THE OPPORTUNITY

Swarthmore College is a highly selective college of liberal arts and engineering located in suburban Philadelphia, just 11 miles outside of the city. The College’s idyllic 425-acre arboretum campus features rolling lawns, a creek, wooded hills, and hiking trails. The College champions diversity and inclusivity across its campus community and beyond, and it is strongly committed to making education accessible; students who attend Swarthmore are admitted regardless of their demonstrated financial need. With nearly 50 programs of study and the opportunity for students to design their own major, Swarthmore offers more than 600 courses on campus each year. Swarthmore maintains 194 full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty; sustains a student-faculty ratio of 8:1; houses 95 percent of its 1,640 students on campus in 18 residence halls; and maintains 20 NCAA Division III varsity sports teams.

The Position

ROLE OF THE ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC SAFETY FOR OPERATIONS

Reporting to the director of public safety, the associate director of public safety for operations oversees and manages the daily operations for a world class department of public safety, and actively collaborates with the associate director for community engagement and professional standards on the department’s community engagement efforts that protect the safety and security of the students, faculty, staff, and visitors to Swarthmore College. The associate director, under the leadership of the director, administers all safety and security operations for the College, including emergency management and physical asset protection; oversees campus security patrol, the communications center, incident investigation, crime prevention, parking enforcement, and shuttle service; provides 24-hour administrative coverage of all incidents and activities that may occur; and serves as second-in-command and in place of the director in their absence. Additionally, the associate director liaisons, collaborates and works closely with the leadership of a variety of campus departments, including the dean of students and the dean’s staff, Facilities Services, and off-campus resources, to promote the continuous improvement of safety protocols and emergency preparedness and management efforts.

Additionally, the associate director, in conjunction with the director, promotes effective training, professional development, and compliance programs for staff; coordinates the activities of the Department’s personnel for all special events, security services, and departmental assessments to ensure operational efficiency; collaborates closely with the department’s leadership team to leverage existing state-of-the-art technology and implement new systems and technologies to better enhance the safety of the community; and manages the command of major incidents, emergency situations, and special events. The associate director works in close collaboration with borough, county, state, and federal law enforcement agencies and other safety and security services on a range of activities, including response to accidents, medical or fire emergencies, and requests for assistance. The associate director supervises six direct reports, a total staff of 40, and 10-15 student employees.

This position is responsible for helping to ensure the Department’s capacity to foster a deep connection with members of the campus community and focus on providing service to and taking care of its constituents through a community caretaking approach to public safety. The associate director serves in a critical leadership role with planning, developing, and implementing strategic initiatives and programs that improve operational synergies and leverage talent throughout the department. The individual in this role also initiates community partnerships, student collaboration, and an active recruiting plan for a diverse work force.

HISTORY OF THE POSITION

The Swarthmore College Department of Public Safety has had two associate director positions since 2013. At that time, one associate director was tasked with managing the daily operations of the department, while the other served as the Title IX investigator. The institution hired a new Title IX coordinator in the summer 2018, and with the restructure, investigations were moved to that department; thus, that associate director was moved from Public Safety to the Office of the General Counsel. With the transition, Swarthmore evaluated the former associate director position and determined that a combination of policing and outreach was a strong need, with an individual in that role who could also function as an accreditation manager (the institution initiated an accreditation process through IACLEA in 2018). Subsequently, the position was reimagined as the associate director of public safety for community engagement and professional standards. As the department was poised to begin hiring for the position, the associate director of public safety for operations resigned to pursue a career with a training company in the United Emirates. This situation left two command-level vacancies, with the search for the operations position now being conducted (the search for the community engagement and professional standards will follow shortly).

OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES

The associate director of public safety for operations must possess a broad and deep understanding of national best practices with regard to field operations, staff development, change management, and strategic visioning in an unsworn and unarmed public safety setting on small, private college campus. The associate director should be an experienced leader capable of managing complex situations and staffing, unwaveringly committed to customer service at the highest level, possessing a deep understanding of current issues in community policing, and equipped to contribute at both a strategic and operational level at a distinguished private liberal arts institution.

