Cluster Hire Proposals (December 4, 2017)

December 4, 2017

Dear colleagues –

I write to you as chairs of the academic units of the FAS to confirm our plan for cluster hire proposals. As I hope you have heard from me during my visits to the departments and programs this fall, we hope our proposal process for cluster hires is very simple. As a reminder, we define a cluster hire as 2-5 individuals. A cluster could include faculty from any rank; a successful cluster hire would be one that includes bringing faculty excellence and diversity to Yale. Although some departmental slot resources will be used in this process, the FRC has also set aside pool slots for these clusters in order to facilitate these hires.

The proposals are due by email to me (kathryn.lofton@yale.edu) with cc to bethany.zemba@yale.edu by 5 p.m. on Wed., January 24. Proposals should include:

1 - a paragraph describing the academic area that unites this cluster of faculty
2 - a paragraph describing why Yale is a particularly good place for these faculty to flourish
3 - a paragraph describing a strategic vision on how this proposal would promote faculty excellence and diversity
4 - the CV for each of the members of the proposed cluster

The Faculty Resource Committee (FRC) will consider the cluster hire requests in February and move to facilitate recruitment as soon as is feasible. The plan of the FRC is to develop a queue over the next several years for these hires in conversation with the relevant faculty leaders and chairs who make these proposals.

Factors in the FRC’s evaluation will include the intellectual excitement of the proposal, and its likelihood of success. These factors should be described in paragraphs (1) and (2) as stated above, where we encourage you to describe what these faculty will bring to Yale, and what resources and opportunities at Yale would pull these faculty from their current positions. To assist with the development of your proposal, I invite you to review our university-wide resources on faculty development and diversity.

Recruiting faculty to Yale is not a simple process, and we imagine every proposal will require further conversation between the relevant divisional deans, associate deans, and where relevant the Vice Provost for Research to confirm available resources. But our hope is that the cluster hire process will help us to innovate our use of the pool slot system defined by the report of the FAS Academic Review Committee (ARC). We want to encourage faculty innovation in the development of research areas at Yale. The FRC understands diversity and excellence to be central to the future intellectual innovation of the FAS.

Please do not hesitate to e-mail me or bethany.zemba@yale.edu with any questions.

Best,

Katie

Kathryn Lofton
Deputy Dean for Diversity and Faculty Development
Professor of Religious Studies, American Studies, History and Divinity
Chair, Religious Studies
kathryn.lofton@yale.edu