Strategic Faculty Hiring Initiative

The Provost’s Office actively supports initiatives complementary to the normal hiring process. The Strategic Faculty Hiring Initiative aims to advance the university’s strategic goals:

  1. to create a more diversified faculty, and
  2. to identify employment opportunities for partners and spouses of faculty candidates as well as current members of the faculty.

This support takes the form of cost sharing (50-50 is the norm) in college and department initiatives that position the university to attract and retain highly qualified individuals. This initiative provides cost sharing support in three instances:

  1. For tenured or tenure track positions this support is available to provide bridge funding for positions that are anticipated to become available within the near term, typically in two or three years.
  2. For termed Lecturer or Professor of Practice appointments this support is available for up to a three year term. Part of the proposal for funds to support termed appointments of Lecturers and Professors of Practice should include a discussion of contingency plans to fund the renewal of these appointments with full college and/or departmental funds if there is a recommendation for reappointment.
  3. For Visiting Faculty positions this support is available for one or two years. Per The Rules and Procedures of the Faculty (R&P), Visiting Faculty members are limited to a maximum term of two one-year appointments. {See Section 2.2.3 of R&P for a description of the criteria for specifying the rank of visiting faculty appointments.)

In any of these instances the Provost’s Office may provide up to 50% of the salary for a faculty member for a maximum three years. The hiring department and college are expected to provide the rest of the salary and a plan for transitioning to 100% college/department support after three years for all tenure and tenure track appointments and for Lecturer of Professor or Practice appointments anticipated to extend beyond three years.

Tenure on Initial Appointment

If the candidate selected for strategic hire is tenured at a comparable institution of higher learning and seeks tenure on initial appointment at Lehigh, he or she will be required to submit to his or her prospective home department evidence of excellence in teaching, research and scholarship, and service that would support the award of tenure at Lehigh. Should the department require further information, the department chairperson will contact the candidate who will be asked to supply that information. It is inappropriate for anyone involved in the review process to solicit evaluations of the candidate from any other individuals or groups external to Lehigh without the candidate’s permission.

Each of the tenured voting members of the department in which the candidate is seeking tenure will submit to the department chairperson substantive letters that address the question of whether or not the candidate merits tenure, specifying reasons for the recommendation. These letters will be forwarded to the college dean. Should the dean agree with the department’s judgment that the candidate is tenurable on appointment, the candidate’s dossier will be forwarded to the provost with a recommendation for appointment with tenure. Should the dean disagree with the department’s judgment that the candidate is tenurable on appointment, the dean and the department will meet to discuss the candidate’s tenurability. In the event that the dean and the department fail to agree that the candidate merits tenure, the candidate will not be granted tenure on initial appointment. In the event that the dean and the department come to an agreement that the candidate merits tenure, the candidate’s dossier will be forwarded to the provost. Should the provost judge the candidate untenurable, the candidate will not be granted tenure on initial appointment.

Please contact Deputy Provost for Faculty Affairs, if you wish to discuss an initiative that may qualify for cost sharing under this program.

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