Vacancy- Dean, Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work

Wilfrid Laurier University

Wilfrid Laurier University is seeking a collaborative decision-maker and mentor as its Dean, Faculty of Social Work.

Wilfrid Laurier University and its campuses are located on the Haldimand tract, traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishnaabe and Haudenosaunee peoples. This land is part of the Dish with One Spoon Treaty between the Haudenosaunee and Anishnaabe peoples and symbolizes the agreement to share, protect our resources and not to engage in conflict.

It’s a great time to join the Laurier team. The university’s new 2019-2024 Strategy, Today. Tomorrow. Together. focuses on two distinct themes – thriving community and future-readiness – and positions Laurier to address societal and sector challenges and harness opportunities by leveraging foundational strengths in academic excellence, research, partnerships, and community.

Wilfrid Laurier University is a leading Canadian university. Its holistic approach to learning integrates innovative programming with hands-on experience outside the classroom. Through its community of researchers, leaders and educators, Laurier has built a reputation as a world-class institution known for its academic excellence and global impact. In acknowledgement of its exemplary workplace policies and programs, and its commitment to sustainability and lifelong learning, Laurier was named one of the Waterloo Area’s Top Employers in 2021. Laurier specializes in the humanities and social sciences, business and economics, music, science, social work, education, and theology.

The Faculty of Social Work has an international reputation for excellence in teaching, research, and field education. The Faculty offers social work programs at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. All graduate programs are offered in person at Laurier’s Kitchener location. The part-time Master of Social Work programs (with the exception of the Indigenous Field of Study) are available online. The newest Bachelor of Social Work program, located at Laurier’s Brantford campus, offers a generalist degree with a unique focus on Indigenous issues. The Master of Social Work program has an overarching framework of social justice, equity, inclusivity and reflexivity, and provides students flexibility in choosing the direction of their learning in micro and/or macro social work practice. The Indigenous Field of Study in the MSW program is rooted in a wholistic Indigenous worldview and includes the teachings by Indigenous elders, a traditional circle process and Indigenous ceremonies.  The Social Work PhD program provides students with opportunities for advanced scholarship and professional growth. The program is designed to lead students into leadership roles in social work in postsecondary education and in policy, and to lead students to research and specialized practice in governmental and human service organizations. In addition to its many scholarly and program strengths, the Faculty of Social Work is an open, accessible, warm, welcoming, and collaborative place. Students, staff, and faculty all speak to this, and all affirm the importance of culture and of the close relationships that exist between and among all members of the Laurier Social Work community at both campuses.

The Dean provides bold, inspiring, and collaborative leadership to the Faculty of Social Work, including leadership of accreditation, and is a community-builder for the Faculty and Laurier’s student-centred academic mandate. The Dean promotes highly innovative approaches to social work practice, education and research, partnerships, and curriculum development. The Dean and Faculty are deeply committed to decolonization and Indigenization, anti-racist and anti-oppressive social work practice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. The Dean ensures a vision for the future of the Faculty, including sustainable growth, develops new partnerships, and recruits and mentors diverse full-time, field instructors, and contract teaching faculty, and staff.

The ideal candidate will hold a doctoral degree and at least one social work degree, along with experience in the field of social work and a scholarly record consistent with an appointment at the rank of Associate Professor or Professor with tenure. Reporting to the Provost & Vice-President: Academic, the Dean of the Faculty of Social Work is responsible for the collaborative leadership and administration of all aspects of the operation of the Faculty, including budget and fund development. As a member of the Vice-President: Academic’s Advisory Council, the Dean is a senior administrator of Laurier who, along with other deans, fosters an environment where excellence in teaching and research can flourish in Laurier’s multi-campus, multi-community environment.

The Faculty is eager to welcome a Dean who understands the concept of wholistic/integrative practices, appreciates the inherent relationship between micro and macro practices, and employs principles of empowerment, social justice, inclusion, and wholism in their social work research, practice, and pedagogy. Integrative practices refer to an analysis of the ways lived experience of Indigenous identity, race, class, culture, gender, (dis)ability, sexual identity, gender identity, and other social locations are produced and shaped by systemic, cultural, and interpersonal experiences and inequalities. The Dean provides authentic and thoughtful leader to support curricular initiatives, teaching, research, partnerships, outreach, and recruitment of high-quality faculty and students. Most important to the Faculty, is a Dean who puts students, faculty, and staff at the forefront of all decisions to ensure that social work programs offered by Laurier are creating the most impact.

Wilfrid Laurier University endeavors to fill positions with qualified candidates who have a combination of education, experience, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position while demonstrating Laurier’s Employee Success Factors ( laurier/employer-philosophy.html).

Equity, diversity and creating a culture of inclusion are part of Laurier’s core values and central to the Laurier Strategy. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities,  and from persons of any minority sexual and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would  like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives. Candidates from other equity seeking groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact Equity & Accessibility. We have strived to make our application process accessible, however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources. Contact information can be found at Apply-/

Consideration of candidates, by the search committee, will begin in late March 2021. For further information and the full executive briefing document, please contact Jessa Chupik and Michael Naufal at