Job Opening – Associate Director of Academic and Public Engagement (07/2012)

2012 July 31

Williams College Museum of Art
Williamstown, Massachusetts

The Williams College Museum of Art seeks an Associate Director of Academic and Public Engagement. This senior management position develops and leads the institution’s strategic vision for faculty, student, and public participation and engagement.

As a teaching museum, the Williams College Museum of Art advances learning through lively and innovative approaches to art for the students of Williams College and communities beyond the campus. The Williams College Museum of Art has a broad collection of more than 13,000 objects with particular strengths in 19th and 20th century American art, Photography, and Contemporary art. Visit our website:

Reporting to the Director, the Associate Director of Academic and Public Engagement generates a truly interdisciplinary hybrid model at the museum of curatorial/pedagogical practice that combines various professional fields in the arts and other disciplines, communities, and constituencies. He/she leads a newly created team aimed at developing and sustaining innovative strategies to broaden and deepen participation by the museum’s publics with our collections, exhibitions, spaces, and history. Such strategies might include college courses, programs, artist residencies, web-based resources, publications, exhibitions, and more. He/she also provides campus-wise advocacy and leadership around the most current issues of museum pedagogy, education, and social practice and works to foster public and student engagement grounded in dialogue, creative expression, and collaboration. The Associate Director manages a staff of four.

Key responsibilities include:

Research, develop and formalize sustainable and rigorous ways the museum can serve as a learning laboratory for undergraduates and graduate level art history students around curatorial and museum-based practice and research.

Actively identify and cultivate opportunities and partnerships with college faculty and students, artists, and others that become platforms for intellectual and social participation and creative expression by students and faculty, both inside and outside of the college “classroom.”

Provide strategic vision for how the museum’s physical space, online presence, and resources promote social and intellectual participation by students, faculty, and the public, including the museum store, galleries, lobby spaces, blog, and online collections. Contribute significantly to training of museum security guards to ensure the public feels welcomed by staff. Oversee the museum’s store manager.

In collaboration with peers at MASS MoCA and the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, co-direct Kidspace, the experimental art gallery, studio, and education program that is designed to deepen art experiences for families, k-12 students, and teachers.

Provide strategic vision and coherence for materials, programs and initiatives that interpret the museum’s collections, exhibitions, and programs, including training resources for student docents (Museum Associates), oversight of museum interns, school and teacher programs, and the Student Advisory Committee.

Collaborating closely with the college’s Office of Communications, provide strategic vision for how the museum presents itself to its public, across promotional and communication materials, programs, and the website. Ensure these materials and presentations reflect the museum’s sensibility, identity and brand. Oversee the museum’s Public Relations Coordinator.

Pursue and assist the Grants Manager in identifying and crafting grant proposals and funding strategies that capitalize on the museum’s initiatives around academic and public engagement and education.

Prepare and maintain budgets for public and academic programs, compiling program statistics as needed.

Play a lead role in long-range institutional planning efforts.


  • Advanced degree in art history or social practice, curatorial studies, education, or related discipline.
  • 5-7 years experience in museum, gallery, or higher education. College teaching experience a plus.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of art and art history.
  • Demonstrated creativity and innovation in developing and leading programs or exhibitions engaging a broad public, in particular college students.
  • Commitment to making art accessible to a broad public by way of new and innovative strategies, especially those involving web-based platforms, social media, etc.
  • Excellent written communication and public speaking skills.
  • Ability and experience to effectively lead a department and manage complex budgets, assignments, and staff.

For optimal consideration, please submit resume materials by August 31, 2012; review of resumes will continue until position is filled. Job # 300829.

Employment at Williams is contingent on the verification of background information submitted by the applicant, including the completion of a criminal record check, and education when applicable.

Please send a cover letter and resume including job # 300829 to:

Office of Human Resources, Williams College 100 Spring Street, Suite 201, Williamstown, MA 01267
Phone: (413) 597-2681, e-mail:

Beyond meeting fully its legal obligations for non-discrimination, Williams College is committed to building a diverse and inclusive community where members from all backgrounds can live, learn and thrive.

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