Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Jobs: What Community Colleges Want

If you have friends or colleagues looking for a teaching job at a community college, here is some good advice from Georgia Perimeter College's Rob Jenkins. I've excerpted pieces of the two articles - both are worth a read. Emphasis added. What Community Colleges Want - Chronicle.com
Based on my experience, I think search committees are seeking five characteristics [sic]

First and foremost, search committees are looking for candidates who are clearly qualified for the position advertised. If you're not clearly qualified — in a way that is both well documented and easy to demonstrate — the committee probably won't even consider you.


[sic] the next thing search committees look for in reviewing the applicants is good teachers. Very good teachers. Because, as has been discussed ad infinitum in a variety of forums, including this one, teaching is what a faculty career at a community college is all about.

What Community Colleges Want, Part 2 - Chronicle.com
three additional characteristics we seek in a faculty candidate: an understanding of the community-college mission, a willingness to work that extends beyond the classroom, and a healthy respect for collegiality.

Speaking as someone who has served on more than a few search committees, I would have to say the main problem with most applicants is that they seem to have no idea what a community college is all about. That ignorance can manifest itself in the candidate's application materials — for instance, a cover letter written for a job at a research university — and again during the interview process.


Another quality that search committees look for is a willingness to jump right into the life of the institution beyond the classroom and share in the myriad tasks that go hand in hand with teaching at a community college.


Finally, the experienced faculty members who make up the search committee are looking, individually and collectively, for good colleagues.

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