The Swarthmore College stakeholders seemed genuinely interested in participating in discussions about the associate director for operations position, and there was a sense of unity in support of identifying a competent and visionary individual who can promote and develop the staff/team, set departmental priorities, and work in tandem with the director of public safety, the upper administration, and the other staff in the department to progressively, innovatively, and comprehensively move the program forward. The following were identified as possible opportunities, priorities, and challenges that will face the new associate director for operations at Swarthmore College:

  • It will be essential that the new associate director of public safety for operations commit to a comprehensive culture of collaboration and partnering, as well as clear and transparent communication within the Department of Public Safety and across campus for maximum effectiveness. Swarthmore College is committed to building strong, healthy, and mutually supportive relationships as a foundation of the campus culture, and strong collaboration is an absolute necessity in all endeavors to ensure success. Public Safety touches a vast number of entities, including students, faculty, administration, departments, and community members, so it will be crucial that the new associate director quickly reach out across each of these areas to build solid and mutually beneficial relationships that foster ongoing positive interactions, support the director and his initiatives, and act as a “connector” and “face” of the department in all instances. These connections are absolutely essential in order to assess the real needs of constituents, provide exceptional programs and services for the campus community, and ensure that Public Safety is known for its customer- and student-centered approach at all times.
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion are important parts of the Swarthmore College community, and the associate director for operations should be a leader in supporting, understanding, embracing, and nurturing these concepts. There are a large number of underrepresented populations within the institution, and the Department of Public Safety needs to be a model for maintaining a strong sense of equity and an unbiased, supportive environment at all times.
  • The scope of responsibilities of the position is wide, and the new associate director will need to quickly assess the needs, learn the staff, and develop a comprehensive list of priorities in order to be successful. This is an outstanding opportunity for the successful candidate to put their own professional mark on the Department of Public Safety and build it to an even higher level, as there is tremendous support from the director of public safety and others in administration to develop and manage a dynamic and forward-thinking program. As priorities are developed and plans are initiated, the associate director should be prepared to identify programs and services that are working well, as well as those areas that are not as efficient or effective, and be willing to enhance and sunset programs as necessary.
  • In addition to the associate director for operations, the Department of Public Safety will also soon be searching for an associate director of public safety for community engagement and professional standards, whose main responsibilities include oversight of the department’s community outreach programs, student employment initiatives, and professional standards, as well as serving as point-person for the department’s IACLEA accreditation, Clery compliance, and other professional organizational compliance standards. Together, the two associate directors of public safety will support the director and the overall mission of the department as the functional leadership team, allowing the director to focus more specifically on strategic visioning and other campus-wide initiatives. The associate director for operations will serve as second-in-command, as acting director in the absence of the director, and in collaborative support of the community engagement activities of the other associate director.
  • The current staff reporting to the associate director for operations are extremely committed to the vision of a strong and supportive team, and they are dedicated to offering the best service possible to the Swarthmore community. The staff works hard and the new associate director should make it a priority to quickly get to know the staff on all shifts as individuals, learn their particular needs, develop trust and confidence across the board, ascertain and understand the various responsibilities they perform and roles they play, be available at all times, and be prepared to provide comprehensive professional support for all staff and oversee the ongoing development of a strong team. This is, in part, to support retention goals, but is also desired as a way to provide continuing emphasis on increasing officers’ knowledge and skills of best practices in higher education policing, as well as general professional development aspirations.
  • Event and emergency management is a significant portion of the role of Swarthmore’s Department of Public Safety. From athletic events to concerts, speakers, and festivals, the associate director for operations provides direction and has key liaison relationships with numerous College offices and local boroughs to ensure safe and well-managed events, as well as oversight for emergency operations in all instances.
  • Swarthmore’s geographic location in the suburbs of Philadelphia and nearby Washington, D.C. and New York City provide easy access to many opportunities that large, metropolitan cities offer, while still residing in a smaller, close-knit community. Across the board, stakeholders reiterated that they liked working at Swarthmore, are very supportive of each other, enjoy the vibrancy of the College, feel much collegiality, and believe that there are many opportunities to make a big difference in the associate director role. Additionally, the Swarthmore community, which sports one of the top public school systems in Pennsylvania, is very welcoming to new members, is very involved with the campus, and remains very open and inviting to town-gown relationships.
  • Community policing is an area of key importance at Swarthmore, and the new associate director for operations must prioritize this area at all times, remaining approachable, relatable, and credible to the student body and the wider campus population. While community policing has long been a standard at Swarthmore, a review of the current operational plan should be conducted in a way that includes officers and command staff within Public Safety as future needs and steps are discussed, ensuring the process becomes even more formalized and professionalized. In doing so, trust in the Department of Public Safety will be strengthened and confidence in their efforts will be enhanced.
  • Students at Swarthmore College are highly engaged, hyper-involved, and often activist in nature, with social justice being at the center, and the College supports students in these activities. However, at the same time, it is also of prime importance to ensure the students’ (as well as the rest of the campus community’s) safety and security in all instances, so an understanding of this type of student culture and effective ways to support and protect them will be extremely beneficial to the successful candidate.
  • This is an exciting time to join Swarthmore College and an outstanding opportunity for the successful candidate to put their own professional mark on the Department of Public Safety, building it to an even higher level. There is tremendous support from the administration for the associate director and the services that emanate from this office, so the successful candidate can look forward to visioning and strategizing with the director of public safety, the associate director of public safety for community engagement and professional standards, and the public safety staff to move the Department of Public Safety forward over time.

