George Mason University (Mason) is Virginia’s largest public research university and is setting the benchmark for a bold, progressive education that serves the needs of its students and communities. Located in the heart of northern Virginia’s technology corridor near Washington, D.C., Mason prepares its students to succeed in the workforce and to meet the needs of the region and the world. Enrollment is nearly 37,000, with students studying in 200 degree programs at the undergraduate, master’s, doctoral, and professional levels. Mason is a distributed university with campuses in Fairfax, Arlington, and Prince William counties. In addition to these three campuses, Mason operates a site in Loudoun County and has partnered with the Smithsonian Institution to offer a Global Conservation Studies Program at the Smithsonian Conservation and Research Center in Front Royal, VA. Mason also offers programs online. Each Mason location has a distinctive academic focus that plays a critical role in the economy of its region.

The Position

Reporting to the Provost, the Associate Provost for Institutional Research and Effectiveness will lead the university’s data analytics and research, as well as institutional effectiveness and assessment activities, and provide key support for enrollment management as well as institutional resource planning and analysis. This individual will ensure that enterprise data is collected accurately, analyzed rigorously, used appropriately, and shared with key stakeholders to make data-driven or evidence-based decisions.

Responsibilities of the Position

The Associate Provost will integrate critical functions in institutional research and institutional assessment to meet changing needs in dynamic regional and national higher education markets. The incumbent will manage institutional data for a wide range of uses: budgeting and financial planning, enrollment projections, scorecards for productivity analyses, student retention and success, federal and state reporting, regional and specialty accreditation reporting, assessment of student learning outcomes, program outcomes, salary analyses, and other projects. As co-chair of the Data Stewardship and Business Intelligence Steering Committees, the incumbent will shape the use of data as a key influencer of University planning and decision support. The Associate Provost will manage an operation that must both meet new institutional challenges for analytics and continuing responsibilities in assessment, in addition to institutional reporting to regulatory bodies.

Required Qualifications

A master’s degree in a related field of study is required and the ideal candidate will possess both the capacity to understand how data systems interact with multiple institutional functions, and the managerial expertise to collaboratively devise solutions to meet multiple needs. In addition, the incumbent will:

  • demonstrate a sophisticated understanding of effective, appropriate and rigorous institutional research and assessment in the current higher education context;
  • demonstrate leadership and management skills, a capacity to work and communicate productively with multiple stakeholders and perspectives to collaboratively address complex data and analysis needs;
  • be flexible, intellectually curious, and able to manage details and big ideas concurrently;
  • have the ability to collect and analyze data, to build effective partnerships, and collaborate across the institution to help forge the consensus needed to advance the University’s mission;
  • have proven skills in working with senior leadership, while demonstrating integrity, credibility, sound judgment, and tact;
  • have the ability to translate data analysis into usable information for decision-making and policy analysis;
  • be skilled in best practices using technology for data analysis and communicating results; and
  • maintain a strong commitment to customer service and possess the ability to prioritize.

Preferred Qualifications

A doctoral degree in a related field of study is preferred.

Characteristics of the Successful Candidate

In addition to the stated qualifications for the Associate Provost position, stakeholders indicated that the following skills would be expected of the Associate Provost:

  • experience with accrediting agencies; experience with SACS would be a plus;
  • demonstrated expertise in statistical analysis software such as SAS, SPSS, and STATA;
  • a working knowledge of data warehouse, data governance, and business intelligence concepts and principles;
  • advanced, multivariate statistical analysis techniques and demonstrated competency in working with relational database systems, such as Banner.

Personal characteristics that would enhance the likelihood of success for the new Associate Provost include the following:

  • very strong communication skills and a desire to be highly collaborative with all GMU constituents;
  • a desire to be proactive in the building of coalitions and to respond positively and on a timely basis to requests for data and reports;
  • a sophisticated understanding and the political savvy to really talk through requests for data and research from individuals and departments;
  • an understanding that data is not just numbers but the ability to connect numbers to people;
  • a transparent leader who will collaborate with all constituents to project and realize the anticipated growth at GMU through “Smart Growth” goals;
  • an enthusiastic leader who can spread the enthusiasm for data gathering and analysis, converse with colleagues about their data requests, and assist them in determining how best to tell the story they are trying to tell with their data;
  • a proactive change manager who will strive to present data to answer multiple questions;
  • a political savviness and able to diplomatically push back as needed in order to best serve all constituents;
  • a “can do” attitude and willingness to assist colleagues with forecasting and predictive modeling;
  • passionate about GMU’s mission and goals;
  • a leader who can integrate research with decision-making and empower people to gather the data;
  • aware of current trends and issues in higher education;
  • exhibiting perseverance and endurance and possessing a long-term vision;
  • an active learner and listener who will ensure that all constituents are on the same page;
  • able to articulate the needs of the office;
  • a proactive leader  who will utilize the new tools to their fullest to complete the myriad of new initiatives continuously coming down the pike at GMU;
  • a very strong ethical core as well as the ability to manage up;
  • solutions-oriented, with the ability to determine who should have information;
  • comfortable working in a resource-constrained environment, with the ability to orchestrate the continuing demands for projects, requests and reporting needs;
  • respectful of data integrity and the necessity for data to be official;
  • nimble and responsive to emerging technology;
  • inquisitive, organized and appreciative of the current team and exhibiting patience by understanding the programmatic structure and complexity of GMU;
  • willing to be an evangelist for the sharing of data; and will work to bridge the academic and administrative sides of the institution; and
  • possessing emotional intelligence and a sense of humor.

History of the Position

The former Associate Provost for Institutional Research and Effectiveness left GMU for another institution after approximately three years in the position. During this time, the Institutional Research and Assessment areas were combined to create the Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness.

The former Associate Provost was instrumental in moving GMU to a new data gathering approach. Collaboration on data governance with the Vice President/CIO was and continues to be a priority for this position, which is currently being managed by an Interim Associate Provost as the search is in process. With a five to six-year intentional growth initiative (“Smart Growth”) in place and a SACS ten-year re-accreditation planning process beginning this fall, institutional stakeholders are keenly invested in the process for the selection of the next Associate Provost.

Likely Opportunities, Priorities, and Challenges of the Position

It was articulated by several stakeholders that this key position will require extensive knowledge in data analysis and reporting; however, there are highly qualified staff members who can perform the tasks. The associate provost should be a visionary who reaches out to the greater GMU community, one who is a strategic thinker and manager who has the ability to connect people and to connect the data with an approach that is welcoming and confident in order to teach the constituents about the importance and validity of the data. The service function of the office is of critical importance, and success in this position will be reliant upon an individual’s ability to lead the entire team to be responsive to all units requesting information, including internal constituents as well as external regulatory and accrediting agencies.

An Overview of the Department of Institutional Research and Effectiveness

Reporting to the Associate Provost are an Operations and Communications Manager as well as two Assistant Provosts – one who oversees Institutional Research and one who oversees Institutional Effectiveness. Reporting to the two assistant provosts are ten professional staff members.

Institution & Location

Institutional Background

As Virginia’s largest public university, George Mason University is setting the gold standard for the modern public university. Its dynamic culture and innovative academic programs prepare Mason’s hard-working students for 21st-century careers. Its commitment to teaching excellence combines with cutting-edge research that enriches the academic experience and is changing the world. George Mason is affordable, yet offers high value. Ideally located in the National Capital region, the university provides students with opportunities to enjoy terrific cultural experiences and access to the most sought-after internships and employers in the country.

George Mason, for whom the university is named, was one of the greatest of the founding fathers of the United States. Mason drafted the Virginia Declaration of Rights, which became a model for the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights. Perhaps the most well-known landmark on the Fairfax Campus, the George Mason Bronze is located between the Johnson Center and the Performing Arts Building. Created by internationally known artist Wendy M. Ross, it is the first three-dimensional rendering of George Mason in the United States. The statue is a constant reminder of the ideals most important to both the man and the university: freedom and learning.

The university is known for its strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, dance, organizational psychology, and health care. Mason students are routinely recognized with national and international scholarships. Enrollment is more than 37,000, with students studying in 177 degree programs at the undergraduate, master’s, doctoral, and professional levels. Mason professors conduct groundbreaking research in areas such as cancer, climate change, information technology, and the biosciences; and Mason’s Center for the Arts brings world-renowned artists, musicians, and actors to its stage.

Mason is a distributed university with campuses in Fairfax, Arlington, and Prince William counties. In addition to these three campuses, George Mason operates a site in Loudoun County, Incheon, South Korea,  and has partnered with the Smithsonian Institute to offer a Global Conservation Studies Program at the Conservation and Research Center in Front Royal. The university also offers programs online and at the Center for Innovative Technology in Herndon. Each location has a distinctive academic focus that plays a critical role in the economy of its region.

Fairfax, Virginia

Less than 20 miles outside our nation’s capital, the city of Fairfax has played an important role throughout the history of the Commonwealth of Virginia and the nation. The city’s size of 6.3 square miles and 23,000 residents gives the Fairfax community the feel of a small town, while providing all the amenities of living in a large metropolitan area.

The city enjoys a vibrant and historical downtown, strong business and residential communities, and an exciting variety of arts, cultural, and recreational opportunities unparalleled in the Washington, D.C. area. George Mason University is an integral member of the Fairfax community.

Over the past several years, Fairfax has been recognized for three significant achievements in local government.

  • Forbes magazine ranked the city of Fairfax one of the top three best places to live in the United States for a community of its size.
  • Achieved AAA bond status—the highest credit rating attainable, citing the city’s budget management, strong reserves, and conservative fiscal management.
  • The National Recreation and Parks Association awarded the city of Fairfax a gold medal at its National Congress. Only four jurisdictions have won this award in Virginia since its inception in 1965.

The city of Fairfax has also experienced tremendous progress over the past decade. They have invested in a new community center, new public library, a renovated and expanded city hall, new police station, four public schools, and purchased an additional 56 acres of open space. All of these, combined with an unprecedented private sector interest in the historic downtown and the redevelopment of Fairfax Boulevard, make this one of the most exciting times in the city’s history.

To learn more about Fairfax, VA, visit

The Mason idea—our core institutional characteristics

  • Innovative – we question current thinking and try new ideas. We honor time-tested academic principles while striving to create new forms of education that serve our students better and new paths of research that can uncover solutions to the world’s greatest challenges.
  • Diverse – we bring together a multitude of people and ideas in everything that we do. Our culture of inclusion, our multidisciplinary approach, and our global perspective, make us more effective educators and scholars.
  • Entrepreneurial – we put ideas into action. We educate students to create as well as carry out jobs; become agents of positive change; and add value through government or business, for profit or nonprofit organizations, academia, or the arts. We pursue discoveries that can make a difference in the world. We help our community thrive socially, economically, and culturally.
  • Accessible – we are an open and welcoming community. We partner with public and private organizations in our region and around the world. We proactively engage with our community. We define our success by how many talented students with potential we serve, not how many we leave out.


A public, comprehensive, research university established by the Commonwealth of Virginia in the National Capital Region, we are an innovative and inclusive academic community committed to creating a more just, free, and prosperous world.


  • Our Students Come First – our top priority is to provide students with a transformational learning experience that helps them grow as individuals, scholars, and professionals.
  • Diversity Is Our Strength – we include and embrace a multitude of people and ideas in everything we do and respect differences.
  • Innovation Is Our Tradition – we strive to find new and better ways to deliver on our mission while honoring time-tested academic values.
  • We Honor Freedom of Thought and Expression – we protect the freedom of all members of our community to seek truth and express their views.
  • We Are Careful Stewards – we manage the economic and natural resources entrusted to us efficiently and sustainably.
  • We Act with Integrity – we hold ourselves to the highest ethical standards as educators, scholars, students, and professionals.
  • We Thrive Together – we nurture a positive and collaborative environment that contributes to the well-being and success of every member.

Strategic Plan

Our Commitments – areas that will drive George Mason University’s attention, innovation, and investments over the next decade

  • Innovative Learning: we will apply new and emerging learning technologies, environments, and methods to improve learning effectiveness and student completion, and to better serve the evolving needs of students, working professionals, and public, private, and nonprofit organizations.
  • Research of Consequence: we will expand research as a central element of our mission; we will work to translate our discoveries into interventions and applications with social, cultural, and economic impact.
  • Economic and Cultural Engine: we will act as a catalyst for the economic and cultural vibrancy of our region; as a growing source of talent in high-demand disciplines; as an incubator of business and social enterprises; as a hub of life-long learning, arts and athletics; and as a research and learning partner for public, private and nonprofit organizations.
  • Engagement with the World: we will prepare our students to thrive in a global context by infusing global awareness, citizenship values, and learning opportunities across all fields; and we will partner with other organizations in solving global problems where our impact will be highest.
  • Sound Investment: we will be a valuable investment for our students, taxpayers, and donors by focusing on outcomes, operational efficiency, and affordability. Specifically, we will expand the number of graduates, the career opportunities for our graduates, the impact of our research, and the value we provide to our community; we will be sensitive to trends in household income in our region in making decisions about tuition and financial aid.
  • Enriching Work Environment: we will invest in recruiting, retaining, and developing talented and diverse faculty and academic and professional staff. We will create a vibrant campus life in which all members can grow and thrive.
  • Foundation for the Future: we will aggressively seek additional sources of funding through higher levels of philanthropy, expanded online certificate and executive programs, research grants, and the commercialization of intellectual property. We will also increase our engagement with our alumni, strengthen the Mason brand nationally and internationally, and effectively communicate Mason’s value to stakeholders throughout Virginia and the National Capital Region.

Ángel Cabrera, President 

Ángel Cabrera is in his seventh year as president of George Mason University. Before becoming Mason’s sixth president in 2012, Cabrera served as dean of IE Business School in Madrid and as president of Thunderbird School of Global Management (now part of Arizona State University). Cabrera is the first native of Spain to serve as president of an American university.

As a business educator, Cabrera played a key role in advancing professional ethics, internationalization, and corporate social responsibility. As a senior advisor to the United Nations Global Compact, in 2007 he was the lead author of the Principles for Responsible Management Education, now adopted by more than 700 schools around the world.

The World Economic Forum named Cabrera a “Global Leader for Tomorrow” in 2002, a “Young Global Leader” in 2005, and chair of the Global Agenda Council for entrepreneurship in 2008. In 2004, Businessweek named him one of 25 “Stars of Europe.” Cabrera was an Aspen Institute Henry Crown Fellow in 2008 and a Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting topic leader in 2010.

Cabrera holds a telecommunications engineering degree from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (BS and MS in computer and electrical engineering) and an MS and PhD in psychology and cognitive science from Georgia Tech, which he attended as a Fulbright Scholar.

In 2014, Cabrera received an honorary degree from Miami-Dade College, and in 2018, he received an honorary doctorate from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. The Carnegie Corporation of New York named Cabrera to its 2017 class of “Great Immigrants.”

David Wu, Provost 

David Wu is Provost and Executive Vice President of George Mason University. Since his appointment in 2014, Provost Wu has launched important initiatives at Mason, including the establishment of the Science and Technology campus in Prince William County, the creation of campus-wide multidisciplinary initiatives, and the formation of comprehensive partnerships with Inova health system and UVA. Despite the climate of declining state support, he was able to build a world-class senior leadership team, streamline academic administration, and implement a market-responsive budgetary system, all while managing organizational changes and positioning the university for top quality research and education. In 2016, Mason entered the rank of Carnegie tier-one research universities.

Prior to joining Mason, Dr. Wu was dean of the Rossin College of Engineering and holder of the Lee A. Iacocca endowed chair at Lehigh University. Serving the deanship for over a decade, Dr. Wu led a period of unprecedented expansion and renewal for the college, recruited over 40% of the faculty, created over 12 new interdisciplinary programs, and built substantial academic and research space. At the conclusion of his tenure as Dean, engineering alumni established the S. David Wu Endowed Scholarship in honor of his accomplishments.

Provost Wu is an accomplished scholar in systems engineering and operations research. As a fellow of IIE, he published extensively and served as editor or editorial board member on several leading journals in his field. He currently serves on the board of overseers for Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering, and the advisory boards for the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) and the National Taiwan University. In 2015, he was recognized with the prestigious Tien Educational Leadership Award.

Provost Wu was a visiting professor at the University of Pennsylvania, and HKUST. He received his MS and PhD from the Pennsylvania State University.

The Academic Program

Mason offers 81 undergraduate degrees, 88 master’s degrees, and a law degree at its Fairfax, Arlington, Prince William, and Loudoun County campuses.

Mason also offers a variety of study abroad options through its Center for Global Education.

The student-faculty ratio is 16:1, and the average class size ranges from 25 to 35 students.

Admission to the Honors College is based on a holistic review of each student’s academic performance as well as any other information included in the general application, such as rigor of coursework, standardized test scores, class rank, essay response, teacher recommendations, outstanding leadership, and commitment to community service. Admission to the Honors College requires an application and is open to both freshmen and transfer students.

Approximately 20 students each year are named University Scholars, Mason’s highest academic distinction, which includes a full-tuition scholarship.

The 3+3 Accelerated Program offers highly motivated George Mason University undergraduate students a fast track to earn both a bachelor’s degree and a law degree in six, rather than seven, years of study.

The Student Body

2017 – 2018 Facts and Figures

New Undergrad, Degree-Seeking Fall 2017

First-Time Freshmen3,489
New Transfers 2,877

First Generation Students Fall 2017

First-Time Freshmen38 percent
Undergraduate Degree-Seeking39 percent

Students Living On Campus Fall 2017

Degree-Seeking Undergraduates 5,899
Graduate Students163
Other Students167

Students Fall 2017 Enrollment

Total Enrollment (Including Mason Korea)36,297
Total Enrollment (US Campus Only)35,960

Student Profile, Fall 2017 (US Campus Only)

By Student Level
Undergraduate Degree-Seeking24,372
Graduate Degree-Seeking Certificates495
Graduate Degree-Seeking Master's 6,882
Graduate Degree-Seeking Doctoral2,154
Professional (Law)553
Nondegree-Seeking Undergraduate 615
Nondegree-Seeking Graduate889

By Course Load

Full-Time Enrollment (68 percent)24,626
Part-Time Enrollment (32 percent)11,334

By Domicile

In-State Students (81 percent)29,059
Out-of-State Students (19 percent)6,901

By Ethnicity

Black or African American3,781
Hispanic / Latino4,334
Native American / Alaska Native53
Native Hawaiian / Pacific Islander100
Two or More1,368
Not Reported1,131
Non-Resident International3,025

Degree Programs Offered

Graduate (Master's - 89; Doctoral - 39) 128
Professional (Law) 1


Full-time Instructional Faculty Headcount1,306
Full-time Research Faculty Headcount164
Part-time Faculty FTE421.4

Tuition and Fees Fall 2017

In-State Undergraduate$11,924/year
Out-State Undergraduate$34,370/year
In-State Graduate$14,480/year
Out-State Graduate$34,184/year
In-State Law School$25,351/year
Out-State Law School$40,737/year

Financial Aid Profile FY17

Students Receiving Aid (60 percent)20,820
Average Grant$6,983
Average Loan$12,859
Average Work Study$2,127
Student Aid Grand Total$301.5 million

Fiscal Year

FY17 Annualized Student FTE29,400 (Target)
FY18 Total Operating Budget$1,014.2 million
FY18 Research Expenditures (budgeted)$104.7 million

Benefits Overview

Benefits provided to employees at George Mason University include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Medical and Dental Benefits
  • Flexible Spending Accounts
  • Employee Assistance Programs
  • Life, Long-Term Care, and Disability Insurance
  • Maternity/Paternity Leave
  • Holiday Leave
  • Employee Tuition Waiver
  • Disability, Sick, Family, and Medical Leave
  • Retirement Plans

For more information:

Application & Nomination

Review of applications will begin immediately and 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 Kendra E. Dane at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the George Mason University website at:

George Mason University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, committed to promoting inclusion and equity in its community. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, or protected veteran status.