within UCI Health Affairs, are highly collaborative and interactive. The incoming dean should have a strong orientation toward and track record of collaboration and be willing to partner with colleagues within the College of Health Sciences, UCI Health, the broader campus and with external constituents. The dean will be a person of high integrity, a courageous leader, a change agent, builder, and risk taker. The dean will articulate a vision for the future of nursing that embraces nursing education, research and service to prepare and empower future nurses to confront the health care demands of a complex and technologically advanced society.

Information about how to nominate a candidate or to apply for this opportunity can be found later in this document in the section entitled “Procedure for Candidacy.”

Opportunities and Expectations for Leadership
Articulate a Vision and Strategy

The dean will articulate a compelling vision and corresponding strategic plan that will guide the School to become a national leader in education, research and practice, and be committed to interdisciplinary academic and clinical excellence. The School will support the Susan & Henry Samueli College of Health Sciences' focus on a future of healthcare that incorporates 21st century biomedical and digital advances to predict and prevent illness, and to personalize care for individuals and populations.

The dean will engage the faculty in identifying ways in which the School can assume a national leadership role in diversifying the healthcare workforce to promote health informatics, integrative whole person care, interdisciplinary team-based practice to address the state's health care needs, especially health care disparities and their negative impact on the population.

The dean will evaluate the School’s current organizational structure, resources and management, making appropriate changes necessary to support its continued growth. The dean will engage faculty in the process of continuous improvement of the curriculum and the identification of changes, enhancements and additions that address both current and anticipated demand. This will include exploring the establishment of signature programs that will distinguish UCI as a leader in how nursing can collaborate with other health professionals and health science disciplines to identify ways to address health care needs of individuals, families and groups from diverse backgrounds.

The new dean must develop a cohesive team among the faculty, building an “esprit de corps,” and creating a culture of belonging that recognizes all faculty members as essential contributors to the School by seeking their input and by continuing to advance a culture based upon respect, compassion, and trust. The dean will set clear expectations, holding faculty accountable to established measures.

Enhance Research and Scholarship

To enhance the school’s research and scholarship, the Dean will:

• maintain a supportive environment that fosters scholarship and innovative research and builds upon the UCI School of Nursing’s visibility as a research institution.
• seek opportunities to expand the research base by identifying opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration with other colleges within UCI as well as with external organizations, and fostering the development of synergistic relationships that will advance UCI’s research enterprise.
• create an environment that supports faculty in their research and scholarly efforts and provide mechanisms to support early career investigators develop their programs of research.
• encourage student involvement in research projects.
• advocate for research funding, space, and infrastructure through federal, state and foundations and philanthropy and support growth in program project and training grants.

Collaborate with Clinical Partners

The dean will establish a strong partnership with senior leadership of the college’s clinical partners, including UCI Medical Center, demonstrating entrepreneurship and innovation regarding how the School can help to address the region’s, as well as the state’s, health care needs. This will include establishing strong partnerships with the chief nursing officers and other senior leadership within the clinical partners and proactively identifying opportunities to expand the School’s program that will address the region’s workforce demands. The dean will seek ways to advance the School’s faculty practice by exploring opportunities with clinical partners and other community organizations for additional School-managed community-based clinics.

Advocate for the School

The dean will be a prominent and effective advocate for the School within UCI, as well as within the larger community. Serving as the executive representative of the School, the dean will foster collaborative relationships with senior leadership throughout UCI and UCI Health Affairs, establishing ways to align University priorities with those of the School. The dean will seek opportunities to strengthen communications between the School’s faculty and faculty across the Susan & Henry Samueli College of Health Sciences, other UCI colleges and community. The dean will also collaborate closely with other deans at UCI outside of COHS to further the research, teaching and service mission of the university.

The dean will play a significant role in fund-raising and friend-raising for the School, actively participating in development efforts in order to increase private support from individuals, foundations and corporations for initiatives that promote the quality of education as well as the continued quality of faculty research and clinical practice. The dean will seek opportunities to increase philanthropic funding that supports research, to include establishing endowed chairs in order to attract strong, externally funded research faculty, and to provide scholarships and continued support to enhance the pipeline to prepare nurses from diverse backgrounds to academic nursing. The dean will build new strategic alliances and create a culture of philanthropy among alumni.

Act as the "face and voice" of the School

The dean will to bring prominence to the School by actively participating in local, regional, state and national health care and academic organizations (e.g. local hospitals, health departments, CCNE, AACN and other accrediting bodies, professional nursing organizations at the state, national and international levels). The dean will participate in influencing health policy for the state and region in alignment with UCI goals.

Professional Qualifications and Personal Qualities

The ideal successful candidate will preferably have the following competencies, knowledge, skills, abilities and personal attributes.


▪ A doctoral degree (Ph.D. in nursing preferred or a related health field);
▪ A graduate degree in Nursing;
▪ Minimum of five years' experience in academic nursing and higher education administration;
▪ Eligible for licensure as a registered professional nurse in California;
▪ Record of achievement in teaching, scholarship and service, which merits appointment as a tenured full professor within the School.


▪ The ability to work well at all levels within a complex health sciences center environment, fostering a spirit of collaboration with faculty, colleagues and administrators;
▪ Strong, sustained record of senior leadership and administrative experience in support of students and faculty in teaching, service and scholarship excellence gained within an academic nursing setting;
▪ Successful experience managing budgets in an academic institution;
▪ Deep understanding, and involvement in an active research program or history of a successful program of funded research;
▪ Knowledge of accrediting standards pertinent to the School and ability to interpret and implement applicable standards of accrediting bodies;
▪ Keen insights into the range of key issues and opportunities in the nursing profession, nursing education, research, health care policy and delivery with the ability to position the School to meet the challenges inherent in health reform;
▪ Ability to manage an academic organization and work effectively and collaboratively with community leaders, interdisciplinary professionals and colleagues within a university;
▪ Ability to identify, recruit, retain and develop outstanding faculty;
▪ Ability to raise funds from interested donors for endowments, to support scholarships, professorships, chairs and programs;
▪ Demonstrated sustained success in building partnerships and relationships across academic disciplines, administrative units and with external communities;
▪ A commitment to enhancing racial, ethnic and gender diversity in the student body and faculty; demonstrated commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive environment;
▪ Experience implementing interprofessional educational activities.
▪ Recognized as a forward-thinking, inclusive and creative leader.

Personal Characteristics

▪ A leader who can establish an inspiring vision for the future of the School and nursing, and who is committed to the missions of the college and university, to growing and developing faculty, staff and students, and is aligned with achieving prestige through the success of the School, college and university;
▪ A persuasive communicator with strong interpersonal skills who is an empathic, respectful listener who can create an atmosphere that allows individuals to flourish within the context of the health affairs strategic pillars. Works effectively with individuals at all levels within UCI and can identify and align key stakeholders;
▪ A diplomat who demonstrates a collaborative approach in working closely with members of the School and other constituents, including administration within the university, as well as outside organizations and individuals; an effective consensus builder and team player;
▪ A skilled negotiator and self-confident individual who is not afraid of criticism or challenge and can effectively manage conflict; is able to work with multiple stakeholders to achieve a common goal;
▪ A decision-maker with a commitment to achieve set goals and to establish a culture of responsibility and fairness;
▪ A confident manager and team builder with strong organizational and business skills who knows how to achieve goals in complex, evolving environments;
▪ A mentor with strong coaching skills to nurture the development of faculty into accomplished educators, practitioners and researchers;
▪ An educator who enjoys interchange with students and faculty;
▪ An individual of the utmost integrity with high levels of energy, maturity and flexibility and a reputation for fairness and idealism;
▪ A builder of organizations, teams and programs; a developer and promoter of the strengths of the school and of individual colleagues.

Procedure for Candidacy

All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a CV or resume, a diversity statement and a letter of interest addressing the themes in this profile.

WittKieffer is assisting UCI in this search. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by March 22, 2021.

Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s candidate portal Applicants in the WittKieffer portal will receive further instructions for applying directly to UCI at

Nominations and inquiries can be directed to:
Zachary A. Smith, Ph.D. and Claudia Teschky

The University of California, Irvine is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer advancing inclusive excellence. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy. The recipient of an NSF ADVANCE award for gender equity, UCI is responsive to the needs of dual career couples, supports work-life balance through an array of family-friendly policies, and is dedicated to broadening participation in higher education.

Application Requirements

Document requirements
  • Curriculum Vitae - Your most recently updated C.V.
  • Cover Letter
  • Statement of Research (Optional)
  • Teaching Statement - See our guidance for writing a reflective teaching statement.
  • (Optional)
  • Inclusive Excellence Activities Statement - Statement addressing how past and/or potential contributions to inclusive excellence will advance UCI's Commitment to Inclusive Excellence. See our guidance for writing an inclusive excellence activities statement.
  • Misc / Additional (Optional)
Job location
  • Irvine

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