MEASURES OF SUCCESS

At an appropriate interval after joining the Swarthmore College, the items listed below will initially define success for the new associate director of public safety for operations:

  • The public safety staff is working together cohesively as a team, morale is high and rising, staff vacancies are being filled as quickly as possible, training goals are being consistently met, and professional development opportunities are being undertaken.
  • Communication from the department is timely, robust, and transparent around issues relating to safety, security, emergency preparedness, and other issues pertinent to students, faculty, and staff.
  • The image of the Department of Public Safety and the trust relationship between the department and the campus is improving, particularly in the eyes of the students, and the associate director is recognized across campus as competent, helpful, and an advocate and supporter of students.
  • Strong relationships have been established, both internally and externally, especially with the public safety staff, academic and administrative departments, student organizations, and the upper administration.
  • Responsiveness to safety issues is timely, proactive, and consistent.

QUALIFICATIONS AND CHARACTERISTICS

The successful candidate will possess a bachelor’s degree (master’s degree preferred), with 7 to 10 years of progressively responsible public safety experience, including 5 years at a management and supervisory level, preferably in a higher education setting, or an equivalent combination of experience and education. The associate director for operations will be a highly collaborative manager and leader with outstanding interpersonal, oral, and written communications skills, as well as a proven ability to inspire and build relationships, trust, and credibility. The successful candidate will bring a strong record of achievement in the fields of safety and security and embrace the Department and College’s commitment to a community caretaking/engagement philosophy around public safety and the significant dedication of time and energy that requires. They will also demonstrate a commitment to fostering an inclusive environment and a proven ability to work effectively in a richly diverse community and with individuals at all levels of an organization.

In addition to the minimum academic and experiential requirements indicated above, other desired characteristics, skills, actions, and/or abilities noted from discussions with campus stakeholders include the following:

