Virginia Commonwealth University
School of the Arts in Qatar
Position: Assistant Professor – Art History Teaching and Research Faculty
Department: Art History Program
Position Number: F15250 and F28460 (Two positions)
Location: Doha, Qatar
Position Begins: August 11, 2013
Review of Applications Begin: The review of applications is ongoing and will continue until position is filled.
VCUQatar (www.qatar.vcu.edu) is the Qatar campus of the prestigious Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Richmond, Virginia. Established in 1998 through a partnership with the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, VCUQatar offers students the opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in fashion design, graphic design, interior design and painting & printmaking; Bachelor of Arts in art history, and, a Master of Fine Arts degree in design studies. Located in Doha, the capital city of Qatar, VCUQatar is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art & Design, The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Council for Interior Design Accreditation. The current student body represents a diverse range of nationalities with students coming from more than 40 different countries.
VCUQatar strives to provide an engaged, learner-centered environment that fosters inquiry, discovery and innovation in a global setting. The university hosts the biennial international design conference Tasmeem Doha and supports the biennial Hamad bin Khalifa Islamic Art Symposium, attracting globally recognized designers, academics and thinkers while fostering sustainable, university-community partnerships that enhance the educational, economic and cultural vitality of Qatar. The university has substantial involvement with the emerging design industries in Qatar and is a significant catalyst for that growth. It has established itself as a center of excellence for education and research in art and design.
VCUQatar has 131 full-time faculty and staff and a student body of 249. VCUQatar was the first campus established in Education City, a unique 2500-acre campus community. Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, Carnegie-Mellon University, Texas A&M University, Weill Cornell Medical College, Northwestern University, HEC Paris and UCL have since joined the university.
Qatar is a liberal, hospitable and progressive country in the Arabian Gulf and remains one of the healthiest economies in the Gulf region. English is the standard second language and the population of Qatar is approximately 1.65 million and growing – 350,000 Qatari, the remainder expatriates. Doha offers all the conveniences found in a contemporary and cosmopolitan city, and also maintains a traditional Arab flavor, evident in the old markets and the city’s Islamic Arab architecture. The Museum of Islamic Art, designed by I.M.Pei opened in November 2008 and the Arab Museum of Modern Art (Mathaf) opened in 2010. The US Embassy considers Qatar among the safest countries in the world for Americans.
VCU-Qatar Art History Program
The BA in Art History at VCU-Qatar is the only undergraduate degree program of its kind in the Gulf region and offers a distinctive concentration in Islamic art within a global perspective. The program is designed to focus on the interchange among the Islamic World, the Western World and the non-Islamic cultures of Asia. Such a degree offers students the opportunity to study the complexity of cultural interchange that has formed the basis of our increasingly globalized modern and contemporary world. It shifts a Western-oriented curriculum prevalent in most university art history programs to one that encompasses a multi-cultural approach. This approach reflects the geographical location and historical involvement of Qatar, which since Antiquity has been part of international trade routes linking both the Central Islamic lands, the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean.
The Art History Program invites applications for two 9-month faculty positions to teach at the undergraduate level in support of the BA in Art History curriculum. The areas of specialization are open. However, preference will be given to candidates who specialize in these two areas: (1) Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern art, or (2) pre-modern Mediterranean world (1250-1800). For the latter position, we are seeking scholars whose teaching and research interests focus on the interrelationship between the European and the Islamic powers in the Mediterranean region, as well as its interactions with cultures of the Near East, Central and South Asia, and the Far East. Applications by scholars researching the Arts of the Book are also strongly encouraged.
The teaching responsibilities will include the introductory surveys of World Art, as well as upper division art history courses in his/her areas of specialization. For the position in the pre-modern Mediterranean world, it is preferred that the applicant have at least three years of experience teaching Islamic Art surveys. The successful candidates will work closely with the Director of the program to develop courses in these areas to support the art history curriculum, and to build an interdisciplinary and collaborative teaching and research environment. The successful candidates must be committed to engage collaboratively with colleagues within the Art History program as well as across disciplines the various design and studio department at VCU-Qatar. An interest in exploring innovative pedagogic strategies in a culturally diverse context is required.
Class sizes are small (typically 10-15:1 ratio) and art history faculty work very closely with students. As teaching faculty, successful candidates are required to maintain office hours to meet with students, serve as academic advisers to students, contribute to the function and educational objectives of the program, provide service to the university, the community in Qatar and the profession, and perform all other duties as assigned. Candidates are required to engage in the development and delivery of significant research, seek publication, and present at international conferences. Art history faculty members are also encouraged to liaise with museums within the Gulf area and facilitate exhibitions.
Successful candidates will join a team of highly collaborative and dynamic faculty members in the Art History Program. Courses offered within this program are consistent with those offered at the Virginia Commonwealth University – Monroe Park Campus in Richmond, Virginia, with the added benefit of a multicultural sensitivity consistent with living and teaching in Doha, Qatar. Our students come from many countries and cultures, as do the faculty and employees members of Virginia Commonwealth University Qatar, so it is imperative successful candidates are able to interact and thrive in such an environment. The successful candidate will be committed to engaging collaboratively with colleagues in this multicultural learning environment.
Successful candidates must demonstrate scholarly and creative activity that makes a contribution to a body of knowledge within the arts, and reflect a high standard of quality and competence. Research is evidenced by scholarly publications, conference presentations, invited talks, curatorial projects, and significant awards recognizing scholarly activity.
- Doctoral degree in art history or related field is required.
- Demonstrated record of excellence in teaching, with a minimum of three (3) years experience teaching at the undergraduate level English-language university settings is required.
- Established record of accomplishments in research or professional work in area of specialization strongly preferred.
- Must possess verbal and written fluency in English, as all courses are taught in English.
- Must have strong collaborative and communication skills, and demonstrate enthusiasm toward teaching and interacting within in a multicultural environment, as a faculty member at VCUQ
- Demonstrated experience working in and fostering a diverse faculty, staff, and student environment or commitment to do so as a faculty member at VCU and VCUQatar.
•Competitive international salary
•Tax protection for U.S. Taxpayers
•30% Off-shore supplement to base salary
•Medical Insurance (100% employer funded premium and employer cost shared options available)
•Fully furnished villa or apartment including wireless internet
•Annual travel allowance to home of record (to include a spouse and dependents relocated to Qatar)
•Monthly transportation allowance
•Educational reimbursement for up to 4 dependent children enrolled in an accredited K-12 program
•International Professional Development and Research Opportunities
Application Process: Qualified applicants should submit electronically the following: Letter of interest; curriculum vitae; research statement; statement on teaching philosophy; scholarly writing sample; unofficial transcripts and names of five references, including email and telephone contact information to Tomaree L. Porter (email@example.com), Human Resources Administrator. Only Electronic submissions will be accepted.
For more information on VCUQatar and this unique international opportunity, please visit www.vcu.edu/arts/employment/qatar
Virginia Commonwealth University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Women, minorities and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.