Vice President for Academic Affairs

🇺🇸 Bel Air, MD

🕑 Full-Time


💻 Other

🗓️ August 1st, 2023

Higher Ed ATD
Harford Community College in Bel Air, Maryland, seeks a visionary, collaborative, and student-centered leader to serve as the College’s next Vice President for Academic Affairs (VPAA). The VPAA is the College’s Chief Academic Officer and provides leadership to Academic Affairs by expanding educational access, driving educational excellence, fostering partnerships with external stakeholders, and ensuring student success and completion.

The Institution: Since its founding in 1957, Harford Community College has served as the anchor institution for higher education in Harford County, Maryland. Harford is a vibrant, open-access institution offering more than 140 affordable degree, certificate, and career and workforce programs to more than 6,300 full- and part-time students, as well as community education courses to nearly 6,000 students a year. Harford provides the tools and platforms for students to discover who and what they want to be and to see their aspirations develop into realities. The College promotes economic growth in Harford County by helping students increase their employability, supplying trained workers to county businesses and industries, employing more than 1,000 faculty and staff, and purchasing local goods and services.

Harford’s main campus is located on 352 beautiful acres near the vibrant town of Bel Air, and it also offers workforce and entrepreneurial training programs at its Edgewood site. Harford has established important strategic partnerships with numerous area businesses and institutions, including the U.S. Army’s Aberdeen Proving Ground, (the County’s largest employer) and the University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health. The College also enjoys an excellent relationship with Harford County Public Schools (HCPS), offering dual-enrollment opportunities to high school students and enrolling approximately 30% to 35% of recent HCPS graduates annually. The College and HCPS have also partnered on a joint dual enrollment effort that ensures all Harford County Public School’s students graduate with the necessary skills and experience to succeed in today’s most in-demand careers. The dual enrollment program offers flexible and dynamic learning options, enabling students to explore career paths and areas of study while still in high school, with the option to continue their coursework at the College —earning an associate degree, certificate, or licensure that will transfer to a four-year institution or lead to immediate employment. This important partnership provides the structure for high school graduates to become the backbone of Harford County’s workforce.

Additionally, Towson University’s Northeast Extension (TUNE) is located on Harford’s campus and offers transfer opportunities to students seeking bachelor’s degrees via 2+2 articulation agreements in eleven in-demand fields; articulation agreements include nursing, business, and education. Harford is also part of the Achieving the Dream (ATD) consortium, a network of colleges, coaches and advisors, state policy teams, and investors and partners, committed to helping all community college students access economic opportunities to achieve their dreams. The College is beginning its fifth year as a member of ATD and is working to operationalize its student success initiatives via its Strategic Plan. Four ATD themes have been included as objectives in the Strategic Plan: course modality and persistence, developmental course completion, onboarding, and equity. Harford Community College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Its accreditation was reaffirmed in 2022, and its next self-study evaluation will be in 2029-2030. For fiscal year 2024, Harford is operating under a balanced budget of approximately $58.1M, and the Harford Foundation, which directs fundraising and alumni outreach efforts, reached $18.3 million dollars in net assets in fiscal year 2023. More information about the College may be found at

The Position: Reporting directly to the President and serving on the President’s Cabinet, the VPAA at Harford Community College serves as the Chief Academic Officer and provides visionary leadership in the areas of teaching, learning, and academic and workforce program development. This position is also focused on expanding educational access while driving educational excellence. The VPAA develops and implements strategies to enhance the quality and relevance of academic programs, ensures alignment of academic programs with the College’s dual transfer and workforce development missions, and fosters a culture of innovation, creativity, and continuous improvement in teaching and learning. In support of this, the Vice President champions assessment strategies and collaborates with Institutional Effectiveness to establish Key Performance Indicators to drive program improvement and student success and completion. The VPAA directly supervises and evaluates approximately ten individuals, including five academic Deans, the Associate Dean for Academic Operations, the Associate Vice President for Workforce Development and Community Education, the Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning, the Library Director, and an Executive Assistant. Among this group, the VPAA promotes a culture of collaboration and excellence and provides leadership development opportunities to support professional growth. Additionally, the Vice President supports the hiring, training, and development of faculty and staff within Academic Affairs. The VPAA supports accreditation efforts, including specialized accreditation, ensures compliance with relevant accreditation standards, and develops processes to measure the effectiveness of education in meeting local and regional workforce needs.

The VPAA also serves as an external advocate for the College and cultivates partnerships with local businesses, industry, external organizations, and other key stakeholders to further ensure alignment between programs, the College’s academic priorities, and the needs of the community. Additionally, the Vice President serves as a liaison with Harford County Public Schools to strengthen dual enrollment programs and ensure academic alignment. The VPAA also supports the development of articulation agreements to facilitate seamless transfer pathways for students; the College currently has articulation agreements with over 25 regional colleges and universities. The VPAA also ensures the availability of resources and technologies that support effective teaching and learning, provides leadership in leveraging emerging technologies and instructional best practices, and oversees key academic support areas such as the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL), the Library, and eLearning. The Vice President also develops and manages budgets that support the College’s strategic priorities as they pertain to Academic Affairs and optimizes resource allocation to enhance teaching, learning, and student support services. Additional expectations of the Vice President are that they adopt a student-focused approach to problem-solving; engage colleagues in regular communication and foster open dialogue and the exchange of ideas; demonstrate an awareness of diverse cultural, social, and demographic differences, and work to create an inclusive learning and working environment that promotes equity, dignity, and respect for all students, faculty, staff, administrators, and the campus community at large; embrace and demonstrate a commitment to the College’s mission, vision, values, and goals; and participate in the life of the College and in mission-driven initiatives, including activities that are in addition to core job responsibilities and based on the needs of the institution. Links to a full job description and an organizational chart can be found below.

Job Description:
Organizational Chart:

Qualifications: The next VPAA will possess a doctorate in an academic discipline, a doctorate in other fields, including but not limited to higher education administration or community college leadership, or a law degree. They will have at least seven years of experience in the higher education field. They will also possess a minimum of five years of full-time teaching experience (this does not need to be consecutive years). Additionally, the VPAA will be an excellent communicator who is able to engage and build relationships with colleagues from across the College as well as external stakeholders. The VPAA will be collaborative and inclusive and will demonstrate an understanding of and affinity for the College’s mission as well as a commitment to student success. They will also have the capacity to promote the values of inclusion, civility, and principled leadership and will demonstrate a positive attitude.

Location: Located just 25 miles northeast of Baltimore, Bel Air, and wider Harford County offer a lively and welcoming atmosphere. Residents enjoy a moderate cost of living in urban, suburban, and rural settings, as well as access to numerous attractions. As the Harford County Seat, Bel Air is centrally located and provides a combination of urban amenities and small-town charm. The town is home to the Bel Air Festival for the Arts, the Maryland State BBQ Bash, lush parks and walking trails, unique museums that illuminate the County’s rich history, and a diverse array of restaurants and boutiques. Northern Harford County is a bucolic region with a distinct agricultural heritage where residents can visit farms to handpick seasonal fruit, explore vineyards and wineries, hike Rocks State Park, and attend outdoor festivals and events, including the Fiore Wine and Jazz Festival and the Darlington Apple Festival. The County’s southern edge sits along the beautiful Chesapeake Bay and is populated by waterfront communities that share a deep maritime tradition, including the historic town of Havre de Grace, which is home to the Havre de Grace Maritime Museum and Susquehanna State Park. In addition to its proximity to Baltimore, Harford County is less than two hours by car from the cities of Washington, D.C.; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Wilmington, Delaware.

Application: Candidates should submit only a cover letter and résumé/CV to RPA Inc. at For a confidential discussion or to make a nomination, please contact Kira Heath, Search Manager, or Isaac Karaffa, Vice President and Senior Consultant, RPA Inc., at the email address above. The review of applications will begin on September 21, 2023, and first-round interviews will commence thereafter.