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Director Indigenous Nations Studies Program

Please see Special Instructions for more details.

To complete the application process, please submit: • Letter of application (Cover Letter). • Current curriculum vita. • Vision statement regarding the future of INST (3-5 pages) (Other 2). • Three letters of recommendation (Professional References). • Statement of past community engagement within Indigenous communities (3 pages) (Other 4). • Statement of Teaching Philosophy and Courses Taught (2 pages). • Writing Sample (no more than 30 pages). • (Optional) Teaching Evaluations (Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness).

Position Announcement

Position Details

Proposed Start Date 09/01/2018
Classification Title Unclassified Excluded
Rank A - Professor
Working Title Director Indigenous Nations Studies Program
Position Number D94184
Representation UX - Unclassified Excluded
Renewable Renewable
Position FTE 1
Tenure Status I - Indefinite Tenure

Position Summary

Brief Description of PSU/School/Dept

Located in Portland, Oregon, one of the nation’s most livable cities, Portland State has an innovative approach to education that combines academic rigor in the classroom with field-based experiences through internships and classroom projects with community partners. The University’s 49 acre downtown campus exhibits Portland State’s commitment to sustainability with green buildings, while many of the 124 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees incorporate sustainability into the curriculum. PSU’s motto, “Let Knowledge Serve the City,” inspires the teaching and research of an accomplished faculty whose work and students span the globe.
The Portland State University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences provides the intellectual foundation for the liberal and professional education of students at Portland State and for the enhancement of the quality of life in the metropolitan area. The College consists of departments across the humanities, social sciences, and sciences.

Position Summary

The Indigenous Nations Studies Program (INST) at Portland State University (PSU) invites applications from tenured senior scholars for the position of Director. PSU is situated in the heart of downtown Portland, Multnomah County, Oregon. Multnomah County rests on traditional homelands of the Multnomah, Kathlamet, Clackamas, bands of Chinook, Tualatin Kalapuya, Molalla and many other Tribes who made their homes along the Columbia River. The Multnomah were a band of Chinooks who lived in this area. PSU wishes to recognize that since time immemorial these have been the lands of the Indigenous peoples of this region.

INST continues to be recognized regionally and nationally for its contributions to decolonizing pedagogy, research and struggles for self-determination for American Indian/Alaska Native and Indigenous peoples worldwide. For nearly two decades the program has offered a minor in Indigenous Nations Studies (formally Native American Studies). Often in conjunction with the Native American Student and Community Center (NASCC), INST has been dedicated to providing a culture of support that cultivates access and retention for both Indigenous students and those of all backgrounds in a climate that is holistic, respectful and affirming. Its importance is further demonstrated by the fact that Portland has the ninth-largest urban American Indian/Alaska Native population in the U.S., and that nine federally recognized Tribes govern themselves within the state of Oregon

The Director will provide administrative leadership and academic vision, and will engage core, affiliated and adjunct faculty in shaping a productive, collegial environment that advances unit goals and objectives. Specifically, the Director will lead efforts to expand the program structurally, including developing a possible partnership with the Institute for Tribal Governance in the Hatfield School of Government at PSU and its Certificate in Tribal Relations, and preparing the case for the establishment of a major in Indigenous and Native American Studies. The Director will cultivate and expand existing relationships with regional Tribal governments and will help them to establish memoranda of understanding with the University. The Director will also provide strong leadership in the promotion of scholarship and external funding, fiscal planning and administration, donor development and relations, in the exploration and development of current and future opportunities for collaboration within and beyond the university. Such external collaborative relationships already exist with both nongovernmental and governmental partners such as the PSU Graduate School of Education, Tribal governments, U.S. agencies, and state and regional governmental agencies.

The ideal candidate will either be an Associate or Full Professor with a doctorate in Indigenous/Native American/American Indian Studies or a demonstrated research focus on Indigenous/Native American/American Indian Studies in a related field. Expertise in one or more of the following areas will be considered an asset: Indigenous ways of knowing and epistemologies (oral, visual and written);
Indigenous science; Tribal critical race theory; the history of Indigenous-settler relations and decolonization; intersectional analysis of Indigenous communities; Indigenous and American Indian/Alaska Native sovereignty and self-determination; and Indigenous recovery, revitalization, and reclamation. The Director will bring greater national recognition to the scholarship, teaching and community engagement of both Portland State’s Indigenous Nations Studies Program and the School of Gender, Race and Nations (SGRN): /. In addition, the ideal candidate’s research interests will also compliment one of the College’s identified research clusters in the areas of Environmental Extremes, Pathways to Social Justice, Community and Ecological Resilience, or Migration studies.

As the Director of INST, the successful applicant will be an integral part of a collaborative leadership team, working closely with the Director of SGRN, and as a member of the SGRN Executive Committee (comprised of the chairs of the Black Studies and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies departments, and the Chicano/Latino Studies and Indigenous Nations Studies programs). SGRN units are committed to the integration of scholarship, teaching and practice contained in its four multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and often transnational departments and programs. The school currently offers a graduate certificate, and is in the process of formulating a vision for a future master’s program.

Primary Activity A - Administrative
Minimum Qualifications

• Doctorate in Indigenous/Native American/American Indian Studies or related field.
• A scholarly record commensurate with the rank of tenured Full Professor or Associate Professor.
• Demonstrated success in an administrative/leadership capacity.
• Demonstrated work experience with interdisciplinary fields, Tribal communities, and community-based research.
• A record of externally-funded research.
• Research focus that may include: Indigenous epistemologies (oral, visual and written); Tribal critical race theory; Indigenous and American Indian/Alaska Native sovereignty; Indigenous science; intersectional analyses of Native communities; Indigenous recovery, revitalization, and reclamation.
• Demonstrated success meeting the needs of diverse student populations and/or reaching out to diverse communities.
• Successful completion of a background check.

Preferred Qualifications
Key Cultural Competencies

• Creates an environment that acknowledges, encourages and celebrates differences.
• Functions and communicates effectively and respectfully within the context of varying beliefs, behaviors, orientations, identities and cultural backgrounds.
• Seeks opportunities to gain experience working and collaborating in diverse, multicultural, and inclusive settings with a willingness to change for continual improvement.
• Adheres to all PSU’s policies including the policies on Prohibited Discrimination & Harassment and the Professional Standards of Conduct.

Environmental Stewardship

Contributes to a culture of environmental stewardship, practices resource conservation, and actively works toward achieving long-term sustainability goals.

Work Days/Hours Monday to Friday 8am-5pm
Total Compensation Range & Benefits Statement

The starting annual salary rate for this position will be commensurate with experience and qualifications with an excellent benefits package including 95% premium paid healthcare; a generous retirement and vacation package; and reduced tuition rates for employee, spouse or dependent at any of the Oregon Public Universities.

Application Instructions

Additional Information
Additional Application Instructions (deadlines, etc.)

To complete the application process, please submit:
• Letter of application (Cover Letter).
• Current curriculum vita.
• Vision statement regarding the future of INST (3-5 pages) (Other 2).
• Three letters of recommendation (Professional References).
• Statement of past community engagement within Indigenous communities (3 pages) (Other 4).
• Statement of Teaching Philosophy and Courses Taught (2 pages).
• Writing Sample (no more than 30 pages).
• (Optional) Teaching Evaluations (Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness).

Does this position require the employee to drive a motor vehicle? No
Background Check Required Yes
Position End Date (if applicable)
If you have questions

Application inquiries should be addressed to Winston Grady-Willis (, Director of School of Gender, Race and Nations and Interim Director of Indigenous Nations Studies Program. Please send all materials electronically through the campus Website: The review process will continue until the position is filled.

Search Details

Posting Close Date
Projected Close Date for Posting Open Until Finalists Identified
Application screening begins 11/21/2017
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Supplemental Questions

Required fields are indicated with an asterisk (*).

  1. * Please name the specific field/discipline in which you received your doctoral degree.

    (Open Ended Question)

  2. * How did you first find out about this position?
    • PSU website
    • Indeed
    • Chronicle of Higher Education
    • Higher Ed Jobs
    • HERCJobs
    • Referral
    • Professional Listserv- please specify in comment box in the next question
    • Professional Journal- please specify in comment box in the next question
    • Other- please specify in comment box in the next question
  3. If you selected Other, please describe.

    (Open Ended Question)

Applicant Documents

Required Documents
  1. Cover Letter
  2. Curriculum Vitae
  3. Other 2 (describe)
  4. Professional References
  5. Other 4 (describe)
  6. Statement of Teaching Philosophy
  7. Writing Sample
Optional Documents
  1. Evidence of Teaching Effectiveness