Dean, Faculty of Arts

  • Kwantlen Polytechnic University
  • Surrey, BC, Canada
  • Mar 09, 2022
Full time Art & Art History Humanities: Other Political Science & International Relations Social & Behavioral Sciences Deans & Directors

Job Description


Dean, Faculty of Arts

As Canada’s only polytechnic university, we offer you the opportunity to make a positive impact on your community through a meaningful career working in a collaborative and inclusive culture. Join us and put your thoughts into action.

About Kwantlen Polytechnic University

At Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) we combine academic excellence with practical, hands-on and experiential learning opportunities that prepare our graduates for successful and rewarding careers, while also providing them with the critical understanding necessary for good citizenship.
We ensure that our graduates are prepared for a lifetime of learning and re-learning so they can adapt to the fast pace of change in the workplace and in society at large.
Located in the Lower Mainland region of British Columbia, KPU offers a diverse range of credentials – including certificates, citations, diplomas and bachelor’s degrees – designed to successfully meet the evolving needs of regional and global employment markets. We offer work-integrated and service learning, connections to business and industry, and a supportive learning environment.
Our post-baccalaureate and graduate diplomas further enhance opportunities for working professionals to augment their knowledge and skills.
With programs in Arts, Business, Science and Horticulture, Health, Design, Trades and Technology, English language studies, adult upgrading and qualifying studies, KPU has proudly served the South Fraser Region of the Lower Mainland since 1981.  
KPU has five campuses: three in Surrey, and one each in Richmond and Langley, with nearly 1,500 employees and over 20,000 students.

We work, study, and live in a region south of the Fraser River which overlaps with the unceded traditional and ancestral lands of the Kwantlen, Musqueam, Katzie, Semiahmoo, Tsawwassen, Qayqayt and Kwikwetlem peoples.

Proudly sharing the name of the Kwantlen First Nation, the word 'Kwantlen' means Tireless Runner, and is reflected in the university's motto: "through tireless effort, knowledge, and understanding." The representation of a wolf and salmon in KPU's Coat of Arms, was created by former KPU Fine Arts student, Brandon Gabriel, nephew of the hereditary Chief of the Kwantlen People, Chief Marilyn Gabriel.

The Position

KPU is inviting applications for the Dean, Faculty of Arts.  This position will be a 5-year term with the option to renew for a second term.

Students in the Faculty of Arts examine contemporary and interconnected social and cultural issues through the humanities, social sciences, and fine and digital arts in experiential programs that include service and community-engaged learning, research, practicums, field schools, and co-op placements. 

The Dean of the Faculty of Arts oversees 23 departments and disciplines which encourage students to develop a deep and holistic understanding of our world today—from anthropology, political science, and criminology to fine arts, English, and philosophy. A recent addition to the Faculty of Arts is a partnership with Center for Entertainment Arts which offers 5 programs (1 certificate and 4 diplomas) in the digital entertainment arts including animation, visual effects, and game development.

For more information about the Faculty of Arts, please visit our website at:


Reporting to the Provost and Vice President Academic, the Dean, Faculty of Arts is responsible for the strategic leadership and ongoing operation of the Faculty of Arts at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU). This includes long-term strategic planning, academic development, and the collaborative management of the Faculty’s financial, administrative, and human resources. The Dean plays a major role in encouraging relationships between KPU and the external community. The Dean also has a commitment to academic excellence, and to advance new programming opportunities, the quality and content of programs, courses, initiatives, and the student learning experience.  A leader in efforts to decolonize approaches to education, the Dean also enables the resurgence of Indigenous agency in learning activities, while also paying attention to anti-racism, equity, diversity, and inclusion in all aspects of the Faculty. The Dean of Arts ensures that a positive culture exists within the administration and the faculty to provide students with a high-quality education and high-quality services so that the student experience at Kwantlen Polytechnic University is a positive one.

Want to know more? 

Please see the Executive Profile and Job Description located on our website:


The Location:

The Faculty of Arts has a presence on all of KPU’s campuses as well as various field sites.  The Dean’s office operates from our Surrey campus, however intercampus travel is required. Due to the current pandemic, remote working is also required.


Preferred and Required Qualifications

Who are we looking for?

  • Ability to advance the quality and content of programs, courses, initiatives, and student learning experiences.
  • Demonstrated ability to provide transparent leadership and to support change management, analyze situations, and develop informed and effective solutions.
  • A record of academic achievement appropriate for a senior faculty appointment in one of the disciplines represented by the Faculty.
  • Knowledge of current and emerging trends in the Arts, Arts education, and Arts related research.
  • Demonstrated in-depth knowledge of the post-secondary organizational and policy environment and relevant experience in academic administration and academic labor relations.
  • Demonstrated experience in strategic planning, program planning, project management, budget development and oversight as well as academic organization and administration.
  • Successful track record in working with others, both individually and in a team setting to identify issues and develop consensus to achieve goals, and objectives, through teamwork and participatory decision making.
  • Demonstrated commitment to Indigenous cultural safety and humility, reconciliation, and decolonization.
  • Demonstrated commitment to anti-racism, equity, diversity, and inclusiveness (EDI) initiatives.
  • Demonstrated ability to build leadership capacity in the Faculty of Arts by hiring, mentoring, and supporting others.
  • Energetic leader who values empathy and ethics, demonstrates integrity and credibility, shows sound judgment, fosters inclusivity, and establishes a trusting and supportive environment.
  • Excellent administrative and organizational skills applicable to operational and logistical tasks.
  • Intercampus travel is required, possession of a valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle is preferred.


What education & experience should you have?

  • A Ph.D. in a related discipline, or an earned doctoral or terminal degree in a related field, is required.
  • Five or more years of relevant leadership experience as well as a minimum of five years of faculty experience preferably within a post-secondary environment.
  • A relevant combination of education and experience will be considered.
  • Experience working in a unionized academic environment in a complex context.
  • A broad understanding of higher education issues within post-secondary education.

Application Details

Note to Applicants:

Does this role sound like it was made for you, yet you don’t check every box?

We at KPU understand that experiences and qualifications may look differently for everyone and, if this job description is of interest to you, we encourage you to apply.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University welcomes and encourages applications from equity deserving groups and diverse experiences including, but not limited to, Indigenous people, racialized people, people with disabilities, and members of the 2S/LGBTQIA+ community.

If there are any barriers that you are experiencing or an accommodation that we can provide to support you through the application process, please reach out to us at

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

We thank all applicants for their interest in employment with KPU. Only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University is committed to protecting the safety and welfare of employees, students, and the general public, and upholding the reputation and integrity of the University. For this reason, final applicants will be asked to undergo a background check. 

Position will remain open until filled, but candidates will be reviewed on April 1, 2022. All applications must be submitted via the online Career Centre - email applications will not be considered. 


For inquiries or recommendations related to this position, please contact:

Kim Hunter
Human Resources Business Partner


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Application Deadline

Position will remain open until filled, but candidates will be reviewed on April 1, 2022. All applications must be submitted via the online Career Centre - email applications will not be considered.