  • a progressive background in campus or municipal law enforcement, with demonstrated experience in community policing concepts;
  • strong managerial and field operations skills in a law enforcement environment;
  • strong leadership and organizational development abilities that inspire and develop staff, providing professional and personal development opportunities and promoting unity and teamwork throughout the operations areas of Public Safety;
  • demonstrated collaboration skills with internal departments and external colleagues, with the ability to understand the importance of interconnectedness and partnerships;
  • an innovator with a futuristic orientation and a willingness to try new opportunities, remain informed on new trends and best practices, and lead significant change processes;
  • an open and transparent communicator with excellent listening skills;
  • demonstrated skills as an advocate and champion for diversity, equity, inclusivity, accessibility, and social justice, along with a willingness to stand up for these values and have an understanding of the intersectionality of a diverse campus population;
  • the ability to multitask, adapt rapidly to changing situations, and be solutions-oriented at all times;
  • emotional intelligence;
  • a student-centered service mentality;
  • experience with and training on mental health, de-escalation, and bias issues is highly desirable;
  • demonstrated ability to delegate effectively and empower staff to conduct their daily responsibilities;
  • accessibility, approachability, consistency, and relatability with internal staff and external stakeholders;
  • a working knowledge of current and trending information technology and systems and the ability to partner effectively with the Information Technology Department in implementing effective technology solutions;
  • a strategic thinker who can develop both short- and long-term plans around the needs of the department; formulate strategic, assessment, and operational plans; and effectively implement those plans in tandem with the director and other associate director;
  • an understanding of the culture at a small private liberal arts college and a buy-in for the academic mission;
  • energy and enthusiasm for the role, passion for the work, a positive attitude, a personable and approachable demeanor, charisma, and the ability to have fun on the job, even in the face of adversity;
  • ability to instill a culture of high-end customer service, including timely responsiveness to campus needs;
  • ability to listen carefully, ask knowledgeable questions, learn the culture of the College and the department, accept input from others, respect differing opinions, and then make well-informed decisions that are best for the Swarthmore community;
  • possess problem solving skills, with the ability to determine needs, address issues, assess policies and procedures, streamline processes, and manage change effectively;
  • knowledge of the nuances and intricacies of a sanctuary campus;
  • in-depth knowledge of emergency management preparation, physical security, and records management; and
  • the ability to make difficult decisions when necessary, to conduct difficult conversations when pertinent, to listen to all sides of an issue, to balance the needs of the people with the needs of the organization, and to be resilient at all times regardless of the circumstances.

THE INSTITUTION DIVISION/DEPARTMENT: AN OVERVIEW

An Overview of the Division of Finance and Administration

Mission

The Finance and Administration Division oversees the financial planning activities and results of the College and ensures that the College has the appropriate financial and physical infrastructure, services, and oversight to support the academic mission of the College.

Goals

Ensure the financial resiliency of the College through oversight, care, and custody of all funds held by the College, including endowment, operating cash, gift planning assets, and retirement plan assets [Investment Office]

Provide the College community diversified business services, including processing financial transactions and protecting monetary assets by maintaining a robust control environment [Business Office]

Provide students with access to financial resources to make up the difference between the direct and indirect costs of annual attendance and what students, and their parents, are able to contribute [Financial Aid]

Conduct research to support effective planning, assessment, and decision-making across the College [Institutional Research]

Manage the general legal affairs of the College, and evaluate and monitor institutional risks.  [General Counsel]

Ensure a safe campus for the entire community through patrol, emergency response, crime prevention education, and individual safety escort.  [Public Safety]

Plan, construct, manage, and maintain Swarthmore’s buildings, grounds (gardens, lawns, athletic fields, and natural woodlands), housing units, and infrastructure (electricity, sanitary, water, data infrastructure, heating and cooling plants including distribution and energy management) with attention to environmental sustainability [Facilities Management]

Provide a range of additional services that enhance the quality of campus life for students, faculty, and staff, including dining, OneCard, Campus and Community Store, post office, print services, event management and non-academic summer programs, and operations of the Inn at Swarthmore [Auxiliary Services]

Leadership of the Division of Finance and Administration

Gregory Brown – Vice President for Finance and Administration and Treasurer

Gregory Brown joined the Swarthmore community on June 15, 2014.

“Greg brings extraordinary experience with him to the College, serving with distinction for 15 years as a financial executive in higher education, and before that as controller for the City of New Haven, Connecticut,” said then-President Rebecca Chopp. “In each of these institutions, Greg has gained an extensive background in the financial administration of complex, global institutions. He has also earned a reputation for being an intellect, a highly collaborative campus partner, and an excellent communicator.”

“I am delighted by the opportunity to join the Swarthmore community in this new role and to helping the campus move forward with its ambitious plans for the future,” says Brown. “I am grateful to the search committee and all of the members of the campus community who were involved in the recruitment process. Their enthusiasm about the institution and their warm hospitality greatly increased my interest in coming to Swarthmore. I look forward to becoming a part of the vibrant Swarthmore community.”

Prior to joining the Swarthmore administration, Brown was the chief operating officer at Barnard College, a position he had held for the previous eight years. At Barnard, Brown was responsible for finance and planning, information technology, general counsel, facilities, public safety, dining services, and capital planning. He was the sponsor of “Taking Care of Barnard,” which realigned Barnard’s administrative systems, campus networks, and computer support services. He was the architect of a streamlined system of financial reporting to the Board of Trustees and an improved budgeting process. Under Brown’s guidance, Barnard was able to construct and finance a mixed-use facility in the height of the financial crisis. As a testament to his devotion to liberal education, Brown led an academic space planning process and chaired a campus-wide steering committee for the creation of a new teaching and learning center. Brown also worked closely with the Student Government Association to establish the Financial Advisory Council to explore financial matters of interest to the student body. As a result of his efforts, the Student Government Association named Brown the Administrator of the Year in 2012.

“Greg’s experience, expertise, and style are a wonderful fit for us,” says Elizabeth Vallen, professor of biology and a member of the search committee. “He is clearly enthusiastic about and committed to working with faculty, students, and staff to understand and align institutional priorities with responsible financial decisions. Greg’s knowledge about the strengths of and challenges to liberal arts education in general, and to Swarthmore in particular, were impressive, as was his ability to communicate clearly to all of the committee members.”

Prior to Barnard, Brown worked at Yale University, the University of California-Berkeley and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion.

“Amongst a number of strong candidates Greg clearly stood out in our search for a new vice president for finance and administration,” says Koof Kalkstein ‘78, also a search committee member and a member of the Board of Managers. “His extensive experience in a similar role at Barnard College, guiding their finances and operations through both the Great Recession and years of growth and renewal, gives me confidence in his ability to help lead the College in the years ahead. Greg’s collegial style and inclusive approach to working with teams will fit marvelously with our community.”

Brown, who received a bachelor of arts from Wesleyan University and a master of public administration from the University of New Haven, is joined at the College by his husband, Linton Stables.

Organizational Chart for the Division of Finance and Administration

Finance and Administration Organizational Chart
Click to Enlarge

Public Safety Department

Public Safety’s mission and responsibility is to work in partnership with the Swarthmore College community to provide a safe and secure learning, living, and working environment. The department endeavors to foster an atmosphere in which officers provide a prompt, professional presence in order to remain aware of and responsive to the diverse community in which they serve, while justly enforcing the rules and regulations of the College and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Swarthmore’s Public Safety Department operates 24/7/365 and is fully committed to providing a safe and healthy campus for the entire community. Public Safety is the first contact and first responder for all campus emergencies.

The Department of Public Safety is comprised of a director, an associate director for operations and an associate director for community engagement and professional standards, a security systems and training administrator, two sergeants, two corporals, eight full-time and five part-time patrol officers, and two full-time and four part-time communications officers. Patrol officers undergo a background check, psychological screening, and physical examination.

Public Safety officers enforce college policies and regulations. Current certification in cardio-pulmonary resuscitation, obstructed airway, standard first aid and automatic external defibrillators is minimally required of all patrol officers. Some officers have advanced medical certifications. Ongoing training is provided for all full time officers. Officers have received a variety of training and certifications, such as ASIS Private Security Officer Course, PA Act 235, and PA Act 120.

When a Swarthmore College student is involved in an off-campus offense, Public Safety officers may assist with the investigation in cooperation with local, county, state, or federal law enforcement agencies.

Local jurisdiction is shared with Swarthmore Borough Police Department, with whom a close working relationship is maintained. Pennsylvania State Police and/or the Delaware County Criminal Investigation Unit will assist Swarthmore Borough Police in most serious campus investigations. The Department of Public Safety typically plays a supportive role in these instances.

Campus officers also enforce College rules and regulations. Swarthmore College is considered private property and trespassers are escorted off campus or arrested.

Organizational Chart for the Department of Public Safety

Institution & Location

INSTITUTION: AN OVERVIEW

Institutional Background/History

Swarthmore College is a private liberal arts college in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1864, by members of the Religious Society of Friends (aka Quakers), with its first classes being held in 1869, Swarthmore was one of the earliest coeducational colleges in the United States. It was established to be a college “…under the care of Friends, at which an education may be obtained equal to that of the best institutions of learning in our country.” By 1906, Swarthmore had dropped its religious affiliation and became officially non-sectarian.

Swarthmore is a member of the Tri-College Consortium along with Bryn Mawr and Haverford College, a cooperative academic arrangement between the three schools. Swarthmore is also affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania through the Quaker Consortium, which allows for students to cross-register for classes at all four institutions. Swarthmore offers over 600 courses a year in more than 40 areas of study, including an ABET accredited engineering program which culminates with a Bachelor of Science in engineering. Swarthmore has a variety of sporting teams with a total of 22 Division III Varsity Intercollegiate Sports Teams and competes in the Centennial Conference, a group of private colleges in Pennsylvania and Maryland.

Despite the school’s small size, Swarthmore alumni have attained prominence in a broad range of fields. Graduates include five Nobel Prize winners (as of 2016, the third-highest number of Nobel Prize winners per graduate in the U.S.), 11 MacArthur Foundation fellows, 30 Rhodes Scholars, 27 Truman Scholars, 10 Marshall Scholars, 201 Fulbright Grantees, and many noteworthy figures in law, art, science, academia, business, politics, and other fields.

About Swarthmore, Pennsylvania

Swarthmore is a borough in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Swarthmore was originally named “Westdale” in honor of noted painter Benjamin West, who was one of the early residents of the town. The name was changed to “Swarthmore” after the establishment of Swarthmore College. The borough population was 6,194 as of the 2010 census.

The borough was originally part of Springfield Township and grew up around Swarthmore College, which was founded in 1864. The advent of passenger rail service from Philadelphia in the 1880s greatly enhanced the desirability of the borough as a commuter suburb, and the borough was incorporated in 1893.

The Ogden House and Benjamin West Birthplace are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Mission

Swarthmore students are expected to prepare themselves for full, balanced lives as individuals and as responsible citizens through exacting intellectual study supplemented by a varied program of sports and other extracurricular activities. The purpose of Swarthmore College is to make its students more valuable human beings and more useful members of society. Although it shares this purpose with other educational institutions, each school, college, and university seeks to realize that purpose in its own way. Swarthmore seeks to help its students realize their full intellectual and personal potential combined with a deep sense of ethical and social concern.

Strategic Planning

To read about Swarthmore’s strategic planning direction:

https://www.swarthmore.edu/strategic-directions

Leadership

Dr. Valerie Smith – President

Valerie Smith, a distinguished scholar of African-American literature, is the 15th president of Swarthmore College. Smith’s significant priorities at Swarthmore include attracting more low-income and first-generation students, innovating the curriculum, increasing diversity, and strengthening relationships between the College and the region. Under Smith, the College has been a leader in sustainability initiatives such as carbon pricing. She has also led the charge to reimagine numerous spaces on campus and invest in new facilities such as Maxine Frank Singer Hall.

President Smith began her career in higher education in 1980 at Princeton, where she rose through the ranks from an instructor to an associate professor of English and Afro-American Studies. In 1989, she joined the faculty at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) as first an associate professor, then professor of English, and eventually serving as chair of UCLA’s Interdepartmental Program in African-American Studies. She returned to Princeton in 2001 as the Woodrow Wilson Professor of Literature and Professor of English and African American Studies. She later served as founding director of the Center for African American Studies and the dean of the college, the position she held before arriving at Swarthmore in 2015.

President Smith is the recipient of fellowships from the Fletcher Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. She also received the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching at Princeton in 2009.

President Smith is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Bates College and holds MA and PhD degrees from the University of Virginia. She is the author of more than 40 articles and three books on African-American literature, culture, film, and photography, and is the editor or co-editor of seven volumes. Her most recent publications are Toni Morrison: Writing the Moral Imagination; The Norton Anthology of African-American Literature (third edition), edited with Henry Louis Gates Jr.; and Race and Real Estate, edited with Adrienne Brown.

Smith has served on the boards of Bates College, the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, and the McCarter Theater Center, and on the editorial boards of Women’s Studies Quarterly, Criticism, and African American Review. She is currently a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves on the boards of Second Nature and Fulbright Canada. Under her leadership, the College is in the midst of a $450 million comprehensive campaign, Changing Lives, Changing the World.

Dr. Sarah Willie-LeBreton – Provost

President Valerie Smith announced that Professor of Sociology Sarah Willie-LeBreton had been selected as the College’s next provost on February 26, 2018.

A member of the Swarthmore community since 1997 and chair of the Sociology and Anthropology Department since 2013, Willie-LeBreton assumed the position on July 1, 2018. She succeeded Tom Stephenson, who returned to the Chemistry Department as a full-time faculty member.

In her message to the community, Smith said that Willie-LeBreton “brings experience, enthusiasm, compassion, and outstanding judgment to this critical position,” and that she “understands both the academic and community values that define Swarthmore.”

In her 20 years at the College, Willie-LeBreton has compiled an impressive list of accomplishments. She served as associate provost from 2005 to 2008; chaired the President’s Task Force on Sexual Misconduct in 2013-14; and was the coordinator of the Black Studies Program from 1998-2005, 2010-11, and 2013-14.

“Swarthmore’s excellence is the result of many partnerships among faculty, staff, administrators, and students,” says Willie-LeBreton. “I look forward to fostering those relationships while advancing the academic mission as we continue to provide Swarthmore students with an extraordinary education for a complex world.”

As a scholar, Willie-LeBreton’s interests include higher education, social inequality, social theory, African-American culture, and work and occupations. She has taught courses on African American culture, race, racism, and social inequality. A self-described applied sociologist, Willie-LeBreton has worked with a variety of groups on inclusivity and justice initiatives. She is the author of Acting Black: College, Identity and the Performance of Race (2003), a study of college-educated African Americans in the post-civil rights movement era, and editor of and contributor to Transforming the Academy: Faculty Perspectives on Diversity and Pedagogy (2016).

Willie-LeBreton graduated from Haverford College in 1986 and received her PhD from Northwestern University in 1995.

The provost is the principal academic officer of the College, overseeing the curriculum and the faculty. All academic departments report to the Provost, as do the Library, Athletics, and Information Technology Services. The Provost chairs the Council on Educational Policy and the Curriculum Committee and is a member of the Committee on Faculty Procedures and the Committee on Promotion and Tenure, among others. The Provost also works with department chairs on appointments, reappointments, and tenure and promotion decisions; develops budgets for the academic programs; provides faculty with opportunities for professional development as scholars and teachers; and proposes, evaluates, and implements curricular changes.

Academic Programs and Faculty

Swarthmore offers more than 40 courses of study, and provides the opportunity for students to design their own major. More than 600 courses are offered on campus each year.

A cohort of students choose to pursue their degree through the College’s Honors Program, unique in the U.S., which emphasizes independent learning in small seminar classes and culminates with oral and written tests given by external examiners who are experts in their field.

Swarthmore has 187 full-time tenure and tenure-track faculty. 99 percent of full-time faculty have a terminal degree in their field.

The student to faculty ratio is 8:1.

The Student Body

Total enrollment is 1,641, 809 male and 832 female.

Geographic Distribution of Students:

  • International:13%
  • Midwest: 9%
  • Middle Atlantic: 35%
  • Mountain States: 2%
  • New England: 10%
  • Southeast: 9%
  • Southwest: 4%
  • West: 15%
  • S. Territories: <1%

Racial and Ethnic Identity of Students:

  • African American: 6%
  • American Indian/Native Alaskan: <1%
  • Asian: 17%
  • Hispanic: 13%
  • Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander: 0%
  • International Students: 11%
  • Race and ethnicity unknown/unreported: 3%
  • Two or more Races: 8%
  • White: 42%

Enrollment Information for the Class of 2022:

  • Number of Applicants: 10,749
  • Number of Students Admitted: 1,016
  • Number of Students Enrolled: 422

Benefits Overview

As an employee of Swarthmore College, you have the following benefits, among others, available to you:

  • Medical insurance
  • Dental insurance
  • Vision insurance
  • Disability programs
  • Long term care
  • Retirement plans
  • Flexible spending accounts
  • Life insurance
  • Tuition programs
  • Leave plans
  • Employee assistance program

Application & Nomination

Review of applications will begin January 31, 2020, and will continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position may be emailed to J. Scott Derrick at jsd@spelmanjohnson.com. Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Swarthmore College website at www.swarthmore.edu

Swarthmore College actively seeks and welcomes applications from candidates with exceptional qualifications, particularly those with demonstrable commitments to a more inclusive society and world. Swarthmore